Green light for drought relief projects in Barkly

A high-priority drought relief project is progressing in the Barkly Regional Council in the Northern Territory, with funding approved to flow under the Australian Government’s Drought Communities Programme (DCP) Extension.

Minister for Drought David Littleproud said he was pleased to see the local project is ready to move forward.

“The Australian Government is providing $1 million to the Barkly Regional Council to repair and upgrade a number of sport and recreational facilities across the Barkly Shire,” Minister Littleproud said

“The project will provide long lasting benefits for the Barkly community, which has been significantly impacted by the drought.”

Country Liberal Senator for the Northern Territory, Dr Sam McMahon welcomed the drought funding for Barkly Shire.

“A lot of people don’t recognise that the Northern Territory suffers from droughts as they think we always have a wet season. The truth is we have had a couple of years of very poor wet seasons recently which has had a dramatic effect on regions such as the Barkly,” Senator McMahon said.

“Since I took on this role I have been very proactive in pushing for affected regions in the NT to be able to access drought funding and I am delighted that the Minister for Drought has recognised the need for DCP to benefit the Barkly region.”

The project will repair and upgrade the multi-purpose sport and recreation facilities at Arlparra and Ampilatwatja; construct new event-grade change rooms at the Elliott Oval, Elliott; construct a BMX track at Wutunugarra and develop an Adverse Events Plan.

Minister Littleproud said now more than ever, the Government is proud to support regional Australia during the added challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The Government is aware of the added challenges presented by COVID-19. Communities should rest assured the Government continues to have their back, with an economic and health support package of $507 billion in assistance announced to date,” Minister Littleproud said.

“This includes the $2.8 billion package to assist local government in the delivery of priority projects with a focus on roads, community infrastructure upgrades and maintenance.

“Under this package, the $1.5 billion Local Road and Community Infrastructure Program, and the bringing forward of $1.3 billion from the 2020–21 Financial Assistance Grant payments will help communities battling the effects of COVID-19.

“DCP Extension projects, such as Barkly Regional Council’s, deliver immediate cash injections to communities to help keep locals employed, businesses open, and money flowing through drought-affected regional economies.

“The Government is standing shoulder-to-shoulder with our regional and rural communities who have been doing it tough through drought and is supporting them through dedicated initiatives such as the DCP Extension.

“Drought doesn't just hurt farmers; it hurts small businesses and the wider community as well. With DCP Extension funding we can keep money flowing through areas that have been affected.

“So far, the DCP Extension has funded over 500 projects, such as the construction of local tourism assets and amenities blocks, delivery of a potable water supply, community resilience events and employing local drought support officers.”

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