Smythesdale Business, Health and Community Hub
Mr HOWARD (Ballarat East)— I was pleased to travel to Smythesdale last week and visit The Well, not a hole in the ground but an innovative business, health and community hub opened in 2008 as a $1.4 million project undertaken by Golden Plains Shire Council with $150 000 in funding from the former government. This has clearly been a very successful project. Ballarat Community Health provides a GP clinic four days per week. Other medical services are also provided, and a commercial pharmacy operates on site. Several other spaces are taken up by community groups, including the local historical society, and many local events, including a walking group, operate out of this hub.
Due to the success of the hub, Golden Plains Shire Council placed it on its list for federal funding in round 5 of the Regional Development Australia grants and was expecting to attract $850 000 to further extend and enhance The Well.
However, with the election of the Abbott government round 5 funding grants have been cancelled. Golden Plains Shire Council and the Smythesdale community will now look elsewhere for funding support, and I hope that we can secure state funding to support this project.