DISASTER RECOVERY GRANTS SUPPORT A NEW START FOR THE REGION

DISASTER RECOVERY GRANTS SUPPORT A NEW START FOR THE REGION

Armidale Regional Council’s Manger Marketing and Communications Darren Schaefer, left, Northern Tablelands MP Adam Marshall and Armidale Business Chamber President Anthony Fox discuss the new projects and programs funded under the $1 million recovery grant.

Monday, 4 August 2020

$1 million worth of projects funded in the Armidale and Guyra region

NORTHERN Tablelands MP Adam Marshall has today announced upgrades to a number of community halls, a new Beer and Barbecue Festival and a shop local gift card program as part of a $1 million State Government strategy to stimulate the Armidale region’s economy following the devastating summer bushfires and drought.

Armidale Regional Council and the Armidale Business Chamber have signed a memorandum of understanding on the joint delivery of the projects which were funded by drought and bushfire recovery grants announced by Mr Marshall earlier this year.

“With the bushfires behind us and a positive change in seasonal conditions on the land, now is the time to be coming up with new and innovative ways to encourage money to be spent in local businesses and support local trades,” Mr Marshall said.

“I am pleased to announce six of the most bushfire and drought affected communities in the Armidale Regional Council area will benefit from this funding through improvements to their local halls.

“Ben Lomond Hall will undergo an audio upgrade, children’s playground equipment will be installed at Wards Mistake, Hillgrove will receive a new causeway, solar power and heaters, a community mower and shed will become available at Ebor, toilet and septic upgrades will happen at Wollomombi and a multipurpose centre and park toilet block will go in at Lower Creek.

“As a way of celebrating better times ahead, while promoting the very best lager and char grill our region has to offer, next year locals will be treated to the inaugural New England Beer and BBQ Festival.

“Over a weekend in March producers will have the opportunity to showcase their products to the community with the backdrop of live music and food demonstrations.

“In order to benefit the business community long-term funds will be spent establishing the Why Leave Town local gift card program which will be administered by the Armidale Business Chamber.

“This will allow residents and travelling tourists to purchase EFTPOS gift cards that may spent at any participating business within the Armidale Region.”

Mr Marshall said a large portion of the funding would be spent on programs which encouraged businesses to be more resilient in future disasters.

“As a means of supporting its members through this difficult economic period, Armidale Business Chamber will put some of this grant towards facilitating programs such as Digital Business Training and Local Retail Stimulus,” Mr Marshall said.

“This will support efforts to transition local operators to online modes of selling while also increasing their resilience to deal with future disasters.

“This initiative will be supported by grants of $2,000 from council to encourage businesses to provide better online services, expand their operation or diversify their operation.

“Finally, a Council space will be developed into a community business facility aimed at helping new local businesses to open up while supporting existing businesses to flourish and grow.”

The Bushfire Community Resilience and Economic Recovery Fund is jointly funded by the NSW and Commonwealth Governments.

For a full list of all available bushfire support, go to www.service.nsw.gov.au

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