Future management model options for Stanley Park, Mount Macedon

Submissions closing on 28 September 2021, 05:00 PM

Council is seeking community feedback about proposed options for the future management of Stanley Park, Mount Macedon. 

Until 1 September 2020, there was a committee of management for Stanley Park which was made up of members of the community. Like many other community groups who are active in conservation reserves, the former committee primarily conducted environmental works such as weed control and revegetation in collaboration with Council.

This committee was a ‘Special Committee’ under section 86 of the Local Government Act 1989. However, the introduction of the new Local Government Act 2020 resulted in such committees no longer existing from 1 September 2020.

Since 1 October 2020, the park has been managed under a Memorandum of Understanding between Council and the members of the former Committee of Management. This was put in place as an interim arrangement and it is now time for Council to decide on an ongoing arrangement. 

The proposed options are:

  • Community Asset Committee
  • Advisory Committee
  • “Friends of” Stanley Park Group
  • Council managed park – no formal community involvement
  • Delegated Committee

Find out more about each of these options, including roles and responsibilities, in the sections below.

Location

Stanley Park, 15 Salisbury Road, Mount Macedon 3441  View Map

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Community asset committees are formal committees formed under the Local Government Act 2020. They have independent decision-making powers in relation to a particular community asset. These committees are made up of dedicated community members who manage recreation facilities and parks on behalf of Council.

This type of committee is required to abide by Council’s Governance Rules and other legal obligations under the Local Government Act 2020. Some powers, duties and functions can be delegated to these committees by the Chief Executive Officer.

Roles and responsibilities of the committee

Roles and responsibilities include the powers, duties and functions allocated to the Committee by Council.

They could include:

  • Managing finances allocated from Council rates
  • Park maintenance including of the toilets, picnic facilities, walking tracks and car parks
  • Fire risk management
  • Tree safety works
  • Park security
  • Bookings of park facilities
  • Development of relevant policies, park strategies, park plans and procedures
  • Community engagement and responding to community enquiries
  • Environmental works
  • Implementation of the Environmental Management Plan

Roles and responsibilities of Council

  • Carrying out any roles and responsibilities that are not delegated to the community asset committee.

The role of an Advisory Committee is to provide advice to Council on matters relevant to the committee’s Terms of Reference. They don’t have the power to act in place of Council.

Roles and responsibilities of an advisory committee

  • Offering specialised advice and assistance to Council
  • Making recommendations to Council

Roles and responsibilities of Council

  • Managing finances allocated from Council rates
  • Park maintenance including of the toilets, picnic facilities, walking tracks and car parks
  • Fire risk management
  • Tree safety works
  • Park security
  • Booking of park facilities
  • Implementation of the Environmental Management Plan (which could occur in collaboration with the committee)
  • Development of relevant policies, park strategies, park plans and procedures with input from the committee
  • Community engagement in collaboration with the committee
  • Responding to community enquiries.

A “friends of” group is run on a voluntary basis and is usually made up of members who choose to volunteer their time to assist in the maintenance and improvement of a particular area, such as a park, reserve or garden.

“Friends of” groups are usually incorporated entities with the ability to apply for funding and establish their own constitution and governance rules.

While Council can assist with formation of a “Friends groups”, they are established and administered by the community. The overall management of the group is the responsibility of the members in the group and it does not have any legal obligations under the Local Government Act 2020.

Roles and responsibilities of a ‘Friends of’ group

  • Environmental works in collaboration with Council
  • Grant applications
  • Presenting identified issues and risks to Council
  • Community talks and other volunteer programs

Roles and responsibilities of Council

  • Financial allocation
  • Park maintenance including of the toilets, picnic facilities, walking tracks and car parks
  • Fire risk management
  • Tree safety works
  • Park security
  • Booking of park facilities
  • Implementation of the Environmental Management Plan in collaboration with the ‘Friends of’ group
  • Development of relevant policies, park plans, park strategies and procedures with input from the Friends group
  • Community engagement in collaboration with the Friends group
  • Responding to community enquiries

Should the community chooses not to establish any of the other options, the reserve would default to being managed by Council.

Council would engage with the community on an individual basis in response to community enquiries. All of the roles and responsibilities set out for the other options would be roles and responsibilities of Council.

A delegated committee is a type of committee formed by Council under the Local Government Act 2020.

It must include at least two councillors and can include any other people appointed to it.

A delegated committee can be given very broad legal powers, duties and functions. Its decisions have the same effect as Council decisions.

The Council decides on the nature and extent of the powers, duties and functions which are delegated to the committee. They could include the same roles and responsibilities as those for a community asset committee, but could be much broader. However, there are some decisions that a delegated committee cannot make, such as changes to the Council Plan and Vision.

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