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Victoria works towards digital inclusion by connecting Shepparton to free public Wi-Fi

According to the announcement made by the Government of Victoria, they are investing A$1.2 million in order to extend the free public Wi-Fi network beyond the central business district in the Shepparton region. 

This initiative will boost the region’s visitor economy as well as enhance digital inclusion in the usual places where groups of people gather together.

The Victoria Government is partnering with the City of Greater Shepparton in order to extend the free public Wi-Fi network beyond the central business district. 

The government will be investing A$1.2 million for this project that will connect more residents, visitors and businesses in the Shepparton region.

Extending the reach of public Wi-Fi will help increase the region’s visitor economy and enhance digital inclusion because this will allow people to connect to the internet in the places where they gather together such as education precincts; Neighbourhood Houses or local organisations that provide social, educational, and recreational activities for their communities; Youth Spots or places where the youth are able to enjoy, play and socialise; parks and reserves.

The Victoria Government will work with the City of Greater Shepparton to determine which locations will be included in the pilot.

New Wi-Fi pilots are being delivered to two location as part of the A$45 million Connecting Regional Communities Program of the Labor Government. Shepparton is one while the other is Geelong.

Both projects build on Victoria’s existing free public Wi-Fi pilots in the Melbourne, Bendigo and Ballarat central business districts which have been used over 23 million times since being launched in September 2016.

Work to extend Shepparton’s free public Wi-Fi network is expected to start in the second half of 2018 and be completed in the second half of 2019.

One of the initiatives of the Labor Government in order to improve digital connectivity across regional Victoria is the extension of the Shepparton free public Wi-Fi network.

Another initiative would be the development of the region’s Digital Plan, which is due to be finalised later this year. For this project, the Labor Government is working closely with the Goulburn Regional Partnership and the wider community.

Minister for Innovation and the Digital Economy Philip Dalidakis said, “As one of the state’s largest regional centres, Shepparton deserves to have access to free world-class Wi-Fi.”

He added, “This is a strong investment in Shepparton’s digital economy. It will enhance connectivity for residents, businesses and visitors.”

Minister for Regional Development Jaala Pulford said, “We’re investing in digital connectivity improvements here in the Shepparton region to create opportunities beyond the town centre that will help this area to grow and thrive.”

She added, “Labor is delivering the connectivity that residents and businesses in Shepparton deserve, breaking down the digital divide, and helping make greater Shepparton a great place to live, work and do business.”

Member for Northern Victoria Region Mark Gepp said, “We have shown time and time again that we support connectivity in regional Victoria. This investment will ensure more people in the Shepparton area have the connectivity they need and deserve.”

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