Published on 09 November 2022
Northern Grampians Shire Council has succeeded in convincing NBN Co and the Victorian Government to support digital infrastructure upgrades in both St Arnaud and Stawell, with third stage co-investment announcements confirming that both will benefit this round.
The co-investment will see Fibre To The Node (FTTN) to Fibre To The Premises (FTTP) infrastructure upgrades made in both St Arnaud and Stawell alike, with these upgrades expected to considerably enhance the capabilities of the network in the area.
Improving Connectivity is a key pillar of the council’s Northern Grampians Shire Community Vision 2021-41, with the opportunity to advance digital connectivity in support of learning and business listed as a key priority. Northern Grampians Shire Council has consistently advocated to the Victorian Government and NBN Co to invest in St Arnaud’s digital infrastructure, with the much-needed upgrades in St Arnaud alone expected to cost more than $3 million.
Council remained persistent and continued to advocate to the Victorian Government and NBN Co for investment in the shire’s digital infrastructure, despite previously unsuccessful attempts to gain funding through the Regional Connectivity Infrastructure Fund (FCIF).
News that both Stawell and St Arnaud are to benefit from the $550 million Connecting Victoria program to improve broadband infrastructure has been gratefully received by all.
Mayor Cr. Kevin Erwin said of council’s recent success: “What a wonderful outcome for our Stawell and St Arnaud communities. We continue to advocate in accordance with the vison set out by our shire residents and these important digital infrastructure upgrades are a central part of this vision. Council has always had a strong advocacy agenda, but there are many instances where the community do not see the efforts we have made because we can’t win them all. Rest assured; council is working hard behind the scenes to ensure that our shire vision comes to life.”
Council’s Forward Advocacy Plan identifies agreed advocacy priorities to the Shire Vision 2021-41 and connects these with the Council Plan 2021-25. These documents provide insight into strategic context to advocacy, are refreshed yearly, and are available on the Northern Grampians Shire Council website.