Council calls for community projects

8 August 2017

Orange City council is asking local residents to suggest community infrastructure projects , which could be funded under a new government program.

The NSW Government has unveiled plans to make $1.9 million available to fund community infrastructure projects in the Orange local government area.

Orange City Council has released the time-line of a consultation process when local community groups can make their suggestions.

Orange City Council’s General Manager Garry Styles said the council wants to hear from the community as it works towards assembling a short-list of projects.

“The NSW Government wants the council to work with their local communities, and then put in a single grant application on behalf of the community,” Garry Styles said. “That priority-list will then be put to the NSW Government, who will make the final decisions about which projects to fund.”

“The deadline for this first round of the funding program is going to make it tight for community groups which aren’t already well-advanced with their possible projects. In a matter of weeks we need to be at a stage when we can send two costing quotes for each project to the government.”

“That means while some projects mightn’t be ready for this funding program in its first year, we’ll also be collecting suggestions for future projects, that could be funded in the 2nd round of funding next year.”

“Later this year, after the September election the council will start work on the next round of long-term planning. Working with the community, the council will start to draft our next Community Strategic Plan, and wish-list projects could be channelled into that process to be considered then.”

“Because the government plans to allocate the funding over two years ($950,00 in each of two years) with two separate application deadlines, that means there’s time for either the council or community groups to work on the details of projects which aren’t well-developed to date.”

The council has launched a new section of the YourSay-Orange community engagement website.

“This is the same online tool, that we’ve used to build community awareness of our roads and footpath programs, ask the community for feedback about the annual council budget and provide info about major projects like the new Forest Rd bridge," Garry Styles said..

“It’s proved to be a very useful way for people to find out more about council projects and then have their say in a way that suits them. Thousands of people are routinely visiting the site."

The new section of the YourSay Orange site about the Stronger Country Communities Fund lets locals :

  • find out more about what kind of projects the government will support
  • learn if you they can add a project to the list to be considered
  • see the timeline leading up the deadline for applications
  • suggest a project to Orange City Council.

Community groups have until 21 August to make suggestions. Once the list of projects has been short-listed and prioritized, the council is planning another round of community consultation to gauge response to the short-list.

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