Support to revitalise Leigh Creek as a regional service town

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The State Government will support Leigh Creek to remain open for business beyond July 2018 providing essential services for about 700 people both in the town and surrounding communities.

Negotiations between the State Government and Alinta are continuing for the Outback Communities Authority (OCA) to take over operational management of Leigh Creek from 1 January 2017 with essential services and buildings to be maintained, including those for commercial use such as the caravan park and tavern whilst the buildings are offered through an Expression of Interest process to operators in the second half of 2016.

Maintenance of essential town services and assets includes water, wastewater, roads and aerodrome and municipal services such as the rubbish dump, footpaths, parks and gardens, barbecues, public toilets, street lighting and other recreational facilities including the swimming pool, ovals, gymnasium, and sports stadium.

Current Leigh Creek residents will be encouraged to stay in the town with the intention to sell housing to new residents by 1 January 2018. Of the current housing stock, some dwellings are intended to be kept and upgraded for current use, other dwellings to be retained for future use and depending on future demand there will be a progressive program to demolish unrequired dwellings.

At this stage, the phased demolition of dwellings is intended to be conducted over a three year period with annual reviews undertaken to account for any progress or development in the region and to determine if additional demolition is required.

30 recommendations have been made to the State Government to maintain and revitalise the township which are outlined in a report released today by former South Australian Education and Tourism Minister Jane Lomax-Smith, who led the Request for Information process.

Manufacturing and Innovation Minister Kyam Maher made the announcement in Leigh Creek today to support the community affected by the closure of Alinta Energy’s Leigh Creek coal mine.

The Government will appoint a Transition Manager to develop commercial and marketing opportunities in the town and region, and continue to consider the recommendations in the report.

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