Geelong Advertiser - - YOUR SAY -

THE Greater Gee­long com­mu­nity has made a sig­nif­i­cant step for­ward since last year’s Com­mis­sion of In­quiry re­port.

A key rec­om­men­da­tion was the “ur­gent pri­or­ity for a 20-30-year out­come-fo­cused vi­sion and strat­egy for the City to be de­vel­oped in con­sul­ta­tion with key busi­ness, com­mu­nity and other stake­hold­ers”.

The re­port also noted that Gee­long’s growth in gross re­gional prod­uct from 2004-14 was sig­nif­i­cantly lower than Greater Bendigo, Bal­larat and Wodonga.

Gee­long was def­i­nitely in the dol­drums. With the demise of in­dus­tries such as Ford and Al­coa and malaise within coun­cil, there was a press­ing need for Gee­long to rein­vent it­self.

When the ad­min­is­tra­tors ini­ti­ated the Our Fu­ture vi­sion project, some peo­ple were dis­mis­sive or cyn­i­cal. Gee­long Sus­tain­abil­ity could see the project’s value and ea­gerly ac­cepted an in­vi­ta­tion to be­come a part­ner.

Gee­long has a tra­di­tion of bounc­ing back from knocks and its peo­ple are re­silient.

So we never doubted that given the ex­tent of com­mu­nity en­gage­ment pro­posed that the process would de­liver on its key ob­jec­tive of a shared 30-year vi­sion for our city and re­gion.

For those charged with the project, the strate­gic plan­ning process was chal­leng­ing and com­plex.

We would like to ac­knowl­edge the ded­i­cated pro­fes­sion­al­ism of Dr Simone Boer and her team. Their com­mit­ment to con­nect and en­gage with all sec­tors of our com­mu­nity in de­vel­op­ing this vi­sion must be ap­plauded.

Progress will re­quire com­mit­ted lead­er­ship, col­lab­o­ra­tive part­ner­ships and gen­uine en­gage­ment. The tran­si­tion cer­tainly won’t hap­pen un­less Gee­long res­i­dents elect rep­re­sen­ta­tives who are com­mit­ted to it.

A di­verse field of qual­ity can­di­dates stand­ing in the Oc­to­ber elec­tions will be es­sen­tial.

We will be ask­ing all can­di­dates whether they pledge their com­mit­ment to achiev­ing the new vi­sion. Vicki Per­rett, Gee­long Sus­tain­abil­ity

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