Broken Hill to look at ways to get more money from miners

Broken Hill City Council has proposed a taskforce to look at ways to increase the revenue it receives from mining companies.

Councillors Dave Gallagher and Darriea Turley will represent the Broken Hill at the Western Division of Councils conference to be held later this month in Nyngan, New South Wales.

The ABC has reported deputy mayor Turley will put a motion to the conference proposing that a mining taskforce be formed to determine how to rate mines.

Turley said the council wants to look at how to earn revenue from mines outside the city council area.

"At the moment you've got mining companies outside of Broken Hill using our roads and other services and we can't even rate them, and yet the community have to pay for contribution to services," she said.

"We just want to get it right. It's certainly not going to happen overnight and that's why we say a taskforce might be best placed – a taskforce that isn't supported by the State Government – and that needs to look at those critical issues."

Turley added that the proposed taskforce would also examine the state government's Royalties for Regions program, which sees royalties from country areas redistributed in areas where they are generated.

She claims that a large portion of the money is currently going to coal mining regions like the Hunter Valley.

"At the moment we've seen little funds distributed, but for small mining towns like Broken Hill, Cobar and others this has great impact of what it can do for our communities," she said.

"We're missing out on opportunities, we're missing out on a way to get money back into the region by not having access to this Royalties for Regions and we need to make sure we're the advocate for the far west."

However Murray-Darling member John Williams said the Royalties for Regions funding ratios are based on revenue and are fixed.

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