Fears for Central Victorian second round Stronger Communities projects

Lisa Chesters, the Federal Member for Bendigo will be joined today by Bendigo Theatre Company (BTC) representatives who hope to get the green light for a $9000 Stronger Communities Programme grant application submitted to the Federal Government last month.


However, there is a fear that the Liberals may not honour applications or scrap the programme altogether.

The BTC have sought funding to help with the purchase and installation of lighting and audio equipment for their Arts Shed.  The Arts Shed is used for rehearsals, small productions and training.  The total cost of the project will be $18,000.

“This is an exciting project. It is one of ten that the Bendigo Electorate panel have recommended to the Department of Infrastructure to be funded as part of the Federal Government’s Stronger Communities Programme,” said Ms Chesters.

“We are now waiting on the Department to assess these projects against the Guidelines and determine whether the project represents a proper use of grant funding.

“Timing of the election is a worry. I fear how committed the Liberals are to the current rounds of Stronger Communities and Stronger Regions.  Applications have closed and we're waiting for the Department's green light.

“I hope that all of the Bendigo electorate projects will be selected to receive the funding as soon as possible,” said Ms Chesters.
To help determine the priority list, Federal Members of Parliament were requested to establish a community consultation committee to undertake consultation in their electorate to identify eligible projects and invite applicants to apply.

“All the local projects recommended for funding are fantastic community projects and any incoming Government should honour the applications,” said Ms Chesters.