Bega Valley Shire Council spent more than $30 million on transport infrastructure repairs and other assets in 2020. Most of the works were jointly funded by the Commonwealth and NSW governments under the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements and completed using local contractors.
Council’s rebuild priority is damage to major roads and other critical infrastructure such as bridges, retaining walls and major drainage structures.
In 2021, council will also start to rebuild Wandella Hall, Kiah Hall, public toilets in Cobargo, and Wonboyn bridge.
“Five natural disasters were declared across the shire in 2019 and 2020, which took an enormous toll on our roads, bridges, retaining walls, drains and other critical infrastructure,” said Bega Valley Shire Council’s infrastructure recovery manager Shaun Bell.
“In 2020, council identified 411 emergency work projects, which included maintenance grades, clearing of silt and debris from roads and drains, repair of bridges and other crossing structures, and removal of dangerous trees.
“The 313 projects completed so far have been valued at $3.9 million. Removal of dangerous trees and debris in the road reserve is ongoing and expected to be completed by June 2021.
“Within the road reserve, 1163 transport infrastructure damages have been identified. To date, 52 reconstruction projects have been completed, valued at more than $1.3 million.
“Planning and delivery of the remaining $28 million in repair work is well underway with a number of major bridge replacement projects scheduled to commence in the next few weeks.”
Member for Bega Andrew Constance said following the spate of natural disasters the region has faced, he is pleased to see council getting on with completing repair work.
“Funding from both the federal and state governments will allow council to complete much of the work with no additional burden on ratepayers,” he said.
“It’s a huge task at hand, but we have great people working extremely hard to get our infrastructure back to where we need it to be.
“Some of these works will take more time than others and I ask the community to be patient while council and contractors identify and undertake the remaining work.
“What our region endured during 2019-2020 was nothing short of catastrophic – the damage to infrastructure and lives spread far and wide – but with time we will heal and rebuild.”