Applications are now open for positions on the boards of Victoria’s 19 water corporations and 10 catchment management authorities.

Minister for Water Lisa Neville is inviting applications to fill 115 director positions on Victoria’s water boards.

Water corporations provide a range of services to customers comprising water supply, sewage and trade waste disposal and treatment, water delivery for irrigation and domestic and stock purposes, drainage, and salinity mitigation services.

Catchment management authorities are responsible for the integrated planning and coordination of land, water and biodiversity management in each catchment and land protection regions.

Board directors come from all walks of life, including farmers, small business owners, project managers and other professionals.

The Victorian Government is committed to increasing diversity in water sector leadership, and applications are encouraged from Aboriginal people, Traditional Owners, people with disabilities, young people and people from culturally diverse backgrounds.

Promoting diverse participation on Boards brings diversity in skills and perspectives and strengthens the Victorian economy and the broader community. Victoria strives to have public sector Boards that are highly effective and reflective of our diverse community.

The Victorian Government has invested $584 million to deliver water initiatives as a part of the state’s water plan, Water for Victoria, including a record $222 million investment for waterway health.

Expressions of interests for the water corporation and catchment management positions close on 1 April 2019.

More information on board vacancies and the expression of interest process is available at Get On Board .

Combienbar Improvements

The last six years has shown a big difference on the Combienbar River!

For many years the East Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (EGCMA) has been partnering with landholders along the Combienbar River; constructing 20km of fencing and installing off-stream stock watering systems to keep cattle out of the waterway. A weed control program followed together with planting native plants to help reduce erosion in the river channel and provide habitat for wildlife. The photos above show the last six years of change. As they say, proofs in the pudding.

Through the Victorian Government’s Regional Riparian Action Plan initiative, farmers, Landcare groups, angling clubs and the wider community are improving areas like the Combienbar. Through people working together, we are seeing great results for the critters who call our rivers home.

Landcare gets technical

Landcare groups across the region have been polishing up on their technical skills in recent weeks, undertaking computer software training provided by the East Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (EGCMA) in sessions run in Bairnsdale and Orbost.

The EGCMA has developed a simple to use software program to help community groups record projects they’ve undertaken and the improvements they have made.

Rena Gaborov from Goongerah Landcare Group appreciates the simplicity of the program and the ability to convey projects visually using a map. “It’s easy to upload our data, knowing that we can refer to what we’ve been doing over years just by clicking on different points.”

Carolyn Cameron, Community Projects Officer at the EGCMA, hopes that the training will ease the administrative burden on groups. “We’ve tried to create a simple program to help our Landcarers report on their projects and better convey all of the great work they do.”

This program has been developed with the support of the Victorian Landcare Program.

Bass Release

Last week saw the release of 25,000 Bass fingerlings into East Gippsland’s waterways, with 15,000 released into the Nicholson and 10,000 into the Brodribb River as part of a project undertaken by the East Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (EGCMA), Bairnsdale RSL Fishing Club, Marlo Angling Club and the Victorian Fisheries Authority.

As a passionate fisherman, David Ballinger President of the Marlo Angling Club understands the importance of a healthy waterway and is eager to boost Bass numbers. “This is all about the protection of a species by supporting and building of a healthy population. This is so important to us as a club and we are all very proud to be involved.”

“Our club is always eager to play our part in promoting a healthy fishery.” said Russell White, President of the RSL Fishing Club. “Australian Bass are an iconic fish to this area and we want to keep them here.”

Graeme Dear, CEO of EGCMA said “Working together with our local angling clubs benefits both the health of our rivers and the fisherman who love to catch Bass.”

Shellebrating Turtles

Students from Lindenow Primary spent a delightful day with members of Turtles Australia, Greening Australia and the East Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (EGCMA) last week learning about all thing turtles.

You might not think of the Eastern Long Neck Turtle as a predator, but in the swampy world of Aussie wetlands – home of waterbugs, tadpoles and small fish – the turtle is king! “They do a great service to the rivers” explains Dylan Hill from Turtles Australia. “They eat just about anything and keep the bugs down which really helps to promote healthy waterways”.

Greening Australia and the EGCMA are currently working together to improve the biodiversity of the Skull Creek wetlands near Lindenow. Martin Potts from Greening Australia thinks that connecting our local young folk with the catchment right on their doorstep is a pretty good idea. “These guys have all seen turtles around but today they’re learning different things about their habitats and their lifecycles; and how they can help to protect them and be aware of them.”

Grade five teacher Danae Murrell thinks that helping kids to get out and explore their own backyard and what’s happening in their local area promotes a healthy lifestyle and a sense of stewardship. “It’s going to be up to these students to create change in the future and to help protect our special places and pass them on to future generations.”