Mayoral Column 25 July 2016

Published on 25 July 2016

How should Lake Boort Reserve be managed?

Lake Boort Wildlife Reserve is a jewel in Loddon Shire’s tourism and lifestyle crown.

The recreational, social and economic value of Lake Boort and its surrounding wetlands cannot be underestimated.

Parks Victoria and the Dja Dja Wurrung Clans Aboriginal Corporation have released the draft management plan for Lake Boort Reserve for public comment.

Little Lake Boort is managed by a Committee of Management which is a sub-committee of Loddon Shire, and is not included in the plan.

I would strongly encourage interested residents to take the time to read and provide feedback on the Draft Lake Boort Management Plan, as public submissions will be carefully considered before the plan is finalised.

To read or download a copy of the Draft Management Plan for Lake Boort Reserve visit http://www.parks.vic.gov.au/lakeboortplan.

Loddon Shire Tourism and Marketing Officer Robyn Vella would like to hear from residents intending to lodge a submission. Contact Robyn by emailing rvella@loddon.vic.gov.au.

Public submissions can be posted to the Manager, Park Management Planning, Parks Victoria, Level 10, 535 Bourke Street Melbourne, VIC 3000.

Alternatively, email your submission to parkplan@parks.vic.gov.au before the close of business on Monday 19 September.

Share your “black spot” knowledge

If you have a mobile phone black spot area in your locality now is the time to speak up.

Council is preparing to map a series of mobile service data collection points across the Shire in an effort to support a state government plan to improve mobile phone coverage.

The project will involve councils within the Loddon Mallee region in partnership with Regional Development Australia and the state government.

Next month we will be loaned three devices to accurately collect and upload mobile signal strength, network performance and drop out locations.

To ensure we collect as much useful “black spot” information as possible during this time, Council is calling on residents to nominate areas they would like surveyed.

While we already have information on mobile phone coverage, using the devices we’ll develop a much more comprehensive connectivity map.

This will prove an invaluable resource to work with mobile network providers including Vodafone, Telstra and Optus to look at options to improve service delivery.

Garbage collection routes will form the basis of points to be mapped, to take advantage of their multiple stops in residential areas.

It’s those other locations along highways, in caravan parks or on routes the garbage trucks don’t follow that we’re particularly interested in hearing about.

Council will endeavour to collect information on as many black spot areas designated by community members as possible.

To have a black spot area you’re concerned about mapped for data collection, contact Council’s Economic Development Officer Christine Coombes by phoning 5494 1200.

Cyclists to sweep through Shire

For the first time in several years The Victorian Veterans Cycling Council’s annual State Road Race Championships circuits are mapped around Loddon Shire.

More than 100 riders are expected to participate in the Championships on Sunday 7 August.

Hosted by the Central Victorian Veterans Cycling Club, the day’s program is set to kick off from Newbridge Hall at 9.30am.

Three different road circuits will be based around the cyclists’ age and gender grouping and I trust our communities will give the riders a warm welcome as they travel through.

While the largest fields are usually in the 40 to 50 age bracket, a couple of riders are expected to be well into their eighties.

Entries for the Newbridge event close on Tuesday 2 August, so residents wishing to join in the action need to apply as soon as possible.

For further information  phone VVCC president Tom Finning on 0418 521 420 or visit www.loddon.vic.gov.au

Drought support for farming families

While we have enjoyed decent rain in recent weeks, the impact of the extended dry period can have a far and long reaching impact.

I would like to remind residents that resources are available to help support families, farm businesses and rural communities.

Assistance available through the Australian and Victorian Governments may include concessional loans, taxation measures, enhanced social support and local community infrastructure projects.

By subscribing to Council’s Drought Support page updates you’ll keep abreast of your current options, simply visit http://www.loddon.vic.gov.au/Live/Health-and-wellbeing/Drought-support.