Formed in June 2015, the Forum is the Community Consultative Body (CCB) representing the views of the Berry region to Shoalhaven City Council. The goal of the Forum is to provide the community with an informed capability to influence the future of the Berry region.
The Forum Committees and Meetings
- Forum public meetings are held bi-monthly on the second Thursday and it is very encouraging that attendance has continued to vary between 60 and 80 on a regular basis.
- The Forum Committee of 12 elected members has been meeting approximately every three weeks to discuss matters affecting the Berry community. We now have a two-way conduit with Council departments, allowing requests from Council to be dealt with promptly and community feedback to be channeled appropriately.
- Three new Review Groups (Town Centre, Infrastructure and Sustainability) have been established to work on the Berry Strategic Plan focus areas and they have been meeting regularly to gather information, identify issues and establish communication channels.
Princes Highway Upgrade & Berry Bypass
Fulton Hogan has done a great job presenting on progress with the Highway at every Forum meeting and the community has been very appreciative of the efforts of Shannon Chisholm and Karen Williams, and also Ryan Whiddon of RMS, in regularly attending after hours.
Berry District Park
- The Forum established the District Park Review Group together with Council to develop a community endorsed revised Master Plan for the Berry District Park. The Park will be a core piece of infrastructure that will play a strategic role for both the town and visitors.
- A stakeholder workshop run by the Review Group in April, was successful in developing revised design solutions that would meet the majority of the needs of stakeholders and users of the site and confirmed that these uses can exist harmoniously together.
- The Review Group was chaired by James Robinson and is a showcase for cooperation between Council and community. Clr. John Wells subsequently was able to obtain Council funding for 2017/18 to undertake the detailed design and engineering work necessary to make the site shovel ready and eligible for State Government grant applications.
In addition to Forum meetings, we’ve established a quality website which relays important information and minutes of all meetings to the community, promptly and with clarity. Our regular email updates now reach more than 900 residents.
Planning & Development
In April, Stuart Coughlan and I met with the new Planning Minister, Anthony Roberts and Gareth Ward to discuss a planning loophole in the State LEP. The Minister supported our position and we are awaiting a response from the Dept. of Planning.
I would like to personally thank all Committee members for the positive co-operative manner in which they have worked as a committee.
Chairman of The Berry Forum
Treasurer’s Report 2016/17
|Balance at 1 July 2016||$1166|
|Meeting room hire||545|
|Balance at 30 June 2017||$832|