City of Mandurah and state government team up to fast-track Peel region's economic recovery

City of Mandurah mayor Rhys Wiliams, Mandurah MP David Templeman and WA Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan. Photo: Kaylee Meerton.
City of Mandurah mayor Rhys Wiliams, Mandurah MP David Templeman and WA Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan. Photo: Kaylee Meerton.

The state government and City of Mandurah have teamed up in an effort to fast-track the local economy after the coronavirus crisis.

Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan and Mandurah MP David Templeman met with City of Mandurah mayor Rhys Wiliams on Wednesday to discuss the Peel region's road to recovery.

The meeting coincided with the launch of the City's Restart Mandurah funding program, which was approved at a special council meeting on Tuesday night.

The $5 million agenda outlines the council's plans to stimulate the local economy following the outbreak of COVID-19.

As part of the state government's efforts to help the Peel region, Ms MacTiernan encouraged local businesses to apply for round three of the Regional Economic Development (RED) grants.

Up to $6 million is up for grabs for regional projects that sustain jobs and contribute to local economic growth.

In light of COVID-19, this round of grants will also have a particular focus on projects that build business resilience, diversify industry and attract new investment as part of the recovery from the pandemic impacts.

Ms MacTiernan told the Mandurah Mail all levels of government would be working together closely to ensure the best outcome for the Peel region.

"This is an important time for government to get behind our regional communities to help stimulate long-lasting economic growth," she said.

"We've been talking with the City of Mandurah, the Peel Development Commission and the Peel Alliance about a range of other ways in which we can help kickstart the COVID recovery.

"We've seen the council taking money from their reserves to bring forward their capital works and maintenance projects so [Mandurah MP] David [Templeman] and I are looking at how we can work with them to assist with that and what more we can do at a larger scale."

The Peel region has benefited from previous rounds of RED funding, with cash injections for the local tourism, manufacturing and food industries.

This is an important time for government to get behind our regional communities to help stimulate long-lasting economic growth.

Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan

Ms MacTiernan said she was looking forward to seeing what could be achieved as Mandurah recovers from the pandemic.

"We've had some fantastic outcomes in Mandurah from these RED grants before and they've really gone across the sectors which helps us to diversify the economy," she said.

"We've also put $40 million into Transform Peel and now we've got to focus on getting businesses up and running in that area.

"It's been great to come down here and see the ideas that local government have got, the PDC have got and our job now is to package those up and feed them into our state-wide COVID response."

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Mr Templeman said the City of Mandurah had shown impressive initiative and he looked forward to state and local governments working together on the upcoming road to recovery.

"I think Peel is well placed to move forward as quickly as possibly but it's going to rely on good collaborations and good partnerships," he said.

"There are some great ideas that have come forward from this morning's meeting and we'll be pursuing those. We're also eyeing off some good projects for the future."

Mr Williams said he was grateful to have the support of the state government.

"The $5 million Restart Mandurah fund and a rate cut for businesses is a very ambitious plan. We have to take this economic recovery seriously," he said.

"We're taking a leadership role and doing what we can to support the recovery of Mandurah's economy in targeted areas but the reality is we know we can't do this on our own.

"I was really pleased today that David Templeman and Alannah MacTiernan were able to join us in the region and hear about our plans for economic recovery and hopefully we can look towards a future of working collaboratively on some of these solutions."

We're taking a leadership role and doing what we can to support the recovery of Mandurah's economy in targeted areas but the reality is we know we can't do this on our own.

Mandurah mayor Rhys Wiliams

Ms MacTiernan said the time had come to start preparing the economy for post-coronavirus recovery.

"We are optimistic that we've got community transmission under control and now we've got to build our way out of here," she said.

"Having done that, we now need to be very focused on getting people back into jobs and we're taking that very seriously by looking at things that are going to create long-term jobs.

"We really want to announce the RED grants early in the new financial year so we can use that to kickstart the economy."

Mr Williams added that everyone in Mandurah would need to play a part to get the City back on its feet.

"People in Mandurah have got to get out and support local businesses, do their bit to buy local in restaurants, butchers, bakers all those sorts of places because they're the things that will make a difference," he said.

"Our job in local and state government is to try and stimulate targeted areas but we need everyone to do the heavy lifting together."

Applications for round three RED grants close on July 7. For more information or application details, visit http://www.drd.wa.gov.au/rfr/REDG.