Mayoral Column 1 August 2016
Published on 01 August 2016
Yorkshire Road a priority project
A 12.4 kilometre stretch of Yorkshire Road, situated between Newbridge and Bridgewater, has been earmarked for sealing.
Tarnagulla and Inglewood residents are expected to warmly welcome Council’s decision to invest $4 million in the major capital works project.
At the end of the two year target period we will have continuous sealed road from the City of Greater Bendigo Shire boundary through to the Bridgewater-Maldon Road.
The project is to be undertaken in three stages, with stage one and three expected to be completed this financial year, and stage two being completed the following year.
Existing road conditions and traffic and development growth on the three stretches have determined the order the road sections are to be sealed.
Stage one of the Yorkshire Road project will begin before Christmas. It comprises a 3.8 kilometre stretch of road to be sealed at an estimated cost of $1.3 million.
Stage three which covers a three kilometre stretch of road is expected to begin by Easter next year at a total cost of $1 million.
Stage two, the last section of road to be sealed, covers a six kilometre stretch of Yorkshire Road and is expected to be upgraded at a cost of $1.8 million.
This means Council has effectively decided to invest $2.3 million of this financial year’s $7.5 million capital works budget on Yorkshire Road.
The decision was determined by commercial vehicle traffic count data which demonstrated a need to upgrade the road.
Hazeldene’s Chicken Farm and Scatoplus mushroom composting businesses which are located in the immediate vicinity undoubtedly account for a large proportion of traffic volume.
These agribusiness industries support countless families within the Shire through direct employment and supporting a range of small businesses service providers.
Dedicating between 25 and 35 per cent of our 12 month capital works budget on the one sealing project makes sense when you consider the potential growth and economic development opportunities.
Standpipe charges modification
To help residents, businesses and farmers manage through drought conditions, in March this year Coliban Water agreed to temporarily suspend fixed charges on standpipes and reduce the volumetric charges from $2.18 per kilolitre to 55 cents per kilolitre.
As a result Council was able to pass this subsidy to its customers by reducing the price from $5 per kilolitre to $2.20 per kilolitre.
The temporary suspension agreement between Loddon Shire Council and Coliban Water expires 1 August.
As a result, from Sunday 14 August the pre-agreement water usage charge of $5 per kilolitre will apply to all customers using Council owned standpipes.
This is not an increase in water charges by Council to its customers, but is a simply reverting back to pre-agreement phase charges.
With recent rains filling dams and bringing a sense of optimism to all, the charges modification has come at a good time.