Present: 155 residents & ratepayers plus Councilor Lynne Kearney. Other councilors attending budget forum.

55/45 split of ‘out-of-towners’ and ‘township people’. Apologies received from 98 residents

The meeting was chaired by Rob McMurdo, who cited rules of conduct. Stuart Coughlan explained on the current situation. Around 30 people asked questions; these have generally been incorporated into the flow of the document.


Stuart explained roles and responsibilities, aims and functions of a CCB and the fact Berry is currently without CCB representation in the council communication process.

The Berry Alliance had previously “hosted” the CCB process, however they had relinquished this role in the interests of creating a non-aligned voice for the community and offered $1000 to help kick off the CCB (more will be needed however).

View of those present was that the community wanted a voice to Council via a CCB and improved communication on Council and other matters.

Comments on Aims and Functions

Geographic coverage from Tourist Rd in the west to 271 Watamolla Rd in the north (includes Brogers and Broughton Vale), to end of Beach Rd in east, to Devitt’s Lane and all of Back Forest Road in south – exact details will be provided when website set up.

Points made about guidelines for operation

  • Need to mobilize best resources and leverage talent in community
  • Can’t agree on everything but allow everyone opportunity to speak freely
  • No disparaging comments to individuals (play the issue not the person)
  • Unite not divide the community
  • Understand decision making process of Council
  • Provide Council with a measure of the opinions within the community
  • Community spirit, have some fun
  • Sustainability of ongoing rural industry, particularly dairying and related industry.
  • Changing demographics, needs of both older and younger citizens

Observation was made re need for more young people to participate.

Governance and Membership

Composition of Management Committee

  • Committee size to be determined when expressions of interest are all in.
  • Diversity is important – age/gender.
  • Officer positions (for 2 yrs max.) to be elected annually by the Committee.
  • Chair and Deputy Chair, Secretaries (2), Treasurer
  • There will be other opportunities for people to work on special projects/issues.

No formal membership as such; all residents and ratepayers are eligible to be on Committee, attend meetings and vote. No fees, however we will require contributions as the annual $500 from Council will not be enough to cover ongoing operating costs.


  • Regular free access to the Town Crier will be provided by Berry Alliance.
  • Six bi-monthly community forum meetings plus special meetings on specific issues
  • For effective CCB communication with the community, an active working website with submission and feedback capability via email is necessary.

Major Priority Issues

The following matters were raised in the meeting

  • Develop Strategic/Master Plan. Gareth Ward & Council have committed funds
  • Impacts of bypass, particularly in North St and KV Rd interchange precincts.
  • Specific new projects eg Adventure Playground, Equestrian facility
  • LEP rezoning changes
  • Look and feel of town eg landscaping, maintenance, impacts of reduction in catchment of Town Creek, etc.
  • Council funding constraints with building, parks, etc. (incl Town Creek)

Brief Presentations

  1. Chamber of Commerce (Anthony Colfelt)

Explained willingness to work with community.

Highest priority is commencing a strategic plan for Berry

  1. Rotary (Ken Hutt)

Explained fundraising aims and described some recent projects. Major project in early stages is the Adventures Playground – they require feedback from the community on objectives/plans.

  1. Rockfield Park (Ian Goss)                                                              

Expert advice states the proposed development has no genuine eco tourist credentials. Legal advice states the function centre is not genuinely “ancillary”. A summary of the key issues was included in the flyer provided.

  1. Mount Hay (Stuart Coughlan)

The proposed development does not comply with key sections of the LEP & DCP and will set a dangerous precedent if approved. A 200-seat function centre is being disguised as an ancillary ‘glasshouse’ to circumvent its prohibited status.  A summary of the key issues was included in the flyer provided.

  1. Equestrian Centre (Graham Sweeney on behalf of the Berry Riding Club)

Explained opportunities created by the relocation of the club from North St to Andersons Lane. Executive Plan is on councils website. RMS & Council have provided seed funding, but significant challenges ahead.

Next Steps.

  1. Council to advertise CCB application in Town Crier and South Coast Register, and then ratify formation of new CCB
  2. Working Party to meet and commence preparation work
  3. First official public meeting to be arranged for 11th June