Victorian water treatment plant.

The Victorian Government has announced the $1.28 million Onsite Domestic Wastewater Management (ODWM) grants program, which will support local councils to improve wastewater management systems. 

Victorian Minister for Water, Harriet Shing, announced the funding, which will also support better planning and management of wastewater to help avoid septic tank spills, which can occur after heavy rainfall.

37 councils have already received support, and funding given to 17 more councils will help them deliver safe wastewater management at the local level.

Councils receiving grants in round 2 include:

  • Gannawarra
  • Frankston
  • Geelong CC
  • Knox CC
  • Moyne SC
  • Whittlesea
  • Whitehorse
  • Mt Alexander
  • Pyrenees
  • Brimbank
  • Queenscliffe
  • Buloke
  • Murrindindi
  • Northern Grampians
  • Mansfield
  • Towong
  • Hepburn

The grants program encourages local government authorities to incorporate environmental and sustainable practices into managing existing and new onsite wastewater management systems.

Improving onsite wastewater management plans by strengthening the risk assessment process will help councils develop mitigation measures like local community awareness campaigns to minimise any potential issues.

Local councils and shires will also complete field research to pinpoint existing wastewater systems and assess their current conditions.

This initiative is part of the State Government’s Water for Victoria, a long-term strategic plan to guide smarter water management, bolster the water grid and support more liveable Victorian communities.

Water for Victoria recognises that the sector needs to work closely with communities, including local governments, when making critical water supply and wastewater management decisions.

Ms Shing said the program helps councils address knowledge gaps, improve planning and wastewater management – protecting communities from septic tank spills.

“In total, we’re supporting 54 councils to adopt environmental and sustainable practices into managing existing and new wastewater systems,” Ms Shing said. 

“The work being funded will contribute to reducing onsite wastewater management issues, improving the health of local water environments and amenities of urban communities.”

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