What is the Rural Councils ICT Infrastructure Support Program?

The Rural Councils ICT Infrastructure Support Program is an initiative to support rural councils in improving their information technology to facilitate remote governance and community engagement.

 

Background

As part of the Victorian Government’s assistance to rural councils, $3.8 million will be provided to support rural councils in improving their information technology to facilitate remote governance and community engagement.

The Rural Councils ICT Infrastructure Support Program recognises that remote working caused by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has created added pressure on rural councils due to the costs of providing appropriate and timely facilities, infrastructure and services to effectively support the introduction of virtual meetings and remote working by councillors and council staff. Rural councils generally face lower levels of digital connectivity, limited budgets to provide virtual meeting facilities, equipment and services and greater distances between council facilities.

 

Funding

As part of this, Victoria’s 38 rural councils will each receive a grant of up to $100,000 to enhance their ICT facilities, equipment and services and undertake training.

 

Eligible Projects

Funds can be used for, but not limited to:

  • The purchase of infrastructure, hardware and software to facilitate virtual council meetings and community engagement
  • Delivery of services remotely using IT and focusing on community engagement and governance to enable the community to access services remotely
  • Set up of remote locations for the purpose of delivering virtual council meetings or community engagement
  • Labour costs for technicians to be present during streaming of virtual council meetings or community engagement
  • Training costs for councillors and relevant council staff
  • The purchase of service support eg: to assist with IT hardware/software
  • One-off service or capital costs to increase bandwidth or capacity
  • Any eligible equipment/infrastructure costs incurred from the State of Emergency declaration on 16 March 2020, which have enabled or enhanced council’s ability to deliver services, virtual council meetings or hardware/software.

 

Eligible Applicants

Grants will only be available to the following rural councils:

Alpine Shire CouncilMansfield Shire Council
Ararat Rural City CouncilMitchell Shire Council
Bass Coast Shire CouncilMoira Shire Council
Baw Baw Shire CouncilMoorabool Shire Council
Benalla Rural City CouncilMount Alexander Shire Council
Buloke Shire CouncilMoyne Shire Council
Campaspe Shire CouncilMurrindindi Shire Council
Central Goldfields Shire CouncilNorthern Grampians Shire Council
Colac-Otway Shire CouncilPyrenees Shire Council
Corangamite Shire CouncilBorough of Queenscliffe
East Gippsland Shire CouncilSouth Gippsland Shire Council
Gannawarra Shire CouncilSouthern Grampians Shire Council
Glenelg Shire CouncilStrathbogie Shire Council
Golden Plains Shire CouncilSurf Coast Shire Council
Hepburn Shire CouncilSwan Hill Rural City Council
Hindmarsh Shire CouncilTowong Shire Council
Indigo Shire CouncilWellington Shire Council
Loddon Shire CouncilWest Wimmera Shire Council
Macedon Ranges Shire CouncilYarriambiack Shire Council

 

Timing

Applications close 20 July 2020.

 

More Information