Community panel to help develop future plans for Colac Otway
March 29, 2024
A panel of 24 community members will be recruited to help Colac Otway Shire Council plan for the future of the shire as part of the Community Vision, Council Plan and Mental Health and Wellbeing Plan.
The panel will be randomly selected via phone recruitment using an independent company and is a key element of the deliberative community engagement process required by Council under the Local Government Act 2020.
Council’s General Manager Development and Community Services Ian Seuren said the panel would help to refine the information currently being gathered by a broader community engagement process.
“Over the last few weeks, officers have been working with the community via various means of engagement to gather their thoughts and ideas for the future and the strategic planning required for Colac Otway Shire,” Mr Seuren said.
“Drop-in sessions have been held throughout the shire; we had a great response from community members sharing their ideas with Councillors and Council staff on broad issues for Colac Otway, as well as information more specific to each town.
“We’ve also had a really strong response from the community to the Colac Otway 2050 Community Vision online survey.
“Once selected, the panel will review the information gathered thus far along with data collected, trends analysis, review of current Council policies and strategies and develop a range of recommendations for Council’s consideration as part of the strategic planning for Colac Otway.
“Council will be partnering with the panel to ensure the community concerns and aspirations provided through the community engagement process have been considered and understood.
“Having a diverse cross-section of the community is essential to the process so if you’re offered the opportunity to sit on the panel, we encourage you to participate.”
Mr Seuren said the process would provide Council with direction on the high-level priorities identified through the community engagement process.
“While Council remains the final decision maker, it’s important that we work with the panel to understand the advice and recommendations that are a result of the engagement process so that community views are incorporated to the maximum extent possible.
“The 2050 Community Vision survey is open until the end of March. If you haven’t completed the survey, please visit Council’s website and tell us your ideas for the future of Colac Otway,” Mr Seuren said.
The community panel deliberations will commence in May 2021.