Online portal for council services
Armidale Dumaresq Council will receive $375,000 in federal funding to develop a new online portal that uses the National Broadband Network (NBN) to give ratepayers better access to council services.
The funding from the Digital Local Government program was announced last week by the Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Senator Stephen Conroy, and has been welcomed by the Independent Member for New England, Tony Windsor.
Mr Windsor says the funding will allow council to deliver better services to ratepayers.
â€œThis federal funding, combined with faster broadband through the NBN, will allow council to install high-definition videoconferencing facilities,â€ Mr Windsor said.
â€œLocals will be able to place a videoconference call through councilâ€™s website and discuss their issues in real time with council staff â€“ without leaving their home or office.
â€œLandowners, architects and developers who need to consult council staff about development applications will have easier and much more immediate access â€“ no matter where theyâ€™re based â€“ which will streamline the planning and approval process.
â€œVideoconferencing will also help council staff resolve issues more quickly.
â€œThe result is a win for ratepayers and a win for council.â€
The Digital Local Government initiative provides funding to councils in NBN first-release areas to develop online programs that can be replicated by other councils as the NBN rollout continues.
â€œArmidale Dumaresq Council is leading the way with this new videoconferencing application.
â€œItâ€™s further evidence of the huge range of possibilities that is opened up by the NBN.
â€œInnovations like videoconferencing at Armidale Dumaresq Council suggest the New England is in a strong position to capitalise on the advantages of having early access to the NBN.â€