Mayor of the Dubbo Region Ben Shields has written to the Minister for Local Government, the Hon. Gabrielle Upton MP in an effort to reverse the ward system that was introduced as part of the State Government’s changes to local government in 2016 which saw the former Wellington and Dubbo City council’s merged.
“During the September 2017 election period, it came to Council’s attention that electors experienced significant confusion regarding the process for voting in a ward system and it was subject to a fair degree of criticism,” Clr Shields said.
“While Council believes that appropriate representation of all residents in the LGA is important, it also feels that the current ward system imposed at the time of the merger in not appropriate for this Council,”
“In the letter I have requested that consideration be given to the feasibility and appropriateness of amending the Local Government Act to allow a process for the creation of two wards for Dubbo Regional Council, one being the former Wellington Council area, electing two councillors, and the other being the former Dubbo City Council area electing eight Councillors,” he said.
An amendment to the Local Government Act would apply across the State so Council is seeking the support of the Member for Dubbo.
“I have included the Member for Dubbo Troy Grant in the correspondence as our local representative to seek his support to drive this change in parliament and back changes that will see the community’s concerns remedied,” Councillor Shields said.
“Dubbo Regional Council has also determined to move a motion at the 2018 Local Government Conference in regards to this request to obtain support from other councils and the Association in this regard.”
Source: Dubbo Regional Council