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Date posted: 3 March 2014
The Australian Government has announced they will invest a total of $12 million to support improvements to vital seawall infrastructure on six Torres Strait islands that experience regular tidal and storm surge flooding.
The joint Australian and Queensland Government project will see a total of $26.2 million provided for the construction and repair of seawalls in the Torres Strait communities of Saibai, Boigu, Iama, Poruma, Masig and the Warraber islands.
'The Australian Government will continue to ensure vital infrastructure and safety for our remote communities is a priority,' said Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development Warren Truss. 'These works will provide residents of the Torres Strait islands with protection from the environmental elements in their region for at least a further 30 years.'
Minister for Indigenous Affairs Senator Nigel Scullion said $6 million from the Indigenous Housing and Infrastructure program, in addition to $1 million already provided, will improve community safety for more than 1,700 residents living on the islands. 'There are currently six Torres Strait islands that have an urgent need for coastal protection works and this project will improve safety on these islands, allowing residents to remain in their communities,' Senator Scullion said. 'Ensuring health and safety related infrastructure is maintained in our Indigenous communities is always a high priority.'
The project will take place over the next four years, and it is hoped that it will maximise employment opportunities for local Indigenous residents.