Mayoral Column 22 May 2017

Published on 22 May 2017

 Inglewood drain completion

It’s great to see that the restoration of the Inglewood open drain along the highway has been completed.

The drain was damaged in April last year following the rollover of a fuel tanker, which also saw tens of thousands of litres of fuel spilled.

The works, which were carried out by a contractor and funded through the fuel company’s insurance, restored the significant, historic open drain including the removal of all contaminants and rebuilding of the drain. The kerb and channel was also repaired.

The replacement drain is an improvement on the previous drain and certainly looks terrific.

Flood recovery restoration works update

Restoration works are continuing across the Shire following large-scale flooding after major rainfall events in September last year.

More than 2100 assets (such as roads, drains and bridges) were damaged with an estimated repair cost of around $10 million. The Commonwealth Government has provided funding under the Federal National Disaster Recovery and Relief Arrangements to restore these assets.

I just wanted to provide our communities with a bit of an update around what’s been happening with the works and the process behind getting these assets repaired.

Under the funding arrangements, all repair works must be undertaken by contractors (not Council). Council’s role instead is to scope the works (all works must also be approved by VicRoads) and procure the services of contractors to do the work.

Any repair works can only bring that asset back to its pre-flood condition. Any further upgrades to that asset must be funded by Council. For example, an unsealed road damaged by flooding will be brought back to its original unsealed condition – it cannot be sealed under this funding arrangement. 

So far, three smaller jobs have been completed to date, with a further 11 projects valued at $500,000 awarded to contractors currently underway. It is anticipated that these projects will be completed by 30 June this year. Prices for two major bridge/culvert projects are currently being organised.

The remainder of the projects, which are estimated to cost $8 million, will be put out to tender in August with works to start in September this year.

Updates regarding the progress of these flood recovery works will continue to be provided.

Public Health and Wellbeing Plan – out now

Council is currently preparing its Public Health and Wellbeing Plan and would like you to help shape its development.

Through consultation with the community and local service providers, the plan will identify and set out the main health and wellbeing priorities for our community during the next four years.

To make sure we develop a plan that responds to challenges facing local communities, we’re keen to know what you think are the main health and wellbeing issues facing our community.

We’re looking for your input through a number of channels, including an online survey and Council’s Our Say website. A hardcopy survey will also be sent to random households. I encourage everyone to grab a pen or jump online and have your say.

For more information on how you can be involved, visit Council’s website and Facebook page or contact Council’s Community Wellbeing team on 5494 1200.

Feedback on draft Council Plan and budget

Finally, a reminder that the deadline to provide written submissions to the draft Council Plan and Council’s draft 2017/18 budget close soon.

Submissions to the draft Council Plan will close this coming Monday (29 May), while feedback for the 2017/18 budget is due by close of business on Monday 5 June.

If you haven’t had a chance to view the documents, I encourage you to visit Council’s website where you can download a copy. You can also inspect hard copies of the documents at our Wedderburn or Serpentine offices. Post offices, resource centres and neighbourhood houses across our Shire also have hard copies of the draft 2017/18 budget for inspection.

Council will meet to consider any submissions to the draft Council Plan and 2017/18 budget at a Council Forum on Tuesday 13 June at its Wedderburn offices. It will then consider the adoption of both documents at its Ordinary Meeting on Tuesday 27 June at 3pm at the Council Chambers in Serpentine.