Businesses Encouraged To Apply For Regional Job Creation Fund

Businesses in the Cootamundra electorate who have struggled with the impacts of COVID-19 will benefit from the NSW Government’s $40 million Regional Job Creation Fund Round Two that aims to create 2,000 new direct jobs in regional NSW over three years.

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke has announced applications are now open for projects that will attract investment through co-funded business initiatives to support economic recovery and resilience in the region.

Ms Cooke said grants will range from $100,000 to $5 million to help fund projects such as replacing plant equipment, upgrading technology and developing regionally iconic tourism experiences.

“Businesses have shown incredible resilience in the face of COVID-19, and the Regional Job Creation Fund is continuing to support them by co-funding projects that drive investment, create jobs and boost economic recovery.”

“In previous rounds we have welcomed funding support for five projects located in Junee, Cowra, Narrandera and Young,” Ms Cooke added.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW Paul Toole said Round One of the Regional Job Creation Fund provided $100 million to help businesses expand, attract investment and relocate to regional NSW, supporting more than 100 regional projects and creating nearly 5,000 new jobs in key engine industries.

“Round Two will attract new investment from businesses both here and overseas and enable economic recovery across agriculture, manufacturing, energy and tourism industries and ensure they continue to thrive now and into the future,” Mr Toole said.

“Through the Regional Job Creation Fund, we will continue to build robust regional economies, giving businesses, employees and their families confidence in the growth and prosperity of regional NSW.”

Applications are open now until 9am Monday 14 March 2022.

For information about eligibility criteria and program guidelines, go to

Raising a Glass to Wine Infrastructure Storage in Hilltops

A winery in Young is set for major improvements to its storage infrastructure, boosting its wine holding capacity to meet a growing demand for Australian export ready wine, thanks to the NSW Government’s Regional Job Creation Fund.

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke MP said a $100,000 grant will help Grove Estate Wines improve its storage facilities to cater for exports to Canada and other international markets, creating up to five full time jobs for the region.

Ms Cooke said the upgrades will help the winery make insulation improvements to prevent temperature variations, keeping wines between 12 – 19 degrees in good humidity to allow the wines to develop in a controlled environment before exporting.

“The demand for quality Australian wines continues to grow around the world and Grove Estate produces award winning wines that exemplify the rich and well-balanced wines that are synonymous with the Hilltops region,” Ms Cooke said.

“Grove Estate Wines will renovate its existing cool stores to minimise light exposure and control environmental temperatures so more wines can be export ready, as it continues to look at more export markets in Asia and the Pacific.”

Viticulturist at Grove Estate Wines Brian Mullany said the funding will help increase the quantity of wines available for export and create new jobs in Young.

“We are looking forward to expanding our presence in international markets, and introducing more overseas consumers to the excellent wine from the Hilltops,” Mr Mullany said.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW Paul Toole said the $130 million Regional Job Creation Fund aims to create more than 6,500 new direct jobs in regional NSW by providing incentives to expand and keep operations in regional areas.

“Regional NSW is the engine room of the state and helping companies like Grove Estate Wines expand its operations stimulates local and regional economies, boosts livelihoods and creates local employment opportunities,” Mr Toole said.

“Providing businesses with the opportunity to fast track their growth plans and expand their operations means they can increase their production, attract more investment and create new jobs today, which is great news for the local economy.

“Setting businesses up for success helps the local community grow and new jobs mean more people earning a wage and spending their pay packets in local stores, cafés, restaurants and on local goods and services.”

The Regional Job Creation Fund supports eligible businesses with grants to purchase new equipment, expand facilities, acquire technology, create new production lines or establish businesses in regional NSW.

Round one of the Regional Job Creation Fund has now closed. A second round will open in early 2022. For more information, go to: