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Mayoral Column 2 July 2018

Released on 2 July 2018

Council meeting outcomes

At its Meeting last week, Council adopted the 2018/19 Budget, following its display for comment (with no submissions received).

The 2018/19 Budget has more than $11 million in capital expenditure (some of this expenditure is contingent on external funding). This includes $4.1 million for recreational, leisure and community facilities, $3.66 million for roads, $0.85 million for parks, open space and streetscapes, $0.35 million for urban and road drainage, and $0.24 million for footpaths.

The average rate rise is 2.25 per cent in line with the State Government’s rate capping level, while management of waste will remain cost neutral with kerbside rubbish collection charges to increase by five per cent. These waste management costs include the operation of landfills and transfer stations across the Shire as well as kerbside collection services (including recycling).

Other strategic documents adopted by Council at last week’s meeting include the Domestic Animal Management Plan and Roadside Management Plan, which are now available on Council’s website (www.loddon.vic.gov.au).

The Domestic Animal Management Plan sets out the framework for the planning and management of animal services across our Shire over the next four years. It outlines a number of strategic outcomes around issues associated with pets and pet ownership, such as increasing pet registrations and microchipping, decreasing the incidence of dog attacks and managing dangerous, menacing and restricted breed dogs.

The Roadside Management Plan is Council’s document for setting the direction for roadside management within the local rural road network in the Shire. It has four roadside management goals: maintain a safe road network, access for all road users, protect biodiversity and heritage assets, and increase awareness of roadside management and values.

Council also endorsed the reactivation of the Loddon Youth Council, which will use a range of engagement methods via new technologies, including a virtual Youth Council. Further engagement will include youth-led peer consultation, presentations by young people at Council Forums and a Youth Council Facebook group.

Council recognises the importance of young people to the future of the Shire and the value of working with our young people to ensure their voices are heard. The reactivation of the Loddon Youth Council will enable young people to get involved in the decision making process of Council, and assist them to develop the skills, confidence and opportunities to be active citizens. 

Pick My Project deadline extended

Good news – the closing date to submit nominations for the Pick My Project grants initiative has been extended until midnight Sunday 8 July 2018.

If you haven’t already heard about it, Pick My Project is a State Government initiative that gives community members the chance to suggest and decide on ideas that will make their community a better place to live. All Victorians aged 16 years and over have the chance to submit project ideas for consideration.

The closing date extension is a great opportunity for community members to try and secure funding for a favourite local idea or project that may not come under other grant programs.

Once you have your idea, you then need to partner with an eligible organisation, such as a community group, school or Loddon Shire, where appropriate, before you submit your idea.

Community members will decide on their favourite ideas by voting, with winning ideas receiving funding. Winning projects will be announced in September 2018.

Projects between $20,000 and $200,000 are eligible for the program, with a total of $30 million allocated for Pick My Project to fund community ideas around the state.  

To find out more visit www.pickmyproject.vic.gov.au 

Victorian Regional Achievement and Community Awards

Do you know an individual, group or organisation in Loddon Shire that deserves to be recognised? If so, you might want to consider putting forward a nomination for the Victorian Regional Achievement and Community Awards.

The awards aim to encourage, acknowledge and reward the valuable contributions of individuals, communities, and businesses throughout regional and rural Victoria.

There are some great prizes for award winners, including either $2,000 into an account in the award winner’s name from Bank of Melbourne or air time packages on PRIME7 for category winners.

The awards are free to enter and you can easily complete an online nomination form. Visit https://awardsaustralia.com/regional-achievement-community-awards/vic to find out more.

Nominations for the awards close Wednesday 18 July 2018.

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