VIC Gold miners struggling to find new work

Locals in the regional town of Stawell in Victoria say the impending closure of the town's gold operation has seen miners struggling to find new jobs, or picking up lower paid work.

ABC News reports the Northern Grampians Shire Council held a meeting last night in order to continue work on a plan to minimise the impact of the closure of the Stawell gold mine.

Last year the site's Canadian owner, Crocodile Gold, said Stawell's gold reserves had run out and mining would finish at the end of 2013.

The site has already started to wind down operations, and workers have already started to be laid off.

According to ABC News shire staff said while some miners were finding replacement work in Stawell their new jobs were often on lower pay or part-time hours.

The shire is working on securing state funding to help minimise the impact of the mine's closure but so far no money has been committed.

Part of the shire's plan to move on from the mine includes opening a new resources project at Stawell's Big Hill.

Last week Crocodile Gold said it aimed to press ahead with developing Big Hill, and it had started the process of winning approval from the VIC Government.

Victoria's mining industry has a reputation for being difficult and expensive to do business in, but a State Government inquiry into mining regulation and strong gold prices have spurred new interest in the state's gold reserves.

Image: Rob Lavinsky/

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