What's happening at Dungog Shire Council

Dungog Hospital Local Health Committee

As the chair of this committee, I attended a forum at Port Stephens on Tuesday, and a roadshow at Dungog Hospital on Wednesday.

The Health Committee is a conduit between the community and the hospital. It is a way to get information to the community about the health services on offer at Dungog, and to give feedback from the community on how the hospital and the services provided are perceived in the community, what the hospital could do better, and what other services the community would like to be available at the hospital.

If you have any feedback, please contact myself or other committee members, Cr Robert Booth, Anne MacDonald or Leslie Wright. I will keep you up-dated as much as possible in this newsletter.

Department of Premier and Cabinet

General Manager (GM) Coralie Nichols and I met with Steve Wills and Aaron Spadaro from the Department of Premier and Cabinet. This was basically an introduction for the GM to what roles Steve and Aaron play in furthering Dungog’s interests with various Government Departments.

We were up-dated on some of the requests for information that we had made and updated them on where we are with our projects, such as the conversations with the community on the Special Rates Variations, and the review of the Community Strategic Plan.

Business Awards

This was a fantastic night, with a record number of nominees.

Congratulations to all nominees and also to those who continue to support our local businesses and those who nominated these businesses and their staff. And of course, congratulations to all the winners and runners up.

It was wonderful to see a large number of new businesses opening up in the Shire and being recognised.

To the Dungog District Chamber of Commerce I say well done and thank you. I’m not sure that people realise what a huge task it is to put on this awards night and you pulled off a terrific event as usual.

Federal Local Member, David Gillespie and Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter, Scott MacDonald, were both in attendance, with Scott announcing a nearly $20,000 grant to The Dungog District Chamber of Commerce and Dungog Shire Council for signage around the Shire.

Thanks to Chamber President, Jenny Lewis who stayed on the case for this funding with Scott MacDonald.

Agricultural Land-Mapping Workshop

This workshop, the second of two, was scheduled for earlier this year but was cancelled due to minor flooding. It will now go ahead on Wednesday 30 May at the Doug Walters Pavilion, from 9.30am to 12.30pm.

The results of this agricultural land-mapping exercise will help inform Council’s Rural Lands Strategy.

As I’ve described before, it will identify important agricultural land in the Shire that needs to be protected as agricultural.

It allows for this land to be quarantined from the more marginal land that in turn could be rezoned for other land-uses, such as residential or commercial.

Special Rates Variation

The final Community Panel for the Special Rates Variation will be held this coming Thursday. Please see my separate document on the SRV.

Council will soon announce our next round of community engagements, where we will travel around the Shire, having a conversation about what the SRV that we will be taking to the IPART will be. 

In the meantime, if you have any questions or concerns, please contact either myself, or your Ward Councillors.