Clr Kyle MacGregor recounts achievements of Council’s first year

Councillor Kyle MacGregor speaks up at a council meeting. Image archiveCouncillor Kyle MacGregor speaks up at a council meeting. Image archive

One of the 10 new faces to Central Coast Council in 2018, Clr Kyle MacGregor, said he believed two of the Council’s greatest achievements to date, were progressing the development of a regional library and performing arts centre in Gosford, and establishing a committee to investigate dumping at Mangrove Mountain and Spencer.

“2018 was a year of vigorous debate and many achievements for the new council,” Clr MacGregor said. “I doubt many residents would be aware of some of the most important achievements of this current council,” he said.

“The highlights included the adoption of an apprenticeship ratio for 15 per cent of workers on Council projects to be apprentices where 10 per cent has been the standard for most government projects since the early 1990s.”

Another highlight was “establishing a committee to investigate the Mangrove Mountain and Spencer dumping issues and calling on the State Government to provide leadership and establish a special commission of inquiry to investigate what has happened there and how to rectify these issues,” he said. “The progression of the RPACC and Gosford Library developments had been languishing in the ether (for almost three decades) until we were able to move forward on this earlier in the year,” he said. Other achievements, according to, Clr MacGregor, were the establishment of a status of women’s committee, and Council’s “continued opposition to the Wallarah 2 Coal Mine and subsequent support for the legal case to protect the Central Coast’s water supply and over $1B worth of community owned assets”.

“We established a social issues committee to investigate local solutions and further work on issues such as youth unemployment, the commuter crisis, support for our seniors, domestic violence, gambling addiction, drug and alcohol abuse and other social issues that our community faces,” he said. “An investigation was initiated to reduce fees and charges for sporting clubs and associations on the Central Coast, and to improve the amenity of local facilities, and the development and delivery of new ones such as the Central Coast Regional Sporting Complex.” Council’s development of a local procurement policy that favours local businesses and workers in the tendering process, and the potential for Council to conduct a buy local campaign similar to the Australian made campaign, were other notable achievements, he said.

He also noted the formal recognition of the international day of mourning memorial wall at Ourimbah for Central Coast workers who have died in workplace accidents or from workplace caused diseases such as mesothelioma. “The development of the affordable housing strategy to combat rental stress and the inability of new families to move into the housing market and own their own homes in this time of housing stress, low wage growth and over inflated house prices caused by the housing bubble,” was another achievement, he said.

“And, finally, we developed a better designed, balanced and more appropriate tree policy for the Central Coast Council. “Often one only hears of the bad things that Council is seen to be doing, it is rare that we hear of the good things that we are up to, and it is important to be balanced when considering our perception of Council and how the Councillors and staff are collectively shaping the current and future agenda for the Council.

“I encourage all people on the Central Coast to take an interest in what we are doing and become involved in helping shape the future of our region together through your involvement and advocacy for what you would like to see us take on in the New Year. “We have also been working on rectifying legacy issues from the time of administration and the former councils, improving community consultation and input on how council operates and what projects we are involved in. “We’ve been putting in place better policies and procedures that are more in line with what the community expects. “An example of this was changing the number of objections to a DA before it would come to Council, from the egregious and excessive 50, to a more than reasonable 15.

“Next year we will face new challenges, have new opportunities and will be working diligently and collectively to deliver new projects and better services for the residents of the Central Coast and the community that we were sworn in to serve. “I firmly believe that if this council is to leave a lasting legacy for the Central Coast and provide the best possible opportunities for residents, then the single biggest issue that we can and must make progress on is the development of the Wyong Employment Zone that will result in thousands of full time, high quality, high paying local jobs, and relieve much stress on our local employment market that currently suffers far higher rates of youth unemployment than other comparable regions across the country and NSW. “This is an historic opportunity for our Council to create something that will be of generational and long lasting benefit to our region and must be acted on as soon as possible before the end of the term of this current Council.

“The community has been waiting nearly a decade for this to be done and thousands could have been employed in that time, there is no excuse for further delay and we must deliver what we can to kick start what could be the biggest employment generating project the coast has seen in decades. “It has been an honour to serve as a councillor on the Central Coast Council so far to represent you and help improve the amenity of the Central Coast, the wellbeing of our residents and visitors, and to protect, preserve and further what we all love about our region, be that the beautiful bushland and beaches or the people who live here we all count as friends and loved ones.

Source: Media release, Dec 18 Kyle MacGregor, Central Coast Council

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