Road investment needed: Ryan
The state government is under pressure to invest in roads and infrastructure around Benalla to support the increase in activity from the Lima South Precast plant.
The government has also been challenged to ensure jobs at the plant are provided locally first, before people are brought in from further afield.
State Member for Euroa Steph Ryan recently raised the matter in Parliament saying there was growing concern in the community about jobs being filled by people from outside Benalla.
‘‘John Holland and CPB Contractors’ decision to build this concrete plant in Benalla is a fantastic investment in the area,’’ Ms Ryan said.
‘‘Despite politically motivated claims to the contrary, I have been supportive of the plant from day one and I have never voted against it.
‘‘At present, however, there are some concerns that the government is quick to claim the credit for John Holland and CPB Constructions’ decision to construct the plant in Benalla.
‘‘But it has been slow to invest any of its own money to ensure our community can deal with the increase in traffic and the movement of heavy trucks in and around Benalla that is a natural result of a major plant build of this kind.
‘‘Intersections like Benalla Yarrawonga Rd and Murrays Rd and the Midland Hwy and Williams Rd are a huge safety concern, particularly given the number of trucks and heavy vehicles that will be passing through every day.
‘‘Residents on Williams Rd are also concerned about the condition of their road with some 140 trucks travelling between the Midland and the Lima South quarry six days a week.
‘‘Investment is needed in our local roads to deal with the wear and tear from the increase of heavy vehicles.’’
Ms Ryan said there was also concern that jobs were not being prioritised locally.
‘‘New industry in Benalla should mean new jobs for Benalla,’’ Ms Ryan said.
‘‘The government should do everything it can to ensure these jobs are made available to interested and hard-working locals first.’’