Murrumbidgee Shire closes a number of facilities

By Southern Riverina News

A number of Murrumbidgee Shire facilities have been closed in line with government advice regarding the Coronavirus pandemic.

Murrumbidgee Council has been forced to close its Coleambally office due to new restrictions issued from the government.

Other facilities closed by the council are as follows: Community gyms and sports centres; community halls; Jerilderie Library; John McInnes Square, Coleambally; museums; playgrounds; public barbecues, skate parks, swimming pools; water fountains; Western Riverina Mobile Library.

Key events organised by Murrumbidgee Council have also been affected by the pandemic with the Youth Week bus trip to Griffith, Seniors bus trip to Morundah Hotel and the seniors’ luncheon in Jerilderie all called off.

Mayor Ruth McRae said while disappointing, the closures are absolutely necessary to slow the spread of the virus.

‘‘The facilities will remain closed until we have been advised by the Government that it is safe to reopen them,’’ she said.

‘‘We understand they are important recreational and leisure outlets in our community. I encourage people to seek alternate leisure and fitness activities that can be undertaken safely.

‘‘It’s really important we continue to look after ourselves throughout this period. It’s also important we reach out to friends, families and neighbours to make sure they’re okay during this very unsettling time.’’

While most facilities are closed, the Murrumbidgee Council offices at Darlington Point and Jerilderie will remain open Monday to Friday from 9am to midday by appointment only.

The council requests the community phones or emails the office, rather than visit in person. Services are available by phoning 1300676243.

‘‘If there is anyone in the community who doesn’t have any support and would like one of our Council officers to call them periodically, please ring and leave your name and number at the office,’’ Cr McRae said.

Added to the list of closures is the majority of public toilet blocks.

Only three toilet blocks in the Murrumbidgee Shire will remain open including the blocks at John McInnes Square, Coleambally; Murrumbidgee Shire Hall, Darlington Point; and 63 Jerilderie Street (next to the bakery), Jerilderie.

Cr McRae thanked the staff who have worked tirelessly to maintain essential services during this very difficult time.

She urged all members of the community to heed the advice of governments to limit the spread of COVID-19 across the nation.

‘‘We need a whole-of-community response to the virus and we can all make a difference by practising the recommended hygiene routines, social distancing and restricting movement in public to essential requirements. If anyone is feeling overwhelmed with the crisis, I encourage you to reach out for support to one of the many support groups as this is a very anxious time in our lives.’’