18 March 2015
Mr WALSH (Murray Plains) – The adjournment issue I raise is for the Minister for Regional Development and it concerns the Mitiamo reticulated water supply system. I ask the minister to meet with a delegation including Neil Allen the president of that group to update them on the work that the former Department of Environment and Primary Industries (DEPI) and the former Department of State Development Business and Innovation (DSDBI) have been doing on possible funding for their pipeline project. They need $900 000 to do the detailed design work. The Mitiamo reticulated water supply system will cover a minimum of 50 000 hectares and potentially up to 80 000 hectares and approximately 200 farms that are currently serviced by 10 existing stock and domestic dam fill schemes. It runs from Dingee in the south to Bald Rock in the north and from Terrick Terrick East in the east to Bullock Creek in the west including the township of Mitiamo.
Currently large parts of the area which is proposed for the pipeline lend themselves to intensive animal industries. On the southern boundary Hazeldene’s has developed a large broiler farm operation and is looking to expand in the area for its operation at Lockwood. The old DEPI/DSDBI had a working group examining the possibility of this becoming an intensive animal precinct similar to the work that was done north of Bannockburn in the Golden Plains shire. In the latter case there was money from the Victorian Regional Growth Fund the federal government and Barwon Water to enable the laying of a pipeline to supply water to that area to develop an intensive animal precinct. This is a good example of what could be done in the Mitiamo area.
As I said DEPI/DSDBI should have advice they can give the minister on that pipeline that she can then pass on to the group at the meeting. We all know the planning challenges around intensive animal industries and the need to remove broiler farms in particular from some of our more closely settled areas. That area is a large broadscale grazing and cropping area and would lend itself ideally to this. I ask the minister to receive a delegation comprising me and members of the Mitiamo group so that she can update them on the work that has been done by DEPI and DSDBI.