The Parliamentary Secretary for Defence, Senator David Feeney, today met with pastoralists in Whyalla. He discussed progress that has been made to expand the Cultana Training Area in South Australia.
Expansion of the Cultana Training Area is critical for Defence’s Joint and Combined Arms training. It is also important to Army’s 1st Brigade, especially the 7th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment which relocated to Adelaide in January 2011.
Senator Feeney said that significant developments have occurred since he visited stakeholders in February 2011.
“Defence has recently obtained in principle agreement with the registered native title claimant regarding an Indigenous Land Use Agreement.
“In light of this development, I have obtained agreement from a number of Federal Ministers to start compulsory acquisition of the pastoral leases within the Cultana Expansion Area,” Senator Feeney said.
Senator Feeney acknowledged that this process has taken some time and thanked pastoralists for their patience.
“The expansion of Cultana will bring more Defence jobs to South Australia.
“Not only will it generate short-term employment during the construction phase, but increased use of the training area will have a positive economic impact on local communities.
“The expansion will also complement the Army’s new $620 million facilities at Horseshoe Barracks, RAAF Base Edinburgh,” Senator Feeney said.
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