NSW Regional Seniors Travel Card

Eligible seniors living in rural, regional and remote areas of NSW can now apply for a $250 prepaid card to help ease the cost of travel.

You can use the card at certain retailers to pay for pre-booked NSW Trainlink Regional trains and coaches, fuel and taxis.

2021 is the second year of a two-year trial for the seniors travel card program.

You can apply by accessing the Service NSW website at www.service.nsw.gov.au or by visiting the Wentworth Service NSW office on Sandwych Street

New pavilion a winner for the Wentworth Showgrounds

The new Wentworth Showgrounds Community Pavilion is ready to go for the return of the Wentworth Show in 2021.

The new building, completed in December 2020, replaces the old Barrett Pavilion that served the community for 114 years.

The pavilion will be used by the Wentworth Show Society, the Wentworth Racing Club and the broader public.

Wentworth Shire Councillors, including Mayor Susan Nichols, toured the new pavilion on 22 February.

“It’s certainly very upmarket, it’s fit for purpose and I believe it’s one of the better buildings you are going to find in a small country area that can be used for a multitude of purposes,” Cr Nichols said.

“It’s huge, it’s just great.”

CPM Building Contractors undertook the construction throughout last year, and although delayed by COVID 19 restrictions Wentworth Show Society president Marcus Moore said they did an outstanding job.

“CPM Contractors have been terrific and have worked well with all stakeholders to deliver a quality end product,” he said.

“It’s been a relatively simple process for such a big project.”

Mr Moore said the new building opened up a lot of possibilities for the community.

“It’s a wonderful redevelopment of the area,” he said.

“Now we have a contemporary building that’s of far more use to us.”

Features of the new pavilion include ample meeting and display space, a large kitchen, disabled toilets and plenty of outdoor cover in the event of rain.

Funding for the project came via various sources including Council, Wentworth and District Community Bank, Relentless Resources, the Wentworth Racing Club and David and Liz Dawes.

This was on top of the Wentworth Show Society’s own funds combined with a $450,000 grant from the NSW Government’s Stronger Country Communities Fund for the $1.1 million project.

“The pavilion has been designed to blend in with the surrounds and it will also be useful for the wider community,” Mr Moore said.

“It’s one of those things that has been needed … it’s just going to be good for the community.”

Dareton draft strategy captures community pride

Wentworth Shire Council’s draft ‘Our Town, Our Future – Dareton Revitalised’ strategy aims to revitalize the township of Dareton and the wider Coomealla district and ensure its future is secure and well planned now and in the future.

The draft strategy will be placed on public exhibition from March 6 until April 9 after councillors endorsed its release at the February meeting of Council.
Research for the plan started in early 2020 and whilst COVID-19 prevented in-person consultation for the most part a community survey with close to 150 responses helped drive the draft strategy.

Wentworth Shire Council Mayor Susan Nichols said the community feedback highlighted just how much pride the people of Dareton take in their town.

“The Dareton community is one that is incredibly proud about the place they live and this strategy will ensure they can take ownership of its future,” Cr Nichols said.

“It is exciting to see in an age where small rural townships have historically been in decline that the Dareton community is really passionate about making sure it won’t be one of those townships.”

The draft strategy looks at existing development in and around Dareton, vacant buildings and their potential for reuse and large lot residential development.

It will look at zoning, including rectifying anomalies and rezoning unused primary production land for residential areas.

The ‘Our Town, Our Future – Dareton Revitalised’ draft strategy will be available on the Wentworth Shire Council website at https://www.wentworth.nsw.gov.au/council/publications-policies/public-exhibitions-hearings/.

Further consultation with business and community groups will commence shortly and copies of the draft strategy will also be on display at the Dareton Library.

“We want the community to drive the plan and I encourage everyone to take a look at the strategy and have your say on the future development of your community,” Cr Nichols said.
A pop up information session will also be held during the exhibition period.

“It really is an exciting time for Council and for the town and I look forward to the next step in ensuring the people of Dareton have something to call their own for years to come,” Cr Nichols said.

Wentworth Aerodrome Open to daytime traffic

The Wentworth Aerodrome is now open for daytime traffic.

The main runway is operational, however the North-South runway is still closed for ongoing works.

There is ample parking space for aircraft and there is access to fuel.

Daytime traffic was able to use the main runway from Wednesday for the first time since April 2020 when work on the $9.12 million Wentworth Aerodrome redevelopment project commenced.

Wentworth Shire Council Mayor Susan Nichols said the redevelopment, which is the biggest project Council has ever undertaken, was nearing completion.

“It is exciting to see planes back in the air from Wentworth Aerodrome,” Cr Nichols said.

“This project really is a jewel in the crown for the Wentworth region and I can’t wait to see the finished product when we will have an all-weather facility able to be accessed 24 hours a day.”

Wentworth Shire Council advises there will be intermittent closures as the aerodrome redevelopment project continues, however work can largely continue while the main runway is in use.

Aviators will be notified by NOTAM of closures.

Blue green algae Red Alert warning lifted – Colignan to Nichols Point on the Murray River

The high-level algal warning (Red Alert) for the lower Murray River from Colignan to Nichols Point has been cleared.

Downstream the high alert warning remains in place for the river from Buronga to Wentworth Weir.

Blue-green algae occur naturally and can reproduce quickly in favourable conditions where there is still or slow-flowing water, abundant sunlight and sufficient levels of nutrients.

Blue-green algae usually appear as green paint-like scums on the water, near the edges, or as greenish clumps throughout the water. It makes the water appear dirty, green or discoloured and generally has a strong musty or earthy odour.

People who believe they may have been affected by blue-green algae are advised to seek medical advice.

Updates about blue-green algae blooms and red level warning areas can be obtained by calling 1800 999 457 or visiting – http://www.waternsw.com.au/water-quality/algae.

Applications open to stock native fish

New South Wales Department of Primary Industries – Fisheries invites the community to submit applications to stock native fish into approved public waters in NSW on a dollar-for-dollar basis.

For the next stocking season (September 2021 to May 2022), dollar-for-dollar funding has been set aside from the Recreational Fishing Freshwater Trust to stock Australian Bass, Murray Cod and Golden Perch into waters of NSW.

Nominated stocking sites must be within the natural distribution of the species and locations must provide good public access.

Applications with offers between $2,000 and $6,000 per group will be considered for matching funding.

Applications above $1,000 may be considered but commercial hatcheries may have difficulty delivering small batches.

Clubs are encouraged to consider direct pick up which is much more cost effective for the hatcheries and prices per fingerling are likely to be lower.

If you are interested in stocking Australian Bass in public waters in NSW on a dollar-for-dollar basis during the 2021/22 season, please complete an online dollar for dollar application form by Friday 19 March 2021.

If you are interested in stocking Murray Cod or Golden Perch in public waters in NSW on a dollar-for-dollar basis during the 2021/22 season, please complete the online dollar for dollar application form by Friday 14 May 2021.

NSW DPI Fisheries also extends an invitation to groups to apply for a fuel card grant to assist with travel costs to and from stocking and fish habitat rehabilitation events.

If you are interested in applying for a fuel card grant, please complete the online fuel card application form by Friday 14 May 2021.

For further information about the Dollar-for-Dollar Native Fish Stocking Program or the Fuel Card Grant Program please phone Simone Mabon at the Hume Fisheries Office, Albury on 6051 7748 or 0438 734 969 or email fish.stocking@dpi.nsw.gov.au.

Wentworth Shire Council excited to host Basin delegation

Wentworth Shire Council Mayor Susan Nichols says the Council is looking forward to hosting the Murray Darling Association’s 77th National Conference and AGM.

Representatives from more than 100 councils across the Basin will meet at the junction of the Murray and the Darling rivers in May to discuss the importance of connectivity to the future health and prosperity of all Murray-Darling Basin communities.

“We look forward to hosting our esteemed colleagues from our fellow Basin councils,” Cr Nichols said.

“The Wentworth Shire Council area encompasses a vibrant region and I’m sure our visitors will enjoy their stay and a chance to take in all we have to offer.”

Cr Nichols said the visitors would provide a major boost for the Wentworth region.

“Naturally these representatives will be spending money at our shops, enjoying meals at our restaurants, and staying in our motels and caravan parks while they are here,” she said.

“All of this provides a great economic benefit to the businesses in the Wentworth region.”

Themed Connectivity: Connecting Councils and Catchments, the conference will be held on 16 – 19 May 2021 in Wentworth with conference presenters including experts from industry, government and community organisations, who are all playing a critical role in shaping the future of Australia.

The MDA’s 77th National Conference & AGM offers delegates the opportunity to be part of the solution – to join the conversation, inform future policy and engage with the innovators, scientists, educators and leaders of our time.

Local Government elections coming

NSW Local Government elections are coming up on Saturday 4 September.

Voting in Local Government Elections is mandatory.

For more information on the elections, including how to become a candidate, visit https://elections.nsw.gov.au/lge21 or call 1300 135 736

Service New South Wales Mobile Service Centre coming to Buronga

Service New South Wales’ Mobile Service Centre will be at Buronga on Saturday 20 March from 9:30am-12:30pm in the car park of Australia Post.

Mobile Service Centres are custom-fitted buses with dedicated Service NSW staff on board to provide convenient access to services at rural and regional locations.

Customers can complete the same transactions and services available at most Service Centres with the buses visiting set locations on a routine basis.

Mobile Service Centres are also be used to support key events and community engagement activities across the state, including disaster relief and delivery of the Regional Seniors Travel Cards.