Commonwealth comes to the table with cash for units
The number of independent living units available at Finley’s Alumuna development could treble with more than $1.25 million in Federal Government funding allocated to the facility this week.
Finley Regional Care was named as a recipient under round two of the Commonwealth’s Building Better Regions Fund on Monday afternoon.
Its CEO Ben Levesque said the grant represents half the cost of the entire $2.5 million project, and comes as construction works under stage one move into their final stages.
Six independent living units are expected to be complete and ready for residents by the end of this year as part of stage one.
This week’s announcement could fund up to 12 new units.
Mr Levesque said this funding, and the project as a whole, will have a huge impact on local employment and the local economy.
‘‘Alumuna will create 48 jobs during the build and 10 extra jobs on completion, producing $3 million in expected flow on benefits to Berrigan Shire,’’ Mr Levesque said.
‘‘We’re using local tradespeople to build at least 16 dwellings over the next 12 to 18 months, which will contribute to the local economy.
‘‘The six star-rated, environmentally friendly homes are designed within Liveable Housing Design Guidelines, which meet the changing needs of home occupants across their lifetime.
‘‘The units also source their own power using solar generation and battery storage.”
Berrigan Shire general manager Rowan Perkins said the council was also excited by the prospects the funding and the development could provide for the community.
‘‘The council congratulates the board and executive of Finley Regional Care in securing grant funding from the Building Better Regions fund,’’ Mr Perkins said.
‘‘This funding will help provide a wider range of quality care options for Finley and the wider community, and importantly help diversify the local economy and provide an expanded range of employment options,’’ Mr Perkins said.
The Alumuna development was announced by Finley Regional Care in September last year, when the civil construction contract was awarded to Crawfords in Tocumwal and the building contract to Kennedy Builders in Mulwala.
Work began later in 2017, with the units being constructed on an eight-hectare block of land behind Finley Hospital in Scoullar St.
The block is large enough to accommodate up to 50 units and a serviced apartment block.
The complex will also include a standalone powered ‘mini grid’ with battery and generator back-up, ensuring electricity fees are kept to a minimum for residents.
In announcing the funding allocation on Monday, Federal Member for Farrer Sussan Ley said the savings that will be provided to residents who live at Alumuna is one of the project’s great advantages.
‘‘This is a really important development, allowing Finley Regional Care to provide low-cost, affordable housing to seniors from our local area,’’ she said.
‘‘The units provide residents with independent living in maintenance-free, safe accommodation in a caring community, meaning our older citizens can be cared for in their own home as long as they wish to be there.’’
The target market for Alumuna will be people aged 55 and over and the units will be ‘‘mobility friendly’’.