Fund­ing is still open for lo­cal busi­nesses

Whitsunday Times - - NEWS -

BUSI­NESSES in the Whit­sun­days have just over a month to ap­ply for the Aus­tralian Govern­ment’s jobs and in­vest­ment pack­age, with up to

$30 mil­lion avail­able to ar­eas con­sid­ered part of the Bowen Basin re­gion.

AusIn­dus­try’s Re­nee Chilton gave a talk to Whit­sun­day busi­ness own­ers at BIG4 on Thurs­day where she out­lined the ap­pli­ca­tion process.

Ms Chilton said it was rec­om­mended that any­one in­ter­ested visit the busi­ness.gov.au web­site to check their el­i­gi­bil­ity.

Ap­pli­ca­tions are as­sessed on the cri­te­ria and sent to a min­is­te­rial panel, with suc­cess­ful ap­pli­ca­tions ex­pected to be con­firmed by the end of the year.

Re­gional Devel­op­ment Aus­tralia chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Ben Wear­mouth said the aim of the pack­age was to cre­ate jobs.

“Lo­cal MP George Chris­tensen was very vo­cal in his sup­port for try­ing to get some sup­port into the re­gion along th­ese lines be­cause of the (min­ing sec­tor) down­turn,” he said.

“The key mes­sage is if you think you have a project, whether it’s an in­fra­struc­ture pro­gram, if you’re a lo­cal govern­ment or not-for-profit, or a skills and train­ing-based pro­gram or an in­no­va­tive busi­ness project, talk to AusIn­dus­try.

“If you can con­tact AusIn­dus­try, you can get an idea of whether it will suit the pro­gram and then there could be some money up for grabs in the re­gion as part of it.”

Mr Wear­mouth said all ap­pli­cants should get in early. “There’s a bit of work in­volved in the ap­pli­ca­tion process, you don’t want to be leaving it too late,” he said.

“The process isn’t too com­pli­cated but there is a fair bit of in­for­ma­tion needed. Make con­tact early, have a dis­cus­sion and hope­fully we can get as much money into the re­gion as pos­si­ble.”

PHOTO: DANE LILLINGSTONE

IN­FOR­MA­TION: Lisa Mul­vi­hill, Abby Martin, Sharon McNally and Deb Lewis.

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