Stuart Ayres MP, Member for Penrith and Minister for Local Government Paul Toole today announced that Penrith City Council will get major upgrade of its drainage system, thanks to a generous subsidy from the NSW Government in Round Three of the Local Infrastructure Renewal Scheme (LIRS).
Introduced by the Liberals and Nationals Government, the scheme encourages councils to make greater use of borrowings to accelerate investment in long overdue community projects.
Under the third round, councils are provided with a three per cent interest subsidy for up to 10 years on loans.
“The NSW Government is committed to Rebuilding NSW and in order to achieve this we need a strong local government sector with the infrastructure to match,” Stuart Ayres said.
“That is why the NSW Government has committed $120 million to the LIRS scheme until 2025.
“The application from Penrith City Council will see $7 million spent on upgrading the existing drainage system to address the CBD stormwater issues.
“I am delighted that Penrith City Council was a successful applicant. This project will eliminate frequent flooding of the Penrith CBD and minimise the associated flood damage cost to the community.”
Penrith Clr Bernard Bratusa said this is another welcome announcement by the Baird NSW Government and complements Penrith City Council’s plans for the CBD precinct.
“Importantly it emphasizes to business the level of commitment and investment the NSW Government and Council and delivering for our city.”
Gai Hawthorn, CEO of the Penrith CBD Corporation said this is a great opportunity to improve small business within the Penrith CBD area, which have struggled over the years with flooding problems. Today’s announcement from Minister Toole reinforces the commitment from Penrith City Council, MP Stuart Ayres and the Baird Government to help Penrith business sustain growth into a thriving CBD precinct for the future.
Mr Toole said in the first two rounds of the scheme, 137 individual projects across 87 councils had benefitted, unlocking almost $680 million for shovel-ready projects.
“Thanks to round three of the scheme, an additional $148 million in infrastructure spending will be unlocked.
“The LIRS is a key part of the Government’s commitment to address the crippling $7.4 billion infrastructure backlog faced by local governments (as at June 2012).
“The community knows that building infrastructure makes a significant difference to both our economy and to people’s lives.”
In total, round three of LIRS received 69 applications, which were assessed by an independent panel.