Tag Archives: Media Release

Media Release: Borroloola Show secures bright future with infrastructure upgrade strategy

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SHOW SECURITY: Roper Gulf Regional Council Municipal Officers Bart Isaac and Kenneth Rory show Roper Area Manager Janeen Bulsey the new toilet block that has been installed ahead of the 2017 Borroloola Show as part of a $100,000 commitment to upgrade ageing infrastructure at the venue that hosts the annual event.

SHOW SECURITY: Roper Gulf Regional Council Municipal Officers Bart Isaac and Kenneth Rory show Roper Area Manager Janeen Bulsey the new toilet block that has been installed ahead of the 2017 Borroloola Show as part of a $100,000 commitment to upgrade ageing infrastructure at the venue that hosts the annual event.

Residents in Borroloola have notched up a show time win before the fun of sideshow alley has even arrived in the remote Gulf of Carpentaria town thanks to a legacy infrastructure upgrade at the venue that hosts the annual event.

Ahead of the 2017 Borroloola Show – which will run from June 30 until July 1 – Roper Gulf Regional Council has replaced the toilet block at the community’s showground as part of an upgrade project funded by the Borroloola Local Authority.

Director of Council and Community Services Sharon Hillen explained that replacing ageing infrastructure had been identified by the Local Authority as a town priority, and that Council staff had worked fast to ensure the new toilet block was operational before gates opened on Borroloola’s biggest event.

“Council owns and operates the Borroloola and Gulf District Sports Ground that hosts the annual Borroloola Show, and with the Local Authority, recognised that much of the legacy infrastructure in place was nearing end-of-life and in need of upgrading to meet the demand of facility users as the town goes through a growth phase,” she said.

“To achieve this, more than $100,000 is being allocated to the sports ground.

“The show is an extremely important social and economic event for the community and surrounding district, so Council is working closely with the Local Authority and other stakeholders to make sure older infrastructure is upgraded or replaced as the needs and expectations of the community evolve.”

In an additional boost for the town, the Council has utilised its strong working relationship with the Northern Territory Government to identify a funding opportunity the Borroloola and District Show Society (BDSS) will use to upgrade legacy buildings at the venue.

The $25,000 grant will allow show organisers to install more lighting and electrical outlets, as well as improve stormwater flow and enclose the main shed.

BDSS Vice-President Trish Elmy praised the Council and NT Government for their commitment to providing Borroloola residents with ever-improving facilities at the showground.

“The show brings everyone from around the region into town, so it’s crucial that infrastructure at the showground continues to be upgraded, especially the older items,” she said.

“The show society will use local contractors for the upgrades to the buildings, and that work will add to the improvements the Council has already made with the new toilet block.”

Mrs Hillen said the Council looked forward to an ongoing partnership with the show society and congratulated committee members on their long-term vision for the Borroloola Show.

“Council is happy to support the show society’s self-determination and direction for the event, and strives to foster strong support and advocacy roles to volunteer organisations who contribute community benefit to towns in the Roper Gulf region,” she said.

View the full Media Release here.

Media Release: Council tours $40m commitment to regional road infrastructure

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BRIDGING THE GAP: After a lengthy delay over the Top End’s extended wet season, work has started on concreting the deck of the new Roper River Bridge.

BRIDGING THE GAP: After a lengthy delay over the Top End’s extended wet season, work has started on concreting the deck of the new Roper River Bridge.

Roper Gulf Regional Council Elected Members and Executive staff have been given a first-hand look at the progress of the project that will improve wet season access to the remote communities of Ngukurr and Numbulwar.

Following the Ngukurr Local Authority Meeting on May 17, the Council accepted an offer from the Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Logistics (DIPL), and project contractor Sitzler, to inspect the new high-level bridges spanning the Roper and Wilton rivers.

The $40 million project is a joint undertaking between the Federal and Northern Territory Governments, with works scheduled to be completed by the 2017 wet season.

In addition to the bridges, the project includes sealing 7.3 kilometres of the Roper Highway, which provides the only vehicular access to two of the largest communities in the Council’s Local Government Area.

Roper Gulf Regional Council Elected Members and Executive staff tour the new bridges spanning the Roper and Wilton rivers following the Ngukurr Local Authority Meeting on May 17.

Roper Gulf Regional Council Elected Members and Executive staff tour the new bridges spanning the Roper and Wilton rivers following the Ngukurr Local Authority Meeting on May 17.

The existing river crossings are impassable for between 80 and 150 days each wet season, and Chief Executive Officer Michael Berto said the new bridges would provide multiple benefits for the region.

“Council has more than 1800 residents living in Ngukurr and Numbulwar, with another 100 in nearby Urapunga, so it was essential that the only road to those communities was upgraded to a standard that improved wet season access,” he said following the tour.

“Ngukurr and Numbulwar are two of the fastest-growing communities in the Roper Gulf region, and this new infrastructure complements Council’s $2.31m Growth Centre Transport and Freight Hub Project.

“Improving heavy vehicle access will open up economic and social development opportunities in both centres, so I commend the NT and Federal Governments for committing to constructing two new bridges to help facilitate that.”

Roper Gulf Regional Council Manager of Governance and Corporate Planning Amanda Haigh and Chief Executive Officer Michael Berto discuss the progress of the Wilton River Bridge with representatives from the Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Logistics, and project contractor Sitzler on May 17.

Roper Gulf Regional Council Manager of Governance and Corporate Planning Amanda Haigh and Chief Executive Officer Michael Berto discuss the progress of the Wilton River Bridge with representatives from the Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Logistics, and project contractor Sitzler.

Despite the recent wet season delaying the project, DIPL Regional Director of Infrastructure for the Katherine region Phil Harris said substantial progress had been made since work recommenced in April.

“Although the extended wet season has resulted in lengthy delays for the contractor to return to site, significant progress on the bridges has been noticeable since Easter,” he said.

“The Wilton River Bridge is now complete, with road works under way to finalise and seal the approaches.

“The placement of deck concrete commenced on the Roper River Bridge last week, and although road works have not commenced at this bridge, it is envisaged that both bridges will be opened before the onset of the next wet season.”

View the full Media Release here.

Media Release: Council to showcase animal health approach at inaugural municipal expo

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CONFERENCE CONSULTATION: Katherine Town Council Works Administration Officer Cheriece Fry and Acting Director of Works and Services David Moore discuss the schedule for the inaugural Northern Territory Municipal Operations Works Conference and Expo with Roper Gulf Regional Council Director of Council and Community Services Sharon Hillen after inspecting the Katherine Showground venue on April 28.

CONFERENCE CONSULTATION: Katherine Town Council Works Administration Officer Cheriece Fry and Acting Director of Works and Services David Moore discuss the schedule for the inaugural Northern Territory Municipal Operations Works Conference and Expo with Roper Gulf Regional Council Director of Council and Community Services Sharon Hillen after inspecting the Katherine Showground venue on April 28.

The success of Roper Gulf Regional Council’s Animal Health Program will be in the spotlight when Local Governments from across the Top End converge on Katherine for the Northern Territory Municipal Operations Works Conference and Expo next week.

The inaugural event, which is being held on May 3 and 4 at the Katherine Showground, is being hosted by Katherine Town Council and the Local Government Association of the NT (LGANT), and will provide an opportunity to discuss the latest innovations in the delivery of municipal services, as well as keynote addresses on issues impacting Local Government in the NT.

Local Government plays a major role in the NT’s economy, with 17 Councils collectively employing about 3000 Territorians as they receive and invest more than $400 million every year.

More than 30 exhibitors will be in attendance at the expo and Katherine Town Council’s Acting Director of Works and Services, David Moore, said it was hoped the event would overcome the tyranny of distance for many delegates by placing suppliers in front of buyers.

“To have this many exhibitors from all over Australia in one place for Council representatives to access is a unique opportunity that there’s a definite need for,” he said.

“In addition, there will be a range of speakers presenting on topics specific to Local Government at the conference.”

Director of Council and Community Services Sharon Hillen and veterinarian Dr Sam Phelan will present a keynote address on the success of Roper Gulf Regional Council’s new Animal Health Program on day two of conference and expo.

Director of Council and Community Services Sharon Hillen and veterinarian Dr Sam Phelan will present a keynote address on the success of Roper Gulf Regional Council’s new Animal Health Program on day two of conference and expo.

Roper Gulf Regional Council Director of Council and Community Services Sharon Hillen will talk about the challenges involved with animal management in remote communities, and how the organisation has managed to record year-on-year improvements through the implementation of its Animal Health Program.

“Animal management in our remote towns is something the Council has had significant success with over the past few years, and we now have a full-time veterinarian on staff to spearhead our Animal Health Program,” she explained.

“At the conference, I will be outlining how the Council tailored the program, and what was required to manage service delivery and community expectation.

“I congratulate Katherine Town Council and LGANT on coordinating this event, as it will give Local Governments in the region a chance to speak to experts and suppliers in a face-to-face environment that would have otherwise been impossible.”

View the full Media Release here.

Media Release: Council youth empowerment project raises roof in Ngukurr

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ROCKING THE HOUSE: Timomatic captivates an audience of about 450 people during a live performance, which was part of Roper Gulf Regional Council’s Right Path Project, in the remote community of Ngukurr on April 8.

ROCKING THE HOUSE: Timomatic captivates an audience of about 450 people during a live performance, which was part of Roper Gulf Regional Council’s Right Path Project, in the remote community of Ngukurr on April 8.

Younger residents of a remote Roper Gulf community have heard from a star of the national hip-hop scene that past challenges do not impede future potential during a youth mentoring and empowerment project at the weekend.

Roper Gulf Regional Council hosted the Right Path Project in Ngukurr on April 8 and 9, an initiative which provided youth under 24 with access to a range of sport and recreation activities, information sessions and support services designed to increase engagement and self-esteem.

In a bid to boost participant engagement, the Council flew Nigerian-born Australian singer-songwriter Tim Omaji, aka Timomatic, to the community, about 300 kilometres east of Katherine, to talk about the challenges he had encountered on his journey becoming one of the country’s best-known hip-hop performers.

Timomatic is mobbed by youth after arriving in Ngukurr.

Timomatic is mobbed by youth after arriving in Ngukurr.

After being welcomed with traditional dance and a smoking ceremony on the Saturday, Timomatic chaired a series of mentoring sessions, during which he told youth they should not let obstacles dampen their ambition.

“A lot of you have had challenges, I know that, but don’t let that stop you doing what you want to do,” he said.

“The rest of your life starts right now.”

Following a community barbecue, Timomatic took to the stage in front of about 450 screaming fans for a concert that celebrated music and dance, youth empowerment and Indigenous culture.

Ngukurr youth listen to Timomatic discuss his life and the challenges he has faced on his journey to hip-hop success during a group mentoring session.

Ngukurr youth listen to Timomatic discuss his life and the challenges he has faced on his journey to hip-hop success during a group mentoring session.

The Council’s Director of Community and Council Services, Sharon Hillen, said the organisation was proud to have delivered a once-in-a-lifetime experience for Ngukurr residents through the Right Path Project.

“We want youth to be a part of our story and get involved in the decision-making processes of Council,” she explained.

“More than 50 per cent of Ngukurr residents are under 24, and many face problems or barriers, which for one reason or another lead them to be disengaged from community.

“In partnership with the Federal Government, through the Indigenous Advancement Strategy, Council has created a program which reaches out to these kids to help them to find the right path to realise their dreams and enter into areas of interest, whether it be sport, work, arts or culture.

“Having Timomatic in Ngukurr to talk to the kids about his own life and challenges, play sport with them and then perform a concert allowed Council to really drive home the message that youth are the future of communities.”

View the full Media Release here.

Media Release: Barunga’s mining past steams into future through CDP innovation

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MOVING HISTORY: A crane lifts Barunga’s iconic 1904 Avery steam tractor onto a purpose-built slab on March 30 in the first stage of a Roper Gulf Regional Council Community Development Program project to revitalise the machine.

MOVING HISTORY: A crane lifts Barunga’s iconic 1904 Avery steam tractor onto a purpose-built slab on March 30 in the first stage of a Roper Gulf Regional Council Community Development Program project to revitalise the machine.

Patrons attending the 32nd Barunga Festival will notice a colourful change to the community’s iconic park dweller when they arrive to celebrate Indigenous culture over the Queen’s Birthday long weekend in June.

As part of a community beautification push, Roper Gulf Regional Council Community Development Program (CDP) participants are undertaking a transformation of the dilapidated 1904 Avery steam tractor that has remained motionless in Heritage Park for more than four decades.

The machine is identifiable to anyone who has ever visited Barunga, but the Council is hoping its makeover will help to promote the link between the community and the region’s rich mining past.

Community members operated the steam tractor at the nearby Maranboy tin mine until it closed in 1946, before it was dragged by a grader through the bush and across a creek for about 10 kilometres to its current location in 1974.

The refurbishment began on March 30 when the 14-tonne piece of Barunga’s history was craned onto a purpose-built slab in Heritage Park in front of dozens of excited onlookers.

COMMUNITY CELEBRATION: The Barunga community turned the move into a community celebration, which began with performances by school students and traditional dancers from neighbouring Beswick.

The Barunga community turned the move into a celebration, which began with performances by school students and traditional dancers from neighbouring Beswick.

Council Municipal Services officer and Barunga artist Owen Henry will play a crucial role in the final step of the transformation by leading the team that will repaint the steam tractor in a combination of traditional colours and stunning Indigenous artwork.

The 28-year-old said he was thrilled to be involved with a project that would preserve the role Barunga played in the mine’s operation.

“It’s been sitting there for so long, it’s going to be nice that it’s going to be turned into something good,” he said.

“It’s got trees growing through it at the moment, so to be able to display it for other people to see when they come in for the festival is going to be good, because people will see it a bit differently and learn what it means to the community.”

STEAMING AHEAD: Barunga Community Development Program participants celebrate with Council staff and other stakeholders after the steam tractor, which has remained untouched for more than four decades, was craned into its new position in front of dozens of excited residents on March 30.

Barunga Community Development Program participants celebrate with Council staff and other stakeholders after the steam tractor, which has remained untouched for more than four decades, was craned into its new position in front of dozens of excited residents.

Work on the steam tractor is scheduled to be completed before the Barunga Festival begins on June 9, and CDP Senior Employment Supervisor Sommer Meadows said there was an air of excitement around the community about the revitalisation.

“It’s of big significance to the community, because it’s basically taking back ownership of something that was theirs many years ago, because they had a milling station down at the Maranboy mine,” she explained.

“A couple of men relocated it along the back tracks from the old mill, and that’s where it’s always sat [in the park] since.

“This project is going to leave a permanent mark on Barunga and allow visitors to learn more about what community members did at the mine when it was running.”

The Council delivers CDP projects in 10 communities on behalf of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet.

The Federal Government initiative assists jobseekers in remote communities to find employment as they contribute to their communities and gain new skills in the process.

View the full Media Release here.