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From the Mayor's Desk - 7 July 2020

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I write my column this week on the verge of a very exciting opportunity for the Goondiwindi region’s tourism sector, and for all local businesses related to it. From 10 July, the Queensland border will open once again to all states and territories but Victoria - and our region is ready to capitalise on this with a brand-new social media tourism campaign encouraging travellers to ‘#VisitGoondiwindiRegion’.

The campaign is part of Council’s COVID-19 Community and Economic Support package to support local tourism operators and related businesses. A whole-of-region campaign, it will feature new promotional photography and marketing to highlight destinations and activities from Weengallon through to Texas. If you use social media, I encourage you to keep track of the campaign on Facebook or Instagram, and share what you can to make sure we get the word out that the Goondiwindi region is ready to show visitors why we are Regional Australia at its Best. I’d also like to take this opportunity to congratulate the Goondiwindi Chamber of Commerce and lend my support to their campaign, ‘Come Say Hi’, by encouraging all residents and businesses to invite their friends and families to our region for their next road trip or reunion.

Next, you may recall that I made a commitment before the election to hold an annual Ordinary Council meeting in both Texas and Inglewood. I am pleased to announce that the dates for the first meetings are now confirmed as follows:

  • Inglewood, 23 September 2020
  • Texas, March 2021

More information will be available closer to those dates - in the meantime, I wish to remind you that all members of the public are invited to attend any Ordinary Council meeting, usually held on the fourth Wednesday of each month.

On 24 June, Council adopted its Budget for the 2020-21 financial year. I’m sure you will have seen the major projects and figures reported in local media by now, but I’d like to make a special mention of a change to Council’s Community Grants and Donations program that I believe will be of real benefit to many groups across the region. Council is increasing its funding for this program as a whole to $441,000 – and included in that figure is a raise in the maximum value of Community Donations to $500. Community Grants of more than $501 for infrastructure, events and programs are also available under this program. The first half of this year has been exceptionally tough for many of our community groups, so I strongly encourage those who are now re-scheduling cancelled events, or planning for new projects, to put in an application and make the most of this opportunity for increased funding. Apply online at: grc.qld.gov.au/donations-grants

At the end of last month, I was extremely pleased to be able to catch up with Talwood residents for a community consultation session. It was a pleasure to get to meet some new faces and, with the continued easing of restrictions, I hope to be able to attend many more of these meetings in our smaller towns going forward.

Finally, I was delighted to see the Goondiwindi Argus return to print last week. Our region should be extremely proud of the fact that it can support two regional weekly papers, and I applaud their service and dedication to our community. I hope we can continue to realise the value of regional journalism and support our local newspapers with renewed vigour into the future.

Hon. Lawrence Springborg AM
Mayor
Goondiwindi Regional Council

Published: 7th July 2020