Flood mitigation project a boon for East Bairnsdale

The Victorian Coalition Government will invest $1.7 million towards a $4.5 million flood mitigation and drainage project that will open up new areas of East Bairnsdale for business and residential development, creating hundreds of new jobs.

Minister for Local Government and Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, said the Coalition Government was proud to invest in this game-changing project through the $1 billion Regional Growth Fund.

“The project will develop a comprehensive flood mitigation and drainage scheme next to the estate at Lucknow, home to one of Gippsland’s biggest employers, Patties Foods,” Mr Bull said.

“As well as securing Patties Foods’ future at the site, the project will facilitate the company’s $25 million investment in a processing plant expansion, creating a further 110 jobs.

“Broadlands Development Pty Ltd is another local business that can now consider a proposed 120-site tourist and caravan park that would attract visitors to the area and create 10 new local jobs.

“The project will also unlock, for possible further development, up to 900 new allotments of land next to the existing industrial estate for residential purposes.   Federal Member for Gippsland, Darren Chester, said the Commonwealth will contribute $1 million toward the project, honouring an election commitment.   “It is pleasing to see three levels of government working together on such an important project for the growth of our region,” he said.

“This drainage project is required for Patties to go ahead with its proposed development.  Patties employs 500 people with a gross wage expenditure of $18 million per year and we must support their long-term future.

Deputy Premier, Peter Ryan, welcomed the funding announcement and said it was yet another example of the Coalition Government’s Regional Growth Fund delivering vital local infrastructure.

He thanked the project’s funding partners including the East Gippsland Shire Council, which contributed $500,000, the Commonwealth Government, which provided $1 million, and local landholders, which invested $1.224 million.

 “Since it was established in 2011, the Regional Growth Fund has delivered more than $400 million, generating around $1.6 billion of total investment across more than 1440 projects,” Mr Ryan said.

“This includes more than $10 million for 58 projects in East Gippsland, leveraging more than $26 million in total investment.”