The 2017- 2018 year was a busy one for the Town as we worked toward setting ourselves up to meet a hugely aspirational new vision and mission under a revised Strategic Community Plan.
As the CEO and Administration internally restructured the business to suit, Council continued to work with Town staff on ensuring community feedback given during the consultation to inform the plan, could come to realisation over the longer term, by supporting and endorsing key strategic documents that will guide us to meet expectations going forward. Some of these included:
Into the new financial year, we look forward to finalising and adopting a few more of these, including our first Reconciliation Action Plan, developed in collaboration with our Aboriginal Engagement Advisory Group, an Economic Development Strategy and the much anticipated Urban Forest Strategy, which will be the first strategic document fully delivered in collaboration with an engaged community working group.
In September 2017, Council took a bold step and decided to fly the rainbow flag in a symbolic display of support for our LGBTQI community, at the time of the Federal Government’s marriage equality vote.
In October, we saw for the first time in the Town’s history, a female dominant elected council, with three new members joining the team.
With the opening of Optus Stadium in January 2018, Council supported local businesses looking to capitalise on this new drawcard based in the Town, and seized the opportunity to increase patronage to our hospitality outlets with a destination campaign called Eat, Ride ‘n’ Enjoy. This message encouraged people to eat and drink in Vic Park on their way to and from the stadium, park for free at Curtin University and catch public transport to their event and enjoy all that this new local experience has to offer. Businesses were engaged to choose the campaign concept and offer special deals and discounts to stadium event ticketholders. We achieved high awareness, great feedback and ongoing interest in expanding the brand concept and opportunities connected to stadium events.
In March, we hosted the State Government’s Community Cabinet Meeting in our Council Chambers and have since worked hard to continue developing good working relationships with parliamentary members and will continue to advocate for our priority projects.
In June, Council appointed up to two ‘other persons’ as independent members to each of its four committees. These volunteers are committed people who complement each Committee’s existing skill set, and are expected to help achieve the vision and mission of the Town. They are positioned to bring a unique external perspective and subject matter expertise to the table.
Over the year, the Lathlain Precinct Redevelopment Project progressed well with Zone 3, incorporating construction of the West Coast Eagles and Wirrpanda Foundation training, administration and community facility, advancing quickly. Works remain on track for completion in early 2019. This partnership aims to set new standards in the delivery of active community recreation spaces and includes substantial long-term benefits to the community. Along with the building opening next year, preparation has been underway to engage the community on developing a much anticipated Community Benefits Strategy also in the next financial year.
On reflection, it’s certainly been a year of growth and change for staff and councillors. I wish to thank them all for always working hard and contributing positively to improve services and outcomes for our community. The leadership and culture of the organisation is at an all-time high. This can only mean many more good things are still to come as we strive to create ‘a dynamic place for everyone’.
Mayor Trevor Vaughan