THE study that will decide the region's water fate was originally due to be completed in 2021, Tamworth MP Kevin Anderson has revealed.
The NSW government is reluctant to fund any large-scale water infrastructure until it finishes the Namoi Regional Water Strategy, which is due to be finalised by the end of 2020.
Mr Anderson said the planned completion had "been brought forward from 2021".
However, the Tamworth MP declined to say whether he believed the end of 2020 date was a reasonable timeline.
"Funding is being provided from the Snowy Hydro Legacy Fund to make sure the strategies can be completed in the fast-tracked timeline," Mr Anderson said in a statement.
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Last week, New England MP Barnaby Joyce said waiting 18 months to see a report before deciding on a course of action was unacceptable.
"If Sydney was in Tamworth's position, the study would be over, the bulldozers would already be moving," Mr Joyce said.
Mr Anderson said the regional water strategy would start with identifying the risks to water security and new opportunities in the region.
The study will then identify policy changes or infrastructure options that may help to improve water security.
Then there will be a detailed analysis of "promising options" to ensure that the proposed solutions are feasible and will have benefits across the regional community.
"The community and stakeholders in the Namoi Region will be involved in developing the strategy to make sure that expert local knowledge and experience informs the assessment of risks and possible options," Mr Anderson said.