Mayoral Column Media Release - 27 September 2018

The first sod was turned at the new Skateboard Precinct last week. Minister Toole, the previous Oberon Youth Mayor Luke McFarlane, Councillors and Staff along with Community Members were in attendance. The tendering process has begun and it is envisioned that work will begin in December 18/January 19. Catering for all levels of riders, I am sure this will be a very popular place for our young folk.
Be aware new mobile phone rules have come into force that will see motorists who use their phone illegally penalised an extra demerit point, up from four to five. The new rules came into force on Monday, September 17 and apply to all motorists. During double demerit periods, drivers who break the rules will be penalised 10 demerit points…So definitely not worth taking the risk. 
I along with Bathurst Mayor Clr Graeme Hanger presented the NSW Volunteer of the Year Awards for the region last week, Recognition of the generosity of spirit shown by not only our regional volunteers but volunteers all over Australia is so important, our communities would be so much poorer both economically and socially without these amazing people who give so much. 
I also attended the Graduation Ceremony of intake 328 of the Gurnang Life Challenge at the Shooters Hill Correctional Centre. The Gurnang Life Challenge is a very successful program established in 1993 that equips young offenders with the tools they need to ensure they are able to manage risk when released. This program developed at Shooters Hill by Dennis Carey has been so successful in reducing the rate of recidivism it is now being rolled out in other facilities. 
The Black Springs Community Association is working on a project to commemorate the contribution to the development of the area by Charles Throsby two hundred years ago next year. Forestry Corporation NSW has kindly agreed to support the project both financially and by allowing the commemorative timeline wall including a bronze bust of Charles Throsby to be erected on Forestry Land. This gesture is much appreciated by all. 
It is always great to get positive feedback and this week and the Community Services Department at Council are receiving great support for their current programs such as Women’s Health Week, Oberon Farmers Aid, Warmer Winter Drive and the Family Bike Ride Day on this weekend. Look out for future events such as “Pink up Oberon” and the great school holiday activities in the library.  I take this opportunity to congratulate the Community Services team Ivy, Tamara and Lynette and also the Library staff Astrid and Sam. Lots more planned so keep an eye on the Council Facebook Page. 
Oberon Pool will be open on 2 October 2018 in time for the school holidays, look out for opening activities and offers on pool entry, we are looking forward to a safe and enjoyable swim season. 
Oberon Outdoor Week commences this weekend, so much on offer – The Redfin Roundup, Barefoot Bowls, Cycling, fossicking and much more. Please support the events and showcase what we have in Oberon. Program can be viewed on Council Facebook page. 
OBTA Business Award Nominations are still open, business owners and service providers work hard to provide a good customer service experience. This is your opportunity to show your appreciation. Nominations close today September 27. 
We are expecting an announcement very soon in relation to the second round funding opportunity under the “Stronger Country Communities” Funding Stream. You may recall the priority project was a Fitness Centre with several other smaller projects applied for. So look out for this.