THE City of Greater Geelong has been allocated an extra $8.2 million to spend on local infrastructure projects through the federal government’s additional investment in the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program (LRCIP).
The federal government split the initial $1.8 billion between local governments across Australia, and the 2020-21 Budget invested a further $1 billion to the program over two years.
Councils must first nominate projects for approval Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications to access the funding.
Federal treasurer Josh Frydenberg said the primary condition of this approval is the projects’ being ready for construction.
“These investments in our local communities will support local jobs,” Mr Frydenberg said.
“Funding for these shovel-ready projects will be provided on a use it or lose it basis.”
The $8,262,225 additional funding for the city takes its total funding from the LRCIP to $10,445,729.
The City’s chief executive Martin Cutter said the extra funds would aid the city’s recovery from the pandemic.
“We welcome this funding from the federal government which will provide much-needed stimulus during our COVID recovery.”
He said the Northern Aquatic and Community Hub would be among the projects the city considered nominating for the LRCIP funds.
“We will look carefully into the criteria of all funding commitments announced in the federal budget to assess how they can support our priority projects, including the Northern Aquatic and Community Hub.
“The city recently allocated a further $800,000 to complete the fourth and final design stage of the Northern Aquatic and Community Hub, which will get the project ‘shovel ready’.
“This is on top of the $1.4 million already invested in planning and design, making the city’s total contribution to date $2.2 million.”
The planned hub will include a 25-metre pool, a sauna, a gym, early childhood care, rehabilitation services and more.
The city has committed $20.6 million for this project – its largest-ever social infrastructure contribution – and has been seeking matching contributions from the state and federal government.
The Surf Coast Shire also received $1,580,159 of new funding to take its total funding from the LRCIP to $2,631,219, while the Borough of Queenscliffe received a further $102,736 in addition to the original $140,915.