Councils urged to ask Federal Government for funds to fix local bridges

Federal Parkes MP Mark Coulton has urged councils in the electorate to apply for funding from the Federal Government to get local bridges in poor condition fixed.

Mr Coulton said a new round of funding under the $360 million Bridges Renewal Programme opened on Friday.

“This is a great opportunity for state, territory and local governments to apply for funding to have ageing bridges fixed, with up to half the cost met by the Australian Government.

“This will be the third round of funding under the programme, which is continuing to keep communities connected and local industries profitable,” Mr Coulton said.

“Our councils can get on board by nominating local bridges that need upgrading or replacement. Residents who might like to put forward their ideas should get in touch with their council to find out about any plans they have to nominate local bridges, or put forward suggestions.” 

“Better bridges improve safety and access for communities, and keep businesses and the road freight sector powering on – delivering dollars into the pockets of local businesses and supporting jobs.

“By working together with governments at all levels – particularly local councils which often need a hand to get big-ticket projects underway – we are upgrading and repairing bridges in all corners of the country.

Mr Coulton said Round 2 of the programme led to funding for 10 bridges in the electorate including three in the Gilgandra and Walgett shires, two in the Warrumbungle Shire and one each in the Gunnedah and Narrabri shires. 

“We’ve already seen serious dollars put into fixing bridges in the region, with the Coalition Government investing $5,514,750 upgrade projects getting support under Round 2 of the Programme.

“State, territory and local governments are eligible to apply for up to $5 million in Australian Government funding per project – that’s a significant sum of money for any organisation.”

Mr Coulton said submissions would be accepted from state, territory and local governments. Successful applicants will be eligible to receive up to 50 per cent of project costs, or $5 million. Applications are open until May 15. More information at: www.infrastructure.gov.au/bridges

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