Council Roundup with Cr Len Roberts

IT was timely that an article by Phil Everitt regarding the local Prostate Cancer Support Group was in a recent edition of News Of The Area.

Prostate cancer was the reason the Council Roundup has not appeared in the NOTA recently.

I received news in March last year that I had an aggressive form of prostate cancer and had less than six months to live, unless I underwent medical treatment immediately.

Last month, I received the ‘all clear’ and my cancer was in remission.

The doctors described me as a ‘walking miracle’.

The 12-month treatment process would have meant that I would not have been able to attend Council meetings.
However, along came Covid-19 and Zoom meetings became mandatory.

This meant I didn’t miss Council meetings and I was able to follow up matters for people even whilst in hospital.

I received tremendous support from family, friends and church during this difficult time.

It was through this support and my faith in God that got me through.

Now that I have improved, News Of The Area would like Council Roundup to reappear on a fortnightly basis.

Perhaps the most significant thing that has occurred this year in regards to Council, was the staff moving to their new headquarters, the former ‘Masters Building’ in Taree, during January.

This move was significant for several reasons:

1) Increasing staff morale and productivity by being in one place.

Some staff have commented they now don’t have to wait for an interoffice email, they can now walk around to their desk and get the information immediately.

2) Cost savings in maintaining multiple buildings with the potential sale/lease of former buildings.

On Wednesday, Council approved the sale of the former water building at Forster.

At this time the purchaser cannot be disclosed, but its use will be exciting and positive for the community.

3) A $40 million project was delivered at a cost of $20 million.

4) Celebration of Aboriginality, the building reflects Aboriginal themes and artwork.

It is known as Yalawanyi Ganya which essentially means welcome to the meeting place house, and is pronounced yalla – one – nee – gun – ya.

I will write more about it in the next roundup.

Please send me an email ([email protected]) or phone 0403071922 if you have a matter to be followed up or questions you would like answered through this column.




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