The NSW Government announced over half a million dollars in funding for the Ballina region as well as the official certification of Ballina Shire Council’s Coastal Management Program (CMP) for Lake Ainsworth.


Minister for Local Government Shelley Hancock said this funding boost will assist Council and other land managers undertake important coastal works to protect the region’s waterways and coastline.


“This Government is committed to ensuring councils are supported when it comes to managing and protecting our unique coastal assets,” Mrs Hancock said.


“Through the Coastal and Estuary Grants Program, Council has been awarded $273,333 to undertake a water-quality monitoring program and a hydrologic modelling study at North Creek.”


Mrs Hancock also congratulated Council on preparing the first CMP for Northern NSW.

“The certification of Council’s CMP for Lake Ainsworth marks a significant milestone in the coastal management process and provides a clear strategy for the long-term management of the lake.”


Parliamentary Secretary for Energy and the Arts Ben Franklin also announced $250,000 in funding for the Lake Ainsworth foreshore, awarded through the Crown Reserves Improvement Fund.


“This funding injection will help address erosion issues at Lake Ainsworth through beach nourishment as well as upgrades to public access points on the foreshore,” Mr Franklin said.


“Given the importance of our coastal waterways to so many in our community, how we manage, protect and improve them is paramount.”


Ballina Shire Council Mayor David Wright said Council is very pleased to have the Lake Ainsworth CMP officially certified and to be the first in Northern NSW.


“I work alongside very dedicated staff who have prepared the CMP and grant application, and I am delighted with their efforts. We are also grateful to the NSW Government for their funding assistance to implement the actions outlined in the CMP,” Mayor Wright said.


“This will certainly take some pressure off the budget and Council looks forward to continuing its partnership with the Government.”


The Lake Ainsworth CMP outlines a suite of actions to reduce keys threats to the health of the lake including sediment and catchment controls as well as actions to manage foreshore erosion.


A certified CMP allows Council to access 2:1 funding from the NSW Government’s Coastal and Estuary Grants Program to implement actions outlined in the certified CMP.


More information on the Coastal and Estuary Grants Program can be found here.


Information on the Crown Reserves Improvement Fund can be found here.