Latest News from Mayor Kathy Sajowitz - 17 March 2016

Oberon Council and Oberon Business and Tourism Association (OBTA) are currently engaged in formulating a Tourism Strategy Document. As you will appreciate tourism is a fast growing business in the LGA and surrounds, to take maximum advantage of opportunities offered, we need a set of objectives and goals and this document will give us this outcome. Tourism benefits us all, showcasing our area to visitors and potential new residents as well as bringing dollars into the local economy. 

I accepted an invitation on Monday to attend a lunch hosted by Woollahra Mayor Ms Toni Zeltzer. Mayors of Kiama and Shellharbour also attended.  As you may know Woollahra has initiated a legal challenge to the proposed Forced Amalgamation of their council with Waverly and Randwick Councils. The meeting was informative as to the process and basis for the challenge and I along with the other two Mayors have indicated an interest in looking more closely at the work already carried out by Woollahra’s Lawyers and the possible impact it could have on our own situations. It was interesting to discuss the varied repercussions of forced amalgamation on metro, costal and rural councils. I think we all left the meeting with a wider perspective but a common goal – to continue to oppose the merger proposals we each faced.

I do not think I am alone in watching the situation currently developing in relation to the nominations for retiring Minister The Hon John Cobb‘s seat of Calare in the upcoming Federal Election.  I am hearing from Councils all over the state that there will be a severe backlash against the National Party as a result of the forced amalgamation proposals currently before many council’s, despite it being a state issue. 

I was disturbed to hear from the Interagency Committee meeting last week that domestic violence is increasing in Oberon. Domestic violence in any form is completely unacceptable and I urge anyone affected to contact the Oberon Information Neighbourhood Centre in Ross St to obtain information as to services offered to assist. 
Acting GM Gary Wallace and I attended a Chifley Local Area Command Safety Precinct Committee Meeting in Bathurst recently. I am pleased to report that all crime statistics in the Chifley Command have declined over the previous three months with the exception of retail theft. Only one incidence of retail theft was recorded in Oberon and one incidence of drug related arrest. We are working closely with the Command to ensure Oberon remains a safe place to live. If you have any information that could compromise this enviable position please contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 this is an anonymous reporting service. 

Congratulations to newly elected Youth Mayor Lydia Moore and Deputy Youth Mayor Keely Armstrong. We look forward to a productive year for the Oberon Youth Council. 

Mayor Kathy Sajowitz