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  • Writer's pictureDave Layzell MP

State Matters - 13 December 2021


THE Upper Hunter electorate now has a solid foundation to commence 2022 with the announcement of round four grants from the Stronger Country Communities Fund.

A total of 17 local projects have secured a share of $4,075,634 with work to be undertaken in Clarence Town, Dungog, Gresford, Singleton, Muswellbrook, Denman, Merrriwa, Scone, Spring Ridge and Quirindi.

It has been an amazing couple months for the electorate with almost $22 million received from the Resources for Regions, Community Building Partnership and Stronger Country Communities programs.

Congratulations also to the Rail Motor Society, Paterson on receiving $3,000 from the NSW Government’s Transport Heritage Grants Program to digitise an irreplaceable collection of engineering drawings about its rail fleet.


TAFE’s Newcastle campus will participate in provide training to meet the growing demand for workers in the NSW renewable energy sector.

From next year, TAFE NSW is offering a Diploma of Renewable Energy Engineering along with a number of new micro-credentials to help students pave their career in renewable energy.

The new diploma was developed in close collaboration with industry and will be aligned to high-demand jobs including in solar, energy storage systems and wind technology.

The new courses will be offered at TAFE’s Ultimo and Newcastle campuses via a blend of virtual classroom learning and face-to-face practical workshops.


An update on the public teacher incentives I mentioned in an October edition of State Matters following the Review of Rural and Remote Incentives in NSW Public Schools

The Deputy Premier Paul Toole and Minister for Education Sarah Mitchell have announced $8 million of the initial $15 million incentives package will be used to extend the existing program to include temporary teachers and double the bonuses for teachers taking up a job in regional NSW.

Temporary teacher incentives include an additional salary of up to $30,000, as well travel, living and housing incentives.

Teacher recruitment funding doubles from $10,000 to $20,000, giving eligible teachers an additional $20,000 on top of their teaching salaries to teach in the regions.

The NSW Government has funded a $125 million Teacher Supply Strategywhich can be viewed at;


Regional event organisers and promoters can access a share of $200 million from the NSW Government’s Significant Event Fund to deliver an event next year.

Sport, entertainment and cultural events are eligible with expressions of interest considered if they fit into a world-class, distinctive and compelling event calendar that factors off-peak event and travel periods.

Funding applications for events held before 30 June 2022 close Monday, 20 December 2021 at

A second round of applications for the 2022-23 financial year opens in February 2022.

And, not-for-profit organisations can access a share of $400,000 to host a multicultural event or festival through the Stronger Together program if an event is held before 30 June 2022.

Applications for funding close 5pm Friday 17 December with further details at


The NSW Government has secured $3 million in additional funding for organisations which go into bat for the vulnerable, helping keep roofs over heads and alleviating financial stress.

The permanent increase provides additional funding support for the Tenants’ Advice and Advocacy Program, the Financial Counselling Services Program, the No Interest Loan Scheme Program and the Aged Care Supported Accommodation Program from 2021-22.

The Tenants’ Advice and Advocacy Program and the Financial Counselling Services Program will benefit from an additional $1 million a year funding, while the No Interest Loan Scheme Program and the Aged Care Supported Accommodation Program will receive an additional $500,000 a year.

I thank local organisation including Hunter Tenants' Advice and Advocacy Service, Financial Counselling Hunter Valley Project Inc and Hunter Region NILS for the work that they do to assist the vulnerable in our community.


All road users in NSW should be able to arrive safely at their destinations and I encourage anyone heading away over coming weeks to exercise caution especially after the recent floods.

Speeding, fatigue and alcohol are the three main causes of death and injury on our roads.

The Staying Safe section of the NSW Centre for Road Safety website provides information, tips and advice to help keep you safe – no matter how you're travelling.


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