Thank you to the residents of Yarrawonga who again turned up in force on Monday night to our extraordinary meeting to debate the Oaktree development. I spoke to several residents after the meeting and I fully understand that there was disappointment among many residents but, as several Councillors said during the debate, it is a tough job being a Councillor and it is impossible to please all of the people all of the time. I believe we went down a path of compromise and reached a position where everyone was a little bit annoyed. A former Mayor of Dubbo told me that if everyone is a little bit unhappy then the decision is probably a reasonable decision. The Yarrawonga residents were concerned about the style of the development and wanted the access to come from the highway. The developer upgraded the building style, added fences and added garages which addressed some of the concerns of the residents. The developer would have preferred to build according to their original application but added some components after hearing the concerns of the residents. Highway access to a parcel of land that was not adjacent to the development was always going to be problematic but our resolution asks the RMS to explore methods of solving the issue for future developments and to move the speed zone further out. As I said, no one group could say the solution was perfect but the development has been granted approval and can now go ahead.

This morning we are at the official opening of the Gulambula Bridge. This project was first conceived back in 2004 as the traffic increases along Old Mendooran Road were becoming evident. This crossing became dangerous when there was heavy rainfall and in times of flood. During salvage excavations, two intact earth ovens were uncovered. Gulambula, the Wiradjuri word for earth oven, has led to the naming of this bridge.

Congratulations to Will Jamieson who I had the pleasure of performing a left-handed shake with on Monday night. Will was awarded the Australian Scout Medallion and is a fine example of the great youth we have in Dubbo today – who will be our leaders tomorrow. To confirm that you do truly learn something new every day, I now know the entire story behind the left-handed shake that is one of the many scout traditions.

The plans for the next Tour de OROC are progressing well although the organisers are just a few logos short of the world record they are trying to obtain. Please contact David Hayes as soon as possible if you want your logo to be part of a Guinness World Record.

Councillor Mathew Dickerson

Mayor of the City of Dubbo

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