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Shoalhaven City Council tonight moved to adopt the new draft Community Engagement Policy before placing the document on public exhibition.

The draft Policy was produced by a working group of community volunteers stemming from Council’s Community Engagement Workshop held in April.

The group has worked in conjunction with Council senior staff and Councillors to produce a draft Policy outlining the engagement principles and procedures Council will follow.

The key charters of the draft Policy include –

• Enhance good governance and civic leadership within the City.
• Ensure that Council obtains a diverse range of views, opinions and ideas on the community’s needs and wants.
• Create well informed and empowered communities in the City through appropriate engagement.
• Create greater community ownership, understanding and acceptance of Council decisions.

The draft document provides Council staff with a matrix outlining the levels of engagement required for projects and policies depending on size and nature.

Staff will be required to inform, consult, involve, collaborate or empower the community dependent on the purpose, level and method of engagement.

Shoalhaven City Council Mayor, Paul Green congratulated the working group on the draft Community Engagement Policy saying he encouraged community members to make comment throughout the exhibition period.

“The draft Community Engagement Policy provides an impressive framework allowing a simplification and better understanding of the engagement process,” said Clr Green.

“Based on the principles of good governance and civic leadership, the draft Policy provides the community with a concrete understanding on the required levels of engagement and implementation of participation techniques.

“I would encourage all interested Community members to take the time to read and make comment on this very important draft Policy. Both Council staff and the community will be consulted as part of the exhibition process.”

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