Council Beat: April 5 2024

The next ordinary council meeting will take place at the Council Chambers on Tuesday May 7. Photo: File

TUESDAY’S Wellington Shire Council meeting (April 2 2024) lasted 30 minutes. Apologies were received from Northern Ward Councillor, John Tatterson.

A proposed lease and easement was discussed for 14 Velore Road, Kilmany.

This address is council-owned land adjacent to the Gippsland railway line and a private (council-owned) road that provides access to the Kilmany Resource Recovery Centre and Landfill.

According to council, the address is undeveloped vacant land and has seen limited development after a lease was made with Elecsome Pty Ltd.

Council approved a lease and easement over the property so that the council land can provide electricity to nearby land and support future development in the surrounding area, which is currently agricultural. Ausnet would be the supplier of this electricity.

Petition response

LAST month’s Bird of The Month in the Gippsland Times, noted the Little Corella as a bird species that “can form very large flocks, numbering into the thousands. It is an active, social bird with a cheeky personality, well known for their mischievous behaviour”.

This behaviour was also noted at the council meeting on March 5 as causing problems at Mafeking Hill, Maffra with economic and social impacts on private and public infrastructure, environmental assets and noise.

Corellas are native wildlife protected under the Wildlife Act 1975, created by the Department of Energy Environment and Climate Action (DECCA).

DEECA released a Victorian Corellas Strategy 2022/23 report on population management strategies and society. Still, council determined that none of the solutions in the report were applicable, primarily due to Mafeking not being an agricultural location.

Wellington Shire Chief Executive, David Morcom has written to DEECA asking for advice to manage Maffra’s Corella population.

Council received an expression of interest request from a DEECA representative who wanted a nomination to join a Corella strategy group and create a solution.

Adjusted Capital Works Budget

THE initial Budget is adjusted when new public works are added or dismissed in the council area, inevitably affecting the initial estimates.

The change since October 2023 has been worth $3,083,458, resulting in an adjusted budget of $51,679,515. In October, it was at $48,596,057.

One new project that is expected to be added to the Capital Works Budget and being considered is repairs to the Upper Dargo Road impacted by the October 2023 floods.

Performance of community asset committees

THE five committees in question are Briagolong Recreation Reserve, Cameron Sporting Complex, Gordon Street Reserve, Maffra Recreation Reserve, and Newry Recreation Reserve.

Section 65 of the Local Government Act 2020 allows councils to have Community Asset committees to manage assets within the municipality.

These committees are an integral part of the process that sees funding going to public works, for example, the Cameron Sporting Complex Committee, which has about $105,000 in cash reserves and recently oversaw the installation of solar systems and new cricket nets.

Community Grants

COUNCIL distributed a new round of grants under the Quick Response Grant Scheme from November 2023 to March 2024, aiming to boost community participation and public events.

Not-for-profit community groups in Wellington Shire can apply for up to $2500, $500 to the Individual Sponsorship category, and $1500 in the Teams and Community Groups category.

The total funding received under this grant from July 2023 to March 2024 is valued at $131,670.21.

Acknowledgments

NORTHERN Ward Councillor, Carmel Ripper acknowledged the efforts of Wellington Shire’s future-proof projects team.

Future-proof is a federal government-funded project focuses on young people aged 12 to 25 in natural disaster-affected areas. In the Wellington Shire, there was 274 young people involved.

Cr Ripper said the team in Wellington Shire supports “young people to grow their skills, connect with their community, and gain qualifications related to community services and emergency management”.

“Those young people that were involved in that, along with the two facilitators, have set a standard for the future of our youth.”

Councillor Marcus Mckenzie of the Coastal Ward had two acknowledgements.

Cr McKenzie congratulated the Yarram District Cricket Club and First Grade team for their success in the Sale-Maffra Cricket Association.

The second acknowledgement was for Easter in the Wellington Shire, which he believed was “fantastic” citing the Tarra Festival in Yarram and live music in the region.