RDA Wide Bay Burnett Newsletter - May 2016
RDA Wide Bay Burnett is one of 55 non-for-profit organisations across the country funded by the Australian Government to help strengthen our regions. RDA's work with business, the community and all levels of government to promote economic development.
Federal Budget commits funding for RDAs

Minister for Regional Development Fiona Nash has confirmed that the Federal Budget includes a commitment to continue funding the RDA Network over the next four years, and that the flagship program National Stronger Regions Fund will remain in place through to 2019-20.

The Melbourne to Brisbane Inland Rail project will also receive a boost, with an additional $595 million from 2017-18 to 2019-20 going towards acquiring land, pre-construction and due diligence activities.

To view the media release:
Dive wreck promotional brochure

RDA Wide Bay Burnett has compiled an information brochure outlining its bid to secure ex-HMAS Tobruk to create a regional dive wreck in local waters.

The 12-page brochure complements the business case and outlines the economic and tourism advantages of creating a new dive wreck as well as plans for an onshore Tobruk Military Museum.

Representatives from the Wide Bay Regional Dive Wreck Advisory Group will attend briefings in Sydney from the Department of Defence in the first week of June and tour the two decommissioned vessels available to the states and territories to create dive wrecks.

Advisory Group spokesperson Ed Gibson said despite strong competition for HMAS Tobruk, the Wide Bay bid remained very strong.

“There are numerous regions competing for one of these vessels but are bid is strong, particularly with Fraser Coast Regional Council providing $1 million towards it,” Mr Gibson said.

“We have the perfect aquatic environment for a new tourist attraction such as a military dive wreck with Fraser Island and the Southern Great Barrier Reef on our doorstep.

“The Wide Bay desperately needs the economic boost and tourism jobs that would be created by this project ahead of places such as the Gold Coast which will benefit by more than $200m in infrastructure spend for the Commonwealth Games.”

Copies of the Dive Into History brochure are available by contacting RDA Wide Bay Burnett on 4121 4017.
RDA Jobs secures 1900 candidates

More than 1900 jobseekers have now registered for rda jobs, a free online job profiling and matching service that automatically connects employers with suitable employees.

Focussing on the major industries of resource sector, retail and hospitality, construction, transport and logistics and agriculture, rda jobs offers fast, efficient job matching for local candidates.

RDA WBB Executive Officer Scott Rowe said posting a job and registering as a candidate were both free and the perfect way to match skilled jobseekers with jobs.

“I would encourage anybody looking for jobs in these industries to register on It’s free and if a suitable job is listed that matches your skills and qualifications you will be automatically notified.

“For employers looking for candidates all they need to do is register the job on the website and qualified potential candidates from the database are then notified. It’s fast, free and efficient.”

For more information visit the website or contact Colleen Bruce on 4121 4017.
New economic blueprint on the way

RDA Wide Bay Burnett is compiling a new regional roadmap which is a three-to-five year document that focuses on the economic development of the region.

The Regional Plan is a living document and provides a wide range of stakeholders, potential investors and policy-makers with a better understanding of the region - including strengths, challenges, and needs - and strategic priorities that outline the region’s future ambitions.

RDA has engaged Lawrence Consulting to prepare key economic and forecasting information to be included in the plan which will also align with the individual strategic plans of each of the six local governments making up the Wide Bay Burnett.

RDA Chair Bill Trevor said that while the region continued to battle high levels of unemployment, the economy was in a transition period with many new opportunities arising.

“With new free trade agreements and the Aussie dollar currently lower than it has been, there are good opportunities in value-added agriculture for our region,” Mr Trevor said.

“Tourism continues to rebuild and livestock producers are currently enjoying record prices.

“The Port of Bundaberg remains a sleeping giant and overall business confidence is improving which should lead to greater employment opportunities across the entire region.”

RDA WBB is planning to launch the new Regional Plan in July.

RDA WBB meets new councils

RDA has held a series of meetings with new mayors and councillors across the Wide Bay Burnett to reprioritise priority projects and proposed new initiatives.

With the region welcoming five new mayors across its six local governments and more than 40 per cent of new councillors, the new local governments continue to work on their 2016-2017 budgets to deliver on their election promises.

With a new leadership team recently elected in the state LNP and a Federal Government election now cemented for July 2, RDA Wide Bay Burnett is working hard to ensure grants and funding are secured for the region to stimulate employment and fund major infrastructure.

“There have been 11 projects submitted for funding under the current round of the Commonwealth Government’s National Stronger Regions Program totalling more than $30 million for the region,” RDA WBB Chair Bill Trevor said.

“We are hopeful several of these projects will be successful which lays the foundation for stronger economic development and job creation.”

RDA WBB Executive Officer Scott Rowe said he was excited to work with the new mayors and councillors to drive the region’s prosperity.

“They are all very enthusiastic and genuinely determined to ensure they work together to ensure our region is top of mind when both the state and federal governments are making funding commitments,” Mr Rowe said.

“Our region remains one of the most challenged across the country which is why we need to be proficient at making sure our needs are not only recognised but addressed.”

Date saver for annual forum
October 6 has been confirmed as the date for the third annual Wide Bay Burnett Economic Growth Forum.

A collaboration between Regional Development Australia, Wide Bay Burnett Regional Organisation of Councils and the Department of State Development, the free forum will be held at the Brolga Theatre, Maryborough.

The annual forum reflects on the economic achievements of the region over the past 12 months and focuses on future opportunities and embracing the new economy.

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Ground Floor,Suite 3 319 - 325 Kent Street Maryborough QLD 4650
PO Box 1142, Maryborough QLD 4650
Ph: 0741214017

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Regional Development Australia Wide Bay Burnett · Suite 3 · 319 - 325 Kent Street · Maryborough, Qld 4650 · Australia

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