Gunnedah Shire Council has agreed to waive fees and charges for two community groups pending a 28-day public consultation period.
One of the resolutions responded to a request by the Gunnedah RSL sub-Branch to waive fees for several commemorative events.
Council resolved to waive fees associated with the Vietnam Veterans’ Day, Remembrance Day, and Anzac Day services, and to endorse the establishment of an ongoing financial assistance arrangement in the form of a wavier of fees from 2024-25 onwards for these three events. This would be subject to council’s annual Operational Plan approval process.
About $6500 in fees for the hire of chairs, equipment, road closures and staff hours would be waived under the agreement for the three RSL events.
Council’s director planning and environmental services Andrew Johns said council has long-supported the sub-branch service events but in an “informal” capacity. This new arrangement would formalise the council’s continued support for the services and ensure staff were available to accommodate the events.
“Creating a budget and a definite arrangement will better support the volunteers of the Gunnedah RSL sub-Branch and support staffing and resource allocation with good lead times,” council’s October business paper stated.
Deputy mayor Rob Hooke said the proposal was a “very sensible” one moving forward.
“The RSL does an excellent job and I thoroughly support this,” he said.
Councillor Juliana McArthur enquired about the cost difference between events which ranged from $4952 for Anzac Day to just $580 for Vietnam Veterans’ Day.
Mr Johns said the Anzac Day services at Curlewis and Gunnedah involved road closures which were “not a cheap exercise”.
In a separate motion at the October meeting, council also endorsed a resolution to offset water bills for Yallambee Homes for the Aged in Gunnedah.
Council supported an allocation of $1600 to offset Yallambee’s water bills for a period of three years between July 1, 2023 and June 30, 2026.
It followed a formal request by Yallambee chair Amanda Cooper who thanked council for its previous support of the organisation and highlighted its difficult financial position.
“On previous occasions an amount was allocated to Gunnedah Homes for the Aged Yallambee,” Ms Cooper said.
“As we received no federal or state government financial support in any form to assist us with our ongoing operations, the allocation was much appreciated.”
Cr McArthur asked if there were any other similar arrangements between council and community organisations.
Mr Johns was not aware of any agreements for water charges but said council did provide support in other ways for not-for-profit organisations such as assistance with insurance.
Both of these resolutions will be on exhibition and open to public feedback until 5pm on November 15, 2023.
The resolutions can be viewed on gunnedah.nsw.gov.au under ‘council, what we do’.To order photos from this page click here