Rockhampton Regional Council is calling on all levels of government to help fund the Mount Morgan water security project, with the business case now completed.
The completed Business Case was officially adopted at the Infrastructure Committee meeting and a commitment was made to continue to seek over $48 million in funding from all levels of government for the pipeline.
It was also endorsed to commence the design and construction of a new reservoir and pump station at Lucas Street, Gracemere, to be funded by Rockhampton Regional Council.
Rockhampton Regional Mayor, Tony Williams, said the announcement is a vital step in Mount Morgan’s long-term water security.
“We made a commitment to the Mount Morgan community to investigate a permanent water supply and today’s resolution reaffirms that commitment,” Mr Williams said.
“The completed Business Case for a pipeline is a major step toward delivery.
“This is a critical infrastructure project but – at a cost of more than $48 million to deliver – it’s one that Rockhampton Regional Council doesn’t have the budget to deliver on its own.
“We need other levels of government to step up and help us provide water security for this historic township.
“A completed Business Case means that when we speak to other levels of government we have the evidence to support us. We can show that this is the right approach – that it’s time for a pipeline.
“We will continue to take steps towards a solution for the community to ensure they have a reliable, safe, and acceptable quantity and quality of water that will continue to service the Mount Morgan community for many years to come.”
Water and Environmental Sustainability Councillor, Donna Kirkland, said Rockhampton Regional Council is looking to the future and what infrastructure will be required once the pipeline is up and running.
“Once we have a pipeline from Gracemere to Mount Morgan, we know this will put extra demand on our Gracemere water supply,” Ms Kirkland said.
“To counteract this additional demand, extra water storage is required to be built at the existing Lucas Street reservoir in Gracemere, prior to water supply commencing to Mount Morgan.
“We are starting this work now and Rockhampton Regional Council has endorsed to begin the design and construction of a 3.75ML reservoir and pump station, to ensure this is ready to go when the pipeline is installed and the people of Mount Morgan don’t need to wait any longer for a secure water supply than they already have.”
Divisional Councillor, Cherie Rutherford, commended the Mount Morgan community for their resilience in the face of strict water restrictions.
“The community of Mount Morgan have lived with water supply issues over the past 20 years,” Ms Rutherford said.
“Since March 2021, the already waterwise residents have been on the highest level of water restrictions and relying on a carted water supply from Gracemere.
“The water carting from Gracemere to Mount Morgan costs around $5 million per year, a cost which has been funded fully by Rockhampton Regional Council so far.
“This cost is an unsustainable burden for the ratepayers of the Rockhampton Region, and the situation is unsustainable and unfair for the residents of Mount Morgan, which is why we are lobbying other levels of government to step up and help out in this dire situation.”