Approval for $1 million worth of drought-projects in Parkes Shire will be a welcome and timely boost to the local economy, the Deputy Prime Minister and Member for Riverina, Michael McCormack, says.

“I had the pleasure of ringing Parkes Mayor Ken Keith this week to tell him of the approval of Council’s projects under round two of the Drought Communities Programme,” Mr McCormack said.

“The timing could not come at a better time for the Parkes community.

“There has been some rain, but we need much more, and as I have said many times before the effects of the drought will continue long after the rains come.”

The projects include weather-proofing the Cookamidgera Hall, upgrading changerooms at Berryman Oval at Trundle, improvements to Memorial Park in Peak Hill and continued employment of a Drought Response Officer by Parkes Shire Council.

Councillor Keith OAM welcomed the injection of funds, which follows on from an initial $1 million given by the Federal Government through the Drought Communities Programme (DCP) in 2018.

“These grants are spent around our community, which is now suffering the effects of the drought and COVID-19, and the projects will assist with our community’s resilience in these tough times,” Cr Keith said.

The Parkes Shire DCP projects are:

  • Continued employment of a Drought Response Officer to deliver a program of support activities to rural producers and businesses as well as community events to encourage social outings and involvement
  • Refurbishment of the new Parkes Library to complete a new build project to provide suitable fittings and furniture and support a new university centre for the region
  • Revitalise Bogan Gate township with air conditioning for the main hall and painting the arts and crafts centre
  • Complete Cookamidgera Hall upgrades to have this community space weatherproof
  • Construct new amenities at Pola Park in Tullamore to provide fit for purpose toilet/shower facilities
  • Provide a modular removal stage structure for the Multipurpose Centre in Cooke Park to support events
  • Upgrade changerooms at Berryman Oval in Trundle to enable the grounds to host female friendly events by refiguring an existing building
  • Improvements to Memorial Park in Peak Hill to encourage more social gatherings at the green space in the township
  • Install fit for purpose bollards in Cooke Park in Parkes to complement the new Multipurpose Centre
  • The development of an Adverse Event Plan for the Shire.

Media release issued by Deputy Prime Minister The Hon. Michael McCormack's Office.