A HORSHAM Regional Livestock Exchange master plan aims to see roofing installed over the saleyard.
Horsham Rural City Council adopted the master plan at its meeting tonight.
Technical services director John Martin said, in a report to council, that the main outcome of the master plan was the recommendation for roofing at the saleyard.
The report noted that the current unroofed saleyard had a number of problems, which included animal welfare, infrastructure maintenance, water harvesting and presentation of stock.
See page 80 for master plan:
Mr Martin said the master plan will be used to develop a full business case, which will help justify funding. He said a consultant estimated the project to cost $2.22 million.
Mr Martin said the master plan also identified four areas of focus for the exchange to remain viable. These comprised of maintaining a fair market price, investing in capital development, maintaining throughout and embracing best practice.
Councillor David Grimble said the master plan will provide a direction for the livestock exchange for the next 10 years. He said it was important for it to meet market expectations and maintain its reputation.
“Saleyards are the true market indicator and they will always have a role to play,” he said.
“We know clearly that sale yards are under constant pressure through other marketing opportunities, but there will always be a role for saleyards and for Horsham because of the nature of the stock going through the facility.
“It’s important to meet the markets expectations – and reputation is a critical part of maintaining our status as the fourth largest livestock facility in the state.”
Councillor John Robinson said the livestock exchange was a fundamental piece in the puzzle.
“We should look at the sale yards at where this sits in the bigger picture – the saleyards, employment and reputation adds to this picture and ultimately contributes to our wealth in this area,” he said.
“We talk about putting a roof on the saleyard, but this is putting a roof on a bigger area in terms of bringing up our profile.”