Campaspe Shire is on the road to a diffifcult balancing act
Campaspe Shire spends 19 per cent of its budget maintaining a 4000 kilometre road network.
Mayor Adrian Weston said managing the shire's biggest asset has been made harder after the Victorian Government imposed rate capping, while Federal and State Government funding had also been cut.
Cr Weston said Campaspe Shire was well placed to manage its road network at the moment, but predicted in the long-term it would get harder.
“We know roads are important to our community. This comes through loud and clear in community surveys, in service requests, in feedback on the street,” Cr Weston
“Our funding however is limited and works are prioritised in order to meet the highest needs, such as school bus routes, transport routes and high traffic volumes.”
A three-year freezing of increases to Financial Assistance Grants and cessation of the Country Roads and Bridges funding has also impacted council’s ability to address these priorities.
“The reduction in this vital grant income for roads by about $1.4 million per year over the past 3-4 years is where it impacts the community. Losing much needed additional grant funds for our road network,," he said.
Among major projects this year are $2 million for gravel resheeting works and $1.3 million for re-sealing works. Construction works are also planned for Kotta Rd and Bolton Rd.'
Campaspe Shire has also been on the front foot trying to advocate the need for works with VicRoads. \
Cr Weston said projects discussed included passing lanes between Echuca and Elmore, improving Echuca's southern entrance, upgrading the Murray Valley Hwy and Sturt St intersection.
“We meet with VicRoads regularly to advocate on behalf of our community about priorities for our main road network,” Cr Weston said.
“We hope to hear positive news on these projects in coming months.”