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$50 million for water management and planning

Tuesday, 07 May 2013
2013-14 Victorian State Budget had delivered funding for a range of initiatives including $22.5 million for the Office of Living Victoria.
“The Office of Living Victoria is leading the way to transform how we manage our water cycles to increase the resilience of our water system and its ability to cope with an uncertain future,” Mr Walsh said.
“The funding allocated in the 2013-14 Victorian State Budget will go towards important work on water cycle research and planning, promotion of new building controls and assistance to industry with water cycle management.
“The work will make sure the use of rainfall, stormwater and wastewater is maximised to reduce the need for future large-scale pipelines, desalination plants and pumping and treatment plants.
“With ongoing climate variability, the Coalition Government is taking a sensible, flexible approach to managing our water resources based on a range of solutions,” Mr Walsh said.
The 2013-14 Victorian State Budget delivers a further $4 million for urgent maintenance, repair and replacement works for the State Observation Bore Network.
“As part of this initiative, observation bores have been identified that have been damaged and have the potential to fail, not only leading to flooding by water coming up from underground, but also to possible contamination to aquifers,” Mr Walsh said.
“Preventing the bores from failing now will save money in the long run.”
A further $4.3 million over three years will be delivered in the 2013-14 Victorian State Budget in response to recommendations from the Victorian Floods Review.
“The funding will go towards flood mitigation works for Creswick, for the development of the State Flood Management Strategy and to commence better flood information mapping for priority rural areas,” Mr Walsh said.
Also in the Budget is $3 million for work associated with the Murray-Darling Basin.
These funds will go towards the development of modelling over three years in relation to the Murray-Darling Basin Plan to minimise the complexity of water sharing arrangements and ensure the maximum volume of offsets are identified. 
“In this Budget the Coalition Government has also delivered $16 million over three years for the first stage of the modernisation of the Macalister Irrigation District,” Mr Walsh said.
“Together with a co-contribution of a further $16 million from irrigators, this funding will see the start of important modernisation works that will improve service delivery, enhance farm productivity, improve waterway and estuarine health, and extend the life of irrigation infrastructure.
“Today’s Budget is about building for growth in rural and regional Victoria. It is about delivering better infrastructure and better water management services, and this can only be achieved through the responsible economic management of the Coalition Government,” Mr Walsh said.

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