Federal funding secured for Roma saleyard facility
DEVELOPMENT of the new Roma saleyard facility is set to go ahead after the Maranoa regional council secured the second half of funding for the $7.3 million project.
The council will now chip in $262,500 for the project, after receiving $3.96 million in federal government funding on Monday. The second $3.6 million is to be supplied through a state government initiative.
The project will include a new arena for stud stock selling with state of the art audio visual facilities, a canteen upgrade and a multi-purpose facility featuring an interpretive centre.
Councillor Peter Flynn, portfolio chair for the Roma saleyards has thanked the Federal Government for their foresight in supporting Maranoa Regional Council.
"The project will also provide a state of the art stud stock selling arena, as well as fantastic viewing opportunities for the increasing number of visitors to the centre, which will be celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2019,” Cr Flynn said.
Residents previously voiced their concerns over the allocation of grant money on the new development, pointing out the new facility could cut use of function facilities at both Bassett Park and Explorers.
Portfolio chair for economic development, councillor Cameron O'Neil, said functions had always been held at the yards.
"There were some concerns around the funding model, how much the rate base would pay,” Cr O'Neil said.
"The ultimate goal was for council to work with the other levels of government, to make this a partnership.
"We are ecstatic that we have leadership from both the state and federal level in this space.
"It was never an intention for this to compete with other conference facilities in town.
"The saleyards have already hosted functions, one being the Easter in the Country dinner which was well received.
"It is really about the upgrades to the facilities.”
The centre is due to open late 2019.