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Putting Government Back To Work For The Barwon Region

17 November 2015

The Andrews Labor Government today unveiled Victoria’s Regional Statement, a new vision for our regions that will change the way government works with the Barwon region.

Premier Daniel Andrews today joined Minister for Regional Development, Jaala Pulford, and regional leaders from across the state at Brown Brother’s Winery in Milawa, to launch the Regional Statement and outline the Labor Government’s commitment to rural and regional Victorians.

The Regional Statement will give regional communities a stronger voice in government decision-making by directing priorities identified by regional communities straight into the heart of the Labor Government’s agenda.

The centrepiece of the Statement is the establishment of nine new Regional Partnerships across the state, with representatives from community, business and all three levels of government.

The Partnerships will be formed in nine regions covering rural and regional Victoria, which have been defined to reflect the real communities-of-interest that exist throughout regional Victoria.

The new Barwon Region, which encompasses Colac-Otway Shire, Surf Coast Shire, Borough of Queenscliffe and Greater Geelong City, will have its own Regional Partnership, ensuring government decisions and investments reflect the priorities of the families, workers and businesses in Barwon Region.

The Statement outlines the Labor Government’s significant commitments and investments for regional Victorians and highlights the opportunities and challenges for the Barwon region.

The Labor Government will work with the Barwon region to address these challenges, including:

  • Refocusing the economy to accommodate growth through employment opportunities like the 150 new jobs at the DisabilityCare national headquarters, and structural adjustment impacts in the region from closures such as the Point Henry smelter and the Ford manufacturing plant
  • Supporting the important role advanced manufacturing will play in the local economy through cutting edge projects such as ManuFuture
  • Tackling disadvantage in Corio and Norlane, two of the most disadvantaged postcodes in Victoria

The Statement also outlines a number of new initiatives that will put the Government back to work for the Barwon, including:

  • Developing a $34 million Regional Skills and Training package that will help local communities in Barwon, particularly disadvantaged groups and areas, access the training they need to get the jobs they want
  • Investing up to $25 million to upgrade ‘first and last kilometre’ routes across regional Victoria through the Agriculture Infrastructure and Jobs Fund. This will grow local agriculture by cutting travel times and costs for Barwon Region producers
  • Delivering better reception for mobile devices along the Geelong V/Line rail route through the Regional Rail Connectivity Project, making it easier for commuters and visitors to and from regional Victoria
  • Revitalising our regional economic services by transitioning our Regional Development Victoria offices into Regional Business Centres, with one of the first to be the Geelong office. The Centres will provide a one-stop-shop for businesses looking to grow
  • Developing a pipeline of the ten most significant regional tourism projects to fully realise the economic potential of the State’s iconic assets, creating jobs, attracting new generations of domestic and international tourists, and increasing visitor spending opportunities

The Regional Statement is available online at Link , along with details of the Labor Government’s commitments and projects currently underway to support the Barwon region.

Quotes attributable to Premier Daniel Andrews

“We’re putting government back to work for the Barwon region with a commitment to create jobs, provide a better start for young people and ensure a brighter future for families and communities.”

“The Statement will make sure that more than ever, government is working for regional communities. Not those with the loudest voices – but the families, workers and communities that are the heart and soul of regional Victoria.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Bellarine Lisa Neville

“No government should ever take regional Victoria for granted. Families in Barwon deserve a government that works as hard as they do – and that’s what this Statement is all about.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Geelong Christine Couzens

“Our new approach will harness input directly from our regions so that government decisions and investments reflect what really matters to Barwon families, workers and communities.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Lara John Eren

“The new Regional Partnerships model will ensure the Government is acting locally to address local opportunities and challenges in the new Barwon region.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Western Victoria Gayle Tierney

“This new approach will provide our local councils with a vehicle to get things done and make sure their diverse needs and experiences are heard in Melbourne.”

Reviewed 10 February 2021

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