Executive Summary

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

This document is the result of contributions by over 100 community members since November, 2016. It contains 18 policies that go to the heart of the preferred future of the NSW Central Coast as envisaged by its residents. This is a living document, subject to ongoing refinement and evolution as changing circumstances warrant.

The policies cover not only what is the responsibly of local government but also issues that fall under the auspices of State and Federal government that should be championed by Council. Here is a brief overview of each of the 18 policies:

1 – Good Governance, Ethical Behaviour and Anti-Corruption

Council’s will ensure widespread community confidence in Councillors and Council employees through good governance covering the culture, processes, systems, policies and practices used to guide every day operations. Democracy depends fundamentally on public trust, and ethical behaviour must be actively pursued and nurtured. Council will be committed to openness, transparency and accountability.

2 – Commitment to Consultation

Council’s purpose is to ensure that honest, genuine and transparent consultation with constituents, workers, stakeholders and project partners is a core value. Consultation precedes a decision and provides the opportunity to influence the decision. Effective consultation is about building trust between all persons involved in an activity to facilitate outcomes for the mutual benefit of all participants.

3 – Environment

Council’s purpose is to protect and conserve our environment from the ravages of climate change, sea rise, ocean acidification, radio-activation, various pollutants, feral animals, unsustainable human usage. Council will and to make provision for sustainable public use of public spaces, support a range of different pursuits and lifestyles, and value our Central Coast heritages, both Indigenous Australian and non-Indigenous Australian.

4 – Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Futures

Council acknowledges the impacts of intergenerational trauma as well as the inherent strength and resilience of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in contemporary Australia. Council acknowledges the necessity for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to have access to the power and resources necessary for a self-determined future. Council will encourage and support a progressive move towards equitable outcomes between Central Coast Aboriginal people and the wider community. Council will encourage and support opportunities which enable Central Coast Aboriginal people to move towards financial independence.

5 – Workers & Families

Council’s purpose is to understand the realities of work-place wages and conditions for its population. Council , and will therefore research, monitor and record throughout the Central Coast, in partnership with relevant other authorities (e.g. Fair Work Commission; Human Rights Commission; NSW Anti-discrimination Board), the provision of i) award, and above-award wages and conditions of employment and ii) workplace policies which are non-discriminatory and free of sexual harassment, nepotism and/or bullying.

6 – Youth

Council’s purpose is to take responsibility for understanding the needs and aspirations of adolescents and their preferred lifestyles, meeting those needs and aspirations of adolescents and their preferred lifestyles, oversight, monitoring, and advocating for appropriate education and training to prepare young people for both vocation, lifestyle and cultural development. Council will regularly review inputs and outcomes concerning youth participation in lifestyle and vocation.

7 – Culture, Arts & Recreation

Arts and culture will be key pillars to enhancing the creative life of our region. Fostering a thriving and creative culture will involve many departments of Council that have not historically been associated with a cultural agenda – departments such as economic development, planning, community, sport, youth and tourism. This will enable Council to more easily adopt an integrated agenda of transformational change in the way it addresses and manages issues arising across its areas of responsibility.

8 – Health & Hospitals

Council’s purpose is to have a full understanding of the Health and Hospital requirements of the central Coast community. Council will prepare, by September 2019, and in collaboration with Central Coast civil society, a well-researched plan for the provision and retention of sufficient general practitioner (GP) services, specialist services, dental services and public hospital facilities.

9 – Roads & Transport

Council’s purpose is to attain a comprehensive understanding of emergency, urgent, current, and future roads and transport needs for the Central Coast, to o take direct action where it can, and to press NSW and Federal Governments where required to have those needs met in an efficient and timely manner.

10 – Education

Council’s purpose is to initiate action to remedy immediately obvious and urgent gaps in Central Coast education provision through the developmernt of a comprehensive plan of educational needs across the region for the provision of pre-school child care, infant education, primary education, secondary education, vocational education, TAFE and university. The investigation of and reporting on educational structures and/or provision, which strengthens social cohesion and Central Coast identity, is a priority.

11 – Small Business

Council’s purpose is to provide a business-friendly approach to small business start-ups and continuing small business success. Council will partner with other government organisations with existing expertise and programs (e.g. ATO and NSW Fair Trading) together with the local government area’s business and community organisations in order to deliver tailored programs and opportunities for Small Business.

12 – Pensioners

Council’s purpose is to fully comprehend, address, and advocate for Central Coast pensioner needs. Council’s advocacy role is necessary, despite the many categories of ‘pensioner’, and the fact that the provision of pensions lies outside the jurisdiction of Council. Pensioners are an important part of the Central Coast community and, as such, comprise an important part of the Central Coast social landscape.

13 – Housing

Council’s purpose is to comprehensively understand the various housing needs of the Central Coast population and to assist with meeting those needs through Council’s strictly applied regulatory and zoning policies. Council will utilise and its requirements of developers with well-researched and public-supported representations to NSW and Federal governments for funding, legislative, and bureaucratic assistance to implement Council’s standards.

14 – Economy

Council’s purpose is to research and publish data pertaining to the Central Coast economy to enable it to fully understand the current economic workings on the Central Coast and envision a preferred economic future for the Central Coast. It will undertake actions for which the Council has direct responsibility in pursuit of this preferred future. Council acknowledges that small businesses account for 90% of commercial activity on the Central Coast and that Council has an important role to engender, encourage, advocate and support a business-friendly approach to viable small businesses and& start-ups, consistent with economically sustainable and public amenity principles.

15 – Social Cohesion & Democracy

Council’s purpose is to consciously build greater levels of social cohesion and community participation in our democracy, with higher levels of democratic understanding and practice throughout the citizenry. This will include the introduction of structures and protocols designed to enable local precinct freedoms to act, express opinions and have power to control their future.

16 – Caring

Council’s purpose is to care for its workers appropriately and to care for those in danger and vulnerable within our community, namely people withdisabilities, people who are homeless, people who are mentally ill, unsupported ADF veterans and victims of violence and intimidation. Council’s purpose is to reduce and prevent domestic and family violence. It is Council’s responsibility to better understand, and to provide support for those with special care needs.

17 – Emergencies

Council’s purpose is to establish and maintain close liaison and support for regional-wide emergency response groups. Council will regularly consult with emergency agencies including the Rural Fire Service, National Parks and Wildlife Service, State Emergency Services, NSW Ambulance Service, Marine Rescue and Surf Life-Saving Clubs.

18 – Public Amenity

Council’s purpose is to integrate the provision of essential, support, cultural, and other desirable services into designated geographic areas that facilitates a satisfying and enjoyable experience and, in particular, in existing villages and the Southern and Northern Growth Corridors.

Download the Executive Summary below