June Ordinary Council Meeting Summary

Published on 25 June 2024

Scone admin building.jpg


25 June 2024

Upper Hunter Shire Council held its Ordinary Council Meeting last night which resulted in several significant decisions to benefit the local community. The following key outcomes were noted:

1. Mayoral Minutes

Recognition of Length of Service - 40 Years - Andrew Collins

The meeting began with the recognition of Andrew Collins for his 40 years of service. Andrew, known as “Barney,” has been an invaluable asset since starting with Merriwa Shire Council in September 1983. His diverse roles have included plant operation, drainage work, and grave digging, among many others. Barney’s dedication and willingness to tackle any job have made him an indispensable part of the team. Congratulations to Andrew on his remarkable career and contributions over the past 40 years.

2. Environmental & Community Services Committee Report

Council has adopted the minutes of the Environmental & Community Services Committee meeting held on 11 June 2024. This includes the approval of Development Application 48/2023 for independent living units at 56 Kelly Street, Scone, and Development Application No. 158/2023 for multi-dwelling housing at 100 Mackenzie Street, Merriwa, subject to conditions of consent.

3. Adoption of Amended Delivery Program and Operational Plan

Council has adopted the amended Delivery Program 2022-2025 and Operational Plan 2024-2025. This comprehensive plan outlines the strategic directions and activities for the coming year, including the annual budget and 2024/2025 Fees and Charges. Council also decided to reduce community consultation meetings in 2025 due to low participation rates.

4. Approval of Rates and Annual Charges

The rates and annual charges for the 2024/2025 financial year have been approved. These include the structure and amounts for ordinary and special rates. Full details can be viewed on Council’s website.

5. Determination of Mayor and Councillor Fees

Council has fixed the councillor fee at $18,340 and the mayoral fee at $39,350 (in addition to the councillor fee) for the 2024/2025 financial year. Superannuation will also be paid on these fees in accordance with the Superannuation Guarantee (Administration) Act 1992.

6. Establishment of Aberdeen Investment Committee

Council has resolved to establish an Aberdeen Investment Committee in line with the Community Funding Deed with MACH Energy Australia Pty Ltd. The committee will include two Council representatives and one community representative from Aberdeen. Expressions of interest for the community representative position will be called shortly.

7. Rural Halls Rejuvenation Grants 2024

Council has approved a grant of $4,750 under the Rural Halls Rejuvenation Grants Program to Abbottsford Park Trust for the Wingen Community Hall. This funding will be used to replace gutters and downpipes to increase water storage capacity, enhancing the hall’s safety and facilities.

8. Liverpool Range Wind Farm - Planning Agreement Offer

Council has accepted an offer from Tilt Renewables to enter into a new planning agreement for the Liverpool Range Wind Farm project. This agreement includes an annual contribution of $1,050 per MW installed within the Upper Hunter Shire LGA, indexed to CPI. This contribution will support community benefit funding, road maintenance, and administration.

9. Notice of Motion - On-Call Booking System for Bulky Waste Collection

Council has instructed the General Manager to investigate the feasibility of changing Council’s annual bulky waste collection service to an on-call booking system. This initiative, proposed by Cr James Burns, aims to reduce the amount of waste material placed on kerbsides and provide the service at times convenient for residents. Discussions with neighbouring Councils are planned to explore the feasibility of this system, with a report to be provided to Council in due course.

For further details on any of these decisions, please visit the Upper Hunter Shire Council website.