Michael Johnsen MP, Member for Upper Hunter today announced the good news that Dungog Shire Council will now be able to apply for low interest loans to fund much-needed infrastructure for the local Dungog community because it has demonstrated its financial sustainability into the future.
Mr Johnsen said the Office of Local Government has carried out a reassessment of the council and determined it satisfies key financial benchmarks necessary to be granted access to the State borrowing facility to fund new and upgraded infrastructure.
“The State borrowing facility through NSW Treasury Corporation (TCorp) was established in July 2015 to encourage local councils to fund infrastructure through responsible and lower cost borrowings,” Mr Johnsen said.
“More than $350 million in loans have either been approved or are currently being assessed for approval to help councils invest in projects that are delivering benefits for local communities.
“Over 30 councils in NSW have taken advantage of the facility and it has been used to fund projects including an aged care facility, airport upgrades, water and sewerage infrastructure, sporting grounds, pools, roads, bridges and footpaths.
“Our local Dungog Shire Council can now join these councils and benefit from cheaper, safer finance from TCorp after the Office of Local Government determined it had met the criteria of sustainability.
“The council has implemented a number of strategies to address its sustainability as part of its improvement plan including a proposed special rate variation. It had previously met the Government’s other key criteria of effective infrastructure and service management.
“This is one of those measures, like the Nationals in government’s commitment that NSW will take back responsibility for Dungog’s council roads and bridges, that I have been fighting for for some time on behalf of the Council and our local community.
“These policy initiatives allow Dungog Council to improve it’s bottom-line, allowing Council to become financially secure moving into the future, and boosting ratepayer confidence in their local Council.
“This is a reminder that as a result of the hard work and responsible economic policy over the last eight years, the NSW Nationals in government are continuing to deliver for our Dungog community.
“I look forward to seeing Dungog Shire Council take advantage of the TCorp borrowing facility and the savings it can offer to help them deliver important community projects,” Mr Johnsen concluded.
Media: 02 6543 1065