The Canberra Region Joint Organisation (CRJO) has been awarded funding of $840,000 from the EPA under the Council Regional Capacity Building Program.
A portion of the funding of the Council Regional Capacity Building Program, will provide the CRJO with two dedicated positions. The two contaminated land specialists will be employed for a period of up to three years to work with and support Wingecarribee Shire Council with their procedures and registers for managing contaminated land, as well as assisting them with taking over responsibility of underground petroleum storage systems (UPSS) from the Environment Protection Authority (EPA).
Chair of the CRJO, Cr Rowena Abbey welcomed the announcement and said “This program has afforded in house expertise for our regional councils in the transition of the regulation of UPSS and provide assistance when dealing with land contamination issues arising from historical underground fuel tank leaks or land which was formerly used for industrial activities.”
“Bringing this expertise to our region and upskilling councils through training will help to protect our community and environment now, and for the long term,” Cr Abbey remarked.
The EPA grant is through the NSW Government’s $4.2 million Council Regional Capacity Building Program, which runs from 2018-2021. The EPA will continue to work with councils to ensure integrated management and regulatory oversight of fuel handling and storage systems.
Under the Contaminated Land Management Act 1997 (CLM Act), the EPA regulates contaminated land where the contamination is significant enough to warrant regulation. Contaminated land that is not regulated by the EPA is managed by local councils through land-use planning processes.
The Canberra Region Joint Organisation is a network to help drive better planning, economic development and service delivery in regional NSW. The Organisation provides a structured way for local councils, State agencies and other stakeholders to collaborate, plan, set strategic priorities, support a shared vision and deliver important projects, both short and long term, on a regional scale, by working across traditional council boundaries.
Membership includes, Bega Valley Shire Council, Eurobodalla Shire Council, Goulburn Mulwaree Council, Hilltops Shire Council, Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council, Snowy Monaro Regional Council, Upper Lachlan Shire Council, Wingecarribee Shire Council and Yass Valley Council.