Regional Victoria is home to strong communities and plays a significant role in Victoria’s economy; however, it faces challenges compared with metropolitan Melbourne, including slow or negative economic growth in some areas. Successive governments have focused on improving economic and social outcomes in regional Victoria through significant programs and grants. As a result, Regional Development Victoria (RDV)—now part of the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions—has administered over $1 billion in grants since 2011 to improve regional outcomes.
This audit looked at the effectiveness of those grant programs in supporting regional Victoria, including whether RDV could demonstrate that it has improved outcomes in regional Victoria, and the quality of RDV’s delivery of these important government programs.
We have made seven recommendations to the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions focused on improving its management and evaluation of its regional grant funds and public transparency of allocated grants.
We have created an interactive dashboard that provides information about the distribution of RDV’s grants to each regional local government area (LGA). The dashboard also provides a snapshot of economic and social indicators for those LGAs.