Improved connectivity for Geeveston, included health and education

The medical centre, schools, the evacuation centre, local emergency services and the town hall in Geeveston will benefit from an uplift in connectivity thanks to the Federal Government’s Regional Connectivity Program (RCP).

The $1.08 million grant from the Morrison Government’s successful RCP program will enable NBN technology in the town to be upgraded from wireless to a direct, fibre to the premises (FTTP) service.

Minister for Regional Health, Regional Communications and Local Government Mark Coulton said currently there were no business-specific plans on the fixed wireless networks, so the upgrade to FTTP would be appealing for the Geeveston Medical Centre and other local companies.

Minister Coulton and Assistant Minister for Industry Development Jonno Duniam visited the medical centre today to hear how the upgrade would benefit local patients and health professionals.

“I’m thrilled that residents, businesses, healthcare, and students will soon enjoy the benefits and opportunities that this improved connectivity brings,” Assistant Minister Duniam said.

“Additionally, the uplift in connectivity will enhance a number of local industries, including forestry, aquaculture, fruit-growing, technical services, television production, tourism and manufacturing.

“This program is providing benefits in areas that most need it, to ensure that more Australians can access high-speed, reliable broadband and mobile services.”

Minister Coulton said Government was listening to the needs of regional communities and businesses, like those in Geeveston, and was pleased to see the RCP being used to support the design and delivery place-based solutions which solved rural connectivity issues.

“The idea of the RCP is to fund projects that will make a real difference on the ground, and from my visit today, I can see that this project will do exactly that,” Minister Coulton said.

While in Hobart today, Minister Coulton announced 51 new projects as part of the second tranche of the Regional Connectivity Program, bringing the total number of projects funded in the first round to 132.

“I am pleased with the quality of projects being put forward, which are tailored to the needs of each region and are supported by the community; a result of a collaborative approach between the telecommunications industry, businesses, regional communities and local councils,” he said.

“Connectivity – digital and physical – is vital for regional Australia to fulfil its full potential to do business, work and raise a family, no more so than now with the unprecedented interest in people living and working in a regional area.”

The Federal Government is contributing a total of $117.4 million (GST inclusive) to the first round of the RCP, generating total new investment of more than $232 million (GST inclusive) through co-contributions from funding recipients, state and territory governments and other third parties, such as local governments, regional businesses and community development organisations. 

In addition, the Government has made further funding of $105.8 million available for a second round of the program, and will call for applications later this year, following consultation on program guidelines.

The delivery of projects will begin shortly, with most projects to be completed by June 2022.

Visit communications.gov.au/what-we-do/internet/regional-connectivity-program for information.

Media contacts: Minister Coulton: Steph Nicholls | 0417 314 920 | Assistant Minister Duniam: 0362 31 2444