Farrer MP Sussan Ley has welcomed funding of close to $350k to help local communities across the electorate explore, invest and develop new business growth opportunities. 

Individual organisations to receive a share in the latest round of the Commonwealth/NSW government’s joint Energise Enterprise program are:-


$25,000 – Southern Growers Incorporated

Plans to engage an agronomic specialist to analyse water usage and crop growth technologies within the Southern Riverina region to identify best practices and viable economic returns. Workshops will be held for growers and wider industry to promote strategies to increase uptake of technology around water efficiency. Creation of grower groups who can disseminate information from workshops to individual farms in the region.

$13,649 – The Hillston Billylids Early Learning Centre (Carrathool)

To coordinate a project to build skills and capability by delivering four workshops on topics including governance, customer service, strategic business planning and website development. The workshops will be offered to not for profit organisations and all businesses in Hillston.

$25,000 – Edward River Council

The project will develop an Economic and Business Development Strategic Plan to help sustain existing businesses, create new employment opportunities and grow the local economy. The new Plan is required to inform Edward River Council’s strategic policy, resources, business engagement and economic development actions over the next five years.

$40,000 – Murrumbidgee Council            

An expert consultant will be engaged to compile market research to develop an Economic Development Strategy for the towns of Darlington Point, Coleambally and Jerilderie.

$25,000 – Federation Council (1)

In partnership with Charles Sturt University, Murray region economic analysis will see research to identify industries which can stimulate economic activity and increase jobs growth. This will then lead to a strategy and operational plan for encouraging regional development.

$25,000 – Federation Council (2)

Community-driven Social and Economic Change in Small Rural Communities – a project to inspire community-driven social and economic regeneration, with six months local and inclusive consultation leading to a framework and plan created for each community.

$24,800 – Murray Hume Business Enterprise Centre (1)    

Business Skills Development Program to involve three workshops taking place in Albury, covering topics of retail merchandising, improving selling skills and enhancing business through social media. A specialist consultant will meet with 18 businesses after the workshops have taken place to develop an action plan with each business.

$11,500 – Murray Hume Business Enterprise Centre (2)    

This project will engage a specialist visual merchandising consultant to visit retail stores in the Tumbarumba, Batlow, Tumut and Gundagai areas in order to provide one-on-one consultations to develop an understanding and importance of visual merchandising.

$25,000 – Griffith Chamber of Commerce & Industry

A research and development campaign to have the Murrumbidgee region recognised as an area which produces high quality, wholesome, sustainable and green food. Deakin University will assist in undertaking focus groups and research to establish the name of a Trust Mark or brand.

$18,750 – Griffith City Council   

A Place Creation Workshop will see a combination of training and workshops on ‘placemaking’ for up to 30 participants. The workshop will focus on improving places through community consultation and engagement. Participants will range from council staff, community and business owners.

$20,970 – Riverina Business Enterprise Centre   

The local BEC will design and construct a specific Riverina marketing portal to represent small businesses in the region. The objective is to make it easier for businesses to be found and engaged by new & existing customers.

$24,000 – Leeton and Narrandera Shire Councils

Partnering with TAFE Riverina, 16 Digital Ready Workshops and one-on-one coaching sessions will be delivered to assist small business to become digital ready, improve their online presence and e-commerce capabilities to increase market competitiveness.

$23,700 – Leeton Shire Council  

A business Retention, Attraction and Expansion Program to analyse the strengths, weaknesses and challenges for Leeton businesses. The outcome of this project is to set priorities for action, develop a Business Gap Analysis and Business Attraction Strategy.

$25,000 – Leeton Chamber of Commerce & Industry

A campaign to action and develop a ‘Shop Local’ strategy with a strategic marketing plan to educate the community and businesses on the benefits of buying locally.


The funding is part of $32.5 million allocated to support the economic base of NSW regional communities likely to be affected by adjustments to the Murray Darling Basin Plan.

Ms Ley said the projects will prove vital for local communities to continue developing and exploring long-term economic growth prospects.

“Through the Murray and Murrumbidgee regions, as it is across Australia, there are changes and factors which influence the buoyancy of our local economy. I hope this region will always be the primary food bowl of the nation, but we also need to build on that historical base to shore up the future.”

“Our local councils, businesses and community groups have hard to secure this funding – projects which can lead to significant economic benefits for our region, helping ensure we will have a thriving local economy for years to come.”

The Energise Enterprise Fund is a component of the Murray Darling Basin Regional Economic Diversification Program providing grants to local councils and not-for-profit organisations for the delivery of economic development and diversification projects and I welcome the funding and benefits that will flow from the projects.

More details on the Economic Diversifcation program is avaialble here.