Its budget time and having raised $131,000 towards sealing their road, the residents of Lower Buckrabendinni were back in front of Nambucca Shire councillors on Thursday reminding them of their offer.
Dairy farmer Terry Baldwin said he had been asked by the Member for Oxley and the NSW Minister for Roads, Melinda Pavey, to present the case for sealing the busy road, which is the life blood of a number of businesses.
“This will strengthen the case for some Government grant funding towards the cost of upgrading the road,” Mr Baldwin said.
He said as well as his dairy farm, there were two earth moving contractors, a large vegetable grower, farm stays plus State Forest, National Parks and the school bus using the road.
“And in my case there are seven employees producing up to three million litres of milk annually. Our fertilizer arrives in 30 tonnes loads via B-Double and the milk tanker is a tri-axle semi trailer … in total there are about 400 truck movements per year servicing my business alone.”
He said dust was one of the biggest problems.
“It kills computers plus I have had to invest thousands of dollars in extensive filtration equipment to help keep the dust out of the milk.”
He said it was increasingly difficult and frustrating to run a modern business “on a 19th century goat track”.
Robyn McDonald then read a letter from long-time resident Jenny Argent highlighting the safety issues caused by the pot-holes and corrugations.
“The road simply is not safe … because the surface is constantly in a bad state of disrepair and can’t withstand the amount of traffic using it,” Mrs McDonald read.
Cr John Ainsworth said it was important the council seized the opportunity the community was presenting “to get this happening”.
The motion to check when the next round of funding for ‘Fixing Country Roads’ opened was carried unanimously.
The total cost of the job has been estimated at $390,424 with the council to pay one third. The budget allocation will be considered as part of the council’s 2017/2018 Operational Plan.