Federal government announces budget funding for Kimba and Ceduna communities

Additional federal funding announced for Kimba

Resources Minister Keith Pitt has announced as part of the federal budget that Kimba will receive an additional $2 million investment in services and infrastructure.

The funding will come under a new round of the federal government's Community Benefit Program, as it seeks to push through its National Radioactive Waste Management Facility in nearby Napandee.

With Federal Parliament resuming, discussion in the Senate on legislation to create a facility at the site is on the table.

Mr Pitt said this brought the total investment in Kimba under the program to $6m and highlighted the government's commitment to the area during this process.

"This additional investment will drive further economic and social improvements across the Kimba community," he said.

"It is also a further investment in the economic success of Kimba, and highlights the government's commitment to the area and the National Radioactive Waste Management Facility.

"This investment recognises the significant amount of time it is taking to progress the facility, and therefore the disruption which this has caused for the people who live in the area."

Mr Pitt said the funding would be invested into vital infrastructure projects and other community initiatives, which would support the community as the facility progressed to the design and construction phases.

Federal Member for Grey Rowan Ramsey said this funding acknowledged the Kimba community's efforts of being at the forefront on this matter.

"We expect it will include projects which will grow employment in the community," he said.

"This is further investment which demonstrates the government's commitment to the community.

"I know it will be warmly welcomed and I look forward to seeing the proposals."

Kimba mayor Dean Johnson said the funding would provide a boost to the community.

"This is a win for Kimba businesses and residents, who want to see more investment in our community to make it even better," he said.

The Australian Conservation Foundation's Dave Sweeney, who has been battling against the Kimba site, said this funding was a way to drum up community support as pushing the legislation through the Senate would prove difficult.

"This is about keeping community support and momentum for legislation that has stalled in the Senate," he said.

"The Minister is keeping a flame alive on the ground, but the project is in serious trouble.

"I can't see any changes in the numbers in relation to the vote - they were able to pass it in the house last year where the government has numbers, but in the Senate it has strong opposition and I can't see it passing unless it is altered."

Mr Sweeney has urged Mr Pitt to revisit the push for a site near Kimba.

Consultation in Kimba relating to the waste facility project has been ongoing for more than five years.

Applications as part of the program will be open later in 2021 and will be assessed by Business Grants Hub in consultation with the Kimba community.

Also announced in the budget on Tuesday was a $30 million package to upskill people at trial sites of the cashless debit card, including Ceduna, for extra support to find work.

A jobs fund will be created to boost employment opportunities in the first four trial sites, as well as funding to improving drug and alcohol rehabilitation services.