​Media Release

$20 million boost for 15 Murray-Darling Basin communities

31 January 2019

  • Local communities hit by water recovery to put forward projects creating jobs in their regions
  • Helping diversify Basin economies
  • Provides up to $20 million over 4 years to 2021-22 to boost communities most impacted by water recovery under the Basin Plan

The Murray–Darling Basin Economic Development Program has been launched today, providing up to $20 million over 4 years to support Murray-Darling Basin communities most impacted by water recovery.

Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources David Littleproud said the funding would help create sustainable long-term jobs in communities where water recovery has hit hard.

"We've got to be honest about this—water recovery has hurt communities," Minister Littleproud said.

"The drought has made it far worse. This investment will help boost 15 communities where water recovery has hit hard.

"This isn't a silver bullet. It's something we're doing to try to help. Everybody has had to compromise to get the Plan through and the thing all communities needed at the end was certainty. 

"These projects will be put forward by local communities. This lets them choose what's best for them to create jobs, diversify their economies and build resilience." 

Eligible communities across the northern and southern Basin include: Dirranbandi (QLD), St George (QLD), Cunnamulla (QLD), Collarenebri (NSW), Warren (NSW), Wakool (NSW), Rochester (VIC), Colignan (NSW/VIC), Merbein (VIC), Red Cliffs (VIC), Berri (SA), Cobdogla-Barmera (SA), Loxton (SA), Swan Reach (SA), Lower Lakes (SA). 

The grant funding will be available to not-for-profit organisations, including local governments, cooperatives, incorporated associations and Indigenous Corporations. 

Organisations that do not fall into one of these categories will be able to partner with eligible organisations to put forward project proposals.

For more information on the Murray-Darling Basin Economic Development Program, visit: agriculture.gov.au/edpgrants.

For information on other Commonwealth Government grants programs, visit: www.grants.gov.au.

Fast Facts

  • This program is part of the ‘Basin Plan Commitments Package’ announced on 7 May 2018.
  • The ‘Basin Plan Commitments Package’ is a $3.3 billion package of initiatives as part of its investment of more than $13 billion to implement the Murray–Darling Basin Plan.