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June 2013 Newsletter

In This Issue:

Welcome From The Chair

Dear Northern Inlanders,

It’s great to see another round of Regional Development Australia Funding announced last week, giving access to an additional $3.3 million in funding for our 13 Local Councils, and $13 million overall for our region as part of all the RDAF rounds.

Another exciting and important initiative that I’m proud to be a part of is the launch this week of the Regional Australia Institute’s new [in]sight interactive tool. For the first time ever, detailed regional information based on 66 indicators will be readily available to everyone at an LGA level.  This will greatly assist local governments, organisations and businesses to access current and relevant information from which they can make informed decisions.

All The Best,

Mal Peters, Chair

Over $3 Million On The Table For Northern Inland Councils

Regional Development Australia Northern Inland (RDANI) has welcomed the announcement of $3.3 million to help build and renew local community infrastructure across the Northern Inland region as part of the latest round of the Regional Development Australia Fund (RDAF).

Executive Officer for RDANI, Nathan Axelsson, said that this funding will be delivered through Round Five of RDAF and will be allocated to councils and shires that already receive Financial Assistance Grants, with up to $3.3 million being made available to the 13 Local Councils in the Northern Inland region.

The Government will provide a base payment of at least $30,000 to smaller councils to ensure that they benefit from this funding.

This funding can only be used to build and renew community infrastructure, with a focus on ‘shovel-ready’ projects in communities.

Sporting facilities, libraries, town halls, playgrounds and essential community services, such as child care facilities, are expected to benefit from this investment.

Mr Axelsson said that this funding built on previous funding already received by many Northern Inland communities through RDAF, over $13 million in rounds one to four.

“Our RDA committee participated in the assessment of projects for earlier rounds of RDAF. We are pleased that there is another opportunity for some of the viable and important projects to be funded so we would encourage Local Councils to submit applications for projects that have been the subject of expressions of interest or applications under previous RDAF rounds.

“This funding will also support jobs on the ground, resulting in a boost to our local economies.”

Applications for Round Five open on 21 June 2013 and close at 5:00pm (local time) on 22 July 2013.
More information on RDAF Round Five can be found at:


Australia’s First Online Index And Interactive Map Of Regional Competitiveness

The Regional Australia Institute exists to create a vibrant future for regional Australia – for the benefit of all Australians.

Launched in February 2012 with seed funding from the Australian Government, the Regional Australia Institute is an independent, not-for-profit organisation developing real solutions to key policy issues through research and an ongoing conversation with the Australian community.

Regional Australia Institute will launch Australia’s first online index and interactive map unlocking thousands of insights into the performance of Australia’s regions.

[In]Sight maps the competitiveness of Australia’s regions across ten themes and 57 indicators of socioeconomic performance, comparative by 560 Local Government Areas and 55 Regional Development Australia regions, spanning the entire nation.

The first of its kind, [In]Sight has been specifically developed to bridge the gap between knowledge, debate and decision-making for the potential and future pathways for non-metropolitan Australia, reflecting the issues that matter to regional Australia.

For more information on [In]Sight and to check out our new website, go to www.regionalaustralia.org.au/research-policy/insight

Important Proposed Changes To Recognise Local Government In The Constitution

The Federal Government has taken the next step to include local government in the Constitution by introducing legislation to amend the nation's founding document.

The amendment would add 17 words to our almost 12,000-word long Constitution and alter Section 96 to read:

96  Financial assistance to States and local government bodies
During a period of ten years after the establishment of the Commonwealth and thereafter until the Parliament otherwise provides, the Parliament may grant financial assistance to any State, or to any local government body formed by a law of a State, on such terms and conditions as the Parliament thinks fit.

It is a small but important change that reflects the fact that the Commonwealth has partnered with local governments to deliver local roads, sporting fields, libraries, child care and community services.

The change will not diminish the role of the States with regard to the administration of local government. Recognition in the Constitution does not alter the fact that local governments are created by and are accountable to State Governments.

Recognising local government in the Constitution will reflect the longstanding partnership between the Federal and local governments on programs like Roads to Recovery, which has enabled the Commonwealth to work with local councils and communities to upgrade and repair 16,000 road sites across the country.

This change has bipartisan support and passage of the legislation through the Parliament will result in a referendum being held in conjunction with the federal election.

Country Art Escapes

Country Art Escapes is an Arts North West initiative.It is a membership-based regional art trail that promotes cultural venues and events in the New England North West region of New South Wales.

Country Art Escapes offers visitors and locals the opportunity to plan a day trip or longer cultural tour. Explore the artist studios, galleries, museums and other cultural venues and experiences of the New England North West region of New South Wales.

Follow one of the suggested Country Art Escapes tours or create your own art trail. You might plan a day trip or create a longer term tour of the region, but take the opportunity to intersperse your cultural tour with food, wine, festivals, accommodation and great local knowledge.

Country Art Escapes is administered by Arts North West Inc which retains all responsibility in relation to management and selection of artists, events and content to be included in the Country Art Escapes website.

Arts North West is the regional arts board for the New England North West of New South Wales. Arts North West supports the development of arts and culture regionally and is involved in the development of regional projects and initiatives.  Find out more about Arts North West www.artsnw.com.au

For further information on Country Art Escapes please visit the website www.countryartescapes.com.au.

What’s On In The Northern Inland

Hats Off To Country 2013

Saturday 6th to Sunday 7th of July


The DAG Sheep Station, Nundle presents Hats Off to Country 2013, featuring three huge "Songwriters in the Round" shows and Christmas in July Lunch/Dinner and Dessert.

Saturday 6th July, 12 noon to 3pm - Luke O'Shea, Allan Caswell and Aly Cook (NZ), with Special Guest Bill Chambers.

Sunday 7th July, 12 noon to 3pm - Luke O'Shea, Bill Chambers and Allan Caswell with Special Guest Aly Cook (NZ).

Sunday 7th July, 5pm to 8pm - Luke O'Shea, Bill Chambers and Aleyce Simmonds with Special Guests Allan Caswell and Aly Cook (NZ).

Bookings are essential. Further details are available on The DAG Sheep Station's website www.thedag.com.au or Tamworth Tourism: www.visittamworth.com.au

Entries Now Open For The North West Film Festival

The 10th North West Film Festival will be held on Friday 13th September 2013 at the ROXY Theatre, Bingara, NSW. It is open to all school and TAFE students, and adult members of the community. Entry deadline is Friday 9th August 2013… So get cracking on those films!!! To qualify, films must have been made in 2012 or 2013, and not previously entered in the North West Film Festival.

The purpose of the festival is to encourage people to tell their own stories as individuals, groups, or communities. A film submitted by students and made with community involvement must have had the majority of its creative decisions made by school or TAFE students. It is above all, about having fun and learning at the same time.

This year, all students attending on the day of the Festival, Friday 13th September, will have a chance to be in a film! This is an exciting opportunity that will bring all attendees into direct contact with the Industry Professionals joining us at this year’s Festival. Imagine learning how the Film and TV Industry works first hand! Each school will also receive a copy of the finished product to screen back at school. Contact the Roxy, Bingara, to secure your place for this fantastic film opportunity.

For further information please go the website www.northwestfilmfestival.roxybingara.com.au

New Grants and Funding Opportunities

Innovation Grants and Community Food Grants

Applications close:  31 July 2013

This program provides funding for local community infrastructure projects that benefit local communities throughout the state.

Community organisations and local councils are encouraged to apply for funding to build and improve community facilities in their local area.

They are looking for projects that will deliver positive social, recreational or environmental outcomes for your community through the building or improvement of faciltieis.

For more information , please contact your Local Member of Parliament, or visit www.communitybuildingpartnership.nsw.gov.au for information and to apply.

Innovation Grants and Community Food Grants

Applications close: 4 July 2013

Applications are now open for two new grant programs, Innovation Grants and Community Food Grants.

Innovation Grants are part of the Caring for our Country Initiative, delivered under the Sustainable Agriculture stream by DAFF.

Grants from $250 000 up to $1.5 million are now available for the development and adoption of innovative practices and technologies across agriculture, fishing, aquaculture and farm forestry industries.

The grants are available to not-for-profit organisations to support the establishment or improvement of community food initiatives — such as farmers’ markets, food hubs and community gardens — and initiatives that address food insecurity, such as food rescue activities.

Grants of up to $10 000 will be available for community gardens, city farms or similar activities, and up to $25 000 for farmers’ markets, food rescue or similar activities.

For more information on Innovation Grants, call 1800 552 008 or visit the NRM website at  www.nrm.gov.au.

For more information on Community Food Grants, call 1800 702 330, email the DAFF team or visit the DAFF website at www.daff.gov.au

Researchers in Business Grant

Funder : Australian Govt. Dept of Innovation Industry Science and Research

Enterprise Connect will provide you with funding for up to 50 per cent of salary costs, to a maximum of $50,000, for each research placement for between 2 and 12 months.

Would current, up-to-date research give you the cutting edge your business needs to be more competitive?

Enterprise Connect can help.

Enterprise Connect support the placement of researchers from universities or public research agencies into businesses, to help develop and implement a new idea with commercial potential.

They will provide you with funding for up to 50 per cent of salary costs, to a maximum of $50,000, for each placement for between 2 and 12 months.

For More Information:
Grant Details: www.enterpriseconnect.gov.au/services/pages/researchersinbusinessgrant.aspx

For further information, call the Enterprise Connect Hotline between the hours of 9.00am and 5.00pm (AEST) on 131 791 (Australian callers only) or email enterpriseconnect@innovation.gov.au

Further informaiton on grants and funding opportunities are available in the Grants and Funding Opportunities area of the RDA-NI website.

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