Building a strong economic future for Central Goldfields
Published on 17 September 2020
A detailed report on the response and recovery actions that have been undertaken by Council in response to the COVID-19 pandemic was endorsed at a Meeting of Council this week (15/09).
The report identifies both the work that has been carried out during the pandemic and the work Council is now focused on to support our local business community as we emerge from COVID-19.
This work continues to be informed by the Economic Response and Recovery Taskforce – a group of 10 local business representatives from a range of sectors who have met fortnightly since April to advise Council and its Economic Development and Tourism teams on how best to respond.
Central Goldfields Shire Chief Administrator Noel Harvey said the COVID-19 pandemic has challenged us all and none more than our local business community.
“To see the enormity of the work that has been done by Council officers over the past seven months was a valuable exercise not only for us as Administrators to understand but a great opportunity for our community to see and understand the key role and impact Local Government is having in this space.
“Congratulations to the Council staff involved with this work and thank you to the ten members of the Economic Response and Recovery Taskforce for their time and the valuable contribution they’ve made in keeping us informed and driving this work.
“I look forward to seeing Council continue to work together with our local business community and the Taskforce as we build a strong economic future for the Central Goldfields.”
A summary version of the Council Report is provided below:
Actions to date:
Economic Response and Recovery Taskforce
10 local business representatives from a range of sectors, working with us to report on local impacts and how to respond. Outcomes have included:
Economic recovery is a major priority and the following actions are some of the ways we are working to build a strong economic future for the Central Goldfields Shire.
Capital Works Program
The 2020/21 Council Budget features a $15.9 million capital works program to help stimulate our local economy – with this program of work made possible thanks to the securing of $9.5 million in funding from both Federal and State governments. This will support local businesses and jobs during the works phase and provide lasting community infrastructure. The projects include:
- Maryborough Outdoor Pool upgrade - $2 million
- Community halls and facilities improvements - $565,000
- Talbot Town Hall toilet upgrade - $250,000
- Energy Breakthrough infrastructure upgrades - $500,000 ($1.5 million over three years)
- Central Goldfields Art Gallery redevelopment - $675,000
- Maryborough Skate and Scooter Park - $645,000
- Carisbrook Recreation Reserve upgrade - $4 million
- Worsley Cottage repairs - $150,000
- Carisbrook Scout Hall and Lions Club roof repairs - $10,000
- Maryborough Community House - carpark lighting and disability access - $10,000
- New footpaths in Bealiba, Carisbrook, Talbot and Dunolly - $81,000
Implementation of Economic Development Strategy
- Maryborough Railway Station Activation project
- Stage 1 to include co-working facility and small business support hub (early 2021)
- Long term master plan and business case (to be developed 2020-21)
- Economic Development Officer – on-going position – recruitment occurring in Sep/Oct
- Investment attraction plan, including Maryborough food manufacturing cluster
- Resident Attraction Strategy - collaborating with Committee for Maryborough’s Attraction and Retention Working Group to identify ways that local employers can attract and retain staff
- Better Approvals – completed
Implementation of Tourism & Events Strategy
- Central Goldfields Art Gallery redevelopment
- Social Media Strategy
- World Heritage listing for the Victorian Goldfields – participating in the regional process to develop a bid for this game-changing recognition
- Visitor Information Centre relocation to be incorporated into Maryborough Railway Station Master Plan
Strategic Land Use Planning
- Implementation of Planning Scheme Review and Population, Housing and Residential Settlement Strategy – providing direction for new residential growth and supporting the construction industry
- Industrial Strategy being developed