Saleyards ramp project approved

EFFICIENCY BOOST: Grant District Council will progress with its plan to upgrade ramps at the Mount Gambier and District Saleyards despite a $150,000 shortfall in allocated funds.

By Raquel Mustillo

GRANT District Council will reallocate $120,000 originally budgeted on the Mount Gambier and District Saleyards roof project toward a ramp upgrade to improve safety and productivity of loading stock at the facility.

A further $30,059 will be allocated to complete the project in council’s 2021/22 budget after elected members supported the funding at this week’s council meeting.

The project comprises of the installation of two new state-of-the-art adjustable cattle ramp with both rear and side loading options to cater for both b doubles and a double trucks, providing increased efficiencies and productivity when loading and unloading cattle, reduced waiting periods and quicker turnaround.

A masterplan identified the need to upgrade the ramps, with a staff report saying the project was a proactive measure “as there have also been issues with loading ramps involving Worksafe in the previous years”. 

The tender process identified a $150,000 shortfall from the initial scope of works and the project is expected to cost $918,059.

“This shortfall is largely due to the initial scoping of the project identifying the earthworks/civil works costing approximately $150,000,” the report said. 

“The civil tender that was originally received by council from the preferred tender identified a potential cost of $414,505 which is significantly higher than the original estimate.”

At an earlier meeting, council backed an in principle funding contribution of $2.7m towards the multi-million dollar upgrade of the saleyards if two State Government grants are unsuccessful.

Elected members voted to contribute an additional $850,000 towards the $5m project – which will also include $2.7m towards a new 13,600m2 cattle roof – to progress a Federal Government grant application.