Message from the Mayor March 2021

Message from the Mayor - March 2021

The start of 2021 has been busy and we are already into autumn!

Our region has received significant rain, and the country and our waterways have been replenished. A bountiful harvest was a very welcome reward in a year that had been seriously challenging.

Our small businesses continue to press on with resilience and optimism, and it is my hope that we are supporting them as best we can and that the new normal will provide us with a sustainable way forward.

Our COVID-19 Plan is being constantly adapted and made fit for purpose, being informed by Public Health Orders and incorporating edicts from multiple adjoining states.

Our kids have all returned to school and our school leavers are readying themselves for tertiary studies or life in the workforce, a really positive step forward for 2021.

It seems forever ago that we all had a Christmas/New Year break, but it is our hope that 2021 will see a full and productive year with the completion of many of our major projects. This includes Bencubbin Avenue, Coleambally Sporting Precinct, Brolga Place, Jerilderie Long Day Care Facility, Young Street Subdivision, Wiradjuri Walk Shared Spaces Project and the Revitalisation Projects across our three towns. We certainly have much on the go and its impact and generational investment will serve us well into the future.

Despite the setbacks with work and resource availability, some significant capital projects were completed in 2020 and are being well utilised by locals and visitors. The official ceremony to mark the opening of the Lions Park Display Centre and Amenities Block and the Boat Ramp and Floating Pontoon at Darlington Point will be held today. Next Wednesday will see the opening ceremony for the upgrade to Jerilderie Pool, the new studio room at the Jerilderie Sports Stadium, and the construction of new public amenities and replacement of the grandstand roof at the Jerilderie Showground. Anyone is welcome to attend these events and you can contact our office for more details.

Next Wednesday evening, along with business women from across the Council area, I’ll be attending a women in business networking event. Guest speaker for the evening is renowned business advisor Kathie Heyman from Passion for Business who will focus on goal setting. This event is part of 2021 NSW Women’s Week.

Recently our Councillors attended a Strategic Planning Workshop in Albury. This was an important investment in working as a team, and thinking strategically, covering areas including finance, governance, risk, our road network, asset management, organisational structure, human resources, community services, aged care, long day care, plant and equipment and economic development and tourism.

The next step in the community consultation regarding the Yanco Creek SDLAM Modernisation Projects took place throughout the area last week. The Modernisation Project relates to the infrastructure within the connected creek system and is one of two projects on the table for consideration. The Project Team, working collaboratively with both the Stakeholder Advisory Group and the Technical Advisory Group, has worked towards bringing eight areas for progression. Thorough and detailed research has informed a business case, with the draft scheduled for delivery by October 2021.

Australia Day 2021 was, this year, celebrated in a different manner across all three towns. Council’s Australia Day Ambassador Mark Warren certainly brought his unique and personable personality with him, and was generous and entertaining.
Coleambally’s day started with a breakfast that was planned with military precision and reverted to plan B after early showers. Darlington Point hosted a lunch at the Punt Hotel for 30 invited guests. Jerilderie hosted a high tea for 36 invited guests.
Congratulations to all those nominated across many categories, and special congratulations to the award recipients. My thanks and congratulations to the Australia Day Committees and Council staff who enabled these events to take place.

A highly successful 2021 Riverina Classic Fishing Competition was held in Darlington Point over the weekend of 13-14 February 2021. Congratulations to the organisers.

In closing, I would like to acknowledge the recent retirement of long standing staff member Greg Purcell. Greg served Council and the community for close to 49 years, which is a remarkable record. On behalf of all at Council, I thank Greg for his commitment to Council and wish him all the best for the future.

Related Pages

Congratulations to Australia Day Award recipients - Coleambally and Darlington Point

Congratulations to all of the 2020 Australia Day Citizenship and Community Awards.

Message from the Mayor

Read all the messages from our Mayor here.

Message from the Mayor - Update 2 - 27 March 2020

Message from the Mayor - February 2020

Message from the Mayor - January 2020

Message from the Mayor - Christmas 2019

Message from the Mayor - March 2020

Message from the Mayor - June 2020

Message from the Mayor 1 July 2020

Winter is upon us and the year is passing way too quickly! Much anticipated follow up rainfall is trickling in, and we live in hope that it does in fact arrive.

Message from the Mayor 8 July 2020

Water and better management of the Murray Darling Basin has been on the agenda this week with the release of a key position paper on water. The paper recommends major changes to the way water is managed.

Message from the Mayor 15 July 2020

I would like to begin by thanking everyone who has provided feedback on the Town Revitalisation Project. Throughout the last two weeks we have received a tremendous amount of input and ideas about ways to revitalise our townships.

Message from the Mayor 29 July 2020

Another week at the coal face. While acknowledging the very real challenge and urgency of trying to contain this insidious virus, we must continue to do all in our power to support those trying to conduct business, those delivering our aged care and health services and those educating and caring for our children. Our community’s sustainability depends on it.

Message from the Mayor 5 August 2020

It’s Local Government Week 2020, and at Murrumbidgee Council we are using the event to highlight the broad range of services we offer to our community, including some surprising and little-known services.

Message from the Mayor 12 August 2020

We have certainly had an icy blast in the last week, which thankfully brought with it some good follow up rains. It is exciting to see the lights up and working at Jerilderie’s Monash Park. This project was funded by Council through a $158,000 grant from the NSW Government’s Stronger Country Communities Fund. The junior teams and key personnel are using the lights, which is great.

Message from the Mayor September 2020

We’re already in September and are certainly getting on with things. Needless to say, we’re still very much in a state of uncertainty. The everyday need to conduct business is challenging and frustrating. Our geographical location quite clearly demonstrates strong pathways and linkages both to the east and south. Hopefully, sooner rather than later, a considered rationale will enable our region to move again. At Council, we, like other businesses, are continuing to deliver our essential services. We’re also continuing to advocate for movement with every other aspect.

Message from the Mayor 30 September 2020

Spring is with us, and as we slowly emerge from our very unnatural year, our countryside certainly speaks to renewal, optimism and opportunity.

Message from the Mayor November 2020

Spring has certainly brought some challenging conditions. We wait, with optimism, at what promises to be a great harvest – let’s hope the weather Gods play nicely and allow the area to fulfil its potential!

Message from the Mayor December 2020

It is all hands on deck as we move towards the close of 2020. Business “as usual” sees us busy but adapting to a different way of delivering what we need to. Our harvest is in full swing and a hive of activity with machinery, trucks and people working long hours to get the crops off. From all reports it is producing some outstanding returns.

Message from the Mayor Christmas 2020

On behalf of Murrumbidgee Council, we offer our best wishes for a very merry Christmas and a safe and prosperous New Year to all in our Council and greater region. It is hard to believe that we have reached the end of 2020. It’s been a roller coaster and the ride is one we don’t wish to revisit any time soon.

Message from the Mayor - May 2021

The seasons are progressing quickly and 2021 is disappearing at a rate of knots. After a very warm Easter break - perfect for camping and family gatherings - we have moved onto shorter days and cooler evenings and mornings.

Message from the Mayor - April 2021

This month we have been blessed with some very welcome and timely rain - almost too good to be true. We are, however, mindful of the havoc that was caused by the torrential rains, particularly for our coastal counterparts. It is our hope that the damage and chaos can be managed as best it can.

Message from the Mayor - June 2021

May has been hectic, to say the least, with a lot of time spent on the road engaging with our representative bodies. This has included appearing before the Parliamentary Inquiry into Health Outcomes and Access to Health and Hospital Services in Rural, Regional and Remote New South Wales. In our brief appearance, and the follow up that we have witnessed, it is glaringly apparent that the way our health care is delivered, by whom it is delivered and our equity in this space, all require serious remodelling.

Message from the Mayor July 2021

Message from the Mayor August 2021

As I sit and ponder the state of the nation, our state and Murrumbidgee Council, it is difficult to fathom the challenges that keep presenting themselves. The latest COVID-19 outbreaks most certainly have created havoc with business, education, Local Government and, most significantly, our health related service delivery.

Message from the Mayor September 2021

We certainly live in an unpredictable environment at the moment. The Public Health message tells us how highly transmissible the Delta strain of COVID-19 is. We have seen how it impacts regional areas, with Shepparton and Temora very close examples. We should all be aware of the considerable risk for our Council footprint given our geographical location and our exposure to three very busy major traffic corridors - the Kidman Way and the Sturt and Newell Highways. The message is clear - Stay home and stay safe!

Message from the Mayor October 2021

Just when we thought all avenues of natural, or unnatural, misadventure had challenged us, we have an earth tremor/quake! I would calmly like to assure whomever is testing our resilience that “we get it”. “Enough is enough!”

Message from the Mayor - March 2022

As this is my first column since the Local Government elections, I would like to begin by congratulating all elected representatives. A very warm welcome to Crs Troy Mauger, Judy Saxvik and Tim Strachan. Welcome back to our returning Councillors – Crs Robert Black (Deputy Mayor), Faith Bryce, Christine Chirgwin, Robert Curphey and Gavin Gilbert.

Message from the Mayor April 2022

Easter is almost here and it’s refreshing to have a major celebration ahead of us without also facing restrictions!

Message from the Mayor July 2022

We’re now in the second month of winter, and the cooler, damper and foggier conditions are certainly a reminder of this time of year. Our roads are busy with the great exodus north to warmer places and, coupled with school holiday traffic, it is a timely reminder to be vigilant on our roads and stay safe.

Message from the Mayor August 2022

As we move through the winter months, we once again find ourselves challenged by another COVID 19 variant. Coupled with a particularly virulent strain of the flu and an accompanying gastro bug, we are all are certainly feeling the strain. Public messaging for all these illnesses is consistent – if someone is unwell, they should stay at home - it really is the only way to get on top of the revolving spread.

Message from the Mayor October 2022

It’s amazing to believe that we are already into October! The plentiful rains continue to fall and our agricultural season is so full of promise and, in turn, our region looks set to deliver in spades.

Message from the Mayor November 2022

Our region is certainly experiencing its share of rain, with the Murrumbidgee River, creeks and waterways carrying large amounts of water. Our thoughts are with anyone who has been impacted by the water. At these times, the SES public messaging is so very important, and we encourage all of the community to listen carefully and follow the relevant advice. The safety of our communities is paramount. Never drive, ride or walk through flood water. If it’s flooded, forget it!

Message from the Mayor December 2022

The past month was challenging, to say the least, with the weather continuing to test us unreasonably, with impacts on our whole Council area - from the Murrumbidgee River in the north to the Billabong and Wangamong Creeks in the south, and everywhere in between. The rivers and creeks are full and the vast agricultural landscape is sodden, with parts still immersed in water.

Message from the Mayor February 2023

The Christmas break is now well and truly behind us, and with Easter on the horizon, many of us are looking forward to another well-earned break. What an unusual weather pattern we have been navigating! The colossal rains and resulting flooding in the last quarter of 2022 were challenging, to say the least.

Message from the Mayor March 2023

And in the blink of an eye, we are into the third month of the year! Harvest is complete, finally, and the crop rotations are in full swing. Talk of watering and allocations is on the table and, after the wettest three months in a long time, who would have thought we would be seeing dust!

Message from the Mayor April 2023

In the blink of an eye, Easter has been and gone and we’re now well into the school holidays. With balmy autumn days and the heat of summer behind us, it’s been the perfect time to enjoy a great range of events across the whole area. These include the Jerilderie Fun Fair and market day, Sir John Monash Oration and 100 Year Commemoration of the Jerilderie Cenotaph and the “Women in Business Networking” evening at Darlington Point, all of which were significantly boosted with funding from the NSW Government.

Message from the Mayor May 2023

There was a tremendous turnout to Anzac Day commemorations and it was deeply gratifying to see our unified resolve to honour those who gave their lives for our country. With Anzac Day hot on the heels of Easter and the school holidays, there’s been no shortage of social activities throughout the area. Our free youth skate workshops were a great success, generously funded by the NSW Government. We have also been supporting the children’s Eco Waste workshops run by Kerri Weymouth and Julie Bellato.

Message from the Mayor – June 2023

And in the blink of an eye, we are into June and the winter cold has arrived. With most of the sowing completed, rice is being harvested and cotton picking is commencing. The diverse and robust nature of where we live and what we produce never ceases to amaze me. Our whole area is busy with a broad range of projects on the go. I recently attended Edify Energy’s celebration of the completion of the solar project at Darlington Point. The investment is huge, somewhere in the vicinity of $230 million.

Message from the Mayor – July 2023

July is here and the wintery conditions won’t be abating for some time. Throughout June, welcome rain was accompanied by cold weather, with this pattern continuing. I encourage you all to have your vaccinations to minimise the impacts of both the recurring COVID surge and the flu season.

Message from the Mayor August 2023

Message from the Mayor September 2023