Inland Rail

11 September 2017

Updates on Inland Rail Project

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Gilgandra Solar Farm Sub Contractor EOI

28 August 2017

Bouygues Construction is seeking Expression of Interest from Gilgandra Shire businesses for goods and services to construct the Gilgandra Solar Farm.

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Inland Rail

Media Release                               8 September 2017


Gilgandra Shire Council has led a landowner delegation to Canberra to meet with the Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Darren Chester to discuss potential impacts of the Inland Rail.  The delegation was hosted and supported by Member for Parkes, Mark Coulton.

Acting Mayor, Cr Ash Walker said the meeting was as a result of a commitment Gilgandra Shire Council made at a meeting of potentially impacted landowners at Curban in August.

“Council gave the commitment to seek a meeting with Minister Chester. He was unable to come to Gilgandra in a suitable timeframe so with the support of our local Member Mark Coulton, a Council led delegation was invited to meet with the Minister in Canberra.

Three landowners attended; Doug Wilson, Grant Thomas and Neville Younghusband. They were present at the meeting at Curban and also represent a geographic spread across the shire as well as a variety in agricultural enterprises.

The aim of the meeting was to highlight to the Minister several issues potentially impacted landowners are raising and feel need clarification by both the Federal Government and Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC). These issues include the lack of clarification of the alignment between Narromine and Narrabri and further to this, the uncertainty and commitment to a timeframe of an announcement. The delegation also raised concerns about land valuation methodology, property severance, impacts on agricultural enterprises in close proximity to the line, environmental concerns such as flooding, changing of water courses and intensification of overland flows. Council has made the full briefing document available Click Here

Whilst the briefing document does not explore individuals’ issues, it does attempt to cover off on key themes and issues that have been raise over the past 12 months by impacted landowners and the community.

 Cr Walker said it is clear there is significant work to be done by the government and ARTC and improving communication with stakeholders in our community needs to be a priority.

“From the decisions it is clear there is an enormous amount of preplanning work the government and ARTC need to undertake. I believe we presented the message loud and clear that just leaving our community in limbo for the next 12 months or possibly longer is not an acceptable outcome and improved community /stakeholder consultation is essential. The vacuum left by the lack of information is creating a level of uncertainty with many businesses holding off investing in capital improvements on their farms. ”

 The delegation was advised that a decision on a preferred alignment would be made known “in the near future”.

 Following the decision and announcement there would be a period of between 18 – 24 months until a draft EIS was exhibited – during this time, it was advised, there would be ample opportunity for both formal and informal engagement/consultation with ARTC on the project.

 Cr Walker confirmed Council ongoing commitment to working with all stakeholders to work towards the best outcomes for the community.  

“Gilgandra Shire Council is committed to working with our ratepayers, landowners and businesses to assist to communicate their feelings and issues to the government and ARTC. We are one of the most impacted communities in the entire 1700km project and believe we deserve a level of attention reflective of that potential impact.” 

Briefing Document Sent to Minister Chester Click Here (PDF Doc 120KB)

Useful Links Regarding Inland Rail

Economic Development Manager, Randall Medd is Council's point of contact on Inland Rail and can be contacted on 6817 8800.