Council News, Thursday 29 May 2014

At last Tuesday’s Council a report was considered in relation to the proposal to fluoridate the Oberon town water supply.  Council decided not to proceed with this project at this time, voting 5/4 against the proposal.  This was an extremely difficult decision and Councillors deliberated heavily about the matter.  I am personally quite disappointed as I believe this was an opportunity to do something positive for the oral health of our community.  NSW Department of Health has been advised of the decision.

Last Wednesday I attended a meeting with representatives from the Oberon Tarana Heritage Rail (OTHR), the John Holland Group and Member for Bathurst, Paul Toole MP to discuss the future development of the Oberon Tarana rail line.

OTHR provided an outline of the work that has been completed to date and put forward their plans for the future development of the line. They are seeking support from the John Holland Group to progress the project and in kind support from Council via the use of heavy plant equipment. To date there has already been more than $2 million of voluntary hours contributed to the project.

Our member for Bathurst, Paul Toole MP has suggested that the group explore opportunities to apply for heritage grant funding which could assist with this project and John Holland Group expressed a willingness to assist with engineering expertise as well as sourcing equipment for use in the restoration of the line.

The display of railway memorabilia and rolling stock at the Oberon Station is open on the first Saturday of each month and once fully restored the Oberon Tarana Rail Line will become a major tourist destination in NSW and will generate great economic benefit for the region.

Burraga Regional Mineral Exploration and Development will hold an information evening at the Burraga Sport and Recreation Club on 29 May 2014, commencing at 6.00pm.  The Burraga Mine will give local residents an update on exploration and potential development activities.

On Thursday, General Manager Alan Cairney and I will attend the next Centroc Board Meeting, which will be held in Parliament House, Sydney.  There will be opportunities for Council’s to meet with various Ministers during the day and I hope to have an audience with the Minister for Primary Industries, Katrina Hodgkinson MP to discuss opportunities to put a funding agreement in place for maintenance of rural road in lieu of rates for forestry activities.

Last Friday Council hosted Oberon’s Biggest Morning Tea in the Robert Hooper Community Centre.  The event was a great success raising over $500 for the Cancer Council to help fund vital research, prevention and support service programmes.

Mayor John McMahon