ALBURY Council has forfeited $7 million in federal government funding for the Davey Road interchange because the NSW government will not provide a matching amount.
The council was last night clinging to a remote hope an extension to source the same amount from the state government would be granted by the office of Deputy Prime Minister and Infrastructure Minister Warren Truss.
In February, the council received the initial $7 million with a June 30 deadline to come up with supporting funding passing last week.
But Mr Truss’ office yesterday confirmed the funding was off the table.
“Commonwealth funding for the Davey Road interchange was approved on the basis that matched funding was provided by the state government,” a spokesperson for Mr Truss said.
“That has not occurred.
“The government is encouraging council to again apply for funding under future rounds of the heavy vehicle safety and productivity program.”
The council was pursuing the NSW government trade and investment department for the balance of the funding after a majority of councillors recently rejected ratepayers bankrolling the missing $7 million required to build two south-facing ramps and roundabouts which would have improved access to the Nexus industrial hub.
Albury mayor Kevin Mack conceded last night the federal funding was gone barring an 11th-hour decision by the NSW government to come to the rescue.
“The next 24 hours are telling,” he said.
“We applied for an extension to the federal government with a support letter from the NSW department of trade and investment.
“We are still hopeful the state government will make an 11th hour decision to fund it and Mr Truss’s department may change its mind.
“We have made representations through Greg to the minister’s office.
“If not we will apply in the second round and get all our ducks in a row.”
Member for Albury Greg Aplin could not be contacted for comment last night.
Member for Farrer Sussan Ley was aware of the funding impasse confronted by council.
“If Albury Council is not successful on this occasion, our understanding is they are extremely well placed for the next round of funding from this program,” a spokesperson for Ms Ley said.
The council is banking on an upgraded Davey Road interchange making the nearby Nexus industrial hub more attractive to investors.