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Snowy decision praised

Rural Councils Victoria (RCV) has called on the Victorian Government to follow the lead of its NSW counterpart and pass on the proceeds of its sale of the Snowy Hydro directly to rural and regional communities.

The NSW Government announced last week that it would put a massive $4.154 billion which it received in transferring its share of Snowy Hydro to the Commonwealth towards assets, infrastructure and investments in rural areas.

RCV, the peak body representing rural councils across Victoria, said the NSW Government’s decision deserved praise and was an amazing boost for rural people in that State.

RCV Chair Rob Gersch said the Victorian Government should do the same to ensure Victoria remains a great place to live, work and raise a family.

“There are many rural communities in Victoria who would benefit greatly from this significant boost of financial support, particularly in a time when local government is being called on to do more and more with its financial resources,” Cr Gersch said.

“The NSW Government has described its decision as an investment bonanza, and we believe that Victoria is crying out for the same treatment from its government to ensure that rural people continue to have a good standard of living and are not forgotten.

“By investing in rural areas, we can be assured of jobs growth and the security of our people.”

The sale of the Snowy Hydro will increase the Australian Government’s ownership from 13 per cent to 100 per cent by purchasing the 58 per cent owned by NSW and the 29 per cent held by Victoria.

It assumes a total value of $7.8 billion for the asset.

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