RCV is constantly scanning the policy landscape to draw on sector and best practice research to inform our approach to policy development, the projects we undertake, and our key advocacy and campaign activities.
Policy, funding models and accepted industry best practice moves quickly in our sector, and we work to keep our member councils abreast of shifts and changes.
A number of key reports that inform our current program of activities and advocacy are listed below. They outline some of the challenges facing rural councils and rural communities, as well as some of the forecast changes to the Victorian Local Government sector.
- Victorian Local Government Act Review (June 2019)
- Victorian Government Response to the Parliamentary Inquiry (June 2019)
- Victorian Auditor General Report on the Outcomes of Investing in Regional Victoria (May 2019)
- Victorian Auditor General Presentation Summary of Report detailing the Outcomes of Investing in Regional Victoria (May 2019)
- Victorian Parliamentary Inquiry into the sustainability and operational challenges of Victoria’s rural and regional councils (March 2018)
- KPMG Report - Local Government Victoria's Rural and Regional Councils' Sustainability Reform Program (December 2017)
We know that how we do things in a rural context is different than in a regional centre or a major metro area.
RCV has commissioned series of toolkits to support our member Councils to develop and implement initiatives with their rural environment in mind. These resources should be read as shortcuts to industry best practice, providing insights for resource constrained small rural councils, and highlighting issues relevant to their rural communities.
New resources will be added over time as new projects are completed.
Environment Protection Act 2017 Implementation Toolkit
RCV has identified the need for a toolkit to assist councils in understanding their obligations and responding to the newly implemented Environmental Protection Act 2017.
This Toolkit will guide rural councils to evaluate their existing systems in six key function areas of council.
Population Attraction Toolkit
RCV has identified the need for a toolkit to assist councils to embed long-term and ongoing population attraction strategies into their community and council plan.
This Population Attraction Toolkit is designed to support member councils to implement the findings of key research in rural population attraction and retention. The toolkit includes practical steps, tasks, initiatives and potential actions that Councils can undertake to attract and retain residents and ratepayers in a strategic, cost effective manner.
The Toolkit has been developed to support rural councils as they adapt to changes initiated in the Local Government Act 2020.
Community Engagement Toolkit
The publication of this toolkit is an initiative of Rural Councils Victoria. Community engagement and consultation in rural Councils is inherently different to approaches used in metropolitan and regional cities. Populations in rural communities are diverse and often dispersed over large geographical areas. Community priorities, interests and challenges are also different and unique to each Council area. Engagement approaches need to be tailored to meet the needs of rural Councils and the communities they represent.
Rural Councils also face the added pressure of having fewer resources, that are spread across a broad range of practice areas.
This Community Engagement Toolkit has been developed to support rural councils as they adapt to changes initiated in the Local Government Act 2020.
Creative Industries Toolkit - A guide to creative industries in rural and regional Victoria
Victoria’s Creative State Strategy 2016-2020 undertook extensive research on why Victorian rural areas can benefit from creative industries. This research showed that people working in the creative industries are more likely to migrate out of metropolitan areas and work in regional areas due to greater quality of life, financial freedom and work freedom. So how to should rural councils be supporting people to establish creative businesses in rural areas?
Grants Toolkit - A guide to preparing successful grant applications, including case studies
Each year millions of dollars in grant funding is awarded to councils and community groups throughout Victoria. Successfully attracting funding requires preparation and planning. Grants enable councils and community groups to create opportunities for people, build community and effect change, as well as acquire assets and ongoing events for the community. This toolkit aims to break down the barriers of applying for grant funding, making it simpler and giving you practical tips to be successful in its application.
Retail Toolkit - How your local council helps retail businesses survive and thrive
Retail business are the lifeblood of rural Victoria. Victoria’s retail sector continues to go from strength to strength with retail trade growing by 4.5 per cent from 2017-2018 – the highest of all states – turning over $79.2 billion and accounting for a quarter of the national retail turnover. This toolkit is designed to support those looking at establishing their own retail business in rural and regional Victoria work with their local council so that our communities can continue to grow and prosper.