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The City signs small business friendly charter

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The City of Greater Bendigo has officially signed a Small Business Friendly Charter in a pledge to give more support to small businesses in the region.

In an initiative delivered by the Victorian Small Business Commission (VSBC), Mayor Margaret O’Rourke was joined by Victorian Small Business Commissioner Judy O’Connell and Member for Bendigo West Maree Edwards MP to mark the signing of the new charter.     

Cr O’Rourke said the Small Business Friendly Charter was designed for all Victorian Councils to create a fair and competitive environment and provided more support for local businesses to develop and grow.

“The charter outlines a number of commitments which need to be met over the next 12 months to help small businesses,” Cr O’Rourke said.

“We have already achieved many of the key commitments outlined in the charter such as a implementing a more user-friendly permit approvals process for small businesses, prompt payments of invoices to small businesses, and a business help desk that provides extra support for business owners who are seeking advice on a variety of matters, including permits and business registrations.

“We also actively engage with regional small business networks, distribute a quarterly Business Matters newsletter, which details new business legislation, State and Local Government supported workshops to assist business owners.

“There is still work to be done to help small businesses and signing this charter demonstrates our commitment to collaborate with the VSBC and our 7,900 small businesses so that they can thrive in a growing Greater Bendigo.   

“We are the nineteenth Council to sign the charter. The VSBC will contact us 12 months after signing the charter to assess our commitments.”

Commissioner Judy O’Connell has commended the Council for signing the charter.

“It is really great to see the City of Greater Bendigo demonstrate their genuine want to work together to give local businesses the support they need to do business,” Commissioner O’Connell said.

Commitments outlined in the charter include:

  • Working with small businesses disrupted by infrastructure projects
  • Support the creation of small business networks across Victoria
  • Faster permit approvals processes for small business
  • Prompt payments to small businesses (within 30 days of issuing an invoice)
  • Easy to read, easy to understand information for Victorian small businesses
  • Open channels of communication between the VSBC and Local Councils


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