COROWA’S saleyards’ upgrade project remains in limbo.
Yesterday the shire council failed to secure a federal funding guarantee upgrade before mid-2015.
Mayor Fred Longmire and general manager Chris Gillard met Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss’ chief of staff, David Whitrow, in Canberra to try to break the funding impasse.
Corowa has been repeatedly overlooked for Regional Development Australia funding by the former Labor government.
Cr Longmire said last night the project remained in limbo.
“We were hopeful and were entitled to feel that way, but all bets are off until July 1, 2015,” he said.
“I thought there was some hope in the short-term for projects which were regionally significant.
“But we got no indication whatsoever in the short term or the long term that council’s project is on the radar of the federal government.”
Corowa has been chasing $1.4 million in federal cash to match its own $1.3 million commitment for the upgrade of the yards, which handle 500,000 head a year.
Cr Longmire will report back to the saleyards consultative committee on Friday.
Member for Farrer Sussan Ley arranged the meeting at Mr Truss’ office, but didn’t attend due to other commitments.
“We understand Corowa’s disappointment, but as we’ve said previously there are other funding possibilities which we are currently exploring,” Ms Ley’s spokesman said last night.
Meanwhile, member for Indi Cathy McGowan used her maiden parliamentary question yesterday to query the status of round five projects Labor promised in election campaign such as those for Wodonga, Wangaratta and Rutherglen.
Mr Truss maintained his previous positions on the issue.
“These were not only election promises, but also unfunded election promises,” he told Ms McGowan.
He confirmed the government would honour commitments in Indi for CCTV cameras in Alpine Shire, the Bright hospital upgrade and local roads improvements.