Mayoral Memo - 15 June 2022
Right at the moment, the greatest danger I see in our amalgamated local government area (LGA) is…apathy. The LGA encompasses a huge area. The 7,536 square kilometres is not far off the area of the island country of the Republic of Cyprus which has a population of 1.2 million.
Across such a vast area, you may be excused for thinking that, with 54,195 residents in the LGA, your lone voice won’t have any impact. It was former United States President John F Kennedy and his brother, former United States Senator Bobby Kennedy, who often repeated the phrase, “One person can make a difference and everyone should try.”
When I was first elected to Council in 2004, one of the aspects I found incredibly interesting was the variety of committees that existed on Council and in the community. I ended up being involved in several Council committees as well as being the Council nominee on several external non-Council committees. I learned more about our community and felt I could be a conduit between the community and Council.
The Council committees ebbed and flowed over my years on Council in my first stint. Some came and went as the need arose. There was a committee formed for the construction phase of Barden Park Athletics Facility, for example, which was then disbanded once the construction had been completed.
I never understood why but after the amalgamation, the new Council removed most of the committees that had previously existed.
This Council has just finished a process in looking at every committee that existed on both the previous Wellington and Dubbo Councils, analysing what those committees did and then recommending the creation of a range of new committees. After a public consultation process and feedback from the community, we now have sixteen shiny new Council committees ready to go and make a difference.
There is only one thing missing.
Nominations are now open for fourteen of these committees but you must submit an application by Friday this week. The committees all have specific duties and cover a range of activities and functions within Council. As I said at the beginning of this column, I am a great believer in the committee concept but the greatest danger to these not working is apathy. If we don’t receive nominations for the committees then we have all lost an opportunity for the community to drive Council in the direction that is required.
Sometimes people believe they aren’t smart enough / experienced enough / loud enough / sophisticated enough to be on a committee but on the contrary, what every committee needs is diversity.
The application details and Terms of Reference for each committee are available at www.dubbo.nsw.gov.au/committees so I look forward to seeing your nomination being submitted and hearing your voice making a difference in our community.
Councillor Mathew Dickerson
Mayor of Dubbo Regional Council
Last Edited: 14 Jun 2022