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Community support still vital for fight to secure airport’s future

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Wagga Wagga City Council, Media Release, 30 May 2024

Put your voice forward and let the Commonwealth Department of Defence know about why it is important to you, your family, your business or organisation for the Wagga Wagga Airport to the remain in the community’s hands.

Council is pleading with local and surrounding communities to keep their submissions coming in support of the fight to secure the future of the airport, which provides a vital connection for families, individuals, businesses, education and health services, aviation training and maintenance, and general aviation.

Council’s current 30-year lease of the airport from the Commonwealth Department of Defence was due to expire in June 2025.

It was recently announced Defence has put a decision about the lease on hold until 30 June 2026.

Mayor of the City of Wagga Wagga Councillor Dallas Tout welcomed the additional time for Council to prepare its case to secure a new and improved long-term lease of the airport.

“The extra 12 months is a positive development for Council as it shows the Minister for Defence is listening to the community’s and our voices on the future of the Wagga Wagga Airport,” Cr Tout said.

“However, the community and wider region should not take this as a signal to take a step back from the fight to secure a new lease.

“Council remains concerned Defence will still pursue the option to privatise the airport through a commercial lease, which we believe will have major impacts on the community by pushing up costs of air travel and creating another barrier for people in the region.

“It is vital that residents, stakeholders, and businesses get involved now and show their support by making a submission through our advocacy campaign.

“The need for community support is as strong as ever and time is of the essence!”

You can add your voice of support by filling in the survey/submission through Council’s Have Your Say Wagga Wagga page until Sunday 30 June.

Following suggestions from the community, Council has also launched a petition to fight for our airport’s future. The petition can be signed at the display in the foyer of the Civic Centre.

All the feedback received will form a key part of Council’s advocacy case as it is developed over the coming months.

Executive Manager Regional Activation Christine Priest said Council is currently forming a working group with other stakeholders from the education, health, business, emergency services, aviation and government sectors, who are also strongly in support of the lease with Council being renewed.

“It is crucial to have this broad support from our local and regional communities as we develop strategy and plan for what to do in terms of lobbying the Federal Government and Defence going forward,” Ms Priest said.

You can submit your feedback and support the fight to save our airport online at haveyoursay.wagga.nsw.gov.au or email it to us at council@wagga.nsw.gov.au or drop it in to the Customer Service team at our Civic Centre by Sunday 30 June 2024.

You can also find printed copies of the submission form at our Civic Centre, along with the petition.

Submit your feedback and support the fight to save our airport online: Have your say Wagga Wagga

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