New arts precinct, Blueprint 100 and more at the last council meeting
It was a packed galley for the final council meeting of the year, with two massive projects on the table and a long agenda to get through before the local government shuts up shop for the festive season.
Catch up here on the major items of business.
The Tamworth Performing Arts Centre and Cultural Precinct Business Case was unanimously supported by councillors at Tuesday's council meeting.
The vote was met with resounding cheers by members of the public.
Glenn Inglis was one of many councillors who stood up in support of the business case.
"To be, or not to be," he said.
"I say, and the community says, the performing arts and cultural precinct, is to be."
This document will be used to assist council in securing co-funding from the NSW and Australian governments.
During the public exhibition period staff received 74 submissions from community members and key stakeholder groups, 70 in favour of the project.
The plan of all plans will be put to the public after garnering support at the last council meeting for the tear.
Councillors voted in favour of the draft Tamworth Regional Blueprint 100 part one and two going on public exhibition in early 2020.
Significant strategic planning was undertaken in 2019, to formulate an overarching document which tied together the range of strategic planning policies council currently has in place and those that will be developed in the future.
Councillor Juanita Wilson said to have Blueprint was “groundbreaking” for the city, and it was about “aiming high and getting it right”.
Amendment approved despite resistance
Two residents spoke up at the meeting against a planning decision to reduce lot sizes at the Oaklands Estate.
Mark Rhodes said he would not have bought into the property had he been aware that this would occur.
In the agenda for the evening, it noted that during the public consultation period all submissions received opposed the proposal.
Mitchel Hanlon, a representative for the applicant, said that the amended proposal was due to environmental planning regulations leading to a deficit.
He said despite perception that the developer should bear the costs, Mr Hanlon said they provide a service that everyone is beneficiaries such as more jobs.
The motion was carried with only one councillor opposing it.
Residents will still be able to escape to local pools and beat the heat this summer despite the tight water rules.
Tamworth South and West War Memorial Pool and Kootingal War Memorial Pool will remain open after council reviewed the opening of the pools under Level 5 water restrictions last night.
Before the vote, resident Kimberly Squires spoke on behalf of community groups and illustrated how much the pool was used.
She added that in trying times, such as the drought, having the facility open could only help public morale.
The pools will continue to operate using non-potable bore water and will remain open until there is insufficient non-potable water or the end of the 2019-2020 pool seasons.
Support for farmers
Councillor Maxwell put forward a notice of motion at the meeting requesting a motion that would allow those who own multiple properties in the Tamworth LGA and are issued separate Local Land Services rate notices to be eligible for a drought relief card for each property.
The motion was passed with unanimous support and means that property owners with two or more properties will now be eligible for a multiple drought relief cards.
The drought relief cards provide property owners with access to a free weekly allocation of 3,000L of potable water from council’s bulk water filling stations.
Future for city's icon
The future of the Big Golden Guitar was cemented with council accepting the sculpture into the Tamworth Regional Council collection as a cultural gift.
The icon will now be secured for the community as a long term asset, providing security for this important national icon and a legacy for the future of country music in Tamworth.
This donation has been made possible, through the Australian Government’s Cultural Gift Program, by the Coultan family.
A further cultural gift donation of the wax museum figurines and country music collection at the Visitor information Centre will follow in due course and this paperwork has been lodged with the program.