HRCC welcomes Livestock Exchange funding

Published on 06 March 2019

Horsham Regional Livestock Exchange.JPG

Horsham Rural City Council (HRCC) has welcomed the Federal Government’s $1.49 million contribution that will allow the construction of a roof over Horsham Regional Livestock Exchange (HRLE) to start this year.

All 23,400 m² of the saleyards will be roofed, with HRCC committing $1.54 million to the $3.03 million project.

The Commonwealth support is being funded via its Building Better Regions Fund.

The key long-term benefits from the roof include weather protection for livestock, staff, agents and buyers, improved livestock quality, carbon emission reductions and reduced cleaning and maintenance costs. 

The upgrade will also include LED lighting and solar panels, and will enable a substantial amount of water to be harvested and re-used.

Chief Executive Officer Sunil Bhalla said the project would help Horsham maintain its status as the major regional exchange for the Wimmera-Southern Mallee region.

“We certainly appreciate the commitment from the Federal Government. Thank you also to our consultant team which assisted us with the strategic planning and business case preparation,” Mr Bhalla said.

“Roofing of the facility was identified as the key priority in the Master Plan completed in 2018 and the subsequent business case identified in detail the significant merit of the proposal.

“It’s pleasing to see the planning and advocacy work come to fruition,” he said.

Mr Bhalla said Council would aim to start construction around the middle of this year, after tenders are called for this work.

Mayor Mark Radford said the project was a great opportunity for Wimmera construction employment and the supply of steel and roofing materials.  

“On behalf of our community, I say thank you for this funding and for showing confidence in our community to deliver this project,” he said.

“It is an important part of our economy and one of Victoria’s main livestock selling centres. Just on 20 years ago, the Livestock Exchange was moved out of central Horsham to its current site at Burnt Creek.

“The facility is well staffed by good people with a passion for what they do,” Cr Radford said.

The Exchange is Victoria's fourth-largest sheep and lamb market and is the major livestock selling centre in the Wimmera, attracting vendors from as far away as the South Australia and southern New South Wales.

Sheep and lambs have been sold at the Burnt Creek facility every Wednesday since it opened in December 1999.