Statement from the Committee for Geelong CEO Jennifer Cromarty

The Committee for Geelong welcomes the 2021/22 Victorian State Budget handed down by Treasurer Tim Pallas today.

We have been through an extraordinary 12 months with all levels of government investing significant funds into the economy to support those who need it most.

We are encouraged that the Victorian Government now has an eye to budget repair while also putting a strong emphasis on significant social issues, including the need for large investments into our health and health system. The impacts of the pandemic will be felt for some time and our health and wellbeing is paramount.

On a local level, the Committee for Geelong is pleased to see investment into a range of projects and initiatives including the much-anticipated Northern Aquatic and Community Hub in Norlane. While the funding level is lower than requested by the City of Greater Geelong, this important project is vital to help address generational disadvantage and to support economic and social growth in the northern suburbs.

The Committee for Geelong is also pleased to see our Leaders for Geelong program set to receive continued funding as part of $2 million state-wide regional community leadership program announcement and that the GROW program is also receiving a boost of $3 million across the state. These programs are an important part of the fabric of our local community and provide support to creating employment opportunities and building inclusive community leadership cultures for our future.

Both the Federal and Victorian Governments are funding our skills needs, which is vital in an environment where international border closures are putting pressure on skills demands. We welcome the Victorian Government’s announcements for a Victorian Skills Authority, ongoing funding for our TAFE system and a new Victorian Academy of Teaching and Leadership to operate from Geelong.

As we work through our post-COVID world, the Committee for Geelong will continue discussions with the Victorian Government on key initiatives including an integrated regional transport plan, revitalising central Geelong and the Geelong Convention Centre via the Geelong City Deal.

Media Contact: Jennifer Cromarty, CEO Committee for Geelong 0413 241 033