COLAC’S civic leaders will push for funding for the Great Ocean Road, rail services and a Central Reserve upgrade in the lead up to the federal election.
Colac Otway Shire Council has updated its funding wish list to make the most of this year’s federal election and potential vote buying in the Corangamite electorate, Australia’s most marginal seat.
Councillors will give copies of the wish list to all candidates as well as relevant federal ministers to highlight where it wants big money spent.
The list includes big-ticket transport projects such as a $10-million-a-year investment in the Great Ocean Road, $40 million for overtaking lanes and road sealing on the Princes Highway west of Colac, and $20 million to boost Colac-Geelong railway services up to five services daily each way.
The list also contains a request for $1.9 million to improve Colac’s business district and city entrances, as well as a $10.3-million Apollo Bay harbour redevelopment.
Sportspeople who use Colac’s Central Reserve could be big winners from this year’s election if politicians commit to a $5.3-million upgrade.
Western Oval and South Colac Recreation Reserve upgrades feature on the council’s minor projects list.
Mayor Lyn Russell said the council would use the wish list to pitch funding requests to federal politicians in the 2013 election campaign, but also to the State Government.
“It’s a combination of big-ticket items, but also small-ticket items,” she said.
“It’s an opportunity for us as a council to go out there and put these projects in the heads and the minds of the federal candidates and work towards getting funding for these projects.
“Because we’ve got such a low population base and a low rate-paying base, we can’t provide the infrastructure and the projects that the community deserve to have.
“Getting external funding is paramount.”
Colac Otway Shire councillors agreed last year that Cr Russell would serve two consecutive years as mayor to help the council maximise benefits from the 2013 federal election and the 2014 state election.