Journalist Matthew Kelly from the Newcastle Herald has recently penned an article titled ‘Shovel ready for rebuild’. This article will become an imperative representation in the presentation to Canberra’s Federal Minister’s ahead of the federal budget in October.
The federal government has been invited to partner with the ten councils of the Hunter region on more than $400 million worth of projects designed to kick start the Hunter’s economy again post the drought, fires and COVID-19 pandemic.
The Committee for the Hunter and the Hunter Joint Organisation (Hunter JO) are championing stimulus in the October federal budget for shovel-ready infrastructure and facilities, which will deliver immediate and region-wide stimulus to local economies across the region’s 10 local government areas.
The Hunter JO is developing an integrated, region-wide program of infrastructure priorities and projects that will provide immediate and broad stimulus responsive to the particular needs of local regional economies. Delivery of these projects will also inject jobs and growth into our communities which have been impacted by drought, bushfires, and more recently COVID-19. These investments in essential community facilities and services will improve community wellbeing and quality of life during an uncertain and challenging time, while attracting visitors back to the region. Importantly, these investments will work to diversify the Hunter economy in the longer-term, making us more resilient and self-sufficient in the future.
The Committee for the Hunter’s campaign for regional infrastructure provides a fantastic opportunity for our region to use its united voice to secure the best outcome for our communities.
The three major projects the campaign is focussed on include the Newcastle Airport Code E runway upgrade, the University of Newcastle STEMM Regional Transformation Hub, and the Port of Newcastle Multi-purpose Deepwater Terminal. The trio of projects are important priorities the Hunter JO supports.
While they aren’t the only infrastructure projects on the agenda for our 10 member councils, they are recognised as projects that will have fantastic outcomes for all of our communities.
“These projects are already part of the vision of the each council and the communities they represent. It is simply a question of how quickly we can achieve these outcomes” Bob Pynsent, Cessnock mayor and chairperson of the Hunter JO said.
“We have the collective capability and capacity to deliver and we are ready to rebuild our economy after the impacts of recent natural disasters and COVID-19.
The funding we hope to attract will not only create local jobs, but will kick start recovery across our communities.
Local council infrastructure, spread across the region, benefits the needs of many over the needs of a few – from town centre revitalisation and destination/tourism development, to road safety, pedestrian and cycle accessibility, water catchment, treatment and dispersal infrastructure and community facilities.
We hope the federal government will collaboratively partner with us to accelerate the delivery of these projects for our communities.”
You can read the full feature article written by Matthew Kelly from the Newcastle Herald here: