A POLICY and a dedicated adviser on contaminated land is in the works after the Namoi Joint Organisation secured funding of $420,000 towards the plan.
Tamworth MP Kevin Anderson and Gunnedah mayor Jamie Chaffey announced the grant this morning, saying it would help the councils deal with issues arising from, for example, historical underground fuel tank leaks or former industrial land.
Councillor Chaffey said it would "allow councils to establish consistent policy and procedures for contaminated lands".
“We can’t underestimate the value of this work in providing surety to both landholders, land users and developers," Cr Chaffey said.
“This funding allows councils and staff to resource and deal with the issue of contaminated lands and UPSS - it’s complex but important work."
Mr Anderson said the Tamworth, Gunnedah, Walcha, Liverpool Plains and Gwydir councils had worked together to seek the funding.
“This is great news for the Namoi JO as the grant will enable them to employ a skilled contaminated land professional for up to three years," he said.
“The contamination officer will develop a land management policy framework, a register of contaminated sites and provide training on contaminated land management issues to the JO members …
"[They] can also help with planning the handover of responsibilities for underground petroleum storage systems from the EPA to councils.”