Priority Projects Register

Recent announcements by NSW State Government indicate more opportunities for investment in significant community infrastructure projects are opening up.

In an effort to help attract and manage funding opportunities Murrumbidgee Council, at its July meeting, approved the establishment of a Priority Projects Register.

The register will be used as a centralised operational tool in attracting, tracking and managing grant funding from State and Federal Governments as well as other sources. The catalogue builds on recent work to identify and support projects under the 2016 Stronger Communities Fund, in particular the Major Projects Program.

The recommendation comes on top of another announcement by State Government regarding a new funding stream, “Stronger Country Communities”, which opens the door to additional funding for significant projects identified by the community in regional areas.

General Manager Craig Moffitt said a register of priority projects offers Council the opportunity to develop projects that may require internal and external resources such as feasibility studies, plans, cost estimates.

“The Priority Projects Register will also assist Council in submitting competitive applications that are supported by community and Council, particularly where short time-frames for lodgement are required by funding bodies, or where applications must be ‘shovel-ready’ in terms of Development Applications, cost estimates and regulatory approvals,” he said.

“With so many different funding opportunities becoming available we can see the advantages of having a register such as this.

“We need to try and get the biggest return on our funds in terms of economic and community development.

“Council is working to ensure that in terms of co-contributions, we make dollars go as far as possible.

“In the past we have had more projects than dollars. The new funding streams may see some projects advance up the list earlier than expected.

“It’s a balancing act because there are different streams of funding available for different categories of projects, from sports facilities, community halls, to arts and culture.

“There is money available for projects we’ve consulted on and prioritised.

“We know what the community wants and we are working hard to get it. This register will streamline that process so we can start to turn sods and get the infrastructure on the ground.”