Wyndham is a vibrant and diverse municipality located in Melbourne’s west. As one of Australia’s fastest growing cities, Wyndham is expected to double in size by 2036.

It’s also the link between Melbourne and Geelong – the two largest cities in Victoria. This makes Wyndham an area of economic significance, but careful planning and investment is needed to secure our future as a healthy, happy and productive community that will help drive our nation’s prosperity well into the next century.

We’re an industrious community with a clear vision for the future. 

It’s a community that’s skilled and ambitious, with a shared vision for realising our city’s full potential. This vision is called Wyndham 2040 – and it’s our blueprint for making sure Wyndham is a liveable, family-friendly, well-connected city where people have equal opportunity to flourish.

Wyndham City provides a range of infrastructure and services that support the wellbeing of the local community.

We run community centres and libraries, provide early years and maternal health services, and maintain local parks and open spaces. We also maintain local roads, and provide rubbish collection and waste disposal services, along with a range of other local infrastructure and services designed to improve the lives of Wyndham residents.

But there are many issues and service gaps affecting our community that we can’t solve on our own. 

We’re largely reliant on other levels of government to fund and provide the infrastructure and services our community needs to prosper. 

That’s why it’s important for us to communicate our needs and seek action from politicians, government departments, and other key stakeholders.

This is what we call ‘advocacy’ – and it’s one of the most important functions we perform.

Our first step is to listen.

We’re a local government – and that means we’re uniquely positioned to understand the grass roots issues affecting the health and wellbeing of our residents. Wyndham’s needs are constantly evolving, so we connect and engage with our community on an ongoing basis.

For us, community engagement is business as usual – and what we learn informs everything we do. 

  • Our engagement is inclusive and reaches a broad cross-section of the community, including groups that are marginalised or have limited access to mainstream channels.
     
  • Our Council receives specialist input from portfolio and place-based committees that include local residents, and stakeholders with depth of knowledge in key areas.
     
  • We keep our communities informed on our progress toward meeting their needs.

 

What we learn informs our strategic priorities and informs our decisions.

Our priorities are:

  • fostering a welcoming, diverse and inclusive city
  • being a place for creativity, arts and cultural connection
  • being safe and preventing crime
  • improving public transport and roads, and limiting congestion
  • offering better access to local services and facilities
  • providing education opportunities for all ages
  • promoting good health and wellbeing
  • creating opportunities for local employment and business development.

These priorities are embedded in the vision, plans and strategies that guide us:

  • Wyndham 2040 Vision 
  • Wyndham City Plan 2017-21 and District Plans
  • Strategies and plans governing our day-to-day operations, land use and amenity, and our provision of services to the local community.

We pursue positive change by using evidence, influence, partnerships, and collaboration

We use evidence to support our arguments for positive change. This means researching thoroughly, so that we can help decision-makers find the best way to meet our communities’ unique needs.

We seek opportunities to influence the policies of the Victorian and Australian Governments, as well as other local governments. We brief and meet with ministers, shadow ministers and MPs, and we provide input into government inquiries. We develop alliances with like-minded communities and organisations.

We foster partnerships with service providers. In doing so, we develop constructive relationships to ensure high-quality service provision, and to provide information and evidence on service gaps impacting our community. Together, we press for change and advise other levels of government on finding the best-possible solutions.

We collaborate with governments and other providers of infrastructure and services for our local area. Our approach is to help them meet their high-level policy objectives, while also meeting our communities’ unique and diverse needs.

Keep reading to find out what we need to help Wyndham secure its future as a liveable and prosperous city.

Wyndham has the highest proportion of people in Victoria who spend two hours or more commuting to and from work.1 Our residents consistently tell us that road congestion and poor public transport are top priorities for government to fix.

Public transport and roads
Public transport and roads

We use our transport network to get to and from work, pick up the kids from school, do the shopping, and visit our friends and relatives. A network that lets us do these things quickly, safely and efficiently improves our individual wellbeing and helps our community prosper. On the other hand, research shows poor transport access has a big impact on people’s happiness, productivity, and physical health. 

Our new suburbs have too few bus services and our train station car parks are full. Regional Rail Link and Werribee line trains are overcrowded, and our roads are too congested for residents to quickly and easily go about daily life.

This has happened because investment in transport infrastructure and services haven’t kept up with high population growth. We’re thankful for the investments the Victorian Government is currently making into road and railway infrastructure, but years of underinvestment means there’s a lot of catching up to do.

We’re calling for urgent investment from the Victorian and Australian Governments to address our transport needs and improve life in Wyndham. 

Whose responsibility is it?

Wyndham City’s

Responsibilities include:

  • maintaining local roads
    (but not arterial roads and freeways).

Victorian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • building and managing freeways and arterial roads (e.g. Princes Freeway, Ballan Road, Point Cook Road, Duncans Road)
  • building and maintaining public transport networks.

Australian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • building and managing freeways and arterial roads (e.g. Princes Freeway, Ballan Road, Point Cook Road, Duncans Road)
  • building and maintaining public transport networks.

What do we need?

Road upgrades

Many sections of Wyndham’s roads have reached capacity and some are carrying far more traffic than they were designed for. This is causing traffic jams, delayed bus services, and safety issues – particularly for pedestrians and cyclists.

Wyndham’s commuters and freight industries urgently need upgrades to arterial roads, intersections, and freeway interchanges. We need to unclog our road network and get Wyndham moving.

We’re upgrading local roads that have reached capacity – but many of the most congested roads are managed by the Victorian Government.

The Victorian Government’s Western Roads Upgrade will help by improving some of our roads, but much more needs to be done. 

We’ve analysed traffic flows and safety issues to identify state-owned roads and intersections the Victorian Government should upgrade.

Roads

Ison Road Overpass (to create a second railway crossing west of Werribee) including upgrade works at Princes Freeway on/off ramps
Point Cook Road (Princes Freeway to Sneydes Road, Seabrook)
Ballan Road duplication (Armstrong Road to Bolton Road)
Sayers Road duplication (Derrimut Road to Palmers Road)

Intersection upgrades

Point Cook Road and Sneydes Road
Pedestrian operated signals on Heaths Road (near Woodville Park Drive)
Ballan Road and Evergreen Drive
Ballan Road and McGrath Road
Geelong Road and Alfred Road

Railway upgrades

Trains are regularly overcrowded and there aren’t enough stations to service our growth areas. This means our residents are more reliant on their cars – and this causes road congestion and overflowing car parks around train stations.

Our rapidly-growing population urgently needs additional train capacity on both the Werribee Line and the Regional Railway Link. 

This is crucial if we’re to unclog our roads and improve liveability for residents of Wyndham. Currently, there is no spare train capacity in the peak hours on the Werribee line. 

There is capacity for only one additional Regional Rail Link train service in the busiest peak hour between Sunshine and Melbourne CBD. Given Wyndham is one of Australia's fastest growing cities, there is a strong case that this additional capacity is required to service Wyndham.

We're asking the Victorian Government to allocate additional Regional Rail Link train services at peak times between Wyndham Vale and Melbourne CBD. 

This is an exciting time for rail infrastructure improvements and we're positive about many of the proposals, but we want Council to be able to influence better decisions for our community.

The proposed Geelong to Melbourne electrification project should include a transfer point between the Regional Rail and Metro Rail lines at Avalon Airport. This would support the connection between Melbourne and Geelong.

There is also a long-term need to improve connectivity between the Regional Rail Link and metropolitan services. This requires an extension of the Werribee line so that an interchange can be created at an existing Regional Rail Link station. This would allow passengers to quickly and easily change services without the need for an additional bus or car journey to Werribee Station.

We’re also asking the Victorian Government to build four new Regional Rail Link stations:

  • Davis Road Station in Tarneit West within 5 years
  • Black Forest Road Station in Wyndham Vale within 5 years
  • Sayers Road Station in Tarneit West within 510 years
  • Truganina Station in Truganina within 5 years.

A new metro station and upgrades to existing stations are needed.
We’re asking the Victorian Government for:

  • a new train station at Derrimut Road to support the development of the East Werribee Employment Precinct 
  • an upgrade to Werribee Station to improve safety, disabled access, presentation, and associated infrastructure
  • an upgrade to Hoppers Crossing Station, to improve presentation, pedestrian crossings, platforms, and associated infrastructure.

Creating bigger car parks isn’t the only solution to overflowing car parks at stations

We need to provide solutions that reduce reliance on cars. Our residents should have access to frequent bus services that connect with stations, as well as cycling infrastructure like bike lanes and secure bicycle storage. 

We’re asking the Victorian Government to work with us on creating a local transport network that reduces reliance on car travel.

Level crossing removal

Level crossings over the Werribee Line are already at or over capacity and are causing congestion. What’s more, the number of vehicles crossing the Werribee line is predicted to increase by 95% between 2011 and 2046.2 Replacing these crossings with grade-separations will ease the problem.

The Victorian Government has committed to removing fifty level crossings including the Cherry Street and Werribee Street level crossings in Wyndham. 

We’re asking for the Hoppers Crossing, Old Geelong Road level crossing to be added to the list of level crossings to be removed by the Victorian Government. This should be considered a high priority.

New and expanded bus services

We need new and more frequent bus services for residents in Tarneit, Wyndham Vale, Manor Lakes, Jubilee Estate, Truganina and Point Cook. These suburbs already have large numbers of people living in new estates that have poor or no access to public transport. With Wyndham's high rates of growth, it's important that bus service coverage is reviewed two years at a minimum.

Wyndham residents have also raised concerns over the coordination between bus and train services, the frequency of bus services, and the hours of operation. 

We are asking the Victorian Government for:

  • Improved bus services across Wyndham including higher frequencies, extended hours of operation and responsive and flexible services
  • Biennial reviews of bus services to improve integration with trains and match service frequencies, hours of operation and extend service coverage to support population growth. 

Upgrades to pedestrian and cycling infrastructure

Wyndham has an extensive walking and cycling tracks, but there are gaps in the network. It needs to be expanded and updated so that it meets contemporary safety standards.

The Victorian Government has committed to funding the missing links in the Kororoit Creek Trail as well as the completion of the Federation Trail. These will allow cyclists and pedestrians to be separated from cars and trucks for the entire journey from Werribee to the CBD.

There is still more work to do. In particular, our community has asked for the following missing links to be addressed:

  • Federation Trail, across the Werribee River, to the Werribee River Trail 
  • Skeleton Creek Trail, between Point Cook and the Federation Trail
  • Bay Trail, between Sanctuary Lakes and the Point Cook Coastal Reserve.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to provide funding to expand and improve Wyndham’s network of walking and cycling tracks.

How to find out more

Visit our website to read our road and transport strategies.

Research shows that high-quality early childhood, health and support services have huge benefits in terms of children’s lifelong wellbeing. We want to give our children the start in life they deserve, but local services are having trouble keeping up with demand.

Early childhood and family services
Early childhood and family services

The Education State Reform Plan tells us the Victorian Government is committed to creating systems and services that support children’s development. However, Wyndham’s population is growing faster than expected. Many of our newest community members are parents with young children – our two largest age groups are children aged 0–4 years and adults aged 30–34 years. 

We urgently need new early childhood education and care facilities, public paediatric health services, and family support centres. 

Services need to be located where they’re needed most – and funding needs to be made available so that they’re up and running when our families and children need them. 

We’re building new centres and planning innovative new service models for our community, but we need cooperation and investment from the Victorian Government. 

We support the Generation West campaign and call for a more collaborative approach to planning and providing kindergartens and other services and facilities. It’s the only way to make sure our children have access to the full range of services they need.

We support the Australian Local Government Association's All Politics Is Local campaign and call for investment in a Local Government Community Infrastructure Program to promote equitable access to community services.

Whose responsibility is it?

Wyndham City

Partners with the Victorian and Australian Governments to provide:

  • kindergarten services 
  • maternal and child health services
  • targeted services like playgroups and for first-time parent groups.

Victorian and Australian Governments

Responsibilities include:

  • planning and funding facilities and services
  • taking the lead on public paediatric health, family violence, and other health and human services. 

What do we need?

15 hours of kindergarten per week, per child

The Victorian and Australian Governments have agreed to fund 15 hours of kindergarten per week for four-year-old children in Australia. Under the agreement, state governments fund 10 hours per week, while the federal government funds the remaining five – but the Australian Government has only committed to funding until December 2019. 

The Victorian Government says it can’t pick up the slack. Without a commitment from the Australian Government, our children will only have access to 10 hours of kindergarten per week, instead of 15.

In comparison, the New Zealand Government funds 20 hours of kindergarten per week, while the UK covers 30 hours for parents who are working. Australia spends less on preschool education than most other developed countries. 

We’re asking the Australian Government to commit to long-term funding that guarantees 15 hours of four-year-old kindergarten per week, per child.

Visit I Love Kinder for more information on this campaign. 

Temporary kindergarten facilities 

We’re experiencing higher-than-expected demand for kindergartens in some of our fastest growing communities. 

Funding is needed to help us set up temporary kindergartens to pick up the slack until new permanent facilities are up and running. Here’s what we need:

$1.54M from the Victorian Government for a temporary kindergarten at Tarneit North
Status:
Achieved
$680K from the Victorian Government for a temporary kindergarten in Wyndham Vale/Manor Lakes.
Status:
Achieved

Integrated early childhood centres

Integrated early childhood facilities that are co-located with schools and community services are shown to have lasting benefits for children.

The Victorian Government’s Early Childhood Reform Plan recognises that integration makes it ‘easier for families to access early childhood facilities and provides children with a more stable transition from kindergarten to school’.3

A large number of government schools are to be built in Wyndham during the coming years. We’re concerned these are being planned in a way that won’t allow co-location. 

We’d like the Victorian Government to work with us on fixing this as a priority. Here’s what we need:

$1.7M to co-locate the Truganina Children’s Centre with the proposed Truganina P–6 school and active open space
$3M to be committed to fund an early years facility at Davis Creek P–6 School
$3M to co-locate an early years facility as part of the planned Grange 
P-12 education, sport and community precinct

Paediatric health and family support services 

Early access to paediatric health and family services helps children overcome developmental challenges that can have lifelong impacts. Currently, there aren’t enough of these services to meet Wyndham’s needs. 

Many families travel long distances for treatment and waiting lists can be a year or more long.

We need new paediatric health and family support services to be fast-tracked as a priority – and as part of the Generation West campaign we’re asking the Victorian Government to work with us in making this happen. Here’s what we’re asking them to do:

Fast-track a Health and Wellbeing Hub that can focus on addressing large shortfalls in allied and acute paediatric and other critical services
Prioritise a Support and Safety Hub to address a shortfall in assistance for people experiencing family violence in our community
Locating a Parenting Centre of Excellence in Wyndham to support local families needing support in early parenthood

Many of our new housing estates are being built before primary and secondary schools are in place. Existing schools are struggling to cope and are becoming overcrowded. It also means many children travel long distances to attend class – and this affects quality of life.

Primary and secondary education
Primary and secondary education

We support the Victorian Government’s Education State reforms, which are designed to improve quality of learning and break the link between social background and how a child does at school. This relies on families having access to conveniently-located schools that aren’t overcrowded.

Under Victorian Government policy, Wyndham should have one government primary school per 3,000 dwellings, and one government secondary school per 9,000 dwellings. We will fall short of these benchmarks under current government plans.

Our research shows we will experience school shortages in Wyndham's growth areas, where high numbers of families with school-aged children are moving to. 

We’re asking for the Victorian Government to work with us in making sure our families have access to schools that are planned and built to meet our community’s needs.

Visit schools4wyndham for more information on this campaign. 

Who’s responsible?

The Victorian Government is responsible for planning and providing government schools. This includes:

  • choosing the location of schools 
  • deciding when those schools will be built
  • coordinating the design and construction of schools.


What do we need?

We face an immediate school shortage in our growth areas. We need the Victorian Government to urgently fund the construction of new schools, as well as bringing forward the construction of schools that are in the pipeline.

Construction of the following schools needs to be funded and commenced as soon as possible:

 

Secondary school in Truganina by 2018
Primary school in Williams Landing by 2019
Primary school in Point Cook by 2020
Primary school in Tarneit by 2020 and an additional one in 2023
Primary school in Truganina by 2022
Primary school in Werribee’s West by 2023
Secondary school in Tarneit by 2023

But fast-tracking schools shouldn't mean taking shortcuts when it comes planning and design. Hundreds of thousands of children will be educated at Wyndham's schools over the coming decades. They need schools that are well planned and properly designed so that they integrate with our fast-growing community. 

We want to work together with the Victorian Government to make this happen as soon as possible.

Schools that are designed to integrate with our community

Schools and the local community can both benefit when they make shared use of shared sporting facilities and community centres provided by local governments like Wyndham City.

There are also benefits to co-locating schools with kindergartens, health services and other community infrastructure.

Doing this integrates schools with the broader community. And by pooling resources, we can create better facilities as well as save money that can be reinvested into other services. 

The Victorian Government recognises this through its vision for schools to become integrated hubs for community learning, recreation and arts, and early childhood education and care. To make this happen, local governments like Wyndham City need to be involved in planning and designing schools.  Current planning and construction processes are not allowing this to happen.

There are four government schools planned that could be co-located with kindergartens and community centres we’re planning to build in the next five years. 

We’re calling on the Victorian Government to work with us in co-designing shared facilities that will result in the best possible outcome for our community. 

Together we can create schools and community infrastructure that better meet the needs of our families – and are more pleasant environments that are accessible to everyone.

Here’s what we’re asking for:

Wollahra P-6 should be jointly designed so that it considers the connection with the Integrated Family Centre alongside the Wyndham Aboriginal Community Centre and sports precinct. These are planned for mid-2019
Truganina South East P-6 should be jointly designed and co-located with a Level 1 Children’s Centre Wyndham City is planning for 2020/21.
Tarneit Missen House P-6 (Tarneit North) should be jointly designed and co-located with a Level 1 Children’s Centre Wyndham City is planning for 2020/21.

More local government involvement in school planning and delivery 

The Victorian Auditor General has called for the Victorian Government and local governments to work much more closely in planning and designing of education infrastructure. Doing this will help make sure our community has well-designed schools that are integrated with our community – and are ready to go when our families need them. We support this and are ready to make this happen.

Here’s what’s needed.

Local planning 

At the moment, a single committee is responsible for planning multiple schools across the state. This limits the ability to create schools that meet unique and diverse local needs. 

We think creating local planning committees will be a better way to create schools that are integrated with the community, through shared facilities and spaces.

More funding for school libraries

Wyndham City provides public library facilities for the local community, but our libraries are experiencing higher-than-expected demand from local schools who are requesting access on behalf of their students. This is because many school libraries can’t fully cater for the needs of local children.

We’re proud of creating welcoming spaces where Wyndham residents can access information, study, or simply relax with a book for free. But it isn’t fair that Wyndham ratepayers are catering for needs that should be met by school libraries.

We’re calling on the Victorian Government to fund school libraries that properly cater for the needs of local children.

Where to find more info

Victorian Government’s Education State

Wyndham is vibrant and diverse community, but the health and wellbeing of our people is lower than the rest of Victoria on average. Our community experiences higher levels of diabetes, obesity, and family violence. There is evidence that the lifestyles of Wyndham residents could be improved with greater physical activity, for example.

Health, support and inclusion
Health, support and inclusion

People’s wellbeing is influenced by many things. These include our employment, our relationships with families and friends, the layout of our suburbs, and our connection to our community.

As a local government, we’re uniquely placed to have a positive influence on health and wellbeing at different life stages. We do this by supporting the development of healthy environments, and services. But there’s only so much we can do. 

Delays in the arrival of infrastructure like kindergartens, schools, health services, roads, and public transport are some of the biggest issues affecting the health and wellbeing of our community. 

We need action from the Victorian and Australian governments to help us improve quality of life in Wyndham.

Whose responsibility is it?

Wyndham City

Responsibilities include:

  • taking the lead on community infrastructure like kindergartens and community centres
  • providing services like disability support, youth services, and maternal and child health.

Victorian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • health and human services
  • schools, police and justice services
  • urban planning
  • roads and public transport.

Australian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • health funding
  • funding for people with disability and aged care
  • funding nationally-significant transport infrastructure.
Health, support and inclusion

What do we need?

Improved family violence services

Our local communities are under-serviced by family violence support services. Wyndham has the fourth-highest number of family violence incidents in Victoria. 

Our community has also experienced a 60% increase in reported family violence incidents over the past five years. High levels of mortgage stress, social isolation, and poor access to transport networks in growth areas add complexity to this issue. 

Here’s what we‘re asking for.

 

Family Violence Support and Safety Hub for Wyndham

Creating a family violence support and safety hub in Wyndham is an opportunity to put services where they’re most needed

We’re asking the Victorian Government to prioritise the placement of a regional Family Violence Support and Safety Hub in Wyndham.  We’re asking for land acquisition and design to commence in 2019/20. 

Status: Working towards

Wyndham City encourages the Victorian Government to adopt planning processes that allow for adequate input from local councils, in line with recent recommendations from the Victorian Auditor General. Doing this will help the government to target limited resources where they are needed most. We’re hopeful that this will be addressed in future planning exercises.

 

Fairer funding for family violence services

We’re asking the Victorian Government for a fairer distribution of funding to family violence and support services across Victoria. We need to make sure funding is targeted at municipalities like Wyndham that have high levels of need.

 

 

Justice services that are integrated with community support

A new justice precinct is being planned to house additional police services and court facilities. We want these to be integrated with services that can support vulnerable and disadvantaged people as they enter the justice system. These services address complex, underlying issues like mental health, drug and alcohol abuse, housing concerns, financial hardship, and unemployment.  

We’re asking for the Victorian Government to join with us in realising a vision for a justice precinct to be person-centred, safe, and integrated with justice and support services.

 

Police coverage that services our growth areas

We’ve asked the Victorian Government to make sure police numbers increase in line with our rapid rate of population growth.

We’re also asking for the Victorian Government to ensure there’s an adequate police presence in our growth areas. 

We’re ready and willing to assist Victoria Police to improve relations with our diverse community and to improve police presence in hard-to-reach areas.

 

Health and Wellbeing Hub 

We’ve asking the Victorian Government to fast-track a Health and Wellbeing Hub that can focus on addressing large shortfalls in allied and acute paediatric services. Our growing population deserves appropriate and equal care. A plan for growth to trigger increased services should be a high priority.

 

Affordable housing

A lack of affordable housing can lead to overcrowding, poor living conditions, or in some cases, homelessness. In the five years between 2011 and 2016 Wyndham City saw an increase of 76.3% in its homeless population, up to 730 residents. Homeless people don’t always “rough sleep,” and estimates account for increases in people staying with relatives or friends, for example.

Council has been active in advocating for better housing support services for our community, with the H3 Wyndham Alliance partnership of agencies aiming to help more than 1700 people doing it tough in the Wyndham area. Council has employed an integration officer to help with this program.

But we need to work collectively to do more because housing is so expensive, and sometimes people find themselves unemployed, ill, or going through hard times. Victoria has the lowest proportion of social housing in the country so people have fewer options here.

Further, Victoria is not one of the states that requires its new developments to set aside a portion of housing for lower income residents. Policies for inclusion—such as ACT’s and South Australia’s housing plans mandating a certain percentage of new dwellings be affordable—would provide a safety net for many of Wyndham’s vulnerable residents, including the elderly.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to:

  • build more, and well-located (i.e. near services and amenities) social housing in Wyndham, and reduce waiting times for those in need
  • require developers to either include affordable housing within developments or pay an affordable housing levy
  • provide additional resources to prevent evictions, maintain tenancies for longer terms and for ageing residents, and ensure people leaving care or institutions have somewhere to go
  • increase housing quality and the energy efficiency of rental housing by introducing minimum quality standards.

We support the Australian Local Government Association's All Politics Is Local campaign for the federal government to address affordable housing and homelessness issues by:

  • Reinstating a national governance model to address affordable housing and homelessness, that includes local government.
  • Acknowledging local government’s role in housing with appropriate funding including for innovative partnership models on housing.

 

Refugee Support Services

When people seek asylum here in Australia they are wanting to be safe and to build better lives for themselves and their families. Many of them have escaped horrific conditions and extreme violence and they may not speak much English, making them feel vulnerable and unable to establish themselves easily in a foreign country. For a period of time they will need language and psychological support, medicine, food, and critical job-seeking assistance. This is where the Status Resolution Support Service (SRSS) program comes in.

We have 337 residents of Wyndham who have qualified for humanitarian visas and who will likely be affected by SRSS cuts—essentially, very few of them will now be eligible for this life-saving program.

Let’s consider the potential impacts of cuts to SRSS supports in our communities that enable refugees to look for meaningful work and to integrate into our communities.

These impacts include people’s access to basic income assistance, trauma and torture counselling, a caseworker, job counselling, vital medicine, housing, and even food for their children. 

We’re asking the Australian Government to continue to provide adequate resources to meet the needs of people seeking asylum. It isn’t fair to stop helping those who have already suffered so much as they try to make a basic start in a new country.

We’ve collaborated with other local governments in Victoria to put out a Joint Statement Against Changes to the Status Resolution Support Services program, including commitments for job readiness supports and case management. The Statement also asks for improved collaboration with local governments to better respond to local area needs.

Mental health services 

The fact is, we don’t have enough support here in Wyndham for our residents suffering from a range of mental health conditions. We’re asking the Victorian Government to address the critical gaps in mental health services here in our community and simply lift its spending to the national average.

Studies have shown that young people are particularly at risk of not receiving adequate mental health care—and young people in Victoria are even worse off than in other parts of Australia. Meanwhile, Wyndham has an even higher percentage of young people than the Victorian or national average!

Wyndham’s young people just aren’t getting the services they need to prevent and treat mental health conditions. We’re joining with Mental Health Victoria in calling on the Victorian Government to almost double its funding for clinical mental health care for young Victorians. This funding should be proportionate to local youth populations.

As Wyndham and the western region transitions to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) in October of 2018, we urge the Victorian Government to ensure that everyone who is currently receiving mental health care here will continue to be supported, in the same way (or better). This includes consideration for the culturally and linguistically diverse residents of Wyndham and their particular needs.

Better regulation of pokies 

The social harm caused by gambling is well known. Research shows that areas with limited access to pokies have fewer family problems and instances of domestic violence, among other issues. We were the eighth-highest Victorian municipality for gambling losses in 2016–2017. 

The Victorian Government caps the number of electronic gaming machines that are allowed in different areas. New caps were introduced in September 2017 – and we’re concerned that these were not properly reviewed before being introduced. 

We’re asking the Victorian Government to conduct a thorough review of current electronic gaming machine caps. 

There are currently 893 electronic gaming machines in Wyndham. Current government policy will allow this number to increase in our growth areas. 

We want the Victorian Government to seriously consider capping the number of electronic gaming machines in Wyndham at current levels.

We also want the stronger laws to protect our community from the effects of pokies. These should include:

  • $200 withdrawal limits at electronic cash machines in gaming venues, rather than the current $500 limit
  • maximum bets of $1, rather than the current $5 limit.

Well planned, vibrant suburbs that encourage active lifestyles

The Victorian Government has committed to creating inclusive suburbs where most of people’s everyday needs can be met within a ‘short walk, bike ride or public transport trip’. 4 This means schools, shops, cafes, parks, health services and public transport are close by and conveniently located.

This is not the experience of people living in Wyndham’s newest suburbs.

Our suburbs have too much low-density development. At the moment, shops, community centres and other facilities are being created too far apart. This encourages car use, discourages active lifestyles, and adds to road congestion. 

We’re missing opportunities to create vibrant, higher-density urban centres around railways stations and key infrastructure. But creating higher density developments isn’t enough.

Sixty-six percent of our workers leave Wyndham to go to work each day. This is because too many people need to look elsewhere to find work in their fields. We need the right mix of development and infrastructure that will attract different industries and professions that can offer a diverse range of jobs.

As a local council, we have little power over how our suburbs are planned. This is the Victorian Government’s role. The Victorian Government’s policy for urban planning is called Plan Melbourne – and we support it. But Plan Melbourne needs to be implemented properly – in partnership with local government – when suburbs are being planned.

We want the Victorian Government to fulfil its commitment to creating liveable suburbs as promised under Plan Melbourne.

The cost of health care is increasing; greater priority needs to be given to preventative health to keep people well and to reduce the burden on the hospital and primary care system. Health and lifestyle programs are especially important for promoting physical activity in outer suburbs.

That is why we support the Australian Local Government Association's All Politics Is Local ask for the federal government to promote healthier communities by investing in a Local Government Place-Based Preventative Health and Activity Program.

 

Equity of opportunity for local youth

Wyndham is on track to experience very fast growth in the number of youths aged between 12 and 17. This is a group that’s more culturally diverse than average – and we want to make sure our community is enriched and energised by this group for decades to come.

Australian youth consistently prove themselves to be invaluable contributors to our society – so long as they’re provided with access to high-quality education, training, health, and social services. They also need local employment opportunities to build a career and help them obtain a fair share in our national wealth. 

We’re a rich, prosperous country who can afford to provide better services and support for our young people. Wyndham youth need:

  • better access to further and higher education to equip them for the jobs of the future
  • high-quality health and wellbeing services to help them overcome challenges that prevent them from reaching their full potential.
     

Where to find more info

Wyndham City Plan

Plan Melbourne

Wyndham Planning Scheme

Mental Health Victoria campaign

Wyndham has a delicate natural environment that’s home to important waterways, wetlands, coastal areas, and native grasslands. We want to accommodate urban growth and be stewards of the environment that sustains community wellbeing. 

Environment and sustainability
Environment and sustainability

As a community, we embrace renewable energy, resource recovery and water conservation – and we’re committed to planning for climate change. We’re seeking action from the Victorian and Australian Governments that help us create local solutions for sustainability, adaptation, and conservation.

We support the Australian Local Government Association's initiative to strengthen Australia's circular economy through a national waste and resource recovery strategy underpinned by circular economy principles, the waste hierarchy, product stewardship and extended producer responsibility.

Who’s responsible?

Wyndham City’s

Responsibilities include:

  • managing 144 hectares of conservation reserves 
  • waste collection and disposal services 
  • litter management and waterway management.

Victorian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • creating and managing certain parks and reserves
  • managing state energy and utility infrastructure
  • collecting landfill levy and managing the sustainability fund
  • irrigation and water supply
  • protecting coastline and native vegetation.

Australian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • national energy policy
  • national environmental policy
  • national parks
  • environmental protection
  • biodiversity conversation.

What do we need?

Better irrigation systems for Werribee’s farmers

If you’re reading this, the chances are you’ve eaten broccoli, lettuce or cauliflower produced in Werribee South. The market gardeners situated there produce much of the high-quality produce that finds its way onto Melbourne’s dinner tables. But our market gardeners also pay some of the highest prices for water in Victoria.

It’s a problem that’s made worse by irrigation infrastructure that’s almost 100-years old and wastes up to 40% of the water it distributes. This water could go back into the system to increase water allocations for farmers – or for much needed environmental flows into the Werribee River.

We’re thankful that the Victorian Government has provided $11.4 million to upgrade irrigation systems. 

We need a further $11 million from the Australian Government for the irrigation project to go ahead. 

Furthermore, the water used in local farms and market gardens is often more saline than is recommended for growing certain crops. This is especially the case in summer, when farmers depend on water the most.

We’re asking water companies like City West Water and Melbourne Water to reduce salinity in our water supply.

 

Creation of the Western Grassland Reserves

Wyndham is developing at a very rapid rate – and we urgently need to set aside parks and reserves that protect the most valuable parts of our natural environment. 

The Western Grassland Reserves will be important habitat for endangered species and preserve wetlands, waterways, red gum swamps, and grassy woodlands. 

The area is situated to the west of Werribee – just north of Little River. To create the reserves, the Victorian Government needs to buy the land from existing owners – and they committed to doing this some time ago. In the meantime, nearby development creates a risk to delicate ecosystems and wildlife. 

We need to create these reserves sooner rather than later so that this precious part of our local environment can be properly preserved and maintained.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to prioritise acquiring the land for Western Grassland National Park. 

Existing property owners also need to be engaged so that they understand the acquisition process and can work with us in maintaining the grasslands until the reserves are created.

We’re also asking for $250,000 per year for Wyndham City to fund community engagement with owners whose land will be acquired to create the reserves.

 

Environment and sustainability

Funding to make landfill a last resort (Municipal and Industrial Landfill Levy)

Not enough money is being invested to upgrade waste disposal facilities so that more waste is recycled rather than buried as landfill. This needs to change.

Wyndham City has one of the largest landfills in Melbourne. This 223-hectare site doesn’t just service Wyndham – it’s also the destination for rubbish collected by other local governments and commercial operators.

A levy is charged whenever rubbish is disposed of at our landfill site. This is called the Municipal and Industrial Landfill Levy. The levy was introduced to reduce the amount of waste that goes to landfill. Not enough of the levy is being spent on this.

Wyndham City has one of the largest landfill sites in Victoria – and much of the waste arrives from neighbouring areas. This means we collect large amounts of landfill levy and pass it on to the Victorian Government, which decides how it will be spent. Over the last six years, we’ve collected over $114 million dollars’ worth of the levy – but we’re concerned that too much of this money is being diverted away from landfill reduction programs. 

In 2015-2016 alone, Victoria sent 4.2 million tonnes of waste into landfill.4 Much more of this waste could be recycled or turned into energy.

Around 60% of our household waste goes to landfill 5 – we want to reduce that to 10%, with the rest being recycled and recovered. 

We have the technology and knowhow to make landfill a last resort. We want the Victorian Government help us get there by investing more of the levy toward its original purpose – reducing landfill.

We’re asking for a substantial investment to build a local waste disposal facility that can recycle and recover 90% of our waste.

Kerbside collection of organic waste

40 to 50% of our household waste is food waste and other organics. At the moment, most of us empty this into our garbage bins which are then sent to landfill. 

When organic landfill decomposes it creates large amounts of methane, a greenhouse gas that’s thought to be 86 times worse than carbon dioxide. 

Instead of sending our organic waste to landfill, we could reduce carbon emissions by using this material as compost or as a source of fuel. We can do this by introducing separate rubbish bins which can then be collected by local councils.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to mandate kerbside collection of organic waste across Victorian municipalities.

Reforms to encourage renewable energy and storage

We applaud the Victorian Government’s long-term target of net zero emissions by 2050. Wyndham City wants to do its bit by using renewable energy and battery storage to power our facilities, but our energy laws and regulations make it hard for us to do that.  

We’re asking the Victorian Government to change the system so that it encourages installation of decentralised renewable energy generation and storage systems.

Integrated Water Management Assets (i.e. stormwater harvesting, water storage, alternate water sources)

Our future urban and agricultural communities need reliable and affordable water as our climate continues to change and our population grows. This is why we support the Victorian Government’s long-term aim of reducing water consumption through the Water for Victoria Plan.

We want to do our bit too.

We’re seeking Victorian Government funding to help our city use water in smarter and more efficient ways.

Understanding the effects of climate change on our coastal communities

Climate change is happening and we need to understand how this will affect us. Storms, sand movement, erosion, and rising seas are expected to cause rapid changes to our shores and coastal wetlands. By researching the effects on our coastline, local, state and federal governments can prepare and plan for any adverse impacts on our coastal communities. 

We’re seeking long-term partnerships with land managers and the Victorian Government to make sure we understand how our coastal communities and environments will be affected by climate change.

We also support the Australian Local Government Association's All Politics Is Local campaign for the federal government to invest in a Local Government Climate Change Partnership Fund to support local government communities in their climate change response.

Where to find more info

Environment & Sustainability Strategy 

Waste & Litter Strategy

Integrated Water Cycle Management Plan

Transport infrastructure, health services and economic growth are foundational to our wellbeing. But healthy, well-connected communities also rely on a vibrant arts and culture scene, as well as plenty of sport and recreation opportunities.

Arts, culture, sport and recreation

Eighty five percent of Australians believe that the arts make for a more rich and meaningful life.7 As a local government, we see our local arts sector as being crucial to liveability. However, recent downward trends in national funding for the arts present a challenge. 

Sporting and recreational facilities also play an important role by promoting physical activity and house sporting clubs that help bind our community together. Participation promotes social inclusion, healthy child development, and helps with anti-social behaviour. But, rapid population growth has made it difficult to keep up with demand.

We’re seeking government support to make sure the health and wellbeing of our community is reinforced by an energetic arts sector and active sports and recreation culture.

Whose responsibility is it?

Wyndham City

Responsibilities include:

  • providing neighbourhood arts and sporting infrastructure
  • helping to develop and support local artists 
  • creating local exhibitions, events and cultural projects.

Victorian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • funding and investment in arts infrastructure and our cultural institutions
  • partnering with local government to nurture local creative economies
  • funding for sporting infrastructure and programs.

Australian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • funding for artists and arts organisations
  • tax incentives
  • supporting artists to take their work to the international stage
  • funding for national sporting institutions and infrastructure.

What do we need?

Land allocated for cultural infrastructure 

The Victorian Government plans the overall layout of our new suburbs and sets aside land for schools and sporting facilities. This is done based on population – for example, we’re supposed to have one football oval per 4,000 people. This doesn’t happen for cultural infrastructure like galleries, community arts centres and cultural spaces. 

We want the Victorian Government to work with us in making sure land is set aside for cultural infrastructure.

Funding for galleries, community arts centres, film/multimedia facilities, and studio spaces 

Established inner-city suburbs tend to have unused buildings and spaces that can be reclaimed or co-opted by artists. However, Wyndham is a growth area that’s still being developed, which means there aren’t many buildings available for this purpose. Funding for new arts spaces is available to regional areas, but outer growth areas like Wyndham miss out. 

We’re asking for outer growth areas to receive funding so that we can build the arts and cultural spaces our community needs.

We’ve also been working toward establishing a regional art gallery in Wyndham. This will create a major cultural tourism destination and be a source of pride for the Wyndham community and the west. It also has potential to create economic and social benefits for the area. 

We’re asking for $1.25 million to begin design work on a regional art gallery. 

Tax incentives to create artist spaces

A vibrant arts cultural scene relies in part on spaces being made available for artist-led activity. This activity should occur in areas that are accessible, rather than places that are out of the way and hard to get to. However, spaces in vibrant, well-connected urban centres can be too expensive for our artists to access. 

We’re asking for tax incentives for commercial landlords to offer industrial or retail property leases for artist-led activity.

Quality arts education for our government schools 

Arts programs in government schools are under-resourced. Additional government funding is only available for schools that have a relationship with an established, professional artist. 

Unlike schools in more established areas, many of our government schools don’t have natural networks that make it easy to connect with such artists. This means many of our students don’t have the same opportunities to engage with the arts, compared to children living in inner-city suburbs. 

We’d like to work with the Victorian Government in developing funding that will help Wyndham’s schools to engage with artists who can connect with our diverse school communities.

More funding for libraries

Libraries are community hubs that provide free and equal access to services and programs that contribute to lifelong literacy and learning. They have a positive economic impact on the local community. 

Wyndham libraries attracted almost a million visits in 2017/18. In the same year there were 1.6 million loans from the libraries' collections. Wyndham, like other local governments, is committed to the ongoing provision of high quality public library services that meet the growing and diverse needs of our community. 

Library funding used to be shared 50:50 between the State and local government. However, funding by successive Victorian governments has failed to keep pace with the growth and expansion of services and Councils now bear 80% of the cost.

We support the MAV's campaign to support Victoria's growing population with a boost to operational funding of public libraries.

Better funding for sporting infrastructure in growth areas

Wyndham City is the main provider of sport and recreation facilities within our community – but meeting the needs of our rapidly growing population is challenging. 

Much of this infrastructure is raised from developer contributions and the community infrastructure levy. The Victorian Government sets the amount we can raise, and current levels aren’t enough to cover the cost of the facilities our rapidly growing community needs. 

We estimate we’ll experience a funding shortfall of $414 million leading up to 2045. We need a long-term funding increase to help us bridge this gap.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to work with us in developing sporting infrastructure grants that are more suited to the unique needs of outer urban growth areas.

We’re also seeking a sustained funding increase for community infrastructure through the Growing Suburbs Fund.

Incentives for investment in joint sporting infrastructure

There are significant benefits to be had when schools and the community share sporting infrastructure. Joint investment and maintenance mean we pool resources that create better facilities for everyone.

We’re keen to work with the Victorian Government and create shared infrastructure that better serves our school communities, as well as the Wyndham Community at large. 

We’re asking the Victorian Government to collaborate with us in the early planning of joint-use sporting facilities that will better serve our school children as well as the general community.

Where to find more info 

Sports and Recreation Victoria

MAV's libraries campaign

Wyndham City Statement of Commitment (to reconciliation)

Wyndham City Arts and Culture

Wyndham City Sport, Parks and Recreation

Wyndham’s Aboriginal Culture and History

In 2016 Wyndham’s economy grew faster than the Victorian average, yet 66% of Wyndham’s workers still leave the municipality to go to work. We want more diverse employment opportunities so that more of our residents can work close to home. 

Economic Development and Industry
Economic Development and Industry

When people work locally, it stimulates the local economy and reduces travel time – which in turn improves quality of life. We want the Victorian and Federal governments to invest in infrastructure and support programs that will attract a diverse range of industries and support local enterprise. This will also help to reduce local unemployment, which is currently 1.5% above the Victorian average. 

When it comes to investing in outer growth areas like Wyndham, research shows that the benefits outweigh the costs. Jobs will be created, tax revenues increased, and the nation will benefit from a permanent boost to GDP. We’re asking the Victorian and Australian Government to commit to this vision.

Whose responsibility is it?

Wyndham City

Responsibilities include:

  • helping to sustain and grow the capacity of local business
  • supporting local tourism
  • encouraging regional exports
  • encouraging local sales and expenditure 
  • promoting local job growth.

Victorian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • setting state taxes and levies
  • state transport infrastructure
  • facilitating innovation & investment
  • job creation
  • tourism.

Australian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • setting federal taxes and levies
  • national economic reform
  • foreign affairs and trade
  • telecommunications
  • national transport infrastructure
  • financial regulation.

What do we need?

Freight infrastructure

Melbourne’s west is already the destination for 30% of freight from the Port of Melbourne – and it's expected to receive much more in coming years. Existing freight infrastructure next to the Port of Melbourne has limited capacity and truck access is difficult due to inner-city congestion. This transport bottleneck represents a drag on Victoria’s economy.

We’re calling for the Victorian and Australian Governments to coordinate their efforts in planning and funding a solution. Wyndham can and should be part of the solution.

We support the Australian Local Government Association in its call for the federal government to fund a Local Government Higher Productivity Investment Plan starting at $200 million per annum over five years.

We’re also seeking the development of a Western Freight Infrastructure Investment Plan to coordinate the following projects.

Construction of the Western Intermodal / Interstate Freight Terminal (WIFT)

The WIFT (and the associated rail link at Truganina adjacent to the Outer Metropolitan Ring Transport Corridor) will accommodate the majority of the Dynon rail yard interstate traffic once complete. 

Land acquisition and construction of the south-west section of the Outer Metropolitan Ring (OMR)

Road and rail is needed to connect the Princes Freeway to the Western Freeway, and the WIFT to the national transport network via Geelong. The OMR will also significantly improve freight movements to and from regional Victoria. 

Construction of the Melbourne Metropolitan component of the Melbourne to Brisbane Inland Rail

This rail link will connect with the WIFT – and a future second container port at BayWest – with the east coast rail freight route.

Relocation of government jobs to outer growth areas

Melbourne needs to become less CBD focused and more polycentric, so that our roads can become less congested and our residents can find employment locally. Governments can help by relocating their offices to urban centres like Wyndham, but we’re currently missing out on these opportunities.

Wyndham City is asking the Victorian and Australian Governments for a fair go when it comes to the relocation of government offices.

Development of Avalon Airport

Melbourne’s air traffic continues to grow. Avalon Airport is well positioned to service Melbourne’s west – Victoria’s fastest growing region – as well as Geelong and surrounding regional areas.  

The development of Avalon Airport will encourage high-density employment industries to locate to Wyndham, as well as growing the region’s visitor economy. The airport will also create on-site jobs in retail, industrial, and high-tech aviation-related industries.

The recent announcement that Avalon will accept international air traffic adds impetus to further develop the facility. 

We’re asking the Victorian and Australian Governments to continue supporting the development of Avalon as Melbourne’s second airport.

Stimulus for regional supply chains 

As Wyndham’s population continues to surge, it’s important for local jobs growth to keep up. We need a strong local economy so that Wyndham residents can work closer to home. This will have important social, environmental and economic benefits for our community and the nation at large.

We welcome the introduction of a Victorian Local Jobs Commissioner in 2017, whose role includes increasing access to government contracts for local small to medium enterprises. We also recognise there are opportunities to build on this progress.

The Victorian Government can assist by requiring infrastructure projects to include a minimum amount of goods or services sourced from the immediate area. This will help develop local supply chains that will stimulate the local job market.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to review the Victorian Industry Participation Policy. This review should consider options for making sure infrastructure projects are better used as a way of stimulating the job market in areas surrounding construction zones.

Programs for small business

We welcome the Victorian Government’s LaunchVic programs and other development support for growing enterprises. But these programs don’t provide enough support for small and medium-sized enterprises that aren’t involved in fields like manufacturing, research development and technology.

The Victorian Government’s Grow Your Business program filled this role, but this program has recently been discontinued. 

We’re asking for the Victorian Government to work with local councils in growth areas to create future programs that will provide the support our local businesses need.

Support for our farmers and market gardeners

Our local farms and market gardens are an important part of Melbourne’s food bowl, but fragmented ownership and small land holdings mean some farming operations are becoming unsustainable.

Our farmers need support so that they can improve yields, increase profits, and sure up their long-term futures. We also need strategies to support farmers seeking to exit from the industry.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to provide an agribusiness support service to help our local farmers and market gardeners.

Tourism funding for Wyndham and other outer-suburban areas

Wyndham’s tourism industry generates $276 million per year,7 yet we can’t get access to important tourism funding from the Victorian Government. Current schemes focus on the Melbourne CBD and regional areas, while outer-growth areas like Wyndham miss out.

The Werribee tourism precinct – featuring the Werribee Open Range Zoo and Werribee Mansion – attracts over 1 million visitors to the region each year. This shows that Wyndham deserves to be recognised as a proven tourism destination.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to give outer urban areas a fair go when it comes to tourism funding.

Wyndham is close to nature and nearer to the CBD than many of Melbourne’s outer eastern suburbs  but living here also has its challenges. Our community is under strain because infrastructure and services haven’t kept up with our rapid population growth. 

Urban development and financial sustainability
Urban development and financial sustainability

Many families travel long distances to reach schools and places of work – and there’s poor access to public transport and health services in some areas.

Research shows that poor access to infrastructure and services leads to a lower quality of life. It also means people have fewer opportunities to reach their potential. With proper planning and investment from the Victorian and Australian governments, we’ll improve living standards and build a strong, nationally-significant local economy.

As a nation we need to focus on creating suburbs that are not only affordable, but also liveable. We’re calling for a new approach to urban development that makes this a reality.

Whose responsibility is it?

Wyndham City’s

Responsibilities include:

  • providing community infrastructure like sporting facilities, community centres and kindergartens
  • promoting and protecting local aboriginal arts, culture and heritage
  • issuing planning permits for building work within the municipality.

Victorian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • the vision and framework for urban planning
  • making laws and providing funding for protection of cultural heritage 
  • laying out where roads, housing, employment and infrastructure will go 
  • major roads, public transport, hospitals and schools
  • deciding funding levels for local government to provide community infrastructure.

Australian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • funding nationally-significant public transport projects like the Regional Rail Link
  • native title and indigenous affairs
  • funding other major infrastructure projects of national significance.

What do we need?

Less out-of-sequence development

Out-of-sequence development happens when people are permitted to move into housing estates before infrastructure and services are properly in place.

Out-of-sequence development causes poor quality of life within local communities. It creates social isolation, long commutes, and poor access to basic services like schools, parks, community centres and health clinics.

We’re calling for a new approach to urban development that makes sure this doesn’t happen.

We want the Victorian Government to work with us in making sure development happens in line with the rollout of infrastructure and services our community needs. 

We understand that the development industry sometimes wants to press ahead with new housing estates when demand is high. But in growth areas like Wyndham, this can mean there are multiple locations needing infrastructure at the same time  – and that makes it harder for governments to deliver what's needed.

Rolling out community infrastructure and services ahead of schedule causes higher costs. Currently, these costs must be met by the Victorian Government and local governments like Wyndham City. Under current funding arrangements, there isn’t enough money to cover these costs.

We need a system that creates a role for developers to assist with raising funds for the early rollout of infrastructure and services in out-of-sequence developments.

Out-of-sequence utility service provision can mean that local government needs to pay to retrofit or redesign brand new developments with the necessary infrastructure.  We need state-wide measures and better planning that prevents utility companies from taking shortcuts that result in Wyndham City ratepayers picking up the tab. We’re ready to help the Victorian Government develop and enforce these measures.

Better protection and promotion of the rich, living Aboriginal cultural heritage of Wyndham

Wyndham City wants to make sure that in partnership with Traditional Owner organisations we protect and promote the rich, living Aboriginal cultural heritage of Wyndham for future generations. More resources are needed to work with Traditional Owner organisations to identify, protect, and sensitively interpret and celebrate Aboriginal places of significance.

We’re asking for adequate funding for Wyndham City to collaborate with Aboriginal representatives in comprehensively mapping, protecting, and celebrating Aboriginal places of significance and land management practices across the city.

In particular we need resources to enable greater and earlier involvement of Traditional Owner organisations in planning and design processes. Traditional Owner knowledge of Country could inform and influence planning and design of suburbs to enable better connection with our Aboriginal heritage.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to collaborate with Traditional Owners and local government in planning our new suburbs so that they better incorporate local Aboriginal culture and heritage.

Better Victorian infrastructure funding 

The Victorian Government has special funding set aside to create infrastructure for fast-growing communities like Wyndham. These funds are collected from a levy called the Growth Areas Infrastructure Contribution (GAIC). 

GAIC funding is not available to fund many of the important infrastructure projects Wyndham desperately needs.

We have more people that commute for two or more hours a day than any other municipality in Victoria. Road congestion, poorly-connected suburbs and overcrowded rail infrastructure are having a big impact on our residents’ quality of life.

Investment in transport can have huge social benefits. It reduces time spent in cars and encourages more active lifestyles. It can create more time for people to spend with friends and family. It can also reduce social isolation in growth areas, and improve access to activity centres and community facilities. 

Together with partners in Wyndham and the western suburbs, we want to be involved in long-term GAIC project planning. We want "bang for the buck" significant investment for our community. 

A fairer funding system for growth areas like Wyndham

Wyndham City is responsible for providing a range of important infrastructure and services for the local community. The problem is that we don’t have full control over how much money is available for us to do this.

The Victorian Government regulates the amount of money local councils can raise through rates – but the current approach isn’t providing us with the resources we need. 

We work very hard to make sure we deliver value for money and improve efficiency in our operations and we support measures that reduce unnecessary costs and red tape.

But Wyndham is growing faster than expected. We need to provide infrastructure for new residents before they arrive, as well as providing for our existing communities. This means we need more funding than established areas of Melbourne.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to help us raise the money needed to create liveable suburbs. We advocate with the National Growth Area Alliance for high growth rates to be properly considered when the Victorian Government sets funding levels for local governments in growth areas.

A one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t work.

We also need state-wide measures that prevent utility companies from taking shortcuts that result in Wyndham City ratepayers picking up the tab. We’re ready to help the Victorian Government develop and enforce these measures.

Restoring local government funding through Financial Assistance Grants

More than 20 years ago local government received 1% of total Commonwealth revenue through Financial Assistance Grants. Despite the pressing need for a strong, reliable flow of federal funding into local infrastructure Financial Assistance Grants now amount to just 0.55%.

Local communities, including Wyndham, are worse off when there is insufficient funding for the infrastructure and assets residents need in their day-to-day lives. 

That is why Wyndham supports the Australian Local Government Association's call for the next federal government to restore core local government funding of Financial Assistance Grants to at least 1% of Commonwealth taxation revenue.

National solutions to local challenges

Australia’s population has been rapidly increasing for many years. Much of this increase is concentrated in outer-urban growth areas like Wyndham. 

The scale and rate of development means Wyndham and other growth areas are of high national importance. Our community will double in size in the coming decades – and this makes it even more important to get urban development right. If we do, we’ll foster a healthy, highly-productive community that will help drive our national prosperity well into the next century.

Together with the National Growth Area Alliance we’re calling for a National Growing Outer Suburbs Taskforce to focus on the challenges we face in growth hotspots like Wyndham. This taskforce would bring together ministers from a range of portfolios so that they can collaborate in finding solutions that help create happy, high-functioning communities. 

We support calls for a National Growing Outer Suburbs Fund that can help cover the high cost of building community infrastructure in Australia’s rapidly-expanding outer-urban growth areas.

Wyndham to be recognised as a Metropolitan Activity Centre (MAC)

Melbourne remains a very CBD-centric city and we need to start thinking about it differently. Technology is freeing industry, people and jobs from geographic constraints. We’re committed to being a Smart City that helps our residents prosper from this economic transformation.

The focus of our planning should be on developing urban and regional centres and connecting them with each other. We want to enable industry, people and jobs to move freely between our urban and regional centres, rather than being concentrated in a congested Melbourne CBD. 

The Werribee City Centre and adjacent East Werribee National Employment and Innovation Cluster (NEIC) should be recognised in the State Government’s Metropolitan Strategy (Plan Melbourne) as a Metropolitan Activity Centre (MAC).

The development of the Werribee City Centre as a focus for regional commerce, specialty retail, entertainment, leisure, and community services will assist in achieving a potential of over 58,000 jobs.

We’re calling for a shift from Melbourne CBD-centric planning towards an approach that recognises the importance of urban centres. Correct this imbalance and create a hyper-connected network of Metropolitan Activity Centres and transit zones such as the Werribee-Geelong corridor.

We advocate with the National Growth Area Alliance for job creation in peripheral areas so that people can work closer to home.

Where to find more info 

Wyndham Residential Growth Management Strategy

Plan Melbourne

Victorian Planning Authority

Australian Local Government Association's All Politics Is Local campaign