Member for Murray Plains Peter Walsh has called on the Andrews Labor Government to intervene to progress a new $63 million almond processing plant at Hattah.
Speaking in Parliament this week, Mr Walsh asked Minister for Planning Richard Wynne to call in Brownport Almonds’ application, which is expected to create an additional 30 full time and 100 casual jobs when completed.
Despite approval from Mildura City Council, VicRoads, Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning and the CFA, an objection by a resident living nearly 6km from the plant is holding up the process.
Mr Walsh said any delay would push out the project’s completion date and could affect next year’s harvest.
“They just want the opportunity to get on and invest this money to build this plant so they can process this year’s harvest,” Mr Walsh said.
“If it’s not completed in time for this year’s harvest, there will not be enough processing capacity for the industry or they may miss the window when the almonds are at the best quality.
“They would like the Minister’s assistance to make sure this plant can actually be built, on time.”
Brownport Almonds will cover the full cost of the $63 million investment. More than 120 people are employed at the Hattah plant.
“Investments like this grow job opportunities in our country communities, which generates business confidence and spending in the regions,” Mr Walsh said.
Mr Wynne has 30 days to respond to Mr Walsh’s request.