Regional Development Australia Murray eNewsletter
Not Showing Images? Click Here

January 2015


Knowledge Forums | How Fast is Regional Australia Moving? 

March 12, 9:30 am - March 13, 4:00 pm

Regional Development Australia Murray is partnering with Murray Now  and other stakeholders in conducting Knowledge Forums themed “How fast is regional Australia moving”.

The two day conference will highlight regional challenges and attributes and will be held in Albury/Wodonga on Thursday 12 and Friday 13 March 2015 including an exclusive networking evening on the Thursday.

The conference will cross borders to bring leaders from business, industry, commerce and whole of government representatives throughout Australia.

Day One features Transport Infrastructure: Challenges facing the transport industry, Inland Rail Project, Women in Transport, Logistics in Murray Region, Intermodal Transport Options, Managing Growth, Supply Chain Efficiency

Day Two features People Property and Industry Movement: The commercial relationship between Asia and Australia, Key Industry movements in Regional Australia, Promoting Business and trade between China and Regional Australia, Water supply infrastructure opportunities, Future population for Regional Australia, , Innovative Communications for the region

Join us and engage in a series of forums, led by high caliber speakers in their field.

For more details and to book for the event visit How fast is Regional Australia Moving


[In]Sight: Australia’s regional competitiveness index

[In]Sight – Australia’s regional competitiveness index is known for enabling Australians to access the information they need to make better informed decisions about regional communities.

A new and improved version of the popular, easy to access, easy to use, interactive web tool was launched in November 2014.

[In]Sight: Australia’s Regional Competitiveness Index provides a lens on where we are now and what advantages Australia can build on to shape a prosperous future.

Using internationally proven frameworks, [In]Sight provides 624competitiveness profiles at the Local Government Area (LGA) and regional level. Data and rankings for ten themes and 68 indicators capture the competitive position of each part of our nation.

Regional decision-making should no longer be based on national and state averages. With [In]Sight Australia can respond to the unique needs of different places and realise its competitive

For more details visit [In]Sight 2014

[In]Sight from the [In]Side out

To help all Australians make the most of [In]Sight Deputy CEO Jack Archer will be conducting a series of FREE master classes, more information is available here.


National Awards for Local Government

Entries for the 2015 National Awards for Local Government (the awards) will be accepted from Monday 19 January 2015 through to close of business on Friday 27 February 2015.  The Awards have attracted thousands of entries during its 28 year history.
This year we celebrate 175 years of local government in Australia.  Councils, shires and other recognised local government organisations alongside local business and not-for-profit organisations play a key role in making Australian communities safe, attractive and desirable places to live.
The Awards provide an opportunity to showcase projects that exemplify leading practice in local government and that respond to the needs and unique challenges of your local community.  All local councils, big and small, metropolitan and rural, urban and remote are eligible to enter.
The categories in this year’s Awards are:
  • Arts Animates—excellence in community engagement and participation sponsored by the Ministry for the Arts in the Attorney-General’s Department
  • Boosting Productivity through Infrastructure sponsored by the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development
  • Contributing to Regional Growth sponsored by the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development
  • Disability Access and Inclusion sponsored by the Department of Social Services
  • Multicultural Australia—Strength in Diversity sponsored by the Department of Social Services
  • Promoting Indigenous Recognition sponsored by the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet
  • Excellence in Road Safety sponsored by the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development
  • Youth Employment sponsored by the Department of Education
If you have any questions please contact the Awards team via email at:
or visit the website

TAFE Unveils New Agreement With University Of Southern Queensland

TAFE NSW Riverina Institute has announced a new pathways articulation agreement with the University of Southern Queensland.

Students studying Surveying and Spatial Information Services at Riverina Institute will be given entry into the relevant listed University of Southern Queensland qualification and granted eight credits for their previous study.

“TAFE NSW Riverina Institute is the only Registered Training Organisation offering spatial qualifications via distance-only at the Certificate III, IV and Diploma level,” said Brian Millar, Relieving Institute Director. “The University of Southern Queensland is the only university offering spatial degrees via distance-only, so the partnership was an obvious one.”

“USQ is committed to enhancing student aspiration and advancement by expanding pathways for students transitioning from the vocational education and training sector to university and this partnership is illustrative of this,” said Vice-Chancellor, Professor Jan Thomas. “These pathways enable students to develop the right mix of skills and knowledge that is highly valued by employers and increases employability of USQ graduates.”

“Furthermore, this pathway offers Riverina Institute students the opportunity to complete their USQ degree online which allows them to meet work, family and other commitments while undertaking tertiary study,” said Professor Thomas.

For more details visit TAFE NSW Riverina Institute

New Grants and Funding

Industry Skills Fund


Individual businesses or consortia will be able to apply for the Industry Skills Fund – Growth Stream providing up to 200 000 training plans and support services over 4 years.

Small and medium sized enterprises are prioritised with help available for skills advice and training grants, “…which plan to upskill and reskill their workforces to better position themselves for growth opportunities.”

The Industry Skills Fund – Growth Stream interconnects with the Entrepreneurs Infrastructure Programme.


Priority industries include:

  • food and agribusiness;
  • mining equipment, technology and services;
  • medical technologies and pharmaceuticals;
  • oil, gas and energy resources;
  • advanced manufacturing, and
  • enabling technology and service industries that support one or more of the priority areas listed above.

NB. Applicants that fall within the priority sectors will be fast-tracked through a streamlined assessment process.

Skills Advice

It is expected that a Skills Adviser will define skills need and solution through tailored advice.

This advice will be tailored to your business and may include activities such as analysis of training needs, skills audits and workforce development planning.

Recommendations for improvement will be given in the following categories:

  • Business growth training – training activities required for you to increase competitiveness for identified growth opportunities.
  • Business growth training support services – other activities you can complete to increase the impact of business growth training outcomes. (p. 5 Customer Information Guide)

Training Grant

The Training Grant helps you with the cost of training, including:

  • nationally recognised training, including full qualifications and skill sets;
  • training that is accredited through state and territory systems, including Language, Literacy and Numeracy training;
  • training that is identifiable, transferrable by a learner and builds the capability of a learner;
  • high quality, innovative or tailored training that may not yet be part of a training package or accredited course. This can include different combinations of training modules to form new skill sets and training tailored to meet specific business needs; and
  • training required to navigate export barriers and/or access foreign markets.

The Training Grant only covers costs directly attributed to the delivery of the training. (p. 6 Customer Information Guide)

Interestingly the definition of Training in the Glossary of the Customer Information Guide is,

Both accredited and non-accredited training, including skill sets, skills analysis and gap training as well as full qualifications that will assist businesses to diversify and improve their productivity and competitiveness in a global market.

and Training Development is defined as,

The development of innovative Training solutions that are not currently funded by the national training system.


You’ll be required to pay the following percentage of the total project cost:

  • Micro Business (0 – 4 FTE employees) – 25%
  • Small Business (5 – 19 FTE employees) – 34%
  • Medium Business (20 – 199 FTE employees) – 50%
  • Large Business (200+ FTE employees) – 75%

Co-contributions must be in cash. In-kind contributions will not be accepted.” (p. 6 Customer Information Guide)

Consortia will be expected to have undertaken economic analysis and workforce development before approaching the Fund for assistance. If this has not occurred, the lead member of the consortium will be expected to undertake this work before an application can be progressed. (p. 10 Customer Information Guide)

Merit Criteria

Applicants will need to clearly communicate and demonstrate how their applications meet the following criteria:

a. how they are positioning themselves to take up a growth opportunity. A growth opportunity could occur when the business:

  1. diversifies into new or emerging markets and/or
  2. adopts new or emerging technologies and/or
  3. enters export markets and/or
  4. responds to significant domestic market opportunities and/or
  5. repositions themselves because of market driven structural adjustment;

b. how the productivity gains created from the proposed project will deliver benefits to the Australian economy;

c. how the proposed project will address critical skills gaps or shortages, and allow the business to be more competitive for the identified growth opportunity;

d. the value for money offered by the proposed project;

e. the capability and capacity of the Applicant and the training provider to carry out the proposed project. (p. 10-11 Customer Information Guide)

Applications must be submitted online.

Review the sample application forms here and you can read the Customer Information Guide and Programme Guidelines here.

For more details visit Industry Skills Fund

Small Grants Program (under $5000)

Closes 31 March 2015

The Mercy Foundation offers a Small Grants Program once a year. Small grants are provided for a range of social justice and community initiatives and are not limited to a focus on homelessness


The Small Grants Program provides seed funding and prioritises those activities and projects which focus on addressing disadvantage in regards to women and children. The types of project areas that may be funded include: poverty, domestic violence, women’s groups and activities, activities that focus on assisting children, women and/or children with disability, mental health and addictions. However, the Small Grants Program are not limited to these areas and these are only provided as a guide

The Foundation will respond to small grant requests within 12 weeks of the application deadline. The Foundation also seeks to minimise paperwork and reporting mechanisms for this program. The next round of small grant applications close on 31st March 2015. Funding for approved grants will commence after 1st July 2015.

Priority will be given to small organisations and those groups that receive no other funding. If the organisation is a community group which is not an incorporated association, that group might seek out an ‘auspicing organisation’ that does have incorporated, company or other appropriate legal status. The Small Grants Program fund projects within Australia only.

The Small Grants program is only available to NON PROFIT organisations. This program does not fund individuals or for-profit organisations. if the applicant has no legal status, an agency that does have legal status (non profit)  can be asked to auspice the project and hold any grant monies on behalf of the applicant.

Applications / Guidelines

Application methods:
Website: Mercy Foundation
Application: Mercy Foundation

Contact Details
Address: The Business Manager The Mercy Foundation Ltd 40 Rocklands Road WOLLSTONECRAFT 2065 NSW  
Phone: (02) 9911 7390
Want to be part of RDA Murray enewsletter.....Contact the RDA Murray Team
RDA Murray
Copyright © 2015 Regional Development Australia - Murray, All rights reserved.

unsubscribe    update email address     forward to a friend