Council chooses forestry-battered roads to get the funding

OBERON Council will concentrate on deteriorating forestry roads as it takes advantage of a NSW Government funds injection.

Oberon is one of 93 councils eligible for the NSW Government's Fixing Local Roads program, which has been specifically developed for regional and rural councils to carry out vital maintenance and repair work.

The application process closed in early December - which, council says, provided only a short period of time to allocate priorities for forestry-affected roads.

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Council has decided to endorse Campbells River Road, Arkstone Road and Burraga Road as the priority roads for funding.

Director of technical services Chris Schumacher said in a report to council that the guidelines indicate that in recognition of the concerns of a number of councils regarding maintaining roads in local government areas with large areas of forest, a portion of the funding from the total allocation will be specifically earmarked for roads in forestry areas.

Cr Mick McKechnie wanted to include Mozart Road on the list, but council general manager Gary Wallace said Mozart was not a high priority road and it might not meet guidelines for funding.

Cr Andrew McKibbin said the roads chosen are basically forestry roads and they need addressing.

"We have a short deadline and we should put our resources into these roads," he said.

Mr Schumacher's report went on to say it is recognised that the roads chosen for maintenance and repair are in a rapid state of deterioration as a result of the volume of traffic.

"Industry is calling for improved heavy haulage access that will allow bigger payloads on these roads in order to meet the delivery aspirations of the timber industry, which as a result will further impact these deteriorating carriageways," he said.

Fixing Local Roads is a five-year, $500 million program.

Applications for the first round of the program were open until December 2 and councils will be notified about the distribution of funds in February.

Councils will have two years to complete the job.