The headquarters of the NSW Department of Primary Industries will remain in Orange for at least the next two decades, under a new accommodation strategy released today by the NSW government.
Nationals Candidate for the Orange by-election, Scott Barrett, joined the NSW Minister for Primary Industries, Niall Blair, in Orange to make the announcement.
“When the former Nationals Deputy Premier and Minister for Agriculture, Ian Armstrong, moved the-then Department of Agriculture to Orange on January 22, 1992, it was the single largest decentralisation project undertaken by a government department,” Mr Blair said.
“The Nationals remain as committed to a decentralised Department of Primary Industries in Orange today as we did in 1992.
“Today’s commitment is a clear statement of support from the NSW Liberals and Nationals government to the people of Orange, and will provide long-term certainty to staff, the community and our primary industries sector.”
Mr Barrett said the decision was a testament to Orange’s position as a hub for the NSW agriculture sector, with Paraway Pastoral Company and The Land newspaper also headquartered in the city.
“Having the Department of Primary Industries headquartered in Orange just makes sense – it was a great decentralisation decision led by The Nationals back in 1992 and today’s announcement sees Orange’s reputation as a key agricultural hub grow,” Mr Barrett said.
The strategy, which will see more than 700 staff from the broader Department of Industry employed in Orange for at least the next 24 years, will either refit the existing office at 161 Kite Street or identify suitable alternative premises in Orange.
Expressions of interest will be sought from the local property market to find sites within or outside the Orange CBD with a gross floor area of 8650m2.
Following the announcement in Orange Mr Blair and Mr Barett visited the flood affected region of Forbes.