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Published: 21 December 2018   •   Media release

The Murray–Darling Basin Authority (MDBA) has appointed a new Regional Engagement Officer to represent the Goulburn–Murray and ensure on-ground knowledge and experience is considered as part of the Basin Plan implementation.

MDBA Chief Executive Phillip Glyde said farmer Josh Kirby would take on the role in early January, joining six other Regional Engagement Officers who bring local expertise and insight to the MDBA.

Mr Kirby replaces former Regional Engagement Officer Merrill Boyd, who has represented the Goulburn-Murray over the past two years.

"The Regional Engagement Officers play a crucial role in the success of the Basin Plan by building strong relationships and ensuring regional Australia has a strong voice in the plan's implementation," said Mr Glyde.

"We are committed to ensuring people right across the Basin have the chance to be involved and have their say on water issues.

"We deliberately recruit experienced people with strong local connections and valuable technical knowledge who can work across catchments and across state borders.

"Regional Engagement Officers work directly with farmers, environmental and community groups, Aboriginal communities, local government and other stakeholders to learn from and address the concerns of people most affected by and interested in the Basin Plan."

Mr Kirby is a local farmer with a passion for both farming and the environment. He has held a number of jobs in the region including with local Moira Shire Council and with Goulburn Murray Water.

Mr Glyde thanked Ms Boyd for her contribution over the past two years.

"Merrill has been a great conduit from the region to the MDBA," Mr Glyde said. "She has also been outstanding representative of the MDBA in the region.

"We appreciate the fine work Ms Boyd has done to help her community understand what is happening in the river system, and her work to relay community issues to the MDBA. We wish her well for her future endeavours."

Mr Glyde said the Regional Engagement Officers, along with the network of regional offices and the 16-member Basin Community Committee, helped provide community input into Basin management and the implementation of the Basin Plan.

FAST FACTS:

  • The Murray–Darling Basin covers one million square kilometres – that's four times the size of New Zealand
  • The Murray–Darling Basin accounts for about 14 per cent of Australia's land mass and produces about 40 per cent of our food and fibre.
  • 2.6 million people live in the Murray–Darling Basin and more than 3 million rely on it for drinking water.

ENDS

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