COROWA Council has written to all Farrer and Indi election candidates asking for support to continue the Regional Development Australia funding after the September 7 poll.
The council is fuming its $2.7 million saleyards project was snubbed for funding again, at the expense of a $6 million central Wodonga revitalisation and $300,000 Rutherglen Main Street upgrade in the neighbouring Indi electorate.
Member for Indi Sophie Mirabella is facing a genuine challenge from independent Cathy McGowan, who will be the recipient of Labor candidate Robyn Walsh’s second preferences on election day.
But, Corowa has been told the Rudd Labor government is in caretaker mode and the department handling the applications for these funding projects can’t move on them until after the election.
Last Friday Corowa’s saleyards consultative committee held an emergency meeting in the wake of the Wodonga funding announcement and agreed to ask candidates in both electorates for support in attracting funding for the saleyards.
The Corowa saleyards are a major sheep selling centre for farmers in both electorates.
Corowa mayor Fred Longmire said the upgrade was one of the biggest issues in the election build-up in Farrer.
“In my opinion the candidate who gives an undertaking to find funding immediately will get a lot of support,” Cr Longmire said.
Member for Farrer Sussan Ley went on the attack last night about the regional funding in Indi.
“The advice I have is that no specific round 5 projects were signed off before the Labor government went into caretaker mode,” she said.
“If that’s the case, this announcement is typical of the Labor Party’s contemptuous and cynical treatment of rural Australia as a political plaything.”