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Byron Shire
February 5, 2023

Pothole repair funding a win but more needed in 2023, says Saffin

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Lismore MP Janelle Saffin says her lobbying for extra funding to fix pothole-riddled roads across her electorate in the wake of this year’s floods has paid off, but the problem deserves more attention going into 2023.

Massive, spontaneous potholes like this one are a common occurrence in Byron Bay’s Sunrise. Some residents claim they are sinkholes. Photo supplied

‘I’ve been raising the pothole issue with the NSW Government before and since the floods, and I welcome the $50-million Fixing Local Roads Pothole Repair Round as a win from that sustained, strategic advocacy,’ Ms Saffin says.

‘It’s a start but what would really help our local councils is if The Nationals in Government honoured their 2019 election promise to transfer 15,000 kilometres of regional roads from local councils to State ownership.

‘The Nationals have shown no sense of urgency in delivering this key election commitment.

‘Minister for Regional Transport and Roads Sam Farraway even had the audacity to claim that it’s not a burning issue for councils.

‘Tell that to local people whose tyres and suspensions are being wrecked on deteriorating country roads or to mayors and general managers trying to keep up with their road maintenance backlogs.’

From this month (December 2022), 94 regional councils are receiving their share of the Fixing Local Roads Pothole Repair Round.

The grant allocations included:

  • Lismore City Council — $422,000.
  • Kyogle Council — $415,000.
  • Tenterfield Shire Council — $579,000.
  • Tweed Shire Council – $428,000.

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  1. more important to build cycleways, skate parks and sporting facilities that are hardly used than waste money on basic infrastructure

  2. What the MP forgot to say is thank you and well done to the Liberal State Government for funding the repair of roads the local councils are not competent to maintain.

    And what she means when she says that the state government should take control of 15,000 km of roads from Councils is that most Councils are not capable of managing local infrastructure and the state government should take over control to ensure that basic services are provided at a reasonable cost. I agree with her opinion on the performance of most councils, and the mismanagement is also evident in water and wastewater. The only problem with the state taking ownership is that the state government can’t manage these activities either so they need another solution.

    However, this issue won’t be resolved until something makes the politicians do the right thing (i.e. they runout of money) so in the meantime, everyone should just keep paying higher and higher rates and taxes.


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