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MDBA Chair’s show of support for new board

Murray Darling Basin Authority (MDBA) chairman Neil Andrew met with Murray Irrigation’s directors-elect over a working lunch in Deniliquin yesterday (Thursday May 31).

Mr Andrew was in the region as part of a tour to meet local organisations and discuss the implementation of the Murray Darling Basin Plan.

His visit was timely given Murray Irrigation’s announcement this week that Ryan Gleeson, Noel Baxter and Steven Fawns had been elected member directors, joining Phil Snowden and Waander Van Beek on a restructured board that will be finalised with the appointment of three independent directors next week.

Current chairman Mr Snowden said it was a fitting opportunity to meet with Mr Andrew.

“The timing couldn’t have been better,” he said.

“It was somewhat symbolic for the new board to meet with the person who is effectively leading the implementation of the Basin Plan.

“Neil was able to provide an insight into basin matters and we appreciated the time he spent with us and his acknowledgement of a new era in governance and board structure for the company.

“It was also a good opportunity to express the concerns that we have from the company’s point of view, as well as constructive solutions to ensure the triple bottom line can be delivered.”

Mr Andrew was taken on a guided tour of some of Murray Irrigation’s operational area on Wednesday (May 30), including a visit to the property of Mayrung farmers Leo and Judy Barry to see on-farm efficiency works, as well as outlets and regulators upgraded under PIIOP 2.

Murray Irrigation’s PIIOP 2 project received funding of $169.2 million from the Australian Government and involved the upgrade of more than 2,100 farm outlets and 1,300 regulators. The company also received Government funding across various rounds of the On-Farm Irrigation Efficiency Program.

Mr Andrew was also briefed on Murray Irrigation’s environmental watering partnership with the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH).