Mayor Shields’ plans for Welling­ton

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In Part Four of a five part se­ries to share Mayor Shields’ ac­cep­tance speech to his role in full, the fol­low­ing ex­tract in­cludes his points 14 to 19 which fo­cussed on Welling­ton’s tourism, po­lice, hous­ing de­vel­op­ment in­dus­try, and CBD. Mayor Shields also shared his ideas for the fu­ture of the cy­cle track in Dubbo’s Vic­to­ria Park.

FROM Mayor Shields’ ac­cep­tance speech de­liv­ered on Septem­ber 28, 2017:

14. Welling­ton Tourism

In this newly merged Coun­cil area we must al­ways be aware of the fact that we now have the highly suc­cess­ful and vi­brant com­mu­ni­ties of the for­mer Welling­ton Shire as part of our team. So it’s im­por­tant to make sure that Welling­ton gets its fair share of Coun­cil at­ten­tion and growth that is com­ing to our re­gion.

I be­lieve that Welling­ton has a mag­nif­i­cent tourism in­dus­try that can be­come even bet­ter with the right en­cour­age­ment. To do this we will need a new tourism de­vel­op­ment plan that re­vamps the Ox­ley Mu­seum; finds a more ap­pro­pri­ate lo­ca­tion or build­ing for the Visi­tors In­for­ma­tion Cen­tre; as well as do­ing a full fea­si­bil­ity study into open­ing a Ru­ral Po­lice Mu­seum at the old Po­lice Sta­tion build­ing.

15. Welling­ton Po­lice

Welling­ton’s po­ten­tial as a tourism mecca is lim­it­less. Again, with the right en­cour­age­ment we prison com­plex needs and de­serves a 24/7 po­lice sta­tion.

16. Welling­ton Hous­ing De­vel­op­ment In­dus­try

Welling­ton also needs a new spe­cial em­pha­sis on res­i­den­tial hous­ing de­vel­op­ment.

I will be ask­ing our staff to for­mu­late a plan to di­rectly en­cour­age growth in this area and work on strate­gies to get Welling­ton build­ing again.

The town has had sig­nif­i­cant growth in Govern­ment em­ploy­ees in re­cent years, but this growth is all in vain if these em­ploy­ees are forced to live in other towns or cities.

17. Welling­ton CBD

It has been brought to my at­ten­tion that Welling­ton has a mas­ter plan for a full main street beau­ti­fi­ca­tion and that the work done so far is only part of the over­all scheme. I have a firm be­lief that we need to in­vest in Welling­ton now, oth­er­wise if we let the town de­cline it will cost ratepay­ers across our ex­panded Coun­cil area far more into the fu­ture.

Ob­vi­ously, one of the ways we can recre­ate vi­brancy in the town is work­ing out a way to fast-track the CBD beau­ti­fi­ca­tion plan. I will be ask­ing staff and Coun­cil­lors to con­sider ways to make this hap­pen.

18. Drag Strip

While Welling­ton’s tourism po­ten­tial is great, our new re­gional Coun­cil also has the op­por­tu­nity to strengthen tourism in the Dubbo area as well. The pro­posal for a Drag Strip for our city is a once-in-a-gen­er­a­tion op­por­tu­nity that the Coun­cil must be en­thu­si­as­tic about. In my new role as Mayor, I am very keen to get to­gether with the pro­po­nents in or­der to of­fer my as­sis­tance and make this ex­cit­ing propo­si­tion a re­al­ity.

19. Cy­cle Track/vic­to­ria Park, Dubbo

Our re­gion has a long and proud his­tory. Which brings me to a sig­nif­i­cant is­sue that I have only re­cently been made aware of – the cy­cle track around Number 1 Oval. I’m told by the lo­cal cy­cle club that that track is one of the old­est in Aus­tralia, and that it was the home track of the first and long time world cham­pion Bob Spears.

Nu­mer­ous gold medals can be at­trib­uted to that track; it has trained many cham­pion cy­clists. I am also told that it is one of the few tracks that is de­signed ab­so­lutely per­fectly with lit­tle main­te­nance work re­quired.

With this in mind, I op­pose any moves to move the cy­cle track. I am a sup­porter of keep­ing our lo­cal his­tory in place. I have al­ways been guided by the say­ing ‘if you don’t know where you have come from, you don’t know where you are head­ing’.

I cer­tainly con­grat­u­late our lo­cal mem­ber for ob­tain­ing a grant to re­fur­bish Vic­to­ria Park Number 1 Oval. But, with this re­fur­bish­ment, we need to go back to the draw­ing board and re­design the fa­cil­ity with the track re­main­ing in place.

We should look at all other op­tions for a full-sized cricket ground in­clud­ing a re­fur­bish­ment and up­grade of fa­cil­i­ties at ei­ther number two or three Ovals.

Next Week: in the last in­stal­ment of the Mayor’s ac­cep­tance speech, his thoughts will be in­cluded on hos­pi­tal park­ing, the or­gan­ics bin, a demo­cratic re­view com­mit­tee, and, state and fed­eral mem­bers.

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The town­ship of Welling­ton re­flected on its past this year, but Mayor Ben Shields said in his speech he be­lieves it’s “im­por­tant to make sure that Welling­ton gets its fair share of Coun­cil at­ten­tion and growth that is com­ing to our re­gion.” PHOTO:...

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