Highlights of the 26 April 2022 Ordinary Council Meeting

Date

Tuesday, 26 April 2022

Release

Community feedback sought on draft agreement between First Nations Leaders and Council

The draft Central Coast First Nations Accord and draft Acknowledgement of Country will be placed on public exhibition for community review and feedback.

The draft Accord is an agreement between First Nations Leaders and Central Coast Council. It aims to set an agenda that will guide how best to work together and further reconciliation.

The draft Accord works in alignment with Government frameworks such as Local Decision Making and delivers against the Priority Reform areas within the National Agreement on Closing the Gap. 

The key themes that comprise the draft Accord are:

  • Strengthening engagement and working in genuine partnership
  • Working with and strengthening the Aboriginal community-controlled sector
  • Strengthening culture and the way that Central Coast Council does business with First Australians
  • Shared understanding of the needs of the community

Through the development of this draft Accord, Council officers engaged with Darkinjung Local Aboriginal Land Council and local First Nations leaders. Consultation was also undertaken with all relevant Council business units to ensure the proposed commitments were achievable and is now providing an opportunity for the broader community to share their feedback on the commitments proposed. 

An important commitment of the draft Accord is the establishment of a broad based Aboriginal Advisory Committee to help guide the implementation of our commitments in a collaborative manner, ensuring the views and aspirations of our local First Nations community can be adequately considered.

Council Administrator, Rik Hart said the draft Accord and wording of the draft Acknowledgement of Country are important for the wider community to consider. 

“I encourage residents to view the draft Accord and draft Acknowledgement of Country and submit comments during the public exhibition period in May. Council will then consider all feedback to finalise this important agreement and statement which will outline our shared vision for the future of our whole community.”

The draft Central Coast First Nation Accord and draft Acknowledgement of Country will be placed on public exhibition online at yourvoiceourcoast.com for community review and comment, between 2 - 30 May 2022. 
 

Central Coast Green Grid Plan: Our Place endorsed by Council

Council has endorsed the Central Coast Green Grid Plan: Our Place, a strategic planning document which provides a mapped framework for future place-based planning on the Central Coast and examines the key natural environmental attributes of the region.

A first of its kind for regional NSW, the Plan aims to deliver an interconnected network of open space that will keep the Coast’s major centres cool, encourage healthy living, enhance biodiversity and ensure ecological resilience. 

Council Administrator, Rik Hart said adoption of the Plan is a key milestone in ensuring the region’s long-term liveability. 

“The Plan will be used as a framework for LGA-wide and local place planning for the next two decades and beyond and is expected to streamline project alignment for future public projects,” Mr Hart said. 

“Members of the community have participated in extensive consultation throughout the development of the draft Plan. Council thanks the many and various groups who contributed their thoughts, time and energy at these workshops.”

The Plan was placed on public exhibition in September and October 2021. There were 12 workshops – six internal and six external – consisting of three with the reference group, and three with other government agencies, including Lake Macquarie City Council. The feedback received at each of the workshops, combined with public submissions received while on public exhibition, provided valuable input into the development of the Plan. 

There is no direct cost in the Plan adoption, with future strategic planning work intended to be completed in-house by Council’s strategic planning staff and supported by budget included in Council’s Operational Plan. Any future funding for identified projects will be sought via a mixture of internal Council funds (for projects on Council land), internal Government agency funds (for projects on other Government agency land) or through grant funding. For each project, an economic assessment will be made to determine the cost benefit of each project.

Community Development Grants Program 2021-2022

Council has endorsed the allocation of $20,000 (inclusive of GST where applicable) from the 2021-22 grants budget to the Community Development Grant Program, to fund an additional application submitted to Council in the 2021-22 application period. 

Council was presented a report requesting the endorsement be considered, following its meeting on 23 November 2021 in which the application was not recommended and deemed ineligible for funding based on an outstanding debt to Council, which was not able to be resolved during the application period.

After significant investigation, the report noted the outstanding debt has been resolved and recommended Council fund the application through the Community Development Grant Program due to its critical need and broad community benefit.

Council Administrator, Rik Hart said the grant program aims to support local community organisations to implement specific projects and activities.

“Council is delighted to see the Community Grant Program continuing to fund projects, events, and initiatives that provide positive outcomes and enhance the quality of life of residents. The grant program is designed to strengthen the Coast’s ability to deliver projects and services that respond to the needs of the community,” Mr Hart said. 

There were 26 applications originally recommended for funding totalling $266,439.69. Council has endorsed the additional recommendation of $20,000, totalling an allocation of $286,439.69 for the Community Development Grant Program.

New Plan will help improve heritage conservation  

Central Coast Council has endorsed a plan to help source and secure heritage grant funding that will assist with heritage conservation across the region.

The Central Coast Heritage Gap Analysis and Action Plan will be used to inform Council’s approach to heritage as well as the development of the Central Coast Heritage Strategy – which will outline the direction of the heritage program for the next 10 years.

Council Administrator, Rik Hart, said the Central Coast Heritage Gap Analysis and Action Plan will ensure Council is progressing a best practice approach towards heritage conservation.

“The Plan identifies gaps, inconsistencies and successes in Council’s planning instruments and heritage management practices,” Mr Hart said.

“It will also advise on best-practice heritage management within the NSW legislative framework.”

“Now it’s been endorsed, we can use it to help with grant applications within the Plan; to help source and secure heritage grant funding over the coming years until the final Strategy is completed.”

The Central Coast Heritage Gap Analysis and Action Plan was put together by GML Heritage Pty Ltd and were partially funded by a Heritage NSW Community Grant and Council’s adopted Operational Plan and Budget.

Council adopts Greater Lake Munmorah Structure Plan 

Council has adopted the Greater Lake Munmorah Structure Plan (GLMSP), following the consideration of submissions received during public exhibition and the acceptance of amendments made in response to the submissions.

Council Administrator, Rik Hart said the draft GLMSP has now undergone extensive consultation with both internal and external stakeholders. The result is a robust plan that will assist Council in meeting the population, dwelling and employment targets, as set by the Central Coast Regional Plan. 

“The GLMSP also refines the precincts identified within the North Wyong Shire Structure Plan (NWSSP) and provides guidance for the future development of the area.”

Mr Hart added that the GLMSP will not amend any land zonings or development controls. 

“Following adoption, any rezoning to facilitate the outcomes of the GLMSP will be required to be landowner-funded in accordance with Council’s Planning Proposal Procedure and relevant fees and charges set in Council’s adopted Fees and Charges.
 
“The Northern Districts Development Contributions Plan will be updated to accommodate certain infrastructure required to service the anticipated future population growth associated with the proposed residential development. It is anticipated that this Contributions Plan will be exhibited in late 2022 and in place early 2023.”

Mr Hart said with the adoption of the GLMSP, the document will now be made publicly available on Council’s website.

Community Support Grants Program – February 2022

The Community Support Grants Program provides a combined budget of $300,000 annually and is provided to support the community to deliver activities which require a small amount of funding and/or in-kind support.  

Council Administrator, Rik Hart said the Support Grant program provides up to $5000 per project per financial year in combined funding and in-kind Council services to applicants who are a legally constituted not-for profit organisations, or auspiced by one.  

“The program remains open for applications throughout the year and the closing date for each assessment period is the last day of each month. The aim is also to enable applicants to apply for funding support in a quicker response time.”

Mr Hart said Council has approved three new funding applications, totally $9,317.00.  

The projects are for the Gosford Showground Land Manager for the Central Coast Regional Show 2022 to assist with cleaning and bins; the Cerebral Palsy Alliance for therapy resources for children with disability, and for the Mannering Park Precinct Committee, to provide Committee support with insurance, fair trading hall hire and stationary.

ENDS

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Last updated : Tue 26 Apr 2022