Marble Bar Airport the target of $8.5 million COVID-19 package

Sam JonesNorth West Telegraph
Shire of East Pilbara president Lynne Craigie
Camera IconShire of East Pilbara president Lynne Craigie Credit: Ian Munro/The West Australian, Ian Munro

An upgrade for Marble Bar Airport will form part of the Shire of East Pilbara’s multi-million dollar COVID-19 economic support package.

Shire councillors passed the $8.5 million package this afternoon, which included by a freeze on rates within the Local Government Area for 2020-21.

The freeze extended to almost all fees and charges, with a five per cent rate refund to owners, small business and pastoralists and a suite of targetted grants for small business and community.

As part of the package the Shire will commit $6.9 million to expedite the Marble Bar Airport revamp, which is now planned to begin construction before the end of the year and operational in the second have of 2021.

Shire of East Pilbara president Lynne Craigie said the package, dubbed the Regenerate Together package, provided immediate relief measures targeting those hit hardest by the crisis.

“The package is designed to help individuals and small business ease the burden from forced closures and job losses as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic,” she said.

Ms Craigie also said she was excited to announce the Shire was to bring forward the Marble Bar Airport works.

“This will provide a significant economic boost, by not only stimulating our local and regional economy, but also by opening up a raft of opportunities across the Shire,” she said.

“The Marble Bar Airport is one of the most significant investment decision I’ve seen in my time on the Shire’s Council and the airport will open opportunities for larger chartered flights such as 100 seater jet planes to come in and out of Marble Bar.”

A local gold mining company, Calidus Resources Limited, will contribute $2 million towards the redevelopment of the airport.

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