Singleton to represent regional voices at federal


Mayor of Singleton, Cr Sue Moore will call for leadership on post-mining land use, water security and social services when she addresses the Select Committee into Jobs for the Future in Regional Areas in Newcastle today.

Joined by Council’s Director Organisation and Community Capacity, Sharon Hutch, Cr Moore said her statement to the Senate Committee was an opportunity to directly address how Council and the Government can work together to provide the facilities and training communities need to promote jobs growth and creation, cementing regional areas like Singleton as an attractive place to live and work.

“We have long stated the benefits of our country lifestyle as reason enough to live and work in Singleton, but there are opportunities to be grasped, and challenges that need to be addressed before we can realise our potential as a leading regional economy with exceptional liveability,” she said.

“We don’t question that our community and our economy benefit enormously from the mining industry, but as the mayor of this beautiful and resource-rich part of New South Wales, my focus is always on how we can do more for our community, and what opportunities are available to deliver more prosperity for the benefit of everyone who lives here, now and into the future.

“Discussions are starting to happen and need to be happening around mining land future use, including final voids. The big questions we are asking now are about how that ought to play out, especially in terms of allocating funds for this much-needed research and planning.”

Mining won’t be the only topic of discussion for the Mayor during her address, with Council’s submission to the inquiry outlining water security and social services as key issues for the central Hunter as well.

“As an area built on agriculture and primary industries, and as NSW contends with one of the worst ever droughts on record, water security has become a fundamental issue for the people of Singleton,” Cr Moore said.

“If we want to safeguard the agricultural industry in NSW, then we need to sure up water resources that are essential to the survival of the sector. Not to mention town supply, and for other heavy industries and tourism.

“We are also eager to highlight to the Committee the lack of resources around social services, especially aged care and disability services in regional areas — Singleton simply does not have enough senior living options to cover the future needs of our community. And that means that people will need to move to other areas for the services and facilities they need. We don’t think that’s good enough.

“We require expert assistance and enough funding to establish aged care and disability service pathways, facilities and training to allow service providers and clients to remain in regions.

“Singleton Council is proud to make a submission to this very important inquiry and to represent our region to highlight to policy makers the need to better connect to regions and for policy processes to better involve the communities that have substantial influence on their own prosperity.”