This month, the Hunter JO and its Member Councils prepared a submission on the draft Hunter Regional Plan 2041. This submission was based on an analysis and synthesis of individual council feedback and submissions.
Regional plans are important strategic documents that shape State Government’s policy implementation, land use planning, and investment. These outcomes, in turn, are critical to the Hunter JO’s priority strategic themes of ‘Jobs and a Growing Economy’ and ‘Liveability’.
We work closely with our colleagues at the Department of Planning and the Environment and value their significant efforts in consolidating a high volume of thinking and feedback into the current draft Plan. Equally, it is vital that we provide constructive feedback on what local government, through the mechanism of the Hunter JO, sees are key issues that will shape the future of the Hunter.
Overall, our submission supported the objectives in the draft Plan which demonstrated high alignment with our own strategic priorities. We have identified that that the Plan’s main gaps however, lie in either silence or ambiguity on three key areas which, if not addressed, undermine the Plan’s potential to achieve its own Vision and Objectives:
- Competitive access to global markets and the importance of global connectivity for the Hunter region
- Intra-region connectivity, specifically public transport
- Clarity around governance of the document and its delivery
Collaborative regional submissions, such as this, are a key aspect for maintaining place-based leadership and united local voices within Local Government. Read the full submission here.