CEN survey finds that community prefers Wyong council split

The Community Environment Network (CEN) conducted a survey to gauge community feeling around the amalgamation of Gosford, Wyong and Lake Macquarie councils.

CEN chairman, Mr John Asquith said splitting Wyong between Gosford Council and Lake Macquarie Council had some merit. “Lake Macquarie Council has a strong track record on environmental management,” he said.

CEN received 100 responses to a snap survey with an overwhelming preference for a boundary change that would split Wyong.

Mr Asquith said 56 per cent of respondents wanted the boundary change. Another 24 per cent wanted no merger and only 20 per cent wanted Gosford and Wyong to merge.

“This would mean that one Council would then manage the catchment of the lake in Lake Macquarie. “This also supports CEN’s view that Lake Macquarie has an outstanding record in sustainability.

“Concerns in regard to councils operations, expenditure and confidential meetings have been ignored to adopt a simplistic amalgamation that does nothing to advance local communities.”

At Gosford Council’s extraordinary meeting to vote on amalgamation Gosford mayor, Cr Lawrie McKinna said a boundary change was Gosford Council’s second option.

Cr McKinna said there had been discussions with Lake Macquarie’s mayor and general manager.

“We definitely had those discussions but after the meeting last week [with the minister for local government] we were told boundary discussions would not be considered,” Cr McKinna said.

Media release,
Nov 16, 2015
John Asquith, Community
Environment Network
Meeting transcript,
Nov 16, 2015
Gosford Council
extraordinary meeting
Jackie Pearson, journalist