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24 January, 2024

Water security high on Council agenda

Earlier this month, Toowoomba Regional Council resolved to investigate two key water security measures for the region.

At Tuesday’s Ordinary Meeting, Council resolved to investigate the possibility of increasing water capacity of Cressbrook Dam as part of the critical Dam
Safety Improvement Project as well as supporting a comprehensive investigation of the potential Emu Creek Dam by the Queensland State Government.

Water and Waste Portfolio Chair Councillor Rebecca Vonhoff bought forward both motions to the meeting and said that future water security is one of Council’s top strategic priorities.      

“Council recently appointed Seymour Whyte and SMEC Australia as alliance partners on the Cressbrook Dam Safety Improvement Project while also finalising a project budget of $270 million,” Cr Vonhoff said.

“Now is the time for Council to build on advocacy with Federal and State Governments as well as explore the potential for the project to increase water capacity in Cressbrook Dam as part of the project.

“The motion Council endorsed regarding the potential Emu Creek Dam signals to the State and Federal Governments that Council wants Emu Creek Dam to be seriously considered as a water source.

“This is important as the Water Moreton Plan is currently being reviewed and plants a flag for future councils of Toowoomba Region.”

The two resolutions endorsed by TRC were as follows:

Proposed revised advocacy plan for Cressbrook Dam Safety Improvement Project:

 That a revised advocacy plan for the Cressbrook Dam Safety Improvement Project be tabled at the Water and Waste Committee meeting of May 2024 for Council’s consideration and endorsement. The revision of the plan should include identification of suitable activities to:

1. Highlight the Cressbrook Dam Project’s strategic alignment to the Australian Federal Government National Water Grid Fund – including the potential of increasing water capacity in Cressbrook Dam as part of the project; and

2. Best enable the Queensland State Government to prioritise Council’s Project in applications made to access the Fund.

Emu Creek Dam:

1. That Council support a comprehensive investigation into Emu Creek Dam as a water source for Toowoomba Regional Council.

2. That Council request that the State Government apply for National Water Grid Funding for this investigation.

3. That funding Council’s request to the State Government (estimated by officers to cost $50,000) be considered at Budget Review 2.

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