Council endorses nine projects for drought funding

Cobar Shire Council has endorsed nine local projects to be funded under the second round of the Australian Government’s Drought Communities Extension Programme.

Council is eligible to apply for $1million in grant funding in Round 2 of the program with projects required to be completed by December 2020.

Of their $1million, Council has allocated that $325,000 be spent on upgrading footpaths and $300,000 has been allocated to a new toilet and shower block at the Dalton Park Horse Sports Complex.

Council has recommended $120,000 be spent to upgrade the bus/taxi shelter in Linsley Street and $100,000 has been earmarked to help fund Cobar’s 150 Years community events.

An amount of $60,000 has been applied for to install a PA system in the main street; $40,000 is to be spent on a photo display in the Heritage Park; $20,000 has been allocated for a shade cover over the barbecue facilities at Dalton Park; and $20,000 has also been allocated to construct an accessibility ramp at the Cobar Country Women’s Association (CWA) building in Linsley Street.

The balance of the $1million allocation, $15,000, is proposed to be spent on the provision of more shade at the Cobar Memorial swimming Pool.

How the $1million was to be spent was discussed at the February Ordinary Council Meeting with Cr Julie Payne calling for some of the money to be allocated to a Dog Agility Park at Ward Oval.

Cr Payne said lot of members of the public have expressed an interest in a dog agility park at Ward Oval which would be a project that could be completed using local businesses and resources.

She suggested the $40,000 allocated to the photo display at the Heritage Park be put towards the dog agility park.

Cr Payne’s motion was not supported and councillors voted in favour of the nine projects listed above.

The extension of the Drought Communities Programme provides funding of $250 million for 184 eligible councils in drought-affected regions of Australia. The program supports local community infrastructure and other drought relief projects for communities impacted by drought.

Funding targets projects that: provide work for people whose employment has been impacted by drought; stimulate local community spending; use local resources, businesses and suppliers; and provide a long-lasting benefit to communities and the agricultural industries they depend on.

The nominated projects will all now need to be endorsed by the Australian Government before grant funding is approved.