Burra Foods at Korumburra will embark on a $20 million water saving project and plant expansion with the help of $1.5 million from the Victorian Coalition Government’s $1 billion Regional Growth Fund.
Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional and Rural Development Peter Ryan said the water recycling and wastewater treatment project would pave the way for an expansion of the plant, which will allow Burra Foods to produce infant formula.
“The project will secure 101 jobs at the plant and create an estimated 26 new jobs as well as new jobs on farms and in supply chain businesses,” Mr Ryan said.
“These additional jobs will boost the regional economy through worker’s wages as well as contract fees to suppliers.
“This project will deliver improved water quality and security, and reduce demand on the town water supply by at least 165 megalitres, or 62 per cent, per year. Wastewater discharges to South Gippsland Water’s wastewater treatment plant will drop by at least 60 per cent.
“Recycling water and reducing wastewater provides significant benefits to the wider community.
“The project is a substantial investment in the region, with Burra Foods investing $20.461 million in the water initiatives and the expansion of its Nutritional Milk Powder Division. Further investment in the Nutritional Milk Powder Division is likely from 2016.
“The investment will also boost Burra Foods’ export sales, secure the future of existing regional businesses and make the dairy sector more sustainable and resilient.”
Mr Ryan said the Infant Formula Water Initiatives Project involves fabricating and installing:
The Victorian Coalition Government’s Gippsland Lakes Environmental Strategy was launched
in East Gippsland today, along with a range of new projects that will benefit the iconic
Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional and Rural Development Peter Ryan launched the
strategy in Paynesville today and said it puts in place a framework for investment through the
$10 million Gippsland Lakes Environment Fund, which was launched in August last year.
“The Gippsland Lakes Ministerial Advisory Committee has prepared the strategy which
balances the needs of the environment, local communities and industries such as tourism and
fishing,” Mr Ryan said.
“More than 200 individuals and 50 government agencies, community and special interest
groups, and industry bodies have had input into the strategy.”
Minister for Environment and Climate Change Ryan Smith said the strategy outlined clear
steps for maintaining the environmental significance of the lakes, improving their health and
enhancing the lakes’ economic and social value.
“A total of $1.67 million will be invested in projects that build partnerships and support on-theground
works, planning, community engagement and sustainable fishing and boating,” Mr Smith said.
“Among the new projects, $150,000 will go towards a sustainable development plan and a
further $50,000 will be used to study the benefits of commercial and recreational fishing to the local economy in order to better support its long-term sustainability.
Other projects announced today include:
* Gippsland Care Groups caring for the Gippsland Lakes ($413,000)
* Enhancing the lower reaches of the Gippsland Lakes tributaries ($313,000 )
* Reducing the Loads, targeting the Upper Latrobe River ($150,000)
* Improving the Gippsland Lakes by Reducing Sedimentation through Improved
Catchment Management ($150,000)
* Gippsland Care Groups Engaging the Community ($57,400)
* Community-based education and interpretation ($100,000)
* Sustainable Lakes Management Centre of Excellence Feasibility Study ($80,000)
* Investigation of Economic Value of Boating ($50,000)
* Evaluation of models for fish stock assessment ($75,000)
* Engaging the Gippsland Lakes Community ($80,000)
“These are in addition to $800,000 worth of projects announced last year that are already
helping to improve water quality and restore vegetation in the catchment area,” Mr Smith said.
Mr Ryan said the $10 million Gippsland Lakes Environmental Fund was a component of the
Coalition Government's $1 billion Regional Growth Fund which is investing in regional areas
to improve infrastructure and services, grow jobs, and contribute to a better quality of life.
“Local projects already funded through the Regional Growth Fund include the Paynesville
CBD upgrade ($300,000), Bairnsdale Library community access project ($500,000),
Bairnsdale CBD upgrade ($500,000), Bullock Island refueling facility ($500,000), East
Gippsland Food Cluster Innovative Vegetable Processing project ($70,000) and J & J Nielson
nursery expansion ($70,000),” Mr Ryan said.
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Work has begun on the $40.3 million project to connect Victoria’s largest unsewered town, Loch Sport, to a reticulated sewerage system.
Deputy Premier and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan visited Loch Sport on Friday to inspect the first construction works on the Loch Sport Sewer Project.
Mr Ryan said more than 1500 residences would receive reticulated sewerage when the project is completed in 2015.
The Victorian Coalition Government contributed $9.2 million towards the planning phase of the project, with the remainder provided by Gippsland Water.
“The project will provide significant benefits for Loch Sport residents, as well as the Gippsland Lakes and its users,” Mr Ryan said.
“This can only be a good thing for everyone who enjoys fishing, swimming and boating in the iconic Gippsland Lakes.
“This project will also end many years of community concern regarding the public health and environmental risk of more than 1500 septic tanks situated on small sandy blocks beside Lake Wellington.”
Mr Ryan said the project had been a long time coming through its conception, investigation and planning stages.
“Loch Sport is the third community in the Wellington Shire connected to sewerage by Gippsland Water through the Victorian Government’s Country Towns Water Supply and Sewerage Program, alongside Seaspray and Coongulla /Glenmaggie,” Mr Ryan said.
“These projects are significant to the future development of the Wellington Shire.”
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Almost $12 million is on offer to emergency services groups for the purchase of vital resources such as rescue equipment, trucks and facility upgrades, Deputy Premier and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan said today
Mr Ryan said the Coalition Government’s $11.95 million Volunteer Emergency Services Equipment Program was offering grants of up to $100,000 to ensure local volunteers are equipped to respond to emergencies and natural disasters.
“Emergency services volunteers play a crucial role in protecting lives and property and the Victorian Coalition Government is pleased to provide record funding to boost the capability of local volunteers to respond to emergencies,” Mr Ryan said.
“From surf lifesavers to fire fighters, our volunteers are the backbone of Victoria’s emergency services, so we want to ensure they have the best equipment available to help them carry on their vital work.
“By committing more money for equipment and upgrades than ever before, the Coalition Government is ensuring our emergency services have the resources they need to continue their vital work for the community.”
Mr Ryan said the grants may be used to pay for upgrades to group facilities or for the equipment needed to assist in emergencies, such as trucks, trailers and generators.
“The VESEP will also contribute $2 for every $1 of funding raised by local volunteer groups,” Mr Ryan said.
The VESEP grants program is open to members of the Country Fire Authority, Victoria State Emergency Service, Life Saving Victoria, the Australian Volunteer Coast Guard Association and other eligible volunteer groups.
Each agency will distribute specific guidelines on selection criteria, application forms and about application lodgement dates to its members and applications will be assessed by a panel of representatives from government and emergency services organisations.
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Deputy Premier and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan today announced that community groups across Gippsland South would receive $1,338,412 as part of the Victorian Coalition Government’s $20 million Communities for Nature grants program.
Local projects to be funded in Gippsland South include:
Yarram Yarram Landcare Network
Jack and Albert River Restoration Project
South Gippsland Landcare Network
Habitat for Life – Friends of Strzelecki Koala
Greening Australia (Vic) Ltd
Marlay Point Woodland Restoration
Friends of Cape Liptrap Peninsula including Bald Hill and Kings Flat reserves
Reconstruction of Sections of the Walking Track at Bald Hill Reserve
“The funding received through the Communities for Nature grants program will enable the four local recipient organisations to carry out their valuable work protecting and enhancing the local environment,” Mr Ryan said.
“All four projects will provide practical environmental outcomes and will be of great benefit to the region.”
Minister for Environment and Climate Change Ryan Smith highlighted the important role Victorian communities’ play in protecting our environment and delivering on-the-ground environmental works.
“Communities for Nature delivers on the Coalition Government’s election commitment to provide practical assistance to local communities so that they can improve, protect and conserve our environment,” Mr Smith said.
Mr Smith said a total of 117 projects would be supported in this funding round.
“I congratulate community groups and land managers across Victoria for participating in this funding round and for their ongoing hard work in protecting our environment and delivering on-the-ground environmental works,” Mr Smith said.
“We received more than 300 applications for this first round of grants and the high quality of those applications is yet another demonstration of the significant environmental works that are being carried out by community groups across Victoria.”
For more information about the program, please visit www.dse.vic.gov.au/communitiesfornature.
Media contact: Ben Bulmer 0437 108 870