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Victorian Recreational Boating Strategy

The Victorian Recreational Boating Strategy and associated documents set the vision for the future of boating In Victoria. Each year, action plans will advise investment into boating from the Better Boating Fund, which returns all money collected from licence and registration fees back into upgrades to improve the boating experience. A comprehensive review of the management of boating facilities in Port Phillip and Western Port has also been undertaken. You can read more and view each document below.

Victorian Recreational Boating Strategy

The Victorian Recreational Boating Strategy is a Victorian-first document developed through extensive consultation with boaters and user groups to establish the vision for the state’s boating facilities through 2030.

The Strategy has been developed as part of the Government’s unprecedented investment into recreational boating, to guide future investment and priorities.

The strategy identifies priorities for future investment into boating and involved several rounds of in-depth consultation with boaters from across the state throughout 2020 and 2021. The consultation saw eight key boating regions identified the Strategy demonstrates ways in which the recreational boating experience can be improved for all.

Another key element of the strategy was the formation of a Ministerial Boating Roundtable, bringing together industry leaders and the Minister for Fishing and Boating to help guide the Strategy’s development.

Action Plans

Annual action plans outline the way in which the yearly allocation from the Government’s newly-established Better Boating Fund will be spent.

The Fund reinvests the money spent on Victorian licence and registration fees back into projects to improve boating. In the Fund’s first year more than $30m is being put back into projects to make boating even better.

The action plans break down the spend into key categories: Enhanced facilities, management and maintenance of facilities, boating destinations, improved access and navigation, safer waterways, boating promotion and improved data and other reforms.

Port Phillip And Western Port Infrastructure Review

As a result of feedback on the condition of boating facilities across Port Phillip and Western Port, the Victorian Government committed to undertake a review of the management of boating infrastructure across the bays.

There are 122 recreational boating facilities located across Port Phillip and Western Port, of which 56 are public. These include boat ramps, facilities within yacht and sailing clubs, jetties and moorings as well as marinas and other private facilities.

While the primary focus of the review was boating facility management across Port Phillip and Western Port, the findings were also tested in regional Victoria to explore whether similar themes emerged.

The review set out to assess the current management arrangements of public boating facilities, identify themes associated with current management arrangements along with their causes and develop options to improve existing management arrangements.

Recreational Boating Access and Dredging Program

As part of the Victorian Recreational Boating Strategy, $1 million of funding has been provided to a grants program to support dredging at boat ramps to improve access. Click here for more information.

Public Berthing Trial

A trial to provide free public berths at three marinas around Port Phillip Bay will also be carried out from 9 December, 2021 to 30 April, 2022. Through the reinvestment of boaters’ registration and licencing fees, the trial will allow more boats to be moored around Port Phillip at the busiest times of year. Click here for more information on the Public Berthing Trial.

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