Message from the Shire President

With March behind us, I want to recognise the efforts of the Mingenew Turf Club in delivering another fantastic race event this year. In addition to a great crowd on the ground, I believe this year also saw the event broadcast to an international audience on the Sky Racing Channel.

Speaking of television, you may have also recently seen the Shire’s new astrotourism commercial on TV or social media. After several years of promoting our wildflowers, this year we are branching out into showcasing our night skies. The Shire’s aim is to find a way to extend our tourist season beyond the main wildflower season peak in winter/spring, and give visitors another reason to explore our Shire. There are several events planned for the coming months as well, with the first of them taking place at Yandanooka on 10 April.

This month the Shire also had a visit from the Local Government Grants Commission, the body who divide and distribute Federal funds to Local Government. They met with Councillors and staff to discuss the complex formulae they use to work out how much we receive and what we can do, as a local government, to try to maximise our share. (Things like population, location and road lengths are quite highly weighted). The best outcome is for the overall pot of money awarded to Local Government across Australia to grow – and this is something we will continue to lobby for with a Federal election likely in the next year or so.

We have also been pressing our case with Main Roads WA for more funding to go into the inland routes on the Mid West network – particularly roads like Midlands Road. Much of the regional investment has been taking place on coastal roads, and we are keen to see some of the funds make it further inland.

Following the recent election I have also written to a number of our returning, and new, State representatives to press for local, and regional, support for the next term of the WA Parliament. It is not yet clear what the make-up will mean for the ongoing local government reform process, so we will be watching this keenly.

Looking forwards, winter sport training has commenced up at the Rec Centre, and I there is plenty of anticipation around the opening night game here in Mingenew on 1 May. I wish all our teams the very best for the season to come.

– Cr Gary Cosgrove, Shire President

Transfer Station Transition Process: 12 April 2021 Changeover

The process of transitioning from our current landfill to a manned transfer station facility is nearing completion. We remain on track to shift to transfer station operations from Monday 12 April 2021. This will include:

  • Reducing the hours that the tip is open. Based on feedback from previous community surveys, the Shire will be adopting the following hours initially:
MondayClosed
Tuesday8am - 12pm
Wednesday1pm - 5pm
ThursdayClosed
Friday8am - 12pm
Saturday9am - 12pm
Sunday9am - 12pm
  • Restricting (and controlling) the type and volume of waste accepted
    • Particularly tyres and asbestos which are expensive for the Shire to manage and dispose of, and often dumped improperly
  • Separating waste streams more effectively to allow certain types of waste to be collected and recycled, rather than going to landfill
  • Charging to accept some waste types and/or introducing charges for those who are not Shire ratepayers
  • Manning the site to better monitor and manage this
    • There will be an attendant employed at the transfer station to provide direction to people about where to dump their waste

Many of our neighbouring shires have already moved to a similar model, and this process will bring Mingenew in line with modern waste management approaches and current waste management legislation. In addition to increasingly stringent environmental regulation which is making these changes necessary, we have also recently been receiving significant amounts of waste, like tyres, at the landfill.

It is acknowledged that some of this is coming from outside the Shire, because our tip is open 24/7 and free. The current lack of a control mechanism means that it is going to be the Shire (and ratepayers) that are required to pay for this waste to be properly disposed of. By transitioning to a transfer station, we will be able to better manage situations like this.
You can find more information online here or by contacting the Shire.

Astrotourism

As part of our efforts to diversify our tourism sector, and extend our tourism period beyond wildflower season, the Shire has been actively working to promote stargazing and astrotourism. You may have seen (or even attended) one of our events at Yandanooka (the next one is coming up on April 10 – click here).
There is a follow-up indigenous stargazing event planned as part of the Shore Leave Festival in May. The event will take place across the Littlewell Reserve and Mingenew Golf Course on Saturday 8 May – expect details to become available shortly here.

Samuel Phillips Park

A recent independent safety inspection of the playground equipment in Samuel Phillips Park revealed a wide range of compliance issues. Some were due to age and deterioration, others because playground safety standards have become stricter since the equipment was originally installed. Given Council’s awareness of the potential safety risks the playground represented, action needed to be taken.

Because of the cost and difficulty of bringing the equipment up to the required standard – and considering the new playgrounds being installed at Cecil Newton Park – Council has removed the play equipment. Unfortunately, because it did not meet current standards, Council was not able to sell/give away the old equipment. Had it done so, the Shire would have potentially remained liable for future injuries or incidents that it may have caused.

This leaves us with a blank canvas at Samuel Phillips Park! Council is seeking community submissions for future uses for the space that we can incorporate into our Corporate Business Plan and future budgets.

To provide feedback, please complete this online survey.

Alternatively, you can collect a paper copy from the Shire Office during business hours. The survey will close at midnight on Friday 30 April 2021.

For more information, contact Margaret Rowe, Community Development Officer on 08 9928 1102 or email cdo@mingenew.wa.gov.au.

Roadwork Updates

Following the sealing of Mingenew-Mullewa Road, the Shire will be commencing gravel resheeting works for our section of Milo Road in April. Please observe any signage and traffic control measures in the area.

Cecil Newton Park/Skate Park Project Update

With the flying fox now complete, work will be taking place through April on the skate park. This should be completed by 23 April. At the same time, the pump track has been pegged out and will start to take shape as well.

Dentist in Town

The RFDS/Karara Mining Dental Van is back in town for 12-23 April. To book, call 9928 1102 before the 12th or 0409 450 286 while the Van is in town.

Agritourism

In addition to the Shire’s recent work in astrotourism, we also held a regional agritourism workshop in Mingenew on 11 March. The event was well attended, and thanks to some engaging speakers and engaged attendees saw plenty of great discussion and ideas.

One of the key action items from the day was to keep the group together and talking about how we can do more with agriculture-based tourism in our region. As part of this process, a Facebook group has been set up to allow anyone interested to learn more and contribute. It can be found here.

ANZAC Day

The annual ANZAC Day Dawn Service will be taking place at the war memorial on Showgrounds Road from 6am on Sunday 25 April. Please contact the Mingenew CRC for more information.

Fire Season

We are now in open burning season. Restricted burning will return on 1 October 2021. Even so, please ensure you are exercising caution with any burning off that you are conducting. The DFES website has some information to help landowners.

Shire SMS Service

To improve our public communication the Shire sends out text messages for key fire, road and community-related matters. It’s easy and free to get on the list. If you would like to be added to the database, please fill in a form at the Shire office or complete one online here.

Mosquito Activity
Shire officers have been testing and treating standing water for mosquito larvae and fogging. If you are have issues with mosquitoes at your property, please let the Shire know (visit the office, call 9928 1102 or email enquiries@mingenew.wa.gov.au) so that we can investigate and treat the issue.

Council Meeting Review – March 2021

Council’s March meeting saw a range of items passed, including:

  • Adoption of the recent Bushfire Advisory Committee AGM and Local Emergency Management Committee minutes
  • Adoption of Council’s 20/21 Financial Year budget review
  • Adoption of new terms of reference for Councillors sitting on external boards/committees

For all the details, you can check the minutes on the Shire website here.

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