Wagga mayor Greg Conkey has welcomed more than $4.1 million in additional roads and infrastructure funding that the council will receive from this week's federal budget, with the city to evaluate how it might spend the funding once more information is released.
Riverina MP Michael McCormack said that twelve council areas around the Riverina and Central West would receive a share of $27.6 million via the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure program in the budget handed down on Tuesday night.
Wagga City Council will receive more than $4.1 million from that program and Cr Conkey said the council "appreciates any funding received for critical infrastructure".
"Council will consider applicable projects when the guidelines are released," Cr Conkey said.
"It is council's understanding that a broader range of projects will now be eligible for funding under the program.
"Previous projects funded under the program include the Riverside Playground and Kooringal Road reconstruction works."
Wagga councillors last month voted to approve a draft version of the council's own budget, which explored options for tackling the city's maintenance backlog of more than $86 million.
Cr Conkey said that "any funding the council receives will assist in addressing the backlog".
Labor duty Senator for the Riverina Deborah O'Neill slammed the budget as making "meagre promises" for the region while pushing up the nation's debt.
"This a government running up close to a trillion dollars of debt in order to fix problems of the their own making," she said.
"This Government has a lot of experience making promises it doesn't intend to deliver. Last year, the Budget's centrepiece was the JobMaker program which was forecast to create 450,000 jobs. It created just 1,100.
"You'd have to be a foundation member of the Liberal National cheer squad to accept that this year's meagre promises for the Riverina will end up being delivered over the forward estimates, given Mr McCormack's abysmal record."
In other news
Some of the region's specific projects were defence, with the new budget providing continued funding to complete training and storage facilities for "Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Defence" (CBRND).
The budget allocated $200,000 for RAAF Wagga over the upcoming financial year for a CBRND storage building and $1.5 million at Kapooka for a "new Mask Testing Facility" to "support individual and collective training" including an underground shelter for up to 30 personnel.
Mr McCormack as federal Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Minister clashed in Parliament on Wednesday with his Labor shadow counterpart, Catherine King, over claims of billion-dollar cuts in his portfolio.
"The front pages of Australia's newspapers reported an 'infrastructure bonanza' would be announced in [Tuesday] night's budget," Ms King told Parliament.
"Why does page 84 of budget paper number one show a $3.3 billion cut to infrastructure over the next four years? Why announce a splurge but deliver a cut?"
Mr McCormack responded that "there is no cut".
"The budget makes for an infrastructure rollout of $110 billion right across the economy, 30,000 additional jobs," he said.
Mr McCormack went on to tell Parliament that the government was "getting on with the job of building the infrastructure that Australia needs".
"There is no cut. The only cut I saw this week was the hair cut I got the other day," he said.
Ms King had previously accused the government of having "underspent on its infrastructure announcements by an average of $1.2 billion every year".
Mr McCormack responded that the Commonwealth "paid on delivery" when the states running the projects completed milestones.
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