Member for Goulburn, Wendy Tuckerman, today reaffirmed the State Government’s commitment to upgrade of the Yass water treatment plant
“Prior to my election, the NSW Liberal Government committed to making funding available from the flagship $1 billion Safe and Secure Water infrastructure program to improve the water quality in Yass.
“The Safe and Secure Water Program was made to ensure regional communities like ours have access to high quality, reliable and affordable water that meets modern environmental and health standards.
“The election commitment to Yass water is subject to the guidelines of the Safe and Secure Water program. This requires a rigorous design and procurement process as well as ensuring any level of co-contribution from Council doesn’t overburden rate-payers or require a significant increase in water rates – unless approved by the community.
“I am just as frustrated as the community on why these matters take so long to commence. After requesting a briefing from the Department and Council, it was clear to me that Councillors needed to be briefed and that a decision to commence Stage One was needed to be made by Council to progress.
“I was pleased to see that Council made the decision at their December 16 Council Meeting in parallel with works being completed on design framework for a new or upgraded water treatment plant by Council consultant.
“Stage one will see improvements to the Raw Water Pump Station, Bubble Aeration and urgent works at the Water Treatment Plant. It is agreed that these works will provide a significant improvement to the quality of water, whilst further discussions and planning works on detailed design and Business Case continue. The estimated project cost of the Council-preferred option is $31.9 million.
“While Council are currently in discussion with the Department on their preferred option, I believe that consideration needs to be taken on the impacts to local household water charges from a greater project cost.
“These extensive discussions that have been held between DPIE (Water), the Council consultant (HunterH2O) and Council staff is a healthy part of major infrastructure construction process – it ensures both the Council and State Government are making appropriate decisions for now but also taking into consideration the long term future needs of our community.
“These decisions being made need to be challenged, and justified, to ensure the best possible outcome now and into the future.
“Yass residents deserve the water quality issue to be fixed sooner rather than later but they don’t need to be paying excessive water rates if it’s not needed. “