Regional Jobs Growth – Ministerial Response

Scroll down for the Minister’s response, or click here to discover more about how we’re working for Wendouree.

Original constituency question from Juliana Addison MP to Parliament –

My question is directed to the Minister for Regional Development in the other place.

It is about how the Andrews Labor government is supporting regional communities by creating jobs, supporting local businesses and building our economy. I wish to thank the minister for her strong, strategic, ongoing support of regional development projects in my community of Ballarat.

My question is: how will the 2020-21 Victorian budget deliver economic growth and job growth for my electorate of Wendouree?

I welcome the $8 billion committed in the 2020-21 Victorian budget for regional Victoria to support communities like mine to recover after COVID and be even stronger than before. I am so proud to be a part of the Andrews Labor government, with ministers such as the Attorney-General, that puts people first in all that it does by investing in health, education, tourism and community sport to create jobs and build regional communities and also support the law in my community.


Response from the Hon. Mary-Anne Thomas MP, Minister for Regional Development (2nd February 2021) –

The 2020-21 Victorian budget will deliver over $8 billion to directly support rural and regional communities recover and prosper.

Rural and regional Victorian communities will be supported through the $156 million Regional Jobs and Infrastructure Fund. This includes $110 million for the Economic and Community Development Fund to support priority community projects to create and retain jobs; $36 million additional funding for the Regional Jobs Fund to support businesses to develop and expand; and $10 million for regional communities to accelerate planning and business cases for projects of strategic importance. Regional Development Victoria will continue to work closely with communities, local governments and businesses to develop projects and support coronavirus (COVID-19) recovery in rural and regional Victoria.

In addition, $10 million will be provided to address the urgent recovery needs of regional communities, including funding for short‑term stimulus projects to get more regional Victorians into work.

Rural and regional Victorians will also be able to access a range of other state-wide initiatives including:

  • $115 million support for the agricultural sector
  • $465 million through the Victorian Tourism Recovery Package and
  • $6 billion through the Big Housing Build with at least 25% of funded construction to occur in rural and regional Victoria.

In the Wendouree electorate, the Andrews Labor Government will provide support through:

  • $2.7 billion for the Building Works package including support for both Ballarat High School and Delacombe Primary School
  • $6.7 million for the National Centre of Photography which will be Australia’s leading photographic destination located in Ballarat
  • $350 million Higher Education Investment Fund including support for Federation University Australia and
  • Regional School Upgrades which includes Ballarat Specialist School.

This support is in addition to projects already being delivered in the Wendouree electorate including the $100 million Ballarat GovHub, the $51 million Ballarat Station Precinct upgrade and the $30 million regional car park commitment which includes development of 1,000 free car parks in Ballarat.