Personal letters to councillors from Office of Local Government CEO Tim Hurst

FEAR NOT: The Office of Local Government says Joint Organisations are not a precursor to forced amalgamations
FEAR NOT: The Office of Local Government says Joint Organisations are not a precursor to forced amalgamations

As Nambucca Shire councillors await their personal letters from the Chief Executive Officer of the Office of Local Government (OLG), Tim Hurst, to further clarify why joining the Mid North Coast Joint Organisation would be advantageous to the shire’s community, a spokesman clarified that such letters were not unusual.

“In carrying out the business of the OLG the Chief Executive Officer regularly corresponds with councillors,” the spokesman said.

“The letter to Coffs Harbour City councillors (see link below) addressed issues raised by the council about voluntarily joining the Mid North Coast Joint Organisation.”

He said that chief among these was the long, strong history Coffs Harbour, Bellingen, Nambucca, Kempsey, and Port Macquarie-Hastings councils have of working together as part of the previous Mid North Coast Regional Organisation of Councils body (MIDROC), the Board of which comprised the mayors and general managers from each of the member councils.

MIDROC does still exist and operates apart from the JO structure.

“The Office of Local Government continues to work with the local councils to ensure a strong and successful joint organisation on the Mid North Coast so that all communities in the region can benefit from the new regional body.”

He stressed that membership of a joint organisation was voluntary and ruled out any move towards forced council mergers, which is a particular fear of some Nambucca Shire councillors.