MDBA REO Elizabeth Stott wants Leeton residents' questions on water

HERE TO HELP: MDBA regional engagement officer Liz Stott (second from right) with Leeton mayor Paul Maytom, chairman Neil Andrew and chief executive officer Phillip Glyde.

HERE TO HELP: MDBA regional engagement officer Liz Stott (second from right) with Leeton mayor Paul Maytom, chairman Neil Andrew and chief executive officer Phillip Glyde.

While irrigation, water and all the lingo coming with it often fills headlines and news broadcasts in Leeton and the wider MIA, there remains a desire to better understand the basics around the Basin Plan and what it all means for irrigators and communities.

A key suggestion from irrigators and residents is access to easy to understand information on water and the Murray Darling Basin Association’s (MDBA) Basin Plan.

The organisation’s recent appointment of Elizabeth Stott to the MDBA’s books aims to bridge the gap between MIA residents and decision makers in Canberra.

The Whitton local’s part-time role as the Regional Engagement Officer (REO) sees her liaise with the community, while running the family farm growing cotton and winter cereals.

She says the MDBA wants to bring the conversations she’s having with irrigators to the community to provide a better understanding of the water issues – without the jargon.

“It’s all about opening up communication between the MDBA and communities, allowing us to share information and I am already seeing this in action,” Mrs Stott said.

“The area I cover largely encompasses the Murrumbidgee and Coleambally Irrigation Areas – although I have also met with stakeholders from Hillston, Carrathool and Goolgowi.”

Mrs Stott’s roles with Murrumbidgee Irrigation and the Ricegrowers’ Association of Australia has helped her understand the importance of open communication with government.

“That is exactly what my role is about, and it is important to highlight that this is a two way street,” Mrs Stott said.

“Communities can help the MDBA understand their key issues and concerns, while the MDBA can help communities by sharing information on things like Basin Plan implementation.”

The plan’s full implementation is continuing, so farmers, residents and business owners should certainly raise any issues they may have. 

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If you have any questions or would like to know more about a particular topic please email Mrs Stott at elizabeth.stott@mdba.gov.au or The Irrigator editor: ben.jones@fairfaxmedia.com.au.

Keep an eye out for the responses in The Irrigator as questions come in.

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