Victoria’s rural and regional councils will receive a boost to their efforts in tackling roadside weeds and pest animals, with $5.2 million in funding from the Andrews Labor Government.
Minister for Local Government, Natalie Hutchins, said the funding would be allocated to councils under the Roadside Weeds and Pests Program, as part of the 2015-16 Victorian Budget.
The funding will play an important role in enabling rural and regional councils to effectively manage their roadsides.
Ms Hutchins said that the list of eligible weeds will also be updated, taking into consideration feedback from local councils and communities.
The announcement comes on top of $3.5 million in funding for the Networked Rural Councils program.
Also delivered under the Budget, the funding will support Rural Councils Victoria, the peak body for 38 rural councils across the state.
In announcing the funding, Ms Hutchins said it would assist continued cooperation and between rural councils as they worked together to tackle problems and improve economic development across rural Victoria.
Funding for Rural Councils Victoria will be delivered as part of the Labor Government’s Regional Jobs and Infrastructure Fund.
Ms Hutchins said funding for Roadside Weeds and Pests Program and the Networked Rural Councils program demonstrated the Labor Government’s commitment to righting the wrongs of the previous Coalition Government and ensuring a fair go for rural and regional communities.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Local Government, Natalie Hutchins
“The Andrews Labor Government understands that rural and regional councils are unique in their role and in their needs.”
“Funding for Rural Councils Victoria will ensure that rural councils get the support they need to continue being a strong voice for their communities.”
“Additionally, under the Andrews Labor Government’s $5.2 million Roadside Weeds and Pests Program, rural and regional councils will be able to access funding to help control roadside weed and pests.”
“Controlling weeds and pest animals on local roadsides is critical to reducing their impact on the farm sector and on the environment.”