It was heartening to meet and chat to the staff and students of Congewai Public School when they visited Cessnock City Council last week.
The students sat in the Councillor's chairs in the Council Chamber and showed such enthusiasm and curiosity about how Local Government works. They asked the tough questions and shared what they'd like to see happen across the LGA. They dreamed big, with an Aquarium being one of their suggestions and a "Forest where the animals can just be themselves".
It was wonderful to host these potential future leaders, and I look forward to hosting more local school groups in the future.
Supporting local business is one of my key priorities as Mayor and I am pleased to see Council hosting more and more events that do just this.
Council will be hosting a local business networking event at the Grand Mercure Hunter Valley Gardens, Pokolbin on Friday, June 10 from 12pm to 2.30pm.
Participants will hear from keynote speaker, Carolyn Miller who will present tips for businesses to foster their audience, employees and customers through digital marketing and engagement.
I strongly encourage local businesses to come along to this event, meet like-minded business owners, and learn practical tips on how to boost their business. Tickets are just $10 and can be booked via council's website.
It's not too late to have your say on the Draft Community Strategic Plan Cessnock 2036, the Delivery Program 2022-26, and the Operational Plan and Budget 2022-23.
These are the plans that guide all that we do at council, which is why it is so important to hear from our community to be sure we have everyone's input. The success of our community relies heavily on our ability to strategically plan for the future and deliver positive outcomes for all residents.
I am pleased that council's operational plan includes an impressive $53.8 million Capital Works Program for 2022-23, $28 million of which is grant funded. In line with community feedback, local roads and pathways will receive a $27 million investment in 2022-23, and the roads maintenance budget sees a 14.3% increase to $5.8 million. A few highlights in the 2022-23 budget include the commencement of the RFS Aviation Fire Base project, the Bridges Hill to Wine Country Drive shared pathway, and the completion of the Branxton to Greta Cycleway.
I encourage local residents to visit council's website to view the plans and share their input before the consultation closes on June 3.
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