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Monday, July 25, 2016

Geelong administrators encourage community engagement

DCSCA members heard the three administrators of the Greater Geelong City Council outline their ambitions at a community engagement meeting the administrators ran at Parks Hall, Portarlington on 20 July at 5.30pm.
Geelong City Hall

The administrators are acting as the Greater Geelong City Council, which the Victorian government dismissed on 16 April 2016, appointing Yehudi Blacher as interim administrator. The three administrators are Dr. Kathy Alexander (chairperson), Peter Dorling and Laurinda Gardner. They were appointed on 25 May 2016 and will run the council until elections are held in 2017 for a new council. At this meeting, they were accompanied by six senior council officers.

Administrators’ responsibilities
Dr. Alexander outlined the administrators’ responsibilities as follows:
1. To create a ‘citizens jury’ through which the community can have its say on how the City of Greater Geelong should be governed; to report quarterly to the Minister for Local Government on progress and on issues of concern; and to recommend actions to the Minister.
2. To create a thirty year Vision and Strategy for the municipality.
3. To recommend how the City of Greater Geelong should be governed from 2017. The administrators want to involve all parties and interests in these decisions, so they will seek comment from the community, e.g. through more community engagement forums.
4. To design a Community Communication Strategy.

No more piecemeal development
There followed a question and answer session. Most questions concerned issues at Portarlington, but there was also a call for development in/of Drysdale to be more coordinated and inclusive, rather than the piecemeal approach adopted to date. In response, CoGG’s William Tieppo said that Vic Roads would aim to coordinate the various developments; and subsequently, VicRoads and CoGG have created a Project Control Group to co-ordinate the planning and transport matters that link the Drysdale bypass, the improvements to the High Street and the proposals concerning the future of the ‘town square’.

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