Rivers to seek slice of funding

TENDERS have opened for the Federal Government's spare $1.8 billion in regional health and hospitals funding and Northern Rivers agencies are getting busy.

Page MP Janelle Saffin said she understood teams from Southern Cross University, North Coast Area Health, and the University Department of Rural Health at Lismore were busy assembling submissions for a slice of the funding.

The funding was announced by Prime Minister Julia Gillard as part of the deal hammered out between Labor and rural independents Rob Oakeshott and Tony Windsor to win their support to form government.

It was delivered as part of a $10 billion regional funding package, which included other initiatives already promised for the regions, such as the early roll-out of the National Broadband Network.

Mr Oakeshott, from the North Coast seat of Lyne, said he encouraged ‘our State governments and territories to take a lead in helping deliver this funding on the ground in our regions'.

“Engagement with the local area health services and State governments will be critical,” Mr Oakeshott said.

“I encourage all to work closely with our local members to make this happen and maximise the benefits this funding will bring to the Mid-North Coast.”

Mr Oakeshott's comments might have been directed at the Mid-North Coast, but it appeared Northern Rivers organisations had also taken them to heart.

Tenders for the grants close on December 3.

Anyone can access the tender documents at www.health.gov.au/tenders.



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