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Local Government councils encouraged to think as a region by $165,000 Federal Grant



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M e d i a

R e l e a s eTHE HON ALEX SOMLYAY MR Minister for Regional Development, Territories and Local Government LOCAL GOVERNMENT COUNCILS ENCOURAGED TO THINK AS A REGION BY $165,000 FEDERAL GRANT

The Federal Minister for Local Government, Alex Somlyay announced today that funding would be provided to local government to encourage individual local councils to think as a region and to play a major role in facilitating employment and economic growth through regional development.

The Minister handed over a cheque to the peak national local government organisation, (Australian Local Government Association) the ALGA at a meeting in Canberra with the President of the ALGA, Cr John Campbell.

The grant of $165,000 is approved for the establishment by the ALGA within its structure of a Committee o f Regional Cooperative Development under the Federal Government’s Local Government Development Programme.

The money will be also used to expand and enhance the ALGA’s Regionlink Information Technology network.

Minister Somlyay said the Regionlink information technology project will increase the links and information sharing that can produce real outcomes in regions to assist investment, employment creation and new infrastructure and telecommunications projects.

“These initiatives suggested by the ALGA have my total support. They will consolidate regional alliances of councils and build on past progress in regional development by strengthening the communication, cooperation and working arrangements between councils in regions across Australia.

“I am especially pleased that the ALGA has recognised in their submission that other key players, especially business and other agencies that provide infrastructure in regions in addition to local government should be involved,” said Mr Somlyay.

He said the money would be well spent because it builds on the achievements made to date in regional development cooperation at the local level.

“Under the Coalition we have spent in excess of $3 billion in a ‘whole of Government approach to regional development issues. .

projects in this growing partnership,” said Mr Somlyay.

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2 April 1998

Contact: Graeme Hallett (Media Adviser) 02 6277 7060

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