From Hilltops Council – John Walker

John Walker
John Walker
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If one was asked to recall what it was like to live in the Hilltops region twenty years ago in the year 2000 it would probably be difficult to define changes. Some may remember it as a more inclusive social society with less technology while others see concerns in impacts to the environment.

Whatever our individual focus it has been said that “Australians still care about quality. The country is full of intelligent, courageous people who would change it if they knew how.”

The period of time to receive public submissions on Hilltops Local Environment Plan (LEP) has closed.

I commend the thousands of residents who viewed the LEP during it’s time on exhibition and especially those who responded with feedback. These submissions present Council with valuable indicators of variables of how community members would like to see Hilltops region develop in another twenty years.

It can be said that we now live in an era of non verbal communication where by comparison of the previous twenty years human contact is being lost. This of course has been exasperated by the restrictions to movement brought on by Coronavirus but our future strategic planning is about an inclusive community.

If we are going to see proper implementation of an LEP our rural values are more aligned to the humanity and mutual respect. We value our individual space and freedom of movement and of opportunities to socialise or to share the sporting field.

The loss of aged care facilities in our region is unacceptable while we see huge developments in other metropolitan regions evolve without commensurate education, health and transport infrastructure.

While we pride ourselves with the increasing domestic tourism through good planning by businesses in places like Jugiong it needs to be supported as part of the same planning processes with public infrastructure of parking and a village sewer system to cope.

The challenge of any strategic planning is for it to remain achievable and sustainable while we sustain the true rural values we enjoy in Hilltops.

- John Walker

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