Lachlan Shire Mayor

New community bus service for Tottenham

 

 

• President of the Tottenham Welfare Council, Geoff Chase, Lachlan Shire Mayor John Medcalf, Senior Manager Community Transport Kathy Dickson, Regional Transport Co-Ordinator Megan Prouse and Flexible Transport Program Manager Transport NSW, George Pund at the Tottenham Trial Launch. Cont

By Melissa Blewitt

A trial service has started in the hope of providing a flexible and tailored solution to public transport needs in Tottenham.
A mini-bus took the first three passengers from the town, 140 kilometres down the road to the larger regional city of Dubbo last Wednesday.
The initial run, follows an ongoing campaign by the Tottenham Welfare Council, led by President Geoff Chase, LiveBetter was chosen due to its commitment to providing affordable services to communities in rural, regional and remote Australia.
“What began as one Tottenham resident’s idea has now come to fruition – we look forward to the local community using the LiveBetter service to its fullest,” he explained.
The six-month pilot is a joint project with Transport for NSW, Tottenham Welfare Council and LiveBetter Community Services, providing the town with a weekly pre-booked transport service linking it with the communities of Albert, Narromine and Dubbo.
The service is tailor-made for Tottenham and the pick-up and drop off points can change depending on passengers’ needs, but they must pre-book.
The type of vehicle doing the weekly run depends on demand and can range from a car to a small bus and the service also provides storage for cold products people may need to transport and space for wheelchairs and prams.
Mayor of Lachlan Shire Council, Councillor John Medcalf was extremely pleased with the announcement which followed over a year of community consultation and lobbying to have a transport service introduced for Tottenham and Albert residents.
“It is very pleasing that from tomorrow Dubbo Community Transport will be running a community bus leaving from Tottenham at 8am and Albert at 8:45am arriving in Dubbo at 10:30am and departing from Dubbo at 2pm to return to Tottenham around 4.30pm,” he stated.
“This will connect residents with health, education, transport and social services based in Dubbo.
“I would hope residents will utilise the service to ensure it remains a service for the long term.”
According to Kathy Dickson, LiveBetter Senior Manager Community Transport, Transport for NSW should be commended for being so forward thinking with their remote transport solutions and looks forward to a long and effective relationship with them.
“We are pleased to be working with Transport for NSW to lead the way in providing this innovative and on-demand transport,” she said.
Andrew Constance, NSW Minister for Transport, said while there are high hopes for the success of the trial, it is not a “one size fits all” solution to regional transport demand.
Transport will leave Tottenham at 8am Wednesdays with same day return leaving Dubbo at 2.30pm via Narromine and Albert. Return trips costs $15 adult, $7.50 child and $2.50 concession.
Transport needs covered under this service include shopping, individual social outings, visits to family and friends, and doctor’s/specialist appointments.
Community members looking to book transport or to request further information simply need to call the LiveBetter Community Transport – Dubbo office on (02) 6882 7711. There are no eligibility criteria for this service.

Fletcher feedlot approved

By Melissa Blewitt

 

Lachlan Shire Council (LSC) has approved a 40,000 head sheep feedlot for Condobolin.

Conditional approval was given to the designated and integrated Development Application (DA) at its last monthly meeting on 15 June.

The development is worth $560,000, and Dubbo based Fletcher International Exports will build the facility.

The site of the proposed feedlot is located approximately 16 kilometres west of Condobolin on the northern side of the Lachlan River on the “Glenlee” part of “Kiagarthur Station”.

According to Lachlan Shire Council Director of Environment and Planning Andrew Johns, the feedlot will create positive economic benefits and employment opportunities in the Shire and wider regional area.

“Being a designated DA means it required the lodgement of an Environmental Impact Statement, which was done and used to assess the application,” he said.

“Integrated means approvals are needed under other acts, which are administered by other state regulatory bodies, such as the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA). The DA needed an Environmental Protection Licence from the EPA as it had the potential to pollute, and thus need a licence from the State Government to go ahead.

“There was some conjecture about noise and the EPA wanted a full noise assessment conducted, however, the LSC argued on behalf of the proponent against that, as the nearest residential dwelling was over five kilometres away and a feedlot in a rural area is a pretty common thing.

“The DA has been approved subject to 21 conditions.”

Lachlan Shire mayor John Medcalf said the project will boost the local economy and provide opportunities for local farmers.

“I think it will give them a little bit of confidence that there’s development happening around them,” he said.

“But also with a 40,000 [head] lamb feedlot there’s opportunity for grain suppliers as well.

“This is a very positive development for the Shire.”

Managing Director of Fletcher International Exports, Roger Fletcher, said the feedlot will complement existing regional business activities undertaken by the company, including managing “Kiagarthur Station” and their sheep processing plant in Dubbo.

“We were looking to expand our sheep finishing operations using an intensive grain feeding system,” he said.

“Kiagarthur Station is very conducive to producing the grain, hay and silage that will be used in the feedlot, so we will utilise that.

“We will be aiming to produce lambs for a range of domestic and export markets.

“We still have a lot to learn, but will be trying our best to ensure the feedlot is a success for Fletcher’s and the wider Condobolin community.”

Mr Fletcher added the feedlot would be up and running “as soon as practically possible.”

“Approvals for feedlots take a long time and there is a lot of red tape involved. That’s just the nature of these things,” he said.

“LSC have been very good to us. We will be looking to employ more people as the venture becomes established.” The feedlot will be implemented in two stages.

 

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