Make the most of the funding for Kimba

It has been refreshing to have our nearby regional cities in Whyalla and Port Augusta in the news lately, having secured government and private funding for major projects and improvements in or near those cities. However, despite our continued optimism and positive ‘can do’ attitudes, we still find our rural towns and smaller community centres are battling to receive our fair share as we struggle to show population and economic growth that would build the case for increased funding.

With this in mind, the Kimba community is fortunate to benefit from a substantial injection of funds as a result of our continued consultation and engagement in the national radioactive waste management facility search. Importantly the funding is not tied to final siting of the project but is recognition of our continued engagement in the process to this point. I would encourage all in our community, regardless of views to celebrate this opportunity and work hard, come together and start planning some amazing projects so we can take full advantage of this cash injection. Let us make this count for the good of us all in the long term.

AusIndustry is tasked with assessing and administering the fund to successful applicants, which will also be assessed by the new Kimba Consultative Committee when it is announced in the coming weeks. Projects will need to show a social or economic benefit for our community, aiming to deliver long lasting benefits to our local area.

The council has begun detailed planning on several projects of its own but we welcome as many ideas and as much input as possible from all in our community. We have a rare opportunity for up to 100 per cent project funding from a $2 million fund, so let’s get creative and find inspiration to have as many applications as possible.

Certainly not all will be approved but we can all put in multiple applications and have them evaluated. Those assessed as strongest will see approval, while others may be considered if there is another round.

Our AusIndustry contact for the Community Benefits Program is Abbie Arbon. She can be contacted by email at abbie.arbon@industry.gov.au or by phone 1300 742 414. You can also make an appointment to see her in Kimba. She is available to help the application process and assist through project building. 

This is a rare opportunity for Kimba. Let’s get together and make the most of it!

Dean Johnson

Kimba District Council mayor