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Council Connections - Mayor's Message 11 December 2019

11th December 2019

I would like to recognise and thank Douglas and Sue Barrie for the magnificent voluntary work that they do in re-establishing graves and headstones at the Old Ingham Cemetery.

Sadly, over the years, many headstones have fallen over, been shifted around, vandalised or simply wording has faded making it difficult to preserve local stories.

The Barrie’s have taken it upon themselves to painstakingly research the records to first determine where the headstones should be and then restore the headstones to their rightful place, as well as restoring others in varying stages of disrepair.

The state of disrepair is extensive given that many families of persons interned at the cemetery no longer are around, or able to afford maintenance. It is not Council’s responsibility to maintain or repair headstones. The work being done is invaluable to our community and the district as history is disappearing. The cemetery includes the graves of early settlers and people who have played a pivotal role in establishing our town and district.

So a big thank you and well done to Doug and Sue Barrie.

‘Friends of the Cemetery‘

The Ingham Cemeteries have been well known for impressive mausoleums and grave monuments in the past and it is well documented that cemeteries these days are a huge tourist attraction and popular for people creating family trees.

Some of the monumental works are falling into significant disrepair, and it is apparent that families of deceased loved ones have long left the district and graves are no longer attended to.

It is not Council’s responsibility to look after or maintain monuments. It is also clear that Council needs permission of family to interfere with a grave or monument where possible to do so.

It is also very clear that if Council were inclined to undertake some level of repair or maintenance work, the exercise would be costly and would be a significant impost on the community. It is not something our Council would do without first consulting.

I am keen to ascertain whether there is any public interest in forming a ‘Friends of the Cemetery Group’. The intention being to harness volunteering towards affording repair and restoration work to the monuments.

Such a group could pursue funding opportunities to gather funds for materials and various projects and work with Council towards assisting the preservation of our cemeteries.

If you are interested in being part of a ‘Friends of the Cemetery’ group, or require further information please give me a call on 0427 875 607.

Corporate Plan

The Local Government Act 2009 says that Councils must prepare a five year Corporate Plan that incorporates community engagement. The Corporate Plan is a strategic document that sets the direction for Councils for five-year period intervals. It is a significant planning document adopted by Councils and is the means by which Councils deliver on their mission to continue to build on the foundations of their regions.

Through the corporate planning process Councils seek to –

  • Know and understand the needs and wants of communities;
  • Address the known needs and wants of communities in a manner that acknowledges and considers the intersection of social, economic, environmental and fiscal parameters;
  • Deliver services and activities that are valued by the community in a manner that is acceptable, affordable and sustainable; and
  • Provide communities with focussed, strong and meaningful civic leadership.

Due to the next Quadrennial Election being held on 28 March 2020 and the short timeline between now and March 2020, Council recently resolved to extend the current 2014-2019 Corporate Plan until a date following installation of the new Council in 2020. This extension will allow the new Council to formally consult with the community and prepare and adopt a new 2021-2025 Corporate Plan after being elected in March/April 2020.

Essentially the extension of the life of the existing Corporate Plan by a maximum of 12 months will enable respective new Councillors to have input into the direction of Council’s Corporate Plan in the first year of service; and will adjust the rotation of the Corporate Plan to cycle appropriately in association with Council Elections.

Need to print the Council Connections page? Click on the link below for the printable version. 

COUNCIL CONNECTIONS -  11 DECEMBER 2019

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