Chamber speaks to Minister about town funding

Foreign Affairs Minister Marise Payne who was at the polling booth at Merimbula RSL Club on Thursday has said she will take up the case for CBD funding.
Foreign Affairs Minister Marise Payne who was at the polling booth at Merimbula RSL Club on Thursday has said she will take up the case for CBD funding.

Merimbula Chamber of Commerce president Nigel Ayling has taken the opportunity of a visit by Minister for Foreign Affairs Marise Payne, to talk about Merimbula CBD issues.

Minister Payne was in Merimbula on Thursday, July 2 in support of the Liberal Party candidate Fiona Kotvojs and is in Bega on Friday before visiting Narooma on Saturday.

Mr Ayling said it was chance to talk with the Minister about Merimbula's town centre issues.

"I explained to her how we are desperately waiting for funding approval for the $14m Merimbula CBD upgrade from state government," Mr Ayling said.

"She said she would talk to Andrew Constance (Bega MP) about it and see what the hold up is. She also indicated it might be something that could be co-funded with the federal government and would talk to the Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack about it as well," he added.

Minister Payne confirmed she would take up the case and was expecting to get more information sent from Mr Ayling to her office.

"This is core business for me as I am a NSW Senator," she explained.

Mr Ayling said the CBD funding was a major priority for the town and has encouraged everyone to advocate for it at every opportunity.

The Minister said that talking to local people she had received a lot of positive comments about the defence spending announcements made on Wednesday, July 1 by the Prime Minister Scott Morrison and had also had a lot of discussion about COVID-19 "in an international context".

With respect to the Liberal Party's chances in the Eden-Monaro by-election, Minister Payne said "we've got a century of history against us".

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