In an exciting move for the region, Clean TeQ – the owners behind the new Clean TeQ Sunrise mine to be developed near Fifield – has agreed to fund local initiatives totalling approximately $17 million.
Clean TeQ and the three shire councils of Parkes, Forbes and Lachlan have reached an ‘in-principle agreement’ for a Voluntary Planning Agreement (VPA).
As part of the agreement, the councils will receive a total of $400,000 for community enhancements – $200,000 for Lachlan Shire Council, and $100,000 each for Forbes and Parkes Shire Councils.
It’s estimated that Clean TeQ will contribute about $10 million towards community enhancements over the approved life of the mine.
There are also plans for Clean TeQ to upgrade and maintain the roads they use, contributing about $340,000 each year towards the road network to ensure its presence does not place undue pressure on local road infrastructure.
All parties are yet to sign the final agreement and Clean TeQ still has several significant project milestones to reach prior to construction, which is expected to take place early next year.
“While there remains a lot of work ahead of the Clean TeQ team to complete the Definitive Feasibility Study and develop the project through construction and into operations, it is pleasing to have reached in-principle agreement with Lachlan, Forbes and Parkes Shire Councils,” CEO Clean TeQ Sam Riggall said.
“I’d like to thank each council for their time and contribution to date, which we appreciate.
“The VPA provides a mechanism for Clean TeQ to contribute to the cost of maintaining public facilities used by the local community.
“When bench-marked against other mining industry VPAs, our committed investment of around $17 million is expected to provide a significant boost to the annual budgets of the local councils. Outside of the VPA, Clean TeQ will also be funding the upgrade of various roads and intersections.”
The VPA also includes a $90,000 per annum provision, to be split three-ways by the councils, to provide for the cost of the employees required to manage the increased council workload during construction.
Clean TeQ Sunrise will generate significant opportunities for its surrounding communities through the creation of jobs, generating investment and initiating flow-on spending across the region.
Stay tuned, a full story on the new Clean TeQ Sunrise project and what it means for the Parkes Shire and region to come.