The Mirror News

Genuine help on locality review

THE part-time project officer working on South Gippsland Shire’s Locality Review, Clare Gilmartin, is someone who genuinely wants to help make the process work for people who want to have a say about how their locality is officially designated and mapped.

As well as the accurate designation of a place being a matter of self-identity for those who live there, the Localities Review will also determine the official geographical information that forms the basis of property addresses for location by emergency service vehicles, mail delivery, maps (including GPS data), rate notices and a host of other formal location identification matters.

So it is an important opportunity to take and it won’t be offered again in a big hurry.

Council is required to follow set procedures with the review, but Clare urges anyone wanting to make a submission of either objection or support of their current locality definition to “put down what you feel” as the reasons supporting their view.

She adds, “Don’t let the formal language put you off from making a submission.”

Clare is also very willing to help people out with questions about their submission and with understanding the maps and process whether it is over the telephone, at Council’s inquiry counter or even out on site if necessary.

She explained that submitters need to say why they want the locality boundary or name changed as well as stating what the current name is and what they want it changed to.

Examples of reasons can include but are not limited to: local tradition, past practices, community of interest [where the people at the location normally connect to or feel themselves a part of], and family history of living at and describing the location.

For those who are familiar with using the internet and map zoom functions, Clare recommends checking out the existing locality designation boundaries online, where maps can be zoomed in down to title boundary level and up to State level.

This can be done at Land Victoria’s web site www.land.vic.gov.au – follow links from the home page to ‘Maps and Images’, ‘Interactive Map’ [this requires agreement to site terms and conditions] and then enter in details of the address, road or locality of interest.

Since the maps go down to actual property boundary detail, it is not practical to have hard copies of all maps available to browse, however Clare is very happy to print out a particular map or set of maps on request for interested people and either hand it over the reception counter or post it out.

The Review must also be carried out in accordance with the Guidelines for Geographic Names 2010, which in sections one and three cover the principles for naming or changing locality names or boundaries.

Anyone wanting to look at the principles before submitting their application can browse a hard copy available at local libraries (static and mobile) and Council offices at Leongatha, or else view the guide online through Council’s web site at www.southgippsland.vic.gov.au (select the link ‘You can comment on Council’s initiatives here’ and then the link to the guide) or at www.dse.vic.gov.au/namingguidelines.

Submissions can be posted or emailed to Council but must be received there by Friday October 22.

A large number of property owners have complained to Council over the last two years about their address being changed as they were progressively notified by Australia Post acting on mapping detail changed some years ago by the Council.

Anyone who is unhappy about the official description of their property address needs to make a submission to the Localities Review even if they have previously signed a petition or contacted the Shire about the matter as the Review is the legal process Council undertakes for making the changes.

Clare Gilmartin can be contacted for inquiries by calling Council reception on 5662 9200.

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