The Mirror News

Community plans not being recognised

CLIVE Hope and Sally Hoskings from the Meeniyan Progress Association went to the Public Presentation Day at South Gippsland Shire Council Chambers on Wednesday August 16 to let Council know that the Association has been having concerns that Community Plans are not being recognised or acknowledged for their value throughout the various Council departments and in fact are being overlooked in many departmental processes.

“Meeniyan Progress’ Community Plan was developed as a pilot project in 2010 and its Town Structure Plan was developed in 2011,” Clive said. “There have been reviews and updates of our community plans and the current plan overview is displayed in a window in the main street.”

He then read out a letter they sent to Council on May 15 written by Sally Hoskings.

In it she said the topic of the renaming of McIlwaine Street was discussed at the Association’s April meeting. Some dissatisfaction was expressed at the Shire’s decision but it is apparent that a final decision has been made.

She went on to say that the discussion then revolved around the value and purpose of a town having a Community Plan when the town is not notified of a proposal to change the name of a longstanding and well known street.

Members felt particularly aggrieved when discovering that the Leongatha and District Historical Society and the Meeniyan RSL were involved in the process as stated in the Council Minutes of July 27 2016.

“Meeniyan was the first town in the Shire to develop a Community Plan and our members, many of whom spent a lot of time working with the Shire on its development consider that the Shire should have notified Progress of the proposed name change. Surely a town with a Community Plan should be an automatic inclusion for direct notice of important matters affecting that town?” Sally said.

Clive then gave a more recent example where notification of a meeting in Meeniyan regarding streetscapes was not given to Progress even though streetscapes clearly fall within a Town Structure Plan.

He stressed that the Progress Association believe notices should be given to the body responsible for the community plan in addition to notices to any other bodies.

“The presentation appeared to be well received by Councillors and Tim Tamlin apologised,” said Clive.

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