Following the release of the 2017-18 Federal Budget last week, Senator Fiona Nash outlines what extra funds for the Building Better Regions Fund will mean for our communities.
Through this year’s budget the Coalition Government is investing an additional $472 million in regional infrastructure and community projects through a $200 million injection into the Building Better Regions Fund (BBRF) and the introduction of a new $272 million fund for major regional projects.
As Minister for Regional Development, I am absolutely committed to working in partnership with regional communities to make them better places to live, work, invest and raise a family. Being a farmer from the Central West of NSW, I also understand firsthand how important it is to invest in the infrastructure that is needed to revitalise local communities, create jobs and increase the productivity of our regions.
The BBRF program, which invests up to $10 million in local infrastructure projects, has already been strongly embraced by local communities across the nation with hundreds of applications submitted to the first round that closed earlier this year. Successful projects are expected to be announced shortly.
I am pleased that as a result of this year’s budget, we will be able to offer additional BBRF rounds to build on our already strong record of local infrastructure investment in our regions.
The new $272 million major project funding announced in this year’s budget will be dedicated exclusively to projects requiring a Commonwealth commitment of $10 million or more and which will transform a region’s economy.
Whether you’re in Lavington or Laverton, there is huge potential and new opportunities for regional communities to prosper and grow through the critical investments we are making. With so much of our national prosperity created in our regions, we must never take our regions for granted and that is exactly why the Coalition is determined to invest in local infrastructure projects that will drive economic growth, create jobs and build strong regional communities.
While other parties continue to ignore anyone living West of the Dividing Range, the Coalition, with the guidance of the Nationals, is focused on delivering these investments right across the breadth and length of the nation.
For more information about the Building Better Regions Fund, visit http://investment.infrastructure.gov.au/funding/bbrf/
Senator Fiona Nash is the Deputy Leader of The Nationals; Minister for Regional Development; Minister for Local Government and Territories; and Minister for Regional CommunicationsSenator for New South Wales