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Published: 28 February 2019   •   Media release

The Murray–Darling Basin Authority will strengthen its engagement with the community in Menindee and the lower Darling in western New South Wales following a visit to the area by Chief Executive Phillip Glyde, Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack and Parkes MP Mark Coulton.

The MDBA will appoint a Regional Engagement Officer to represent the area, joining seven other Regional Engagement Officers who provide direct feedback to the MDBA about issues relating to their area and help local communities learn more about water management.

"When I visited Menindee with the Deputy Prime Minister and Mr Coulton to talk with the community following the fish deaths in the lower Darling River, it was clear they wanted more regular and direct engagement with the MDBA," Mr Glyde said.

"MDBA staff have been regular visitors to the region.

"But given the importance of Menindee and the lower Darling and the significant challenges the region is facing, having an engagement officer who lives in the area, and is a part of the community, means we can hear more directly the views and frustrations the community is experiencing."

The request for a Regional Engagement Officer in Menindee came during a meeting with the Menindee Water Users Group.

Mr Glyde said the job would be advertised in the community. The position will be part-time, for an initial six months and will focus on the Menindee and lower Darling communities.

Mr Glyde said the Regional Engagement Officers were an essential part of the MDBA's ability to learn from local experience and knowledge.

"Our Regional Engagement Officers are all experienced people with strong local connections and valuable technical knowledge," he said.

"They will work directly with farmers, environmental and community groups, Indigenous communities, local government and other stakeholders to learn from and address the concerns of people most affected by the Basin Plan."

The MDBA has seven other Regional Engagement Officers who live across the Basin, representing the Lower Balonne (Queensland), the Macintyre (Queensland and NSW), the Namoi and Gwydir (NSW), the Barwon–Darling (NSW), the Mid-Murray (NSW), Goulburn–Murray (Victoria) and the Lower Murray (SA).

ENDS

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