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Mayoral Column 13 September 2016

Released on 13 September 2016

Time to clean up long grass

Recent rain has resulted in lush pastures, picturesque canola crops and brimming dams.

However, those rains, topped with a dose of early Spring sunshine is also leading to a pressing need to tend to long grass which if left unattended will shortly pose an unwanted fire risk.

Council’s Municipal Fire Prevention Plan is designed to help create a safer community by identifying and managing fire risks.

The seasonal conditions have undoubtedly added extra weight to the requirement to tend to what will soon become long, dry grass.

Council is taking steps to prepare for the approaching fire season by turning its attention to roadside slashing to reduce roadside fuel and mowing firebreaks in township areas.

I would urge all residents to work alongside us, to help keep our community safe over the summer months.

You can begin the task of making your property fire safe by clearing long grass, leaves and branches, undergrowth and vegetation.

Ensuring gutters are clear and removing rubbish and other flammable material lying around your property should also be undertaken now.

Fire prevention inspections will be taking place right across the Shire from the start of next month.

You can find out more about how to make your property “Fire Safe” by visiting cfa.vic.gov.au or phone the Victorian Bushfire Information line on 1800 240 667 to obtain a Fire Ready Kit.

Last chance to stand for Council

Nominations for the 2016 council elections open on Thursday (15 September) and close at noon on Tuesday 20 September.

While it’s probably fair to say potential candidates will be keeping key election period dates firmly in mind, it’s timely to remind all residents of the brief window of opportunity.

It will be interesting to see if there are any last minute surprises in the lead up to the October election, which in Loddon Shire is to be conducted by postal vote.

Compulsory Council elections encourage all eligible adults to carefully consider who they would like to represent their community over the next four year period.

For further information visit the Victorian Electoral Commission website at www.vec.vic.gov.au

Tax time help is at hand

Tax time has rolled around again and help is at hand for those needing assistance.

Australian Tax Office volunteers are available to assist residents with tasks such as completing a tax return online, claiming a refund or completing a non-lodgement advice.

You may be eligible for tax help if your income is around $50,000 or less for the financial year.

If you’re eligible for tax assistance, you will need to have a myGov account.

To create a myGov account go to www.my.gov.au or phone 13 28 61.

Assistance is available until 31 October.

Footy fever final word

As many of you know I love my footy.

Sport draws our community together.

The Loddon Valley Football Netball League Grand Final at Pyramid Hill’s Mitchell Park where Bridgewater came head to head with Mitiamo proved no exception

As a Life Member of the North Central Football Netball League and Boort Ward Councillor, I was thrilled to see Boort player James Orr claim the Feeny Medal.

I’m now looking forward to soaking in the NCFNL Grand Final atmosphere at St Arnaud on Saturday (17 September).

See you there!

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