Under the new Local Government Act, council is required to develop a Community Vision plan. At present the council has not acted on this so it is holding up progress on other strategies such as the Coastal Strategy.
This letter is a starting point for community discussion.
In past years there has been a Council Plan and this requirement is still within the Act. The Community Vision is new.
We all need to get busy with our ideas – it is your Vision. We perhaps look at Bass Coast and see that it has had much greater growth than South Gippsland Shire. Why is that?
Do we want that growth? What has growth done for Bass Coast?
The growth outcome is pretty obvious when we consider the shopping variety and scale available in Wonthaggi. That has created many more local jobs.
Being able to shop locally keeps the money in local hands. The growth has resulted in more health facilities at Wonthaggi.
The hospital has an emergency ward whereas the facilities in South Gippsland do not.
The Bass Highway has been duplicated from Lang Lang to Anderson and there have been massive injections of funds into the Koala Park and the Penguin Reserve.
Bass Coast has a great many subdivision sites that enable people to re-locate to the area. Do we at South Gippsland want to create some of these options? Can we use growth in numbers to overcome some existing constraints?
South Gippsland Shire has a great rural backbone and we need to support our major industries, especially the dairy industry. But can we further develop our small-scale farming enterprises and assist entrepreneurs in the likes of specialty cheeses, ciders, garlic etc? Can we see scope in paddock to plate ideas? What do we need to change or do that helps all?
We have some great tourism attractions and now that we are spending around $15 million on expanding the Great Southern Rail Trail. How do we capitalise on that?
The bicycle users survey conducted by the shire shows a great desire to be able to ride from Foster to the Prom. How do we achieve that, How can we support other tourist operations?
In Bass Coast there are some classy resorts such as the RACV at Inverloch and Silverwater at San Remo. What do we at South Gippsland offer?
Council facilitated rezoning of land for a resort adjacent the gates to the Prom. Why has that not progressed? Is it because there is no water supply?
How do we organise ourselves to create the conditions which would support that resort?
Email South Gippsland Action Group with your thoughts Sgactiongroup@gmail.com.
Lindsay Love, secretary South Gippsland Action Group.