Locals address council meeting in new public access forum

Jill Weaving and Lydon McIntyre (along with Elesha Jebb, not pictured) were the first Cobar ratepayers to use the new public access forum at Cobar Shire Council’s ordinary meeting last Thursday to speak to councillors about a variety of issues.

Three local residents addressed the Cobar Shire Council Ordinary Meeting last Thursday to have their say on local issues.

Lydon McIntyre, Elesha Jebb and Jill Weaving had applied to speak at the Public Forum section of the meeting and each was granted five minutes to express their views.

Mr McIntyre firstly spoke about Cobar’s dirty drinking water and called for council to provide him with water testing results from the Ministry of Health.

“As of this date, I have received no acceptable reply,” Mr McIntyre said in his address.

He was provided with data on the matter at the meeting by council’s general manager Peter Vlatko.

Mr McIntyre also questioned if Cobar Shire Council shopped locally to which mayor Lilliane Brady advised “yes” they did.

Mr McIntyre then called for a list of purchases made by council for June 2017, where each item was purchased from and the cost.

Mr McIntyre’s third question of council was about the Rural Fire Shed and if ratepayers were paying the legal costs associated with the project.

Mayor Brady replied “yes” and council’s general manager advised this matter had previously been reported to councillors at a public meeting and also by the press.

Ms Jebb praised council for the improvements made to Drummond Park for children but requested that council consider installing a safer baby swing.

“We’ll definitely take that on board,” Mr Vlatko said.

Mrs Weaving addressed the meeting imploring councillors to consider the value of free camping to the local economy and local businesses with the respect to the Newey.

“This is a massive industry, we should be embracing this,” Mrs Weaving said.

She quoted there were more than 520,000 vans registered in Australia with 11.58million one night stops recorded last year.

Mrs Weaving suggested some improvements could be made to the Newey area including the addition of some speed humps and more signage. She also questioned if locals could sit in on council’s economic taskforce committee meetings.

Mrs Weaving was advised that locals could request to present to taskforce meetings and council later resolved that future meetings would be open to a public gallery.