Hot on the heels of the $8 million for the Valla Growth Area (VUG) yesterday, Nambucca Heads was the beneficiary of another $8 million announcement this morning … this time for a TAFE campus in the heart of the town itself.
It is a big win for Nambucca Heads where there has never been a TAFE presence.
The Minister responsible for TAFE NSW, Adam Marshall, and the Member for Oxley, Melinda Pavey, were at the Nambucca Heads Library to unveil the good news … giving mayor Rhonda Hoban yet another reason to smile.
“It is certainly very welcome news,” Rhonda said.
“The combination of what was announced yesterday with this means people have choices and opportunities for skills development and training and then for employment out at Valla.
“It is a very good investment … and a better way to spend $16 million than on welfare, because this will see real long term benefits for everyone.”
Nambucca Heads and Valla Chamber of Commerce president Christian Knight said it was “a red letter day for Nambucca Heads”.
“A brand new TAFE campus will go some way to addressing the unacceptable youth unemployment issue we have in the town," Mr Knight said.
“Local kids shouldn't have to leave Nambucca Heads to find work or to study post-school.
These twin announcements are as welcomed as they are deserved for our community.Christian Knight
"Congratulations to Melinda Pavey on these undertakings and we look forward to seeing construction underway at both Valla and at the new TAFE campus."
Mr Marshall said it was a significant investment in the future of the town.
“TAFE campuses are the beating hearts of our country communities and provide essential access to the education and training people need to get a job and get ahead.”
He said the project was only in the early stages of development, and was dependent on the results of the March 23 election.
“If we win, then talks will begin between TAFE NSW, the Government and the council about what is available and where would be the best place to build.
“Once we have acquired a site, then TAFE NSW will talk to local businesses to see what courses best match the skills needs in the area. We want to make sure that from Day One the facility is offering the training people need in their home town that will lead to employment.
He said negotiations would get underway immediately after the election with a view to having solid plans in the next six to 12 months.
We are bringing the training to the people, not asking the people to go out to the trainingAdam Marshall MP
Mrs Pavey said she was absolutely delighted.
“This announcement is a game-changer and is the perfect strategic accompaniment to yesterday's announcement about the Valla Industrial Employment Lands because we are delivering both employment and training opportunities to the Nambucca Valley.
“Importantly, the new TAFE campus will also be able to provide expanded training opportunities to students right across the North Coast and complement existing TAFE campuses such as Macksville and Kempsey.”
Mrs Pavey said the area down near the schools at Newville was one possible site.
“That would create an education precinct, a place that is accessible for life-long learning in this community.”