A new agreement between the Western Australian Government and the WA Local Government Association (WALGA) has led to greater local government roads funding.
The State Government has approved a new five-year State Road Funds to Local Government Agreement, which guarantees councils will receive 20 per cent of total state vehicle licence fee collections.
The agreement means the pool of funding shared by local governments will escalate from $182.3 million in 2018-19 to an estimated $203.4 million in 2022-23.
In addition to funding under this agreement, the State Government is committed to funding approximately $260 million of other works on the local government road network between 2018-19 and 2021-22.
WA Transport Minister, Rita Saffioti, said, “The local road asset base in WA is worth more than $25 billion and forms a critical component of the State’s transport network. These roads cover more than 127,000km or 86.5 per cent of all the roads in WA.
“Although the State Road Funds to Local Government Agreement is not the only source of State Government road funding for councils, it is a significant plank in local governments being able to plan for and deliver important road services throughout WA.”
WALGA was involved in the negotiation of the funding deal and has endorsed the arrangement.
“The agreement demonstrates the commitment by both levels of government to managing an effective road network and provides certainty to local governments over the funding arrangements,” President of WALGA, Lynne Craigie, said.
Under the new agreement, funding will be split into two categories.
The local government managed programs will receive 66 per cent of annual funding in direct grants, road project grants, State Black Spot allocations, and for strategic and technical support.
The remaining 34 per cent of funding goes to the Main Roads managed programs, which include state initiatives on local roads, bridgeworks and bridge inspections, and remote Aboriginal access roads.
“It’s important to note the agreement includes funding to improve access to remote Aboriginal communities. This will help improve social disadvantage brought on by sub-standard road access,” Ms Saffioti said.
“Funding under the agreement also supports tourism for national park roads, upgrades on Rottnest Island and on Kings Park roads.”