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Truss announces a $500,000 advance on Federal funding for stage 7 of the Northern Mallee Pipeline.

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AFFA01/172WT 1 July 2001

Truss announces a $500,000 advance on Federal funding for Stage 7 of the Northern Mallee Pipeline

Construction of Stage 7 of Victoria's Northern Mallee Pipeline has received a significant boost with the Commonwealth offering to provide a $500,000 advance to allow work on the project to proceed, the Federal Agriculture Minister, Warren Truss, announced today.

"The $500,000 is an advance payment against the $2.8 million that the Victorian Government has recommended the Commonwealth provides for Stage 7 of the project in 2001-02 through the Natural Heritage Trust One-Stop-Shop arrangements," Mr Truss said.

Mr Truss said he has previously given assurances to the Wimmera Mallee community that the Commonwealth would look favourably on a proposal to contribute funds towards Stage 7 of the pipeline, provided it was a priority in Victoria's 2001-02 Natural Heritage Trust bid.

"The Government has now honoured that undertaking and work on the pipeline's final stage should be able to begin as soon as possible," he said.

Mr Truss said 2001-02 is the final year of the Natural Heritage Trust in its present form, and the aim is to complete all projects by September 2002.

"The Northern Mallee Pipeline is the largest project funded under the National Landcare Program in Victoria and the Government's decision to provide the $500,000 advance will give Wimmera Mallee Water the opportunity to meet this deadline," he said.

Mr Truss also acknowledged the severe water shortages being experienced in the Wimmera Mallee and said the completion of the pipeline's 7th stage would make an important contribution to future water savings in the region.

"The Wimmera Mallee community can be assured that the Federal Government is aware of the importance it places on the pipeline's completion and today's announcement confirms our strong commitment to the project," he said.

Minister's office: Yvonne Best (02) 6277 7520 or 0418 415 772

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Last updated 2 July 2001

URL: Commonwealth of Australia 2001