Message From the Chair – Summer 2023


2023 has been a year of change, growth and achievement for Regional Development Australia Central Coast (RDACC), but it has not been without its challenges.

As always, collaboration has been critical to the ongoing success of our region and RDACC has worked to facilitate this collaboration between all levels of government, industry and our local community.

Affordable Housing has remained a high priority on the RDACC agenda in 2023 and we have focused our advocacy efforts on campaigning and supporting legislative changes at both a local and state government level that will help address our growing housing shortage.

A change of state government to Labor leadership in March this year, saw changes to policies and priorities across the state and put the Central Coast in an advantageous position, with four out of our five sitting members from the elected party.

Soon after the election, we were proud to host a visit for Minister for Regional Development, Local Government and Territories, The Hon. Minister McBain, as she came to the Coast to discuss some of our most regionally significant projects.

During 2023, RDACC continued our work to facilitate government-industry linkages, hosting our fifth developers successful developers forum, attracting over 60 participants including Minister for the Central Coast, The Hon. David Harris MP, and Central Coast Council CEO, David Farmer.

Jointly hosted by the Urban Development Institute of Australia (UDIA) NSW, these productive and popular events bring together government representatives, regional leaders and local developers to improve development and economic outcomes for the Central Coast.

Together with Business NSW, we coordinated another fantastic Regional Roundtable event, providing further opportunity for our regional leaders and major stakeholders to come together to determine critical priorities and provide a unified voice for the Central Coast.

Looking further afield, we partnered with the Australia Arab Chamber of Commerce to present the inaugural Regional Innovations, Global Connections event and interactive workshop, to help regional business owners explore and understand the wealth of trade and investment opportunities that exist in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.

After attending the Global Entrepreneurship Conference with fellow RDACC representatives, we launched the popular Local Entrepreneurs Series, to help promote our local business innovators and showcase the abundance of entrepreneurial talent that exists here on the Coast.

Just recently, we celebrated the construction commencement of the $63.8M university campus happening in the Gosford CBD, together with a number of other regional stakeholders who have tirelessly advocated for this landmark development.

It has been another busy and productive year, and in line with the new RDA Charter, we have continued our work to develop a strong, connected region that supports our economic growth and wellbeing by collaborating with a broad cross-section of local stakeholders and regional leaders.

We have delivered and supported numerous initiatives to assist in the successful implementation of the Australian Government’s Regional Investment Framework (RIF), which guides a more coordinated approach to regional development, underpinned by local engagement.

I would like to thank all RDACC Board Members, Committee Members, staff, partners and supporters, for working together with us to achieve great outcomes for the Coast in 2023.

I wish all of you a safe, happy and healthy festive season and I look forward to continuing our work together in 2024 and beyond.

Merry Christmas!

Lawrie McKinna

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