Council Meeting Recap: Key Decisions & Projects

Published on 24 April 2023

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Upper Hunter Shire Council held a successful meeting, adopting numerous agenda items to improve infrastructure, support renewable energy, and foster community engagement.

Council endorsed the draft Delivery Program 2022/2023 to 2024/2025 & Operational Plan 2023/2024. These documents will be placed on public exhibition for a minimum of 28 days, commencing on Friday, 29 April 2023, and closing on Monday, 29 May 2023. Community engagement will be undertaken before finalizing the draft. A series of consultation sessions have been arranged and the document is now available to view online. 

In the interest of improving communication services, Council supported in principle the installation of a Government Radio Network (GRN) telecommunications facility at Ten Mile Mountain, Beales Creek Road, Kars Springs. A 20-year licence agreement with the NSW Government Telecommunications Authority is set to be negotiated by the General Manager.

Council deferred the decision on the offer from Lightsource bp to enter into a planning agreement for the Goulburn River Solar Farm Project. This 550 MWdc solar farm and battery energy storage system will be located between Wollar and Merriwa, on Wollara Road. The project will generate enough power to meet the energy needs of 180,000 households or 4% of the average New South Wales energy demand.

An offer from Ark Energy to enter into a planning agreement for the Bowmans Creek Wind Farm was also accepted by Council. The agreement is based on an annual contribution of $686 per MW installed on land within the Upper Hunter Shire LGA (indexed to CPI).

Council supported the establishment of a Return and Earn reverse vending machine at Lot 21 DP 1134921, Lawrence Lane, Scone, subject to favourable community consultation and all approvals being met.

The proposed sale of Killoe Road, Merriwa was rejected after considering the outcome of community consultation. Council decided not to permanently close and sell the road.

Council also endorsed the draft Bill Rose Sports Complex Master Plan for public exhibition, with a period no less than 28 days. Community engagement will be undertaken before finalizing the draft.

Lastly, in a late report presented at the meeting, Council considered and adopted a recommendation to establish a Return and Earn reverse vending machine at an alternative location in Merriwa. The proposed site is within the road reserve adjoining Lot 6 DP 244849, 46 King George V Avenue, Merriwa. Council's support for this initiative is subject to available funding, favourable community consultation, and all necessary approvals being met.