August Council Meeting and Report

Wrap up of the August 2021 Council Meeting

Last week’s council was relatively packed: we had several polices and plans that we put out for comment, including the Council Plan and the Climate Action and Environment Strategy. You can read all these and put in your comments here. Apart from these policy items, we had six planning items. I like it when we have at least 5 planning items – our main task as councillors is shaping our future city, and the decisions we make on planning are a huge part of that task.

Two applications related to houses built on small pieces of farming land – I voted against both of these as I don’t want to see farming land split up over time. However, I recognise that we are seeing this type of application repeatedly – do we keep voting against them? Or do we need to have a more nuanced view, taking into account different forms of farming, and the fact that our population patterns are changing? I was also a minority on an application to start a dog-breeding and horse-husbandry facility: I was in favour but not too many others were!

Report to the community – August 2021

It has, sadly, been very difficult to meet in person with members of the community – a Teams or Zoom chat is just not the same as being with people “on the ground”. That said, I did manage to get a few things done:

  • Mens Sheds meeting at Long Gully. An excellent place for people to gather, make friendships, and sometimes create something from metal or wood.
  • Initial meeting with council staff about a conservation management plan for Victoria Hill Historical Area in Ironbark. There will be opportunity for community input into this process.
  • Participated in council workshops on waste reduction and recovery, and on our managed growth strategy.
  • Participated in the state-wide conference put on by the Youth Affairs Council of Victoria. This conference was an excellent window into the work being done by young people, and with young people, on issues like mental health, emergency management, and including young people in the decision-making processes of our community. On that last point, we can commend ourselves for supporting a Youth Council, and I look forward to strengthening their role in our decision-making.
  • Visited the Bendigo BMX Club at Eaglehawk, to discuss track surfacing, new lighting, and support for the club when they run events that attract hundreds of competitors.

I am also looking forward to some events that have had to be cancelled, like the Eaglehawk township meeting, and a walking tour of Elmore. If you’d like to keep up with updates from me, please sign up your email here.