Water

Locations revealed

By Country News

New Murray-Darling Basin Authority offices are set to be in Griffith and Mildura as the authority continues to decentralise.

Local Government and Decentralisation Minister Bridget McKenzie said at least 20 jobs would be created at a new Mildura office alone.

‘‘We know that the flow-on effects of relocating agencies will drive greater economic and social growth for our regional towns, both direct and indirect, and also brings government services closer to the people and industries they serve,’’ Ms McKenzie said.

Federal Member for Farrer Sussan Ley welcomed the new offices.

‘‘I am delighted by the decision, and also know these staff will be kept busy by the interest and input we will provide them into the basin plan,’’ Ms Ley said.

‘‘They’ll get that feedback here in Griffith, they’ll certainly receive it one-on-one in Deniliquin, indeed everywhere they visit, from Balranald to Buronga, Tocumwal to Tooleybuc.’’

A total of 103 MDBA positions will eventually be located outside of Canberra, one third of the total staff.

Victorian Shadow Water Minister and Member for Euroa Steph Ryan said the move sent a good signal to Victorian irrigators that their concerns were being heard.

‘‘Victorian irrigators are living through some really challenging times and they want their voices to be heard, so I think this is a really positive step from the Commonwealth,’’ Ms Ryan said.

‘‘It means staff will be living and working in the communities that are directly affected by the authority’s actions and decisions, and that level of understanding can only serve the people of our basin communities well.’’