Administrator takes a broad look at Council activities

Council Administrator Rik Hart

Administrator, Rik Hart, has commented on a number of activities that have taken place recently and he has also looked ahead and how things are shaping up.

Next financial year’s Operational Plan public exhibition period has closed and it will come to the next meeting on June 29.

“About 140 submissions came in, Hart said.

He said he would have a fair bit to say about the past and present actions that have gone into the preparation of that document.

Hart then spoke about the Public Inquiry and said submissions closed on Monday, June 21.

The Public Inquiry is looking into the financial woes that led to councillors being suspended in October last year.

Hart said that he had encouraged people to put in submissions, including staff, and Council put in documents to the Inquiry which are available on Council’s website.

He has been out a bit in the past three weeks.

Hart presented the Volunteer of the Year Awards, including to Gabrielle Greiner, who was the Coast’s National Volunteer of the Year.

“It was mind-blowing, the time people put in”, he said.

“Congratulations to all, including a lot of younger people who go out of their way to do some of those jobs.

“Some people are phenomenal in what they do,” he said.

One included a 94-year-old still out and about contributing.

Along with CEO David Farmer, Hart attended a Central Coast economic breakfast meeting and he said that it was unanimous among the speakers that the Central Coast was on a growth spurt which was reflected in the population coming this way.

He has met with local MPs to discuss their concerns and continues to seek grant funds.

Also, Hart met with Darkinjung Local Aboriginal Land Council to discuss further opportunities that the Council might be able to pursue with them and to understand the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that Council has with them.

He is working through the tranche three asset sales submissions and is going out to see the sites involved so that he knows what they look like and what the issues are.

Hart also talked about some awards for Council work including flood plain works, tourism and more, including blood donations by the staff.

Council was highly commended for its Climate Change Adaptation Landform Design Study in the 2021 Floodplain Management Australia Project of the Year.

“Congratulations to the Floodplain Management Team and the Project Manager, Robert Barker, for this great project and Council’s Flooding and Drainage Engineer for their work on this study and the teams who supported them,” Hart said.

“The Highly Commended Project, Davistown and Empire Bay Climate Change Adaptation Study, aimed to address climate change and issues of sea level rise over the coming decades in these low-lying areas.

“Congratulations also to the Tourism Marketing Team who received the Judges’ Choice Award for Most Compelling tourism itinerary, Ettalong Beach, in 2021.

Other mentions in his speech included work at Umina and Ocean Beaches, flood mitigation work at Woy Woy and Umina and a visit to Gosford Musical Society.

Merilyn Vale