G21 Snapshots newsletter - April
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  April 2015
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As an important member of the broader G21 family, each month we will keep you informed of the key projects and activities of the G21 Alliance. G21 is the formal alliance of government, business and community organisations, working together to improve people's lives in the G21 region.

G21 Board heads to Canberra
GROW project’s national award recognition
Geelong Mall project aims for safe space
Simonds Stadium upgrade moves ahead
Old Beechy Rail Trail official opening
GRIIF Round 3 grant applications open
Have your say on Drysdale Bypass
Jobactive launch
New fund to drive jobs and growth in regional Victoria
Forrest mountain bike strategy adopted
Apollo Bay Harbour redevelopment closer

RDA BSW Committee update
Items of regional interest
Key Economic Indicators released
Latest news from the G21 Pillars
Media articles of interest to the G21 region


G21 Board heads to Canberra

web_AbottThe G21 board has travelled to Canberra in the last month to advocate for key G21 region infrastructure and community development projects with federal ministers and shadow ministers.

The G21 board met with 17 key ministers, shadow ministers and advisers in Canberra, including:

  • Tony Abbott MP, Prime Minister
  • Warren Truss MP, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development
  • Ian Macfarlane MP, Minister for Industry
  • Greg Hunt MP, Minister for Environment
  • Bill Shorten MP, Leader of the Opposition
  • Senator Stephen Conroy, Shadow Minister for Defence
  • web_ShortenAnthony Albanese MP, Shadow Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Shadow Minister for Tourism
  • Senator Kim Carr, Shadow Minister for Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Industry
  • Jenny Macklin MP, Shadow Minister for Families, Payments and Disability Reform

The delegation delivered messages to politicians about the challenges our region faces and about the opportunities to invest in key projects which will stimulate employment in the region.

With an election most likely in the second half of next year, now is the right time to be telling our politicians of the projects we in the
region believe are most important to our future economic and social wellbeing.low_McFarlance

The G21 board advocated primarily for G21’s priority projects which, among other items, include the Land 400 project which would see the region involved in the manufacture of the next generation of combat vehicles, support for the growth of Avalon Airport, and the innovative GROW (G21 Region Opportunities for Work) project, which is a joint initiative of Give Where You Live and G21.

The delegation is part of a long-term strategy to reinforce the merits and the importance of key projects with our political decision makers.

GROW project’s national award recognition

The G21 Region Opportunities for Work (GROW) project has been recognised in The Search, a prestigious national ‘social impact’ award. GROW was one of only 11 projects to be shortlisted across Australia.

GROW is joint initiative of Give Where You Live and G21 in response to growing employment challenges facing the G21 region.
GROW aims to counter generational disadvantage in parts of our region using a range of measures, including by positively addressing joblessness.

Being short-listed in The Search was a wonderful validation of the framework being used to bring the Geelong community together through the GROW project.

GROW is funding a business plan specifically focusing on increasing employment through procurement processes, fostering small-to-medium sized business and helping people from areas of greatest needs (such as high unemployment) across the G21 region.

We look forward to announcing more specific detail about GROW in coming weeks.

Geelong Mall project aims for safe space

In January, Police Minister Wade Noonan, asked G21's Regional Justice Reference Group to work to address safety perceptions in Geelong's Mall.

The Committee's work was released in early April, with traders, young people and other Little Malop St mall users at the heart of the collective plan to help the community feel safer in central Geelong.

The Central Geelong Mall Project aims to make the mall a better place by improving its physical environment and by preventing crime.

The project will introduce the #SoYouKnowGeelong initiative to promote socially acceptable behaviour for all mall users.

Other key elements of the multi-pronged approach include:

  • improving the mall’s physical environment after a Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design audit
  • increasing the community’s use of the mall, with performers, food trucks, holiday activities, street art workshops and commercial promotions
  • an integrated approach to crime control such as CCTV monitoring and uniform and plainclothes police patrols
  • workshops that seek traders’ view on ways to better use the mall
  • conflict resolution programs by Dispute Settlement Centre Victoria.

The Victorian Government has granted $19,000 towards a new $20,000 #SoYouKnowGeelong program, with the balance coming from G21, and in-kind support from BATForce and the City of Greater Geelong.

Simonds Stadium upgrade moves ahead

Simonds Stadium will be transformed into a world-class arena suited to staging globally-recognised major events after landmark redevelopments of the ground begin.

The stages 4 and 5 redevelopment of Simonds Stadium is a project supported by the G21 Economic Development Pillar.

An architect and project manager to coordinate stage four of the ground’s redevelopment has been appointed.

Global design giant Populous is a world leader in sporting architecture, responsible for state-of-the-art stadium upgrades at Lord’s, Wimbledon and Margaret Court Arena.

RCP returns to Geelong as project manager of the redevelopment after also coordinating the installation of ground lighting in time for the 2012 AFL season.

The ageing Brownlow and Jennings Stands will be demolished, paving the way for a capacity increase to 36,000. This will strengthen bids by Geelong to host a range of major events, including AFL finals.

Construction will create 90 jobs, and 320 ongoing positions.

Old Beechy Rail Trail official opening

web_BeechyThe Old Beechy Rail Trail enhancement, one of the trails recognised under the G21 Adventure Trails Priority Project, has been officially opened, providing a safer and more enjoyable experience for riders and walkers exploring the trail.

The 50 kilometre trail runs from Colac to Ferguson, following sections of the old rail line.

The Old Beechy Railway was an incredibly important link for sawmillers and farmers who relied on it to cart timber and later vegetables and livestock to Colac, because of poor road conditions.

It is now an ideal place for a walking trail. Not only has the track been upgraded and rerouted, several shelters and bike racks have been installed, signage improved, new seating provided and a myriad of new trees planted.

This trail now offers a safer and more enjoyable experience to a wide variety of people, from cycling enthusiasts to bird watchers, historians and nature lovers.

The Victorian Government contributed $500,000 to the project, while the Colac Otway Shire provided more than $330,000.

GRIIF Round 3 grant applications open

The Geelong Region Innovation and Investment Fund (GRIIF) Round 3 is now open for applications for grants from eligible G21 region businesses.

Applications close on Thursday 14 May 2015.

GRIIF is a competitive, merit based grants program to support investment that will create new or additional business capacity and result in new sustainable jobs in the G21 region.

It is jointly funded by the Australian Government, the Victorian Government, Ford Australia and Alcoa Australia.

Projects can come from any industry sector. Eligible projects must involve new business activity and create sustainable jobs through investment in new capital equipment or buildings and facilities.

The Fund will provide financial assistance for up to 50 per cent of total eligible project expenditure of $100,000 or more and all funds awarded must be expended by 30 June 2017 when the Fund will close.

The merit criteria and guidelines can be found here.

For further information, please contact a Business Development Manager at the Barwon South West Office of Regional Development Victoria, based in Geelong on 5215 6000 or information.barwonsouthwest@dsdbi.vic.gov.au

Draft Bells Beach Coastal Management Plan out for comment

The draft Bells Beach Coastal Management Plan will be available for public comment until 31 May.

The draft plan has been prepared following more than a year of detailed planning and community consultation including the establishment of the Bells Beach Community Visioning Taskforce chaired by John Thwaites.

In September 2014 a vision for Bells Beach Surfing Recreation Reserve was adopted which reads; ‘to respect and protect the natural environment, indigenous heritage and surfing culture of Bells Beach.’

The draft Bells Beach Coastal Management Plan touches on many areas of interest including the natural environment, heritage, infrastructure, events, governance and traffic management.

A common theme throughout is that Bells Beach is a unique place with attributes that should be understood, respected and preserved and infrastructure should be kept to an absolute minimum.

The draft Bells Beach Coastal Management Plan has a 10 year time frame whilst the accompanying Implementation Plan has a 3 year lifecycle.

Have your say on Drysdale Bypass

Bellarine Peninsula locals are invited to view plans for the Drysdale Bypass and provide input into key features of the project such as intersections and improvements to High Street in Drysdale.

The $109 million project will reduce congestion and improve the amenity of High Street by reducing noise, making it safer for road users and pedestrians and making it easier to park.

The bypass will also reduce the numbers of trucks and heavy vehicles by providing an alternate and more efficient route which will divert them from the centre of town.

VicRoads’ engineers are currently investigating potential impacts on the environment and will be completing a range of other studies including cultural heritage, social, economic, land use planning, ecology and traffic.

A community consultation session will be held in Portarlington (22 April, 3.30pm-7pm, Portarlington Neighbourhood House, 28 Brown Street, Portarlington), alternatively, click here for further information and a community survey.

Jobactive launch

On 31 March, Prime Minister Tony Abbott was in Geelong to announce the launch of jobactive, a $5 billion program that supports job seekers to secure employment and help local businesses grow.

Jobactive provides clear incentives to ensure employment service providers are focused on better preparing job seekers to meet the needs of local employers and helping people to find and keep a job.

Service providers will no longer receive ‘job placement’ payments. The rules around training have also been tightened to ensure that job seekers are not being sent to training unnecessarily.

A number of local providers across the G21 region have been selected to become jobactive providers. 

New fund to drive jobs and growth in regional Victoria

Stage Two redevelopment at the Geelong Performing Arts Centre is closer to commencing after the introduction of legislation to establish the Regional Jobs and Infrastructure Fund, a $500 million Fund to support major projects, create jobs and build stronger regional communities.

The introduction of this legislation paves the way for the government to deliver the $200 million worth of projects and programs committed under the Fund at the state election.

Forrest mountain bike strategy adopted

web_ForrestThe vision for future development of the Forrest mountain bike trails is clear following Colac Otway Shire’s adoption of a strategic plan for the network.

Forrest mountain bike trails are an important element of the G21 Adventure Trails Priority Project.

The plan has been developed through extensive consultation with the community and key stakeholders, and incorporates a number of key recommendations that enhance riders’ experience and will help attract more users in the future.

The recommendations include upgrading existing and establishing new trails, setting up a skills development park, upgrading trail signage, undertaking landscaping improvements and revegetation works, and completing detailed design for a tunnel underpass of Birregurra-Forrest Road to enhance rider safety.

The 66 kilometre network of trails attracts approximately 22,000 riders per year, and has been instrumental in the economic and social transformation of Forrest and its surrounding areas in recent years.

State and federal funding is now required to implement recommendations from the plan.

Apollo Bay Harbour redevelopment closer

The redevelopment of the Apollo Bay harbour is a step closer after the Colac Otway Shire approved a planning scheme amendment for the precinct.

The amendment will now progress to the Planning Minister’s office, where it will be gazetted and incorporated into the Colac Otway Planning Scheme.

Redevelopment of the harbour is a G21 Priority Project.

The next step is the creation of a development plan which would outline in more detail the future possibilities for the harbour.

After several years developing a planning, a framework for the harbour has been developed that reflects the community's views.

This will be a significant and long-term project that has the potential to create new jobs and achieve a greater economic yield from the tourism industry.

Central to the project is to maintain the harbour as a working port, and enhancing the precinct for both locals and visitors.


Regional Development Australia Barwon South West (RDA BSW) Committee update

National Stronger Regions Fund (NSRF) Round Two
The opening of National Stronger Regions Fund (NSRF) Round Two will be delayed to ensure applicants are notified of the outcomes from Round One. The RDA BSW Committee will advise as soon as possible when NSRF Round Two will open.

In preparation for Round Two of the Australian Government’s new $1 billion Fund, local government and not-for-profit organisations are urged to consult the RDA BSW to start developing suitable project proposals now.
NSRF can provide dollar for dollar grants of between $20,000 and $10 million for new infrastructure, or the upgrade, extension or enhancement of existing infrastructure.
Projects must deliver an economic benefit to the region beyond the period of construction, and should support disadvantaged regions or areas of disadvantage within a region.
The NSRF funded part of the project must be completed on or before 31 December 2019.
Closer to the closing date, the RDA BSW will once again invite NSRF applicants to request a letter of support for projects that fully meet the funding criteria and strongly align with the Barwon South West Regional Strategic Plan 2013-2016. 
For further information on how RDA BSW may assist in the upcoming Round Two of the NSRF, please contact Nigel Harper, Senior Projects Manager, Regional Development Victoria on 5564 8876 or nigel.harper@rdv.vic.gov.au
Successful applicants from NSRF Round 1 will be announced shortly.
For more information, guidelines on eligibility, and how to apply for NSRF

For more information, please contact our regional office on 03 5215 6000 or email us rda.barwonsouthwest@rdv.vic.gov.au

Click here to visit the RDA Committee website
Click here to follow RDA Committee on Twitter

Items of regional interest

Volunteer Promotion – A Q&A on effectively engaging your audience
The G21 Volunteer Strategy Working Group presents its first forum of the year - a Q&A on effectively engaging your audience and looking at promoting the value of your volunteer program to stakeholders. Hear experts speak about audience segmentation, social media, internal influence and persuading the CEO. RSVP 20 April.

29 April 2015,  9.30am-12noon, Deakin Cats Community Centre, Simonds Stadium Gate, Geelong.

Regional Prosperity Geelong 2020
Geelong is at a turning point on its road to prosperity and faces many challenges. This workshop is a unique opportunity to hear from an international leader in regional development as well as local entrepreneurs from within the region. It’s also an opportunity to make your voice heard and to contribute ideas, insights and experiences that could help shape the region's future. Tickets must be purchased before event.

April 28 2015, 10am-2pm, Novotel, 10-14 Eastern Beach Rd, Geelong

Grants of up to $60,000 to build Men’s Sheds
Communities across Victoria can now apply for funding of up to $60,000 to build new Men’s Sheds. Priority will be given to projects that can demonstrate a high level of need for the project in their community, as well as a plan to attract participants, create a positive environment and address issues of social isolation and promote inclusion. Applications close 19 June 2015.

Start-up funding available to sports tech ventures
An Expression of Interest is now open to Australian start-ups (or individuals) that would like to compete for up to $50,000 to fund their start-up sports tech venture. Closes 3 May 2015. Shortlisted applicants must pitch to The Australian Sports Tech Company in Melbourne on 7 or 8 May.

Key Economic Indicators released – March 2015

The City of Greater Geelong has released the March Key Economic Indicators Report which monitors the region’s economy. The key points are:

Economic Indicator
Data Movement Status (Fav/Unfav)
Monthly Unemployment Rate
(Barwon Western District)
6.9% -0.5pts
Average Weekly Job Advertisements
(Barwon Region)
114 +12.9%
New Monthly Online Job Ads
(Geelong & Great Ocean Road)
833 -6.8%
Monthly Domestic Building Activity
(City of Greater Geelong)
$51.2m -12.9%
Monthly New Dwelling Building Activity
(City of Greater Geelong)
146 -+8.1%
Monthly Non-Domestic Building Activity
(City of Greater Geelong)
$9.5m -63.6%
Quarterly Median House Prices
(City of Greater Geelong)
$408,000 -0.5%
Quarterly ABN Registrations
(City of Greater Geelong)
988 -20.1%

Latest News from the G21 Pillars

Each of the eight G21 Pillars meets on a regular basis to discuss regional issues and progress regional projects. Click on the below links for the most recent Pillar activity report.

G21 Arts & Culture Pillar
G21 Economic Development Pillar
G21 Education & Training Pillar
G21 Environment Pillar
G21 Health & Wellbeing Pillar
G21 Planning & Services Pillar
G21 Sport & Recreation Pillar
G21 Transport Pillar
Click here to view the full list of G21 Pillar Projects

Media articles of interest to the G21 region

G21 tracks articles within the region that discuss G21 and the region’s Priority Projects.

Click here to view G21's Articles of Interest Feb - Mar 2015

This email has been designed to provide you, a valued member of the broader G21 Family, with a snapshot of the key projects and activities of the G21 Alliance over the past month. You have been included in the distribution list of this G21 Snapshots email, because you have an important role in improving people’s lives in the G21 region as a Federal or State parliamentarian, Councillor, Regional Management Forum member, senior manager with regional Councils, senior manager with Regional Development Victoria, G21 Member, G21 Pillar participant, G21 Board member or member of the media (a list of over 700 individuals or organisations). If there are other people in your organisation or network that you think should be aware of this email please feel free to pass it on to them.

If you want further information or wish to bring something to our attention, please contact either of us at the numbers or addresses given below or refer to the G21 website at www.G21.com.au.
snapshots_Lyons   Elaine Carbines headshot
Cr Darryn Lyons
G21 Chairperson


Elaine Carbines
Chief Executive Officer

0437 202 300

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