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Botanic Park Masterplan

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A new masterplan will be designed for the Mansfield Botanic Park. Help us shape the future of our beloved Bot Park by contributing your thoughts and ideas in this community consultation.

When we asked for ideas about how to enhance our outdoor spaces, we had many responses about the Botanic Park. In response, we set money aside from that grant funding to develop a Botanic Park Masterplan that would bring together the many great ideas the community has for that space.

It’s not just the existing space – the Mansfield Botanic Park Masterplan will consider the current park and an extension of almost 3.9 hectares of land adjacent to the Redgum Estate.

We know you love the Botanic Park and have loads of ideas. We’ve already completed some improvements to the Botanic Park completed over the last 12 months, including the installation of the new playground, the Gadhaba garden, new picnic tables and bench seating and restoration of flood damage to paths and garden areas.

Procuring a consultant to complete and implement the masterplan is funded with $40,000 of the $300,000 total grant funding from the Victorian Government’s Outdoor Economy Package.

We’ve heard you also want to address how dogs and families can safely share the space and developments that will enable the community to host events, such as power and a stage. These are great ideas – what others do you have to help shape and guide the Mansfield Botanic Park Masterplan? Tell us below.

Changes to Recycling and Waste Services in Mansfield Shire

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Major new Victorian Government legislation(External link) will soon change recycling and waste services in Mansfield Shire.

Currently Mansfield Shire has a two-bin system. A mixed recycling bin with a yellow lid that is picked up fortnightly and a residual waste bin with a red lid that is picked up weekly.

Residual waste is also known as general waste and goes to landfill while mixed recycling is sorted into five different types of recyclables.

The two major changes in the new legislation are that all Victorian councils are required to separate glass from recycling by 2027 and separate garden and food organic waste from residual waste by 2030.

This will create four categories or streams of recycling and waste that will each have their own colour: glass (purple), other mixed recycling (yellow), garden and food organics (green) and residual waste (red).

The good news is that community members will help decide how these four recycling and waste streams will be delivered. This could be by kerbside pickup like what is currently done, drop off at a central community location or by a combination of these. Community members will also help decide if kerbside pickups happen weekly, fortnightly, or monthly and when they start.

Each of these options will benefit different community members in different ways. So to find the service solutions that best fit our community we need to hear from you.

The other consideration is that our Shire’s recycling and waste contract expires on 1 July 2024 but, because of the long times for rubbish trucks, recycling facilities and landfill sites, a new contract needs to be signed by December this year. To do this:

  • in June, Council will begin to share general information about the upcoming changes and what they mean;
  • in July, the community will be invited to forums where the project and changes will be discussed in more detail. Two forums will be face-to-face in Mansfield (July 8 and 9 booking link(External link)), and another will be online (July 13 booking link(External link));
  • in August and September, a community Deliberative Panel(External link) will meet at least three times to review options for the new recycling and waste service model;
  • in October, the Deliberative Panel and Council will agree the Shire’s new recycling and waste service model; and
  • in November, the new recycling and waste contract will be signed by Council.

As the first step to finding these solutions, this page has information on the current recycling & waste services and their performance, the important parts of Victorian Government legislation(External link), and environmental & operational considerations for these new services.

This page then gives you the opportunity to ask questions, complete a survey, share your ideas, stay up to date with the project, and to nominate to be part of a deliberative panel(External link) that will help design future recycling and waste services in Mansfield Shire.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Grants to help propel your business in 2022

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As we know, it’s been a challenging two years for many businesses in Victoria. The good news is there is a range of assistance available through various State or Commonwealth programs to help your business as we move out of the pandemic.

Whether you are looking to accelerate your business growth or need assistance to bounce back from the impacts of COVID-19 and other challenges, there is financial assistance, mentoring programs and other partnerships available to you.

The MDBA can help you find different grants and incentives ranging from business development, growing jobs, energy, mental health and wellbeing and export assistance. Here are some for you to consider.

Business development and support

Business recovery and resilience mentoring: Whether you’re growing your business or adapting to new challenges and opportunities, you’ve undoubtedly had to make some difficult decisions and sacrifices.

To support you and your business this new financial year, the Victorian Chamber in partnership with the Victorian Government is offering free business mentoring for eligible business. By taking part you will receive up to four, free 2-hour sessions with a mentor, guidance to help you make informed decisions about the future of your business and be matched with an industry leader who suits your business needs.

Elsewhere, the $250 million Victorian Business Growth Fund supports Victorian SMEs ready to grow their business, but who can’t access the funds or find the right partner to take the next step.

Upskill My Business provides Victorian small businesses with access to free online courses, live and on-demand events and resources to help them recover from COVID-19.

The SME Recovery Loan Scheme provides small and medium-sized businesses with guaranteed loans to help their business recover from the impacts of the coronavirus crisis. Under the 2022 scheme, loans are available from 1 January until 30 June 2022, with a Federal Government guarantee of 50 per cent.

Ready for Growth is an initiative to support 1,000 Victorian businesses with high growth potential to access new markets and create jobs. It provides businesses with tailored advisory services by expert growth facilitators.

Landing Pads helps market-ready scaleups take their business global. It provides start-ups with a workspace for up to 90 days in a global innovation hub, along with access to coaching, investors, customers, training and networking events.

The Advancing Victorian Manufacturing is the Victorian Government’s blueprint to ensure Victoria is home to internationally competitive manufacturers that are growing economic opportunity and jobs.

Future Industries is about supporting investment in high-growth industries through industry excellence and development projects, including establishing collaborative networks and building supply chain readiness capabilities.

Microenterprise Development Grants Program 2022 provides support to organisations with experience in delivering capability development programs that address socio-cultural constraints to economic participation and entrepreneurship for priority groups of Victorians.

Accelerating Commercialisation provides small and medium businesses, entrepreneurs and researchers with access to expert advice and funding to help get a novel product, process or service to market.

The Entrepreneurs’ Programme can help transform your business, getting you from where you are to where you want to be. Our unique services give you access to expert advice and financial support through grants to help you progress your goals.

The Small Business Digital Adaptation Program provides $1200 rebates so small businesses can access a range of digital business tools.

Jobs funds

The Jobs Victoria Fund supports businesses to employ people most affected by the economic impact of the pandemic by hiring new staff or increasing hours for existing employees. Jobs Victoria wage subsidies of up to $20,000 are available to meet the costs associated with employing someone for 12 months.

Available for regional businesses is the Regional Jobs Fund to attract new investment, create new jobs, and in some cases retain existing jobs in regional Victoria and to support businesses to improve their productivity and competitiveness.

Similarly, the Australian Apprenticeships Incentives Program provides employers with incentives to employ an apprentice. Incentive payments to employers are based on the apprenticeship certificate level completed. Payments range from $750 to $4,000.

Assistance for businesses employing young people is available via Youth Jobs PaTH, which provides funding for businesses to trial and/or hire a young person aged between 17 and 24. Up to $10,000 is available per person.

The Digital Jobs Program provides businesses with an opportunity to host a digitally trained candidate through a subsidised 12-week internship. Businesses will be provided with a $5,000 wage subsidy per internship to host one (or more) trained mid-career interns for a minimum of 12 weeks.

A Wage Subsidy Scheme is available for employers who take on a Disability Employment Services (DES) jobseeker. Payment depends on the wage subsidy program and the negotiated amount agreed to, based on the program criteria, the individual circumstances of the jobseeker and the employer’s needs.


A $15.7 million Export Recovery Package exists to address logistics and supply chain issues caused by the pandemic, and establish new export channels. That includes a $4.7 million Global Victoria Trade Alliance program to help Victorian exporters adapt their export strategies to respond to rapidly changing global market conditions, and Virtual Trade Missions to provide Victorian businesses with the opportunity to participate in virtual trade missions to help them expand their potential in international markets and increase their exports.

Export Finance Australia Loans provides small to medium businesses with loans to help with the finance needed to secure export contracts or purchase orders. Additionally, the Small Business Export Loan provides small to medium export businesses with loans to cover up to 80 per cent of the costs to secure an export contract or purchase order with an overseas buyer.


Small Business Energy Saver Program supports Victorian small business upgrade to energy efficient equipment. The exact amount your business will need to pay for an approved energy efficiency improvement will depend on the type of energy upgrades undertaken. On average each business could receive a discount of about $2000 for eligible equipment upgrades.

Business Energy Advice Program delivers advice to help small businesses and their representatives get better energy deals and reduce their energy usage. Businesses get a free personalised energy consultation and access to a Small Business Energy Check tool.

The Advancing Renewables Program provides businesses with funding or finance to develop renewable energy technologies.

The Emissions Reduction Fund provides businesses with the opportunity to earn Australian carbon credit units for every tonne of carbon dioxide equivalent a business stores or avoids emitting through adopting new practices and technologies.

Solar for Business provides small businesses with a rebate of up to $3,500 to help with the costs of installing a rooftop solar system, while subsidies up to $3,000 are available for businesses in Victoria to purchase a zero emission vehicle.

Health and wellbeing

Wellbeing and Mental Health Support for Victorian Small Businesses provides mental health support to Victorians dealing with the challenges of running a small business to help them navigate through the impacts of coronavirus (COVID-19). Through this program, Victorians dealing with the challenges of running a small business can get the mental health support they need to navigate through the impacts of COVID19.

Partners in Wellbeing – Small Business Support is the Victorian Government’s free and confidential helpline that provides wellbeing support, business advice and financial counselling to business operators, their staff and families.

Indigenous business

Indigenous businesses have access to specific support. The Start-Up Finance Package provides Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander start-ups with access to loans to help new businesses get off the ground.

The Indigenous Advancement Strategy provides funding for organisations to help them undertake projects or activities which promote equal opportunities for Indigenous Australians.

Tax incentives

One of the main tax incentives for businesses during COVID-19 was the Coronavirus Payroll Tax Reliefwhich is available for Victorian businesses impacted by COVID-19.

The $150,000 Instant Asset Write-Off, which provides businesses with an asset write-off. Assets must cost less than the instant asset write-off threshold and be purchased and used in the year that the write-off is claimed.

The Small Business Income Tax Offset also provides unincorporated small businesses with a tax offset of up to $1000 per year. The offset is worked out on the proportion of tax payable on your business income.

The R&D Tax Incentive offers a tax offset for companies conducting eligible R&D activities. It encourages investment in R&D to help your company to grow and innovate which generates benefits for the Australian economy. As well as providing financial support, the R&DTI can be an opportunity to collaborate with registered Research Service Providers (RSPs).

Country Universities Centre

By news

Country Universities Centre operating locally in Mansfield is Federally funded to support anyone studying Higher Education in the region.

If you are studying any course, at any university or Higher Education provider.  Studying online, part-time, commencing a diploma or working on their PhD.   CUC can be of benefit as a supported space for your studies.

CUC provide support to Mansfield Shire business, organisations and people considering accessing higher qualifications, by providing reliable internet, free printing, a quiet-dedicated study space and academic support.

CUC is not an RTO and do generate income from ‘enrolments’.   It’s a service and facility funded by Federal Government that provides a great option compared to the distractions and isolation that comes with studying at the kitchen table, trying to study in your workplace and/or battling poor connectivity. CUC can provide in-person support which can be valuable for those new or returning to study after a long break.  To discuss your option please contact Mark Van Bergen, Centre Manager

M: 0409 022 028 or via email

Council Purchases High Street Land for Additional Parking

By news

An additional 100 car parking bays will soon be available in Mansfield’s central business district with Council’s purchase of a large vacant block on High Street.

The vacant land, at 34-38 High Street, was formerly the site of the Caltex Service station.

Mayor Cr James Tehan said the purchase is strategic and will support strong economic development for Mansfield.

“Council has proactively sought out additional land for the development of car parking in the central business district. We recognise the need to balance visitation with the needs of our fast-growing community,” said Cr Tehan.

It was purchased at a cost to Council of $1.3 million for the large 3,244 square metre site. This space allows for the provision of at least 100 new car parking bays.

Mayor Cr James Tehan said the purchase would alleviate car parking pressures.

“We’re really excited that we’ve been able to carve out the opportunity for more parking in our central business district, alleviating congestion on High Street and making it easier for the community and visitors to access services and businesses,” said Cr Tehan.

“We’ve moved quickly on this purchase to ensure we can accommodate for our extraordinary growth. We want to make sure that our community and visitors can move freely during periods of high visitation. We’re growing fast but we’re growing sustainably through strategic development.”

Car park construction is scheduled to begin in the new financial year.

TRAINING: Advance strategies taking your business online

By Past Event

3 hr – Thursday 21st April 9.30am


This workshop is designed to give you the knowledge, strategies and tools to grow your business online.

The topics covered include:

  • Operating your Business in a Digital World: How digital technologies are impacting the way businesses operate.
  • Digital Strategy: What a digital strategy is and the elements you need to consider when developing your digital strategy.
  • ·Website Best Practice: Comparing your website against best practice and what improvements you need to make.
  • Ecommerce: Investigating the different ways your business can sell online.
  • Mobile Apps: How mobile apps can support your business operations.
  • Business Processes Automation: Automating business processes to increase efficiencies within your business.
  • Risk Management: Protecting your business in a digital world.

TRAINING: Virtual Business Advice

By events

Business Victoria offers free online business advice sessions to help you start or grow your small business. Available Monday to Friday, the one-on-one sessions with a business expert will provide information on your business idea or how to grow your existing business.