Australia Covid-19, Economy and regeneration

Georges River Council’s Economic and Social Recovery Plan

Georges River Council, located twenty minutes south of the Sydney CBD, shares some of the details of the three-phase Economic and Social Recovery Plan that they are currently implementing.

The Plan is made up of three key phases in response to the unprecedented impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic on local businesses and the community at large, and complements packages being rolled out by the State and Federal governments.

Phase 1 ‘Immediate Support’ actions have already been implemented to support businesses and the community, including a business support program, #WeAreInThisTogether campaign and the waiving or reduction of fees and charges. We also provided support for Georges River Health Care workers including free parking, the Coffee On Us program and backing of the Adopt a Health Care Work program. We moved to increase online learning and digital programs for libraries and gallery exhibitions and provided free reservation of spaces at its childcare centres.

Phase 2 ‘Revival’ includes actions which will help the community prepare for the revival of Georges River both economically and socially as restrictions ease, such as a Recovery Grants Program which reimagines the current program in order to support the LGA’s recovery.

We placed a strong focus on key capital works with an estimated value of $41.8 million which will stimulate the local economy and improve public domain. Council will actively pursue government grant opportunities to assist with a targeted program of ‘shovel-ready’ projects, and assign a dedicated officer to focus on injecting more commercial floor space into key town centres.

We are providing specialised planning advice and translated material in community languages for food safety and COVID restrictions. Council will also promote its Buy Local program for local contracts at an estimated and a deep cleansing program is to be carried out in six key town centres to prepare our public domain for increased activation.

Other initiatives we have as part of the programme include outdoor dining license fee exemptions, reduction in DA fees for commercial fit-outs for a period of six months, faster payment for local suppliers and waiving library fees and fines, and providing a dedicated concierge service to triage customer enquiries related to COVID-19.

During Phase 3 ‘Discover Georges River’ we will celebrate the re-launch of the city with a series of events and activations, supported by a budget of $400,000, and with branding and marketing to encourage residents, visitors and investors to discover the potential of Georges River.

 

If there are any interesting initiatives at your council you’d like to tell us about, we’d love to share them with our readers. Email hannah.muirhead@lgiu.org for more information.

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