For Mooroopna’s Beau Cruickshanks, starting his own earthmoving business has been an easy decision.
Record investment in our region this winter – namely the Connections Project spending $100 million on a range of works in the Goulburn-Murray Irrigation District – means there has been no shortage of work.
BCE Earthmoving was subsequently created and Beau, 34, has recently wrapped up work on his first job near Numurkah as a subcontractor for Mick Hogan Excavations.
As a Murray Valley Irrigation Area contractor, Mick Hogan has staff, and subcontractors like Beau, carrying out earthmoving, channel lining, channel bank remodelling and meter installations at a range of sites.
“I was a foreman for eight years working for Mick,” Beau said.
“I could see an opportunity. There’s heaps of work in this area.
“So I purchased a $140,000 14-tonne excavator so that I could continue to do what I was doing – but do it for myself.”
Beau is grateful to Mick for employing him in a new capacity and keeping the Connections investment circulating amongst local people and businesses.
“It’s great that Hogans employ local staff where possible,” he said.
“You can’t knock back an opportunity like this. This project is good for the local area and hopefully the economic benefits snowball.”
Mick Hogan Excavations director Mick Hogan said it was good to see local people taking advantage of business opportunities.
“He wouldn’t have started his own business without this project. He’s making the most of it.”
Connections Project Director Frank Fisseler said the $100 million investment has included 35km of pipeline at seven sites, remediation of 33km of irrigation channels and channel automation at more than 271 sites.
“It’s fantastic to see this investment bringing positive results to people and local businesses in our region,” Mr Fisseler said.
Minister for Water Lisa Neville said the $2 billion Connections Project is not only delivering benefits to the region’s economy but is also creating a sustainable future for productive agriculture in northern Victoria.
“The scale of this investment is creating employment benefits and numerous opportunities for farming enterprises, communities and businesses in the region,” she said.