Council builds on optimism

ORANGE mayor John Davis wants Australia to continue to prosper and the Orange region to lead the pack in 2013 building on a “very good” 2012.

Cr Davis said the new year will again be filled with large scale projects for the city which will see optimism in Orange continue.

“In the nine plus years I’ve been on council I don’t think I’ve seen or heard as much optimism and positive comments in regards to what we’ve got in Orange,” he said.

“Sure there’s fine tuning to be done, but people would have to agree since the warmer weather has been here the road network has been upgraded substantially.”

The north Orange bypass will have a final touch-up in early February to “overcome the blemishes”, Cr Davis said, and the first stage of the southern distributor will begin with work to install traffic lights and upgrade the intersection of Huntley Road and Forest Road.

The finalisation of the hub waste project in 2013 will cap-off 25 years of planning and will mean Orange will be prepared to cope with waste control in the future unlike other council areas, he said.

“Waste disposal and control will be at the forefront of most councils’ challenges for their existence,” he said.

Cr Davis said he appreciated there was anger about the $60 green waste charge and $20 equalisation levy but said the bills would be astronomical in the future if the fees had not already started.

Cr Davis said he looked forward to a final decision on the Macquaire Pipeline project and said if it was approved work would start as soon as possible.

“We’re getting back to 90 per cent in our dams,” he said.

“We’re only in the early stages of summer in Orange and people are starting to talk water.”

Cr Davis said the council was confident the project would get the tick of approval but said if tough conditions were enforced by the planing department it could make the pipeline impractical.

“We haven’t encountered what we believe are any game stoppers,” he said.

“However we don’t take anything for granted.”

The expansion of the Orange Airport was another exciting project for the city that would take off in 2013 beginning with earthworks, Cr Davis said.

The long-running museum project will remain the council’s number one priority with Cr Davis expecting work to start in 2013 for the building to be finalised within four years.

The future of the showground will also be cemented with money to be spent on upgrades in time for March’s show, he said.

clare.colley@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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