Fishery Creek Bridge at Ballina.
Fishery Creek Bridge at Ballina. Google Maps

The $30 million 'significant liability' for council

MAJOR improvements to River St and Tamarind Dr at Ballina will cost at least $30 million - representing a "significant liability" for the council.

At this week's meeting, councillors will consider a report on the various road projects and priorities for the next year.

A number of works have already been completed. But the remaining road priorities are:

  • Byron Bay Road / Hutley Drive roundabout and connection to Hutley Drive: $2.9 million. The council will aim to complete this by the end of 2019
  • Angels Beach Dr / Bangalow Rd roundabout lanes extension: $900,000
  • Four laning of River St and Tamarind Dr, listed as six separate projects totalling almost $30 million.

According to the council report, the final project on the list is a "significant liability in the short term".

"Council has applied for a Federal Government grant for 50 per cent of the cost of the works and once the above two projects are completed it will be a matter of continuing to seek grants and looking at options such as loans to possibly fund this work in a timely manner," the report states.

"Council is regularly approached to construct other high profile projects such as the North Creek Bridge ($19 million), Ross Lane improvements ($16 million) and the Western Arterial ($32 million)."

The Roads Contribution Plan is the council's largest financial liability in respect to works that must be delivered.

The total value of the works in the plan is about $154 million.

"Only $19 million of that represents council's liability, however the difficultly with Contribution Plans is that the contributions are often not collected at the time the community, or council, is seeking to have the works delivered," the report explains.