Relief on Eyre Peninsula with road funding extension

ROADS: Eyre Peninsula Local Government Association president Sam Telfer has welcomed the extension of supplementary road funding.
ROADS: Eyre Peninsula Local Government Association president Sam Telfer has welcomed the extension of supplementary road funding.

The Eyre Peninsula Local Government Association has welcomed the two year extension of the Supplementary Local Road Funding program to ensure future upgrades of council road networks across the region.

A $20 million annual allocation across two years was announced as part of the federal government's 2021-22 budget announcement.

Since 2003 the program provided additional road funding to South Australian councils to address the inequity in the allocation of local road funding to South Australia.

EPLGA president and Tumby Bay mayor Sam Telfer said this funding stream was crucial for councils in particular to fulfill their commitment to maintain and upgrade their local road network.

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"It recognises there is an anomaly in the formula for road funding nationwide where South Australian councils have a short fall," he said.

"If this funding wasn't renewed there would be a significant deficit when it came to funding from councils into their road network across Eyre Peninsula."

Local Government Association of South Australia has also welcomed this news and president Angela Evans said the state had 11 per cent of Australia's local roads, seven per cent of the population but received only 5.5 per cent of local roads funding through Financial Assistance Grants.

"It's especially important for many regional councils that have a small ratepayer base, and limited capacity to raise their own road funding through council rates," she said.

"In recent months the LGA has been advocating for an extension that will provide South Australian councils with certainty, and support them to provide and maintain safer local roads."

The budget also included a $1 billion expansion of the government's Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program, which supports councils to invest in strategic infrastructure projects.

Mr Telfer said another welcomed development in the budget was the allocation of $200 million to the next round of the Building Better Regions Fund, which had already help bring about infrastructure projects on Eyre Peninsula.

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