New council alliance swings into action
IN WHAT'S been described as an exciting new chapter in local Government, the Northern Rivers Organisation of Councils will transition to the new Joint Organisation next week.
Making up the new Northern Rivers Joint Organisation are member councils from Ballina, Byron, Tweed, Lismore, Richmond Valley, and Kyogle, who will meet to plan and focus on significant regional issues across the communities they represent.
NOROC president and Kyogle Mayor Danielle Mulholland said the new NRJO would launch its 10 regional priorities following its first meeting next week.
"NOROC had two workshops early in the year around developing our regional strategies,” Cr Mulholland said.
"Ten priorities have been identified including tourism, waste management, renewable energy and housing. Around these priorities, we will develop a regional vision and statement of the priorities which will be submitted to the State Government.”
Cr Mulholland said the new NRJO would create a more productive working relationship between local and state government.
"The Joint Organisations have a liaison officer for premier and cabinet which will be enormously valuable to us, in terms of having that communication with the state government,” she said.
"It will open doors for us and start influencing decision makers at the state level ... especially about issues that impact on rural communities.”
Cr Mulholland said the transition process was going smoothly and was already ahead of schedule.
"We have six months to develop those 10 regional priorities and we've already done that work,” she said.
"So we are already leading the field.”
She said NRJO would discuss how they would spend the $300,000 in seed funding granted by the NSW Government to establish the new NRJO at its first meeting.
The first meeting of the NRJO will be held on June 22 at Lismore City Council at 11am and will see members elect a chair, endorse a charter, decide on a voting model, endorse various administrative policies such as the Code of Meeting Practice and identify how the Executive Officer will be recruited.