Wingecarribee Shire Council’s Ordinary Meeting of Wednesday 11 August began with a Minute by Council’s Interim Administrator Mr Viv May.
Within his report Mr May detailed a scathing assessment of Council since his appointment and recommended the Minister for Local Government intervene and hold a Public Inquiry.
Concerns highlighted by Mr May included Council’s response to the Black summer bushfires, inconsistencies surrounding planning, development and regulatory services, disregard to compliance and statutory obligations and compliance with provisions within the Local Government Act. Civic Centre refurbishment concerns, excessive expenditure on contractors and consultants and allegations of bullying and toxic workplace conditions were also raised.
In regard to operational matters public feedback will be invited on the future of the Penrose Village Park following the endorsement of the Draft Penrose Village Plan of Management.
The Plan of Management (PoM) will be placed on public exhibition from Monday 16 August until Sunday 26 September 2021. Following the close of the exhibition period, a final Plan of Management, including public feedback, will be returned to Council for adoption.
To view the Draft Penrose Village Plan of Management visit www.yoursaywingecarribee.com.au.
A draft Bus Shelter Policy will also be developed, following feedback from local bus providers and schools. This Policy will cover bus shelters across the Shire’s main towns and outlying villages and will also consider heritage conservation areas. Once the draft is prepared, further consultation will be undertaken as part of the public exhibition period with the broader community. The document will then be presented to Council for final adoption.
Council was also provided details of the Revolving Energy Fund (REFund) over the course of the 2020/21 financial year. This is part of Council’s actions to reduce the organisation’s energy consumption, with savings reinvested to fund more energy projects across the organisation.
To date this program has saved $206,000 in electricity costs and reduced greenhouse gas emissions by over 1,000 tonnes. In the 2020/21 financial year $38,189.41 was returned to the Revolving Energy Fund.
Council also entered into an agreement with Service NSW to consider future business opportunities to improve customer service experiences and build awareness around support available from the NSW Government. The partnership agreement is particularly aimed at business owners and will help make applications and transactions between Council and the State Government easier to navigate.