Gannawarra Shire Council will be able to prepare an economic development strategy to attract new business investment leading to more local jobs, thanks to a $30,000 Brumby Labor Government grant.
Regional and Rural Development Minister Jacinta Allan said the grant would allow the Shire to prepare the Gannawarra Economic Development Strategy with a consultant to identify how best it can drive economic and jobs growth.
“We understand that the Gannawarra region has been dramatically affected by the impact of prolonged drought, the downturn in milk prices and the recent decision by Murray Goulburn to close its Leitchville plant,” Ms Allan said.
“That is why the Brumby Labor Government is supporting Gannawarra to prepare its economic development strategy to strengthen and diversify the local economy and help create jobs.”
Ms Allan said that once selected, the consultant would be expected to:
- Update the economic profile of the Gannawarra community;
- Collate and consider existing research, such as on the impacts of sales of permanent water entitlements and land use options for new dryland;
- Identify economic drivers and key performance indicators;
- Consult with private and government sector specialists to scope opportunities;
- Prioritise goals and objectives for the strategy;
- Formulate action plans for key future growth sectors such as agriculture/cropping, tourism and home based business to leverage and facilitate investment opportunities.
- Investigate potential employment and business growth;
- Prepare investment prospectuses; and
- Present a final report to the Council and community.
“The funding will be made available through the Planning for Change fund, an initiative under the $502 million Moving Forward action plan that is helping make regional and rural Victoria an even better place to live, work, invest and raise a family,” she said.
Ms Allan said the Brumby Labor Government would contribute $30,000 towards the $45,000 total project cost, with the Gannawarra Shire Council contributing $15,000.
Today’s announcement follows the recent commitment of $650,000 from the Regional Infrastructure Development Fund grant towards the Gateway to Gannawarra Education, Culture and Heritage Centre that will showcase the Murray region’s red gum forests and heritage at a purpose built facility in Cohuna to help boost tourism to the region.