Items of Interest: Council Meeting – Wednesday 18 April 2018

A GROWING, CONFIDENT AND SUSTAINABLE SHIRE

Today Council adopted its Corporate Plan for the next five years.

The Plan sets the strategic direction of the Council and highlights the performance indicators for measuring the local government’s progress in achieving its vision for the future.

The document includes a fresh vision, mission and set of values and principles which will help define Council’s direction over the next five years.

Council’s mission is to; “provide cost-effective services, foster collaborative partnerships and maintain accountable governance to promote the prosperity and livability of the Shire.”

Mayor Tom Gilmore said the strategic priorities start with financial sustainability. “We will continue to manage our finances efficiently and effectively to ensure long-term financial sustainability, while, bolstering capacity to provide a high level of service across all areas of the Shire, ” Cr Gilmore.

Cr Gilmore said community engagement and promoting an active, safe and healthy lifestyle were also priorities over the next five years. “We will continue to assist the community to build its capacity to develop the area of arts, culture and heritage to enrich lifestyles and encourage economic development across the Shire,” Cr Gilmore said.

Maintaining transport and Council infrastructure, focussing on and enhancing the Shire’s resilient economy, being environmentally responsible and governing with ethical, accountable and transparent decision making are Council’s other strategic principals included within the Plan.

 

COUNCIL SUPPORTS MENS SHED IN KURANDA

Council today endorsed the Kuranda Mens Shed group to occupy a portion of reserved land in Kuranda to develop a safe facility for men to meet and socialise, promoting physical, mental and spiritual wellbeing.

For some time, the group has been in negotiations with Council to access a suitable parcel of land for their meeting place. Council had previously offered the portion of a reserve which holds what was the old Civil Works Kuranda Depot which is no longer used. Consequently, the section of land has not been used for a number of years and the group accepted the offer.

The portion of land includes an old shed which the group can use as an initial base of their operations and the site has sufficient area to allow for the erection of a new shed which has been donated to them by the Australian Defence Force.

Mayor Tom Gilmore said he was pleased the group accepted Council’s offer. “Council certainly encourages the building of strong partnerships with the community and we are delighted to be able to assist this group who provide a wonderful service for gentlemen in our community,” Cr Gilmore said.

 

CHANGES TO BUILDING CERTIFICATION

In-keeping with current trends with other regional Councils, Mareeba Shire Council will no longer offer building certification services, with exception for remote areas in the Shire.

Mayor Tom Gilmore said the private certification industry has grown. “An investigation into the market has revealed that there are sufficient private certifiers in the region to provide adequate service to the region.” Cr Gilmore explained.

“For many years, Council has been offering building certification services however under Local Government Regulations, this service is not mandatory.”

Council will continue to assist those remote communities that are not frequently serviced by private certifiers. “We understand that people living in remote parts of our Shire may find it difficult to obtain a private building certifier, so we will still be offering the service in those remote areas,” Cr Gilmore said.

More information, including a map of the building certification boundary will be available on Council’s website.

 

BUDGET SET TO BALANCE

In preparation for the upcoming budget, Council today adopted several scheduled fees and charges for the next financial year.

Mayor Tom Gilmore said next year’s budget would again be a safe and sensible one. “There has been a slight increase in fees as you’d expect across the board to keep in line with the rising cost of living and cost recovery,” Cr Gilmore said.

“Our staff have been working diligently to ensure our budget puts Council in a sound financial position for a sustainable future.”

Council is set to adopt the budget at a special Council meeting in June.

 

SUPPORTING ART AND CULTURE IN REGIONAL QUEENSLAND

Over the last three years, Mareeba Shire Council has funded 33 community arts, heritage and cultural initiatives, to the tune of $110,000, through Regional Arts Development Fund (RADF) program.

After a recommendation given by the RADF Advisory Committee, Council today agreed to fund seven projects under the community grant round of the RADF 2017/18 strategy.

The funding is an ongoing partnership between the State Government and the Mareeba Shire Council to support local arts and culture in regional Queensland.

Chair of the RADF Committee, Councillor Angela Toppin congratulated the seven successful applicants. “It is wonderful to see Queensland Government support art and cultural projects in regional areas and I look forward to seeing these projects come to fruition,” Cr Toppin said.

“Creative opportunities are essential to the cultural vitality and wellbeing of the community by decreasing social isolation and sense of belonging to the community.”