Bendigo Mayor Andrea Metcalf says advocacy will be a priority after being elected Chair of Regional Cities Victoria, which represents the 10 largest regional cities in Victoria.
Cr Metcalf says it’s a critical year for the organisation with a new federal government and another federal budget and a state election later this year.
“I’m passionate about our regional cities being successful and it is an honour to be elected to lead such a hard-working group who share in this aspiration in wanting the best for their communities,” she said in a statement following her election last week.
“As we keep taking positive steps out of COVID-19, we will be seeking to address the challenges ahead for regional Victoria, such as rising housing prices and tight rental markets, skills shortages, support for young people and reducing government red tape.
“When our regional cities are strong, so too are the many smaller communities that surround us, and I will be working hard with my peers to ensure regional Victoria continues to grow and prosper.”
Another focus would be ensuring that the benefits of Victoria hosting the 2026 Commonwealth Games would flow through to regional parts of the state,” Cr Metcalf said.
Mayor of Latrobe City Council, Cr Kelly O’Callaghan, was re-appointed Deputy Chair of Regional Cities Victoria.
Regional Cities Victoria comprises the Mayors and Chief Executive Officers of the 10 largest cities in regional Victoria – Ballarat, Bendigo, Geelong, Horsham, Latrobe, Mildura, Shepparton, Wangaratta, Warrnambool and Wodonga which are home to more than 800,000 Victorians.