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Council Plan 2013–17

The Aboriginal people of the area encompassed by the City of Greater Bendigo are the Dja Dja Wurrung, Taungurung and Ngurai-illam Wurrung language groups of the Central Kulin nation. Councillors and staff pay their respects to the Traditional Owners and Elders, who continuously retain their spiritual and custodial connection to their country.

Image: Jason Tavener Photography.


Council plan 2013–2017

Executive Summary Each Council Plan commences a new chapter in the book that is ‘Greater Bendigo’. Just as in a book there is continuity with a past and a clear link to the future and the next chapter. This chapter of the Greater Bendigo story promises to provide many opportunities and challenges for our community. Bendigo is the major regional centre for north central Victoria and the third largest urban area in Victoria. It is a vibrant and culturally enriched city renowned for the lifestyle and opportunities it provides for residents and visitors. Greater Bendigo has a population forecasted to be 109,199 in 2013. Our continued rapid population growth, that is expected to increase our population by more than 36,000 in the next 20 years, provides both challenges and opportunities for the City of Greater Bendigo. Opportunities because the increasing population is evidence of confidence in the bright future of our Greater Bendigo, it means more services will be provided to meet the population growth; more employment happens as many jobs are now about supplying services to people, and the municipality can sustain more diverse facilities and services; Challenges because such a large and rapid population increase places consequent demands on future planning and infrastructure development and maintenance appropriate to meet the needs of the residents and workforce. The changing face of the City will, in itself be a challenge that people who have lived here a long time will need to adjust to. Some things cannot remain the same but refusing to adapt to the increasing population is not an option either. These significant changes are an important reason that the City of Greater Bendigo commissions a wide range of research and other professional advice to enable Councillors and staff to make well-informed, economically sound and sustainable decisions for the future. In the period ahead, Council is supporting significant future planning, especially with reference to residential and transport infrastructure and learning and employment opportunities. A wide range of information and data are being used to inform these major decisions that will affect the nature of our city. Council has made a commitment to conduct diverse and broad community consultation at all stages in the development of new strategies to add to the body of advice.

The long term view taken by this Council, and set out in this Council Plan, has two main themes: the first is a strong undertaking to complete detailed planning in important areas including transport, residential and economic development in preparation for the continued increase in population. The second theme is the need for consolidation and concentration on asset maintenance, following a period where there have been a number of major new initiatives. Completing these and an emphasis on maintaining existing maintenance and essential infrastructure is paramount in the next period. Council has also made a strong commitment to ongoing resource efficiency, especially in areas such as water, waste and energy. The region must cope with and adapt to changing weather patterns. A secure water-supply for an increased population is important, as is waste reduction and efficient waste management. Agricultural areas will be further challenged by dryness and increasing temperatures. Many people in our community expect the Council to be leaders in role-modelling practices that reduce our use of resources of all kinds. The Council Plan enables directors and managers to plan staffing budgets and staff workloads. It is the basis of major periodic reporting to Council and the community. Council recognises it has a responsibility to keep community members informed about its intentions and activities. The Council Plan is explicit in outlining the planned community engagement activities in the future and it expresses the benchmarks that have been agreed as indicators of these objectives having been met.



Council Vision Our residents can live healthy and satisfying lives in our vibrant City and region, confident in its growth and future. This Council Plan outlines how the Greater Bendigo vision for the future will be achieved through the delivery of strategies, projects and services in the period 2013–2017.

Council Purpose and Values Councillors have made a commitment in their Code of Conduct to working and leading together in: • • • • • • • • • • •

Making informed, balanced and objective decisions Acting honestly Taking responsible financial decisions Ensuring good governance Being inclusive in their activities and sharing information with others Learning from each other Respecting each other’s undertakings Being respectful in their interactions with others Communicating clearly about decisions that have been made Fulfilling their undertakings and being clear when this is not possible Working positively with the media to ensure community members are provided with accurate information

Staff Organisational Values Our core values are aspiring to quality and achievement in everything we do by: • Embracing challenges • Encouraging and respecting each other • Nurturing creativity and diversity to make a difference in our community 2

About Greater Bendigo The City of Bendigo is located in the geographic centre of Victoria; about 90 minutes drive north of Melbourne. Greater Bendigo has a population of over 104,000 and covers almost 3,000 square kilometres of the central Victorian landscape, including smaller towns and villages such as Heathcote, Axedale, Huntly, Marong, Elmore, Goornong, Neilborough, Sebastian, Woodvale, Raywood, Mia Mia and Redesdale. The Aboriginal people of the area are the Dja Dja Wurrung, Taungurung and Gurai-illam Wurrung language groups of the Central Kulin nation. Traditional Owners and Elders continuously retain their spiritual and custodial connection to their country. Nationally, most regional cities are experiencing rapid growth. There are many advantages in terms of employment, cost of living and quality of life that attract people to settle in these centres. In responding to this trend the State Government has provided some significant support to assist with the development of infrastructure through the Regional Cities Victoria initiative. The City of Greater Bendigo is recognised widely as a thriving centre of growing sophistication and importance as a destination to settle, visit or conduct a business or industry, all reflecting the strength of Bendigo’s economy – diversity. Greater Bendigo is experiencing growth at a rate faster than the State average, and this rate of growth is expected to continue. The ageing population and the implications of this have been widely anticipated across many local government settings, but unlike many other locations, Greater Bendigo is also experiencing a population ‘hump’ in the larger than expected proportion of the population who are young adults. This is a fortunate situation for the future in that the anticipated population growth will be likely to ensure its economic growth, sustainability and vibrancy as a regional centre into the future. Greater Bendigo has a diverse and progressive manufacturing industry base and this has ensured its resilience in recent times of economic challenge. But a great deal of advocacy is being undertaken to ensure Greater Bendigo is best placed to take advantage of new developments and funding opportunities to ensure the vitality and sustainability of the whole municipality. This work will continue to be an important role for Councillors and senior staff members. Greater Bendigo Councillors and staff also play a central

role in advocacy for future developments across the Loddon-Mallee region. The revised Regional Strategic Plan provides strong guidance for all the councils. Greater Bendigo enjoys close proximity to the surrounding Box Ironbark forests of central Victoria. The Box Ironbark forest on public and private land continues to make a significant contribution to the natural heritage of Greater Bendigo. In parallel to the challenges being experienced by many growing urban centres, there is a tension between the need to plan for population growth and also to preserve this unique asset. Bendigo’s location as a ‘city in a forest’ is a major consideration in planning for the future, both in terms of the need to protect this unique asset, but also with regards emergency preparedness in managing and mitigating bushfire hazard to residents and planning future emergency responses, where needed. Detailed planning is essential to ensure the best balance is achieved. The area’s rich and diverse heritage is evident in the architecture of the city and many of the small towns of the municipality. This in turn provides a uniqueness which draws an increasing number of visitors to the area from Victoria, Australia and overseas. A number of significant initiatives have been endorsed by Council in recent years, including redevelopment of the library, provision of a multi-storey car-park, extension of the Bendigo Art Gallery, and provision of and re-development of a number of sports grounds and facilities. These, along with other major projects that are underway or in the planning stages, including the Community Theatre complex and development of the aquatic facility at Kangaroo Flat, will provide the facilities required for a growing, sophisticated City and region.



Above (from left to right): Cr Rod Fyffe, Cr Barry Lyons, Cr Peter Cox, Cr Elise Chapman, Mayor Cr Lisa Ruffell, Cr James Williams, Cr Mark Weragoda, Cr Helen Leach and Cr Rod Campbell.

Councillors Whipstick Ward Localities include: Ascot, Avonmore, Bagshot, Bagshot North, Barnadown, Bendigo, California Gully, Drummartin, Eaglehawk, Eaglehawk North, East Bendigo, Elmore, Epsom, Fosterville, Goornong, Hunter, Huntly, North Ironbark, Jackass Flat, Kamarooka, Long Gully, Neilborough, North Bendigo, Raywood, Sebastian, Wellsford, Whipstick, White Hills, Woodvale. Cr Lisa Ruffell – Mayor 2012–2013 Phone: 5434 6206 • Mobile: 0429 946 171 Email: Cr Peter Cox 5434 6189 • Mobile: 0427 318 490 Email:

 Raywood

 Neilborough Sebastian

 Goornong

 Huntly  Myers Flat  Marong

 Maiden Gully

d Ward wood Lockwoo  Lockwood

 Axedale Strathfieldsaye Mandurang

Eppalock Ward

 Ravenswood

Cr James Williams 5434 6208 • Mobile: 0427 211 677 Email:


 Elmore

tick Ward stick Whips Whip

 Costerfield

 Heathcote

 Mia Mia  Redesdale

Lockwood Ward

Eppalock Ward

Localities include: Big Hill, Golden Gully, Golden Square, Harcourt North, Kangaroo Flat, Leichardt, Lockwood, Lockwood South, Maiden Gully, Mandurang, Mandurang South, Marong, Myers Flat, Quarry Hill, Ravenswood, Sailors Gully, Sedgwick, Shelbourne, Spring Gully, West Bendigo, Wilsons Hill.

Localities include: Argyle, Axe Creek, Axedale, Bendigo, Costerfield, Derrinal, East Bendigo, Emu Creek, Eppalock, Flora Hill, Heathcote, Junortoun, Kennington, Kimbolton, Knowsley, Ladys Pass, Longlea, Lyal, Mia Mia, Mount Camel, Myrtle Creek, Redcastle, Redesdale, Strathdale, Strathfieldsaye, Tooleen.

Cr Rod Fyffe Phone: 5443 7673 • Mobile: 0419 874 015 Email:

Cr Rod Campbell Phone: 5434 6203 • Mobile: 0427 514 429 Email:

Cr Barry Lyons Phone: 5434 6215 • Mobile: 0429 292 084 Email:

Cr Mark Weragoda Phone: 5434 6192 • Mobile: 0400 363 586 Email:

Cr Elise Chapman Phone: 5434 6193 • Mobile: 0418 330 289 Email:

Cr Helen Leach Phone: 5434 6190 • Mobile: 0419 549 574 Email:

Senior Leadership Team Craig Niemann

Darren Fuzzard

Chief Executive Officer

Director Presentation and Assets

Bachelor of Business (Local Govt), Master of Business Administration.

Bachelor of Engineering (Civil Engineering), Graduate Diploma of Management

Craig joined the City of Greater Bendigo in October 2005 when he was appointed as Director of Organisation Support. He was appointed Chief Executive Officer in December 2007.

Darren was appointed as Director Presentation and Assets in January 2011 following almost five years as DirectorOperations at the Loddon Shire Council.

Prue Mansfield Stan Liacos

Director Planning and Development

Director City Futures

Diploma of Occupational Therapy, Graduate Diploma of Organisation Behaviour.

Bachelor of Applied Science (Planning), Graduate Diploma of Business Management, Master of Marketing

Stan joined the City of Greater Bendigo in January 2006. He has a background in Local Government both locally and internationally.

Prue has extensive executive experience in social planning, economic development and land use planning at both the local and regional level.

Pauline Gordon Director Community Wellbeing

Marg Allan Director Organisation Support

Associate Diploma in Applied Social Science, Diploma Company Directors

Bachelor of Business (Local Govt), Graduate Diploma of Public Policy, Master of Public Policy and Governance.

Pauline has held the roles of Director Community Services (Programs) and Regional Manager Creative Communities.

Marg Allan has extensive experience in Local Government including governance practices, organisation development, financial management and strategic planning.

Below (from left to right): Marg Allan, Darren Fuzzard, Pauline Gordon, Stan Liacos, Prue Mansfield and Craig Niemann.



The Purpose of the Council Plan The Council Plan is one of the most important documents the Council produces. It both takes advice from the community about their priorities and expectations and provides information back to the community about the major direction the Councillors have chosen to take in the next four years. By law, each Council must prepare a Council Plan at the commencement of its term and review the Plan at least annually. The Council Plan sets out the long term view of where the Council wants to be during its term, the Vision, and a number of Values which will underpin all the things it does. The main document outlines the philosophy, key directions and strategic objectives that have been chosen by Council to provide guidance for the fouryear period 2013–2017. The 2013–2014 action plan sets out what new priorities and actions have been agreed upon. A new action plan will be prepared each year but the strategic objectives will remain constant.


The role of Council Each Council term does not and cannot commence with a ‘blank slate’. A range of information is used to assist with planning and decision-making about what new and continuing activities are important and what can be accommodated in the available budget. This advice to Council comes from four sources: 1. Federal and State data and related priorities 2. Current and previous Council priorities and decisions including adopted plans and strategies 3. Local evidence and community engagement feedback 4. Professional advice from City of Greater Bendigo staff. Developing a new Council Plan is a big task, which is iterative in nature. Each potential decision must be considered with reference to the agreed priorities and directions and budget availability.

Community input into the Council Plan Community engagement is ‘…any process that involves the community in problem-solving or decision-making. Community engagement uses community input to make better decisions.’ Community engagement is playing an increasingly important part in the development of a range of new City of Greater Bendigo strategies and plans, including this new Council Plan for 2013–2017. In this Plan, community information has informed decision-making about the key directions, or strategic objectives and the actions that have been prioritised for the first year. Community engagement results that have contributed to the Council Plan took many forms, and included:

To provide broad input • The Bendigo-Loddon Regional Strategic Plan (Southern Region). The Greater Bendigo 2036 Community Plan. • The Community Plans developed by 11 small towns and 6 neighbourhoods across Greater Bendigo. • Results from the Youth Survey 2012. • Results from the 2011 Bendigo Wellbeing Survey. • Results from the 2011–12 Aged and Disability Services Review. • 2012 Statewide Local Government Community Satisfaction Survey, benchmarked against other Councils. 400 people were interviewed. • Customer request analysis: more than 30,000 requests annually.

To provide input into the Council Plan Specifically • Reflective feedback from Councillors at the end of the previous term and a series of planning sessions and a workshop with the Councillors were conducted specifically to develop the first draft. • Two specially convened Community Workshops. • Discussions in newspapers, on the web, Twitter and Facebook to contribute ideas.

To get comments on first draft Council Plan • Community consultations and opportunities at ‘Shopfront’ for both Council Plan and the updated Municipal Public Health and Wellbeing Plan (throughout February). • Newspaper page (last Tuesday of each month). • Website, with questions to respond to Facebook and Twitter (interactive with specific questions posed). • Councillors’ Listening Posts. • Discussion at advisory committees happening in the timeframe.

To get comments on the final draft Council Plan • The draft was available for formal submissions from the public for 28 days during April 2013. Submitters were invited to make a verbal presentation. 7


The Purpose of the Council Plan


The following diagram illustrates the relationship between the Council Plan and other major City of Greater Bendigo documents and the role of community engagement strategies in informing the development of these documents.

City of Greater Bendigo Corporate Planning and Reporting Framework Engagement

Action Planning

Resource Planning


Community Plans

Community Engagement Framework 1. Deliberate Consultation Activities

– Greater Bendigo 2036 – Small Towns and Neighbourhood Plans

Council Plan

Long Term Financial and Workforce Plan (Strategic Resource Plan)

Annual Report to the Community

2. Communications and Media 3. Customer Service Requests

CoGB Strategies and Plans

Report to Councillors on achievements in strategies

4. Small Towns 5. Individual Contacts with Staff/Councillors

Note: Lighter shades are for “internal only” documents.

Council Plan Annual Actions

Council Budget including Annual Capital Expenditure

Report to Councillors on progress against Annual Actions and Budget

Service Plans

Unit Budget

Progress report to Director

Individual Work Plans

Progress report to Supervisor

Council’s Planning and Reporting Framework is underpinned by Federal, State and regional strategic plans, policies and legislation.




Theme 1:

Planning for growth During this term Council has made a strong commitment to significant planning work to develop detailed and long term plans around integrated transport and future residential needs. This enables Greater Bendigo to plan for the future and present compelling arguments to the State and Federal Governments for funding to deliver on the plans, especially major infrastructure items. The completion of a number of major projects, identified in previous planning work, is also a high priority. These strategies ensure Greater Bendigo adapts to the needs of a growing and increasingly diverse population smoothly and positively.

Challenges and Opportunities • Greater Bendigo is the largest Council in the Loddon Mallee region, and Bendigo’s role as the regional capital is likely to increase. • We expect a significant and rapid increase in population; this will provide both opportunities and challenges. • We are challenged to ensure sufficient growth in housing availability, education and employment opportunities while retaining our liveability and attraction for people of all age groups.


“Contain our urban growth boundaries.” “Consider aged people and those with disabilities when planning and building.” “Better regional connectivity.” “Keep trucks out of the CBD.”


• A significant amount of public investment guided by the Bendigo CBD Plan, has ensured the vibrancy and attraction of the city to businesses, residents and visitors. • Lobbying and advocacy will remain important to ensure we retain our regional competitiveness and take advantage of opportunities for future development and sustainability of the region. • Future planning and investment in major transformative projects which will serve the entire region as it grows and changes is essential. • Prudent financial management is critical to the long term viability and sustainability of the City. • Financial responsibility is heightened within the current Federal and State Government policy environment where costs are passed on to local government in the forms of reduced grants and/or cost-shifting. • There are competing demands for funding to plan for growth, maintain the existing infrastructure to safe and acceptable standards and meet increasing community needs and aspirations.

Strategic Objectives and 2013–2014 Actions 1.1 Our City undertakes successful lobbying and maintains its excellent reputation.

1.3 Our quality of life is maintained as our City’s population and economy grows.

1.1.1 Maintain strong and positive relationships with State and Federal Government politicians and departments.

1.3.1 Complete the Residential Development Strategy Review, encompassing the urban growth boundary, new growth areas, housing diversity and medium density infill residential options.

1.1.2 Lobby political leaders to secure external funding for key priority projects and services, especially in the lead up to the Federal and State Government elections. 1.1.3 Enhance the reputation and profile of Greater Bendigo and the region through effective promotion.

1.2 Significant projects that will transform the City over time are completed as planned. 1.2.1 Complete the Art Gallery extension project and launch the new exhibition spaces. 1.2.2 Re-open the Bendigo Library redevelopment as an integrated community facility.

1.3.2 Collect, understand and communicate a range of current population information to inform the development of strategies that improve the quality of life of residents, including completing the 2nd Community Wellbeing Survey. 1.3.3 Lobby Federal and State Government for funding to ensure access to 15 hours per week of pre-school for every four year old. 1.3.4 Lobby Federal and State Government for required infrastructure to be in place as our community grows.

1.2.3 Continue development of the Community Theatre project by working with DEECD and BSSC to achieve a mutually agreed name, construction program and budget that encompasses streetscape / public realm design and documentation. 1.2.4 Continue planning for the Kangaroo Flat Aquatic Centre by completing schematic design and documentation and lodge planning permit and funding submissions. 1.2.5 Complete the Hospital Precinct Structure Plan and commence implementation. 1.2.6 Work collaboratively with the Victorian Government to establish a Steering Group of development partners to help leverage maximum economic and social benefits arising from the new hospital development project. 1.2.7 Continue planning for Bendigo Airport redevelopment (airport and business park) by finalising the Planning Scheme Amendment and lodging funding submissions. 1.2.8 Continue implementation of Bendigo Botanical Gardens Masterplan including further upgrade of the heritage gardens, commencing development of the contemporary gardens and upgrading the play space. 1.2.9 Progress implementation of the Canterbury Gardens Masterplan through construction of Central Activity Area. 1.2.10 Progress the Marong Business Park by lodging the Planning Scheme Amendment documentation. 1.2.11 Progress the Marong Business Park Planning Scheme Amendment through exhibition.

1.4 Our communities have the space and facilities they need for future growth. 1.4.1 Contribute to the Regional Growth Plan & Regional City Strategy being led by Regional Development Victoria. 1.4.2 Implement the Eaglehawk Structure Plan Planning Scheme Amendment. 1.4.3 Implement the Bendigo Landscape Project – Big Hill & Mandurang Valley Significant Landscape Overlay Planning Scheme Amendment. 11


Theme 2:

Liveability When people in Bendigo describe it as being very liveable, they use phrases such as, it is easy to get around, it is safe, it is affordable, and there is good access to health and education, and services for people who need help. There are choices in activities, education, housing and entertainment. And people still say ‘Hello’ in the street. These are important features of the community to strengthen as Greater Bendigo grows and changes.


Challenges and Opportunities • Community members’ increasing expectations and social values about what Council services may be provided, especially in the areas of social support services.

“Make Greater Bendigo a point of difference – it could be an innovation centre in Australia.” “Invest in programs that create the opportunity for social interaction.” “Open spaces should grow in relation to residential growth.” “Develop and extend cycle lanes with good continuity.” “Encourage creativity and cultural diversity.”


• Council is reviewing its role in direct service provision in a number of areas including children’s services and aged care. • We have a higher than average proportion of young families, and an increasing number of older residents. • Access to high speed internet services is as much a business necessity as it is a social asset. • Fair access to services is a guiding principle. • Supporting community members’ opportunities for connecting and celebrating diversity is fundamental to community wellbeing. • Council has a role in strategies that will improve the health and wellbeing of our population over time. We use a range of validated evidence to inform decision-making.

Strategic Objectives and 2013–2014 Actions 2.1 People feel connected to their community. 2.1.1 Complete the review of Community Plans for Redesdale, Raywood, Axedale and Marong. 2.1.2 Support community events in public spaces and parks, including specific actions to include isolated rural residents and Aboriginal and culturally diverse community members in local activities. 2.1.3 Encourage and acknowledge volunteers by working with the Volunteer Resource Centre and community committees to promote, recruit, build capacity and celebrate the achievements of volunteers and committees. 2.1.4 Develop a program for Council’s consideration that supports residents who wish to green their streets.

2.2 Our communities have active and vibrant places in which to meet. 2.2.1 Investigate the implications of changing retail patterns and possible Council actions in response. 2.2.2 Improve the vitality of the Hargreaves Mall and other activity centres by the Hargreaves Mall Activation Program and other events. 2.2.3 Work in partnership with our small towns and districts to upgrade services and facilities, in line with priorities in Small Town Plans, and to identify the conditions and changes necessary for the small towns to sustain and grow.

2.1.5 Lobby Federal / State Government for funding to enable people with a disability and residents in outlying districts to access suitable transport options and/or services.

2.3 Open space and recreation facilities are well designed, extensively used and well maintained. 2.3.1 Update the Aquatic Strategy 2009, including pool management models. 2.3.2 Undertake agreed open space improvements including Queen Elizabeth Oval and Epsom/Huntly Recreation Reserve. 2.3.3 Complete the Rosalind Park Masterplan. 2.3.4 Continue to support major recreational organisations to increase their financial independence. 2.3.5 Complete construction of the splash park at Long Gully. 2.3.6 Continue implementation of the Play Space Strategy including works at Strathfieldsaye Recreation Reserve (district), Peppercorn Reserve White Hills (local) and McIvor Forest Reserve Junortoun (local). 2.3.7 Complete detailed design and documentation for Barrack Reserve. 2.3.8 Develop a pro-active Tree Management and Maintenance Contract for trees managed by the City.



2.5 Our community’s health and wellbeing improves over time. 2.5.1 Implement the agreed priorities of the Health and Wellbeing Plan, including supporting the Mental Health project in partnership with La Trobe University. 2.5.2 Update the Active and Healthy Communities Framework to determine future community priorities. 2.5.3 Continue to implement and evaluate the “Healthy Together” program.

2.4 More people are confident to walk and cycle more often. 2.4.1 Continue to progress cycle and walking path links and footpaths to commercial centres, recreation facilities and schools. 2.4.2 Maintain investment in improving universal access for everyone to buildings, paths and crossings. 2.4.3 Continue the extension of the O’Keefe Rail Trail to Heathcote. 14

2.5.4 Update the Domestic Animal Management Plan for 2012–2016 and implement agreed priorities. 2.5.5 Implement the Violence Prevention, Bendigo Safe Communities and Community Access and Inclusion Plans. 2.5.6 Build community safety through environmental health, building and animal services, promotions and programs.

2.6 Services and programs support all people to live in our community. 2.6.1 Implement the agreed outcomes of the review into Council’s role in childcare and preschool support. 2.6.2 Implement 3 agreed priority initiatives from the Youth Strategy. 2.6.3 Implement the agreed recommendations of the Aged & Disability Services Review. 2.6.4 Review the City’s role in delivery of Early Years Services, including Maternal & Child Health and immunisation. 2.6.5 Work with other agencies to investigate emergency and social housing models to improve the emergency housing stock in Greater Bendigo, focussing on Dower Park and Heathcote.

2.7 Greater Bendigo is known for its vibrant and diverse arts and culture scene. 2.7.1 Continue to develop the reputation of the Bendigo Art Gallery as a national leader in contemporary art and exhibitions. 2.7.2 Develop and commence implementation of the Festive Season Strategy. 2.7.3 Support “Mic Up Productions” to deliver accessible and inclusive alcohol, drug and smoke free events for young people. 2.7.4 Celebrate community diversity by creating and promoting opportunities for participation in diverse arts and cultural activities across the municipality. 2.7.5 Continue to deliver quality performing arts programming and activities to the central Victorian region. 2.7.6 Conserve, interpret and increase activity and use of important Bendigo venues, including the Bendigo Town Hall and The Capital.



Theme 3:

Productivity Productivity is about encouraging innovation and diversity in education, commerce and industry. It is about responding to new economic opportunities, including making sure our local workforce is appropriately skilled. It involves creating the opportunity for all people to be actively employed. It is establishing the environment for investment, and making sure the infrastructure is in place to support economic activity.


Challenges and Opportunities • The diversity of our economy and manufacturing sectors are major factors in our economic sustainability.

“Support and encourage growing and retaining small businesses.” “Industry and business will improve employment and will allow more people to gain self-worth.” “Plan for it and make some hard decisions now.” “Invest in our own population through a range of training and education programs.”


• Supporting businesses which attract visitors, residents and workers continues to be a high priority. • The expected advantages brought about by NBN access in Greater Bendigo will facilitate further expansion of knowledge-based employment opportunities. • Essential infrastructure, footpaths, drainage, well built and maintained roads are essential for economic and social purposes. • Major financial decisions are warranted to accommodate the future growth of the city and maintain its appeal as a place to live, work and visit. • The links between the education sectors and employment opportunities are significant, especially in relation to young people’s opportunities. • Greater Bendigo must continue to provide attractions to a diverse range of visitors.

Strategic Objectives and 2013–2014 Actions 3.1 Our long-term planning enables the movement of people and freight that is efficient and healthy for individuals and the environment. 3.1.1 Complete the Integrated Transport & Land Use Strategy, encompassing private transport; public transport logistics and freight; impact on health; integration and development, and commence implementation of agreed development tasks. 3.1.2 Lobby State and Federal Government for ongoing investment in major transport routes and increased public transport services.

3.2 A diverse, strong and growing economy supports community resilience. 3.2.1 Complete the review of the Economic Development Strategy and implement agreed priorities including lobbying State Government for more jobs to be located in the Bendigo region. 3.2.2 Lobby State and Federal Government to improve increased biosecurity and water security and secure the continued viability of the agricultural sector, including protecting productive agricultural and intensive agricultural activities. 3.2.3 Effectively communicate the changes to the Planning System implemented by the State Government designed to facilitate better outcomes and speedier granting of planning permits.

3.3 Our City is known for creativity, innovation and vitality. 3.3.1 Promote Bendigo as a centre for innovation through the Bendigo Inventor Awards. 3.3.2 Build community understanding of National Broadband Network’s potential, including opportunities for knowledge based businesses in small towns.

3.4 Tourism and major events are a significant contributor to our economy. 3.4.1 Continue to grow the Bendigo region as a major visitor destination, through the Regional Tourism Board and Bendigo Tourism. 3.4.2 Develop a “family friendly” marketing campaign for a range of family-oriented tourism activities. 3.4.3 Broaden the experiences available to visitors and locals through development of walking tours and apps on cultural activities.

3.5 Employers can attract an appropriately skilled workforce and education leads to employment. 3.5.1 Continue the Goldfields Horizons Project to provide better links between school education and employment needs. 3.5.2 Support the universities to expand their offerings in identified local priority areas.

3.4.4 Market cycling and walking experiences based on the O’Keefe Rail Trail and Goldfields Track. 3.4.5 Attract, retain and nurture major events that deliver substantial economic, promotional and social benefit for Greater Bendigo. 3.4.6 In partnership with relevant businesses, develop strategies which build the mutual benefits between tourism and retail. 17


Theme 4:

Sustainability Sustainability means making good use of all our resources, so that the decisions made today do not limit the choices of future generations. Many people think of sustainability as the ongoing viability of natural systems (air, water, energy, biodiversity) in a balanced relationship with human life. In the context of this Council Plan, built and natural assets and finances must also be managed in a way that is viable into the future. A changing climate threatens our future prosperity, environment and development. Without strong action globally, and at home, the projected impacts and costs of the changing weather patterns are significant. Action includes reducing the consumption of resources, especially carbon fuels, reducing waste and generating and celebrating new industries which create positive outcomes.


“Improve manufacturing waste management.” “We need to look to future, beyond the immediate need.” “Have a zero waste vision.” “Develop a future energy plan for Bendigo.” “Rules to allow Bendigo to remain a ‘city in the forest.’”


Challenges and Opportunities • An increase in extreme weather events and increasing temperature are already significantly impacting on Council planning and emergency preparedness. • Councils are expected to be leaders and role models in policy aimed at climate adaptation and reducing resource use. • Implementation and administration of newly introduced legislation, such as the Fire Services Levy, impacts on the work and resources of Council. • Reducing waste to landfill has become a very important priority because of the increasing costs and environmental obligations associated with waste disposal. • Keeping our assets and infrastructure in good repair is an important principle. • We will continue to value our unique natural and built environment assets.

Strategic Objectives and 2013–2014 Actions 4.1 Existing infrastructure and assets are well maintained and appropriately upgraded to sustain them for future generations. 4.1.1 Maintain investment in renewal of existing infrastructure assets so they remain safe, sound and fit for purpose. 4.1.2 Maintain increased investment in rural roads. 4.1.3 Maintain increased investment in drainage. 4.1.4 Increase investment in renewal of swimming pools. 4.1.5 Consider, and implement where appropriate, Stage 1 of the security audit on Council buildings. 4.1.6 Finalise the Building Asset Management Plan to provide strategic direction to manage Council’s significant property portfolio. 4.1.7 Conduct a review of the Fire Prevention responsibilities and delivery. 4.1.8 Better protect properties at risk of flood by starting the Planning Scheme Amendment process to implement the Bendigo Flood Study. 4.1.9 Implement Mitchell Street streetscape works to improve facilities for pedestrians, public transport users and traders. 4.1.10 Implement the next stage of the East Bendigo Link Road (Roh’s Road) to improve freight movements.

4.3 Continue to build the capacity of our community to reduce the impact of changing weather on communities and individuals. 4.3.1 Implement a bulk change of street lights to energy efficient globes as part of the Lighting the Regions project. 4.3.2 Continue to deliver “Creating a Climate Resilient Southern Loddon Mallee” project. 4.3.3 Lobby State Government for gas supply to Heathcote and Marong. 4.3.4 Implement energy efficient works in City of Greater Bendigo buildings.

4.2 Reduce all waste to landfill 4.2.1 Commence implementation of agreed priorities in the Waste & Resources Management Strategy encompassing: reducing resource consumption, a local landfill decision, reducing waste to landfill and converting waste to resources.

4.4 Strengthen the links between Greater Bendigo’s past and future by protection and contemporary re-use of our heritage assets. 4.4.1 Complete the White Hills Heritage Study and commence the Planning Scheme Amendment. 4.4.2 Promote good contemporary design in heritage places through the Heritage Awards. 19


Theme 5:

Good governance and decision making Good governance is the leadership shown by the Council, to assure the community that there is transparent and well-informed decision-making for the long term, sound management of resources, diverse and effective engagement with community members, and the flexibility to plan for and manage emerging issues, as well as respond to immediate problems.

Challenges and Opportunities • People increasingly want to take an active part in consultation about each phase of the development of new Council initiatives, strategies, masterplans and service reviews. • An engaged community is a strength that enables significant partnerships and service delivery opportunities to counter government funding shortfalls. • Community engagement opportunities need to keep pace with changing use of technology. • State Government and community have high expectations with regards reporting on performance and audit outcomes, especially with regards the long term impact of strategies on people’s lives and wellbeing.


“Maintain responsible budgeting.” “When you consult – do what you said would be done.”


• The future financial liability associated with the Superannuation Defined Benefits Scheme shortfall remains unresolved and unclear. • Being prepared to manage risk and emergencies is important. • Detailed workforce planning and development is undertaken to ensure the City has the right number of people in place with the right skills able to deliver the right outcomes, all the time. • Organisations such as the City of Greater Bendigo (and other Councils) face challenges related to a changing industrial relations arena, the ageing of the general workforce, skill and talent shortages, and different generational motivators, corresponding to attraction and retention issues.

Strategic Objectives and 2013–2014 Actions 5.1 Council demonstrates good governance and leadership. 5.1.1 Consider the recommendations of the Independent Review 2013 and implement the agreed actions. 5.1.2 Continue to lobby for a change in the superannuation legislation, to minimise the impacts of the Defined Benefits Scheme. Below (Independent Review Committee Members, from left to right): Nigel McGuckian, Cr James Williams, Rod Hanson, Mayor Cr Lisa Ruffell, Cr Peter Cox and Margaret O’Rourke.

5.3 We engage effectively and often with our communities, through excellent customer service and by providing information to enable people to take part in decisions about the changes. 5.3.1 Review the Community Engagement Policy and Framework 2011, especially with regards the use of social media. 5.3.2 Continue to implement the Community Engagement Framework to guide engagement opportunities, timetables and feedback throughout strategy and policy development and service reviews.

5.2 The financial and physical resources of the organisation are managed efficiently and well. 5.2.1 Implement the Surplus Property Disposal Plan. 5.2.2 Effectively communicate the changes to the collection process for the State Government Victorian Fire Services Levy.

5.3.3 Implement the Customer Service Charter and continue to improve satisfaction with customer service.

5.4 Organisational workforce and business system development is undertaken to support staff to be highly productive. 5.4.1 Negotiate the 2013 Enterprise Agreement.

5.2.3 Thoroughly evaluate the potential long term impacts of any shift of responsibility or reduction in funding from the State Government, before agreeing to continue to fund service delivery or fund new services. 5.2.4 Continue to improve project management processes. 5.2.5 Continue to support major City business units to increase their revenue streams and their financial independence. 5.2.6 Review all user fees and charges to achieve transparent decision making in the setting of fees.

5.4.2 Improve organisational performance reporting. 5.4.3 Continue to plan for and develop current and future workforce needs. 5.4.4 Undertake a pilot, structured continuous improvement program and from that make a decision on the preferred continuous improvement framework.

5.2.7 Implement an electronic grants project management system.

5.4.5 Review the Municipal Emergency Management Plan.

5.2.8 Continue to focus on improved procurement practice through the development of the Procurement Action Plan.

5.4.6 Review the corporate approach to injury management and return to work.



Strategic Indicators Goal Area

Strategic Performance Indicator


Planning for Growth Community satisfaction with lobbying to other levels of government on behalf of the community

Aim to improve 2011–2012 Score of 55 Statewide score for 2011–2012 =55

The percentage of agreed major initiatives completed in agreed timeframes

Aim for >90%

We offer a broad “Summer in the Parks” program and community participation continues to increase

New measure

The work of volunteers is valued and widely publicised

New measure

Improved community satisfaction rating for the appearance of public areas

Aim to improve 2011–2012 Score of 69 Statewide score for 2011–2012 = 71

Increased cycle or walk to work rate

‘Super Tuesday’ riders per hour at the busiest count site to exceed 2013 figure of 55

Provide, manage and maintain physical infrastructure

MAV and ESC indicator 1A-01: Condition based renewal gap and Indicator 1A-02: percentage of Council assets at intervention level (roads bridges, pathways and buildings) – MAV Step Program

Improvement in reported overall wellbeing of Bendigo residents as reported in the Bendigo Wellbeing Survey 2014

In 2011 77% of respondents reported positive wellbeing.

Proportion of infants born annually that receive primary immunisations

Maintain or improve (compared to previous rate whole of Bendigo population = 93.9%; indigenous persons= 50%)

Implementation of the Healthy Together Bendigo Initiative

90% schools and early childhood services registered with Victorian Prevention and Health Promotion Achievement Program (VPHPAP); 70% medium to large workplaces registered with Victorian Prevention and Health Promotion Achievement Program (VPHPAP)

Community satisfaction with community and cultural activities

Aim to improve 2011–2012 Score of 73 Statewide score for 2011–2012 = 68

Satisfaction of library patrons with the new Library design and range of services

New measure

Unemployment rate lower than the regional average

Benchmarked against the Victorian average each quarter

Bendigo region is a major visitor destination

As indicated by: – Day trip and overnight visitation numbers – Average spend per visitor – Yield (dollars into the city) – Visitor Centre bookings into tours and accommodation




Goal Area

Strategic Performance Indicator


Community satisfaction rating for Council’s general town planning policy

Aim to improve 2011–2012 Score of 54 Statewide score for 2011–2012 = 54

Percentage of planning applications processed within the timeframes set out in the VicSmart Planning process

New measure

Improved current domestic waste resource recovery rates

Increase diversion of domestic waste to resource recovery by an average of 5% per annum against the 2012 baseline figure of 34%

Reduced waste generated by the community and CoGB by improving awareness through behaviour change

Reduce average volume of waste generated by each household by 5%. (2011–2012 measure of 642 kg/household)

Maintain or exceed the current community satisfaction level with Council’s waste services, as measured annually on a Statewide basis

Aim to improve 2011–2012 Score of 55 Statewide score for 2011–2012 = 55


Good Governance & Decision-making Maintain the Customer Service telephone enquiries service where 85% of all calls are answered within 20 seconds

2011–2012 this was achieved 88.4% of the time

Improved community satisfaction with community consultation and engagement

Aim to improve 2011–2012 Score of 55 Statewide score for 2011–2012 = 57

Maintain or improve community satisfaction rating for overall performance generally of the Council

Aim to improve 2011–2012 Score of 63 Statewide score for 2011–2012 = 60

Number of people providing direct feedback on new strategies and plans via Facebook and Twitter

New measure with baseline in 2012–2013 Aim to progressively increase over time

Achievement of the objectives set by each directorate in their Workforce Development Plan

New measure

Capital Replacement – comparison of the rate of spending on infrastructure with its depreciation

Target is more than 1.5 – Low risk of insufficient spending on asset base

Indebtedness – this indicates the ability to repay longer-term debt from revenue

Target is 40% or less – No concern over the ability to repay debt from own-source revenue

Liquidity – this measures the ability to pay existing liabilities in the next 12 months

Target is more than 1.5 – No immediate issues with repaying short-term liabilities as they fall due

Renewal Gap – indicates the extent to which expenditure on asset renewal is sufficient

Target is more than 1.0 – Low risk of insufficient spending on asset base

Underlying result – a positive result indicates a surplus, and the larger the percentage the stronger the result

Target is more than zero – generating surpluses consistently




Existing Policies, Strategies and Plans • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Arts and Cultural Strategy (2008) (for review 2013) Bendigo Airport Strategic Plan and Master Plan 2009 Bendigo Industrial Land Strategy (2002) Bendigo Residential Development Strategy (2004) (review underway) Bendigo Sustainable Water Use Plan (2007) Carbon Management Plan (2009–2012) Commercial Land Strategy (2005) Community Access and Inclusion Plan (2011) Community Engagement Strategy (2011) City of Greater Bendigo Gaming Policy Framework (2009) Customer Service Strategy (2012) Economic Development Strategy (2008) (review underway) Future Industrial Land Strategy (2007) Future Uses for Former Mine Land (2007) Greater Bendigo 2036 Community Plan (2011) Greater Bendigo Walking and Cycling Strategy (2006) Greater Bendigo Volunteering Strategy (2008) Integrated Transport and Land Use Strategy (under development) Municipal Public Health and Wellbeing Plan (new Plan 2013–2017 underway) Natural Environment Strategy 2007–2010 Open Space Strategy (2005) Play Space Strategy (2009–14) Positive Ageing Strategy (2011–2014) Road Safety Strategy/Plan (2007–11) Rural Areas Strategy (2009) Small Town and Neighbourhood Community Plans (various 2005 to present) Violence Prevention Plan (2012) Waste and Resource Management Strategy (under development) Youth Development Strategy (under development)

Place Based Plans • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Axedale Township Plan (2008) Bendigo Botanic Gardens, White Hills, Master Plan (2010) Bendigo CBD Parking Strategy (2008) Bendigo CBD Structure Plan(2006) Canterbury Garden/Lake Neangar Master Plan (2008) Eaglehawk Open Space Precinct Master Plan (2010) Eaglehawk Structure Plan (2012) East Bendigo Local Structure Plan (2006) Gateway Park Master Plan (2011) Huntly Township Plan (2009) Jackass Flat Structure Plan (2007) Kangaroo Flat South Regional Centre Structure Plan (2006) Kennington Recreation Reserve Master Plan (2011) Lake Weeroona Precinct Master Plan (2011) Maiden Gully Recreation Reserve Master Plan (2011) Maiden Gully Structure Plan (under development) Marong Business Park Plan (under development) Marong Local Precinct Structure Plan (2011) Northern Corridor and Huntly Local Structure Plan (2005) Strathdale Commercial Precinct Structure Plan (2010) Strathfieldsaye Township Plan (2010) Rosalind Park Master Plan (under development) View Street (Arts Precinct) Master Plan (2009)

Note: Many of our Strategies are integrated and therefore relate to more than one Council Plan goal theme.


Strategic Resources Plan

Financial Statements CITY OF GREATER BENDIGO Budgeted Standard Income Statement For the four years ending 30 June 2017 Strategic Resource Plan Projections 2013/14 $'000 Income Rates and Charges Statutory Fees and Fines User Fees Contributions - Cash Contributions - Non-monetary Assets Grants - Operating Grants - Capital Other Income Total Income

2014/15 $'000

2015/16 $'000

2016/17 $'000

86,981 3,284 21,564 8,204 5,929 27,460 4,990 1,949 160,361

93,636 3,421 22,468 8,208 5,988 28,215 4,000 2,056 167,992

100,792 3,883 23,091 8,212 6,048 28,991 12,000 2,169 185,186

108,378 4,038 24,066 8,216 6,108 29,789 5,000 2,288 187,883

(52,314) (58,850) (48) (29,241) (1,472) (26) (141,951)

(56,531) (61,350) (52) (30,850) (1,735) (27) (150,545)

(61,090) (63,956) (54) (32,546) (2,001) (29) (159,676)

(66,018) (66,674) (60) (34,337) (2,118) (30) (169,237)

Net gain/(loss) on disposal of assets





Surplus / (deficit) for the year





Expenses Employee Benefits Materials and Services Bad Debts Depreciation Borrowing Costs Other Expenses Total Expenses



Strategic Resources Plan

Financial Statements


CITY OF GREATER BENDIGO Budgeted Standard Balance Sheet For the four years ending 30 June 2017 Strategic Resource Plan Projections 2013/14 $'000

2014/15 $'000

2015/16 $'000

2016/17 $'000

31,228 12,309 405 112 44,054

37,466 12,937 417 113 50,933

33,766 14,253 429 114 48,562

36,245 14,511 442 116 51,314

Non-Current Assets Investment in Associations Other financial assets Trade and other receivables Property, Plant and Equipment Total Non-Current Assets

4,306 1,330 390 1,143,300 1,149,326

4,436 1,357 394 1,211,771 1,217,958

4,569 1,384 398 1,238,779 1,245,130

4,706 1,411 402 1,310,088 1,316,607






Current Liabilities Trade and other payables Interest-bearing loans and borrowings Trust funds Provisions Total Current Liabilities

11,923 2,076 2,675 10,895 27,569

12,595 2,445 2,702 11,113 28,855

13,357 2,931 2,729 11,335 30,352

14,135 3,374 2,757 11,561 31,827

Non-Current Liabilities Provisions Interest-bearing loans and borrowings Total Non-Current Liabilities

5,810 27,307 33,117

5,926 31,285 37,211

6,045 32,800 38,845

6,166 32,884 39,050











EQUITY Accumulated surplus Reserves TOTAL EQUITY

559,051 573,643 1,132,694

570,698 632,127 1,202,825

596,709 627,786 1,224,495

609,857 687,188 1,297,045

Current Assets Cash and cash equivalents Trade and other receivables Accrued Income Other assets Total Current Assets

Strategic Resources Plan

Financial Statements


CITY OF GREATER BENDIGO Budgeted Standard Cash Flow Statement For the four years ending 30 June 2017 Strategic Resource Plan Projections

Cash flows from operating activities Receipts from customers Payments to suppliers and employees Net cash inflow (outflow) from operating activities

2013/14 $'000 Inflows (Outflows)

2014/15 $'000 Inflows (Outflows)

2015/16 $'000 Inflows (Outflows)

2016/17 $'000 Inflows (Outflows)

153,393 (110,681)

161,196 (116,921)

177,635 (123,990)

181,321 (131,614)









Cash flows from investing activities Proceeds from sales of property, plant and equipment Payments for property, plant and equipment





Net cash inflow (outflow) from investing activities





(1,472) 6,500 (1,871)

(1,735) 6,500 (2,153)

(2,001) 4,500 (2,499)

(2,118) 3,500 (2,972)



Net increase (decrease) in cash





Cash at the beginning of the year





Cash at the end of the year





Cash flows from financing activities Finance costs Proceeds from borrowings Repayment of borrowings Net cash inflow (outflow) from financing activities





Strategic Resources Plan

Financial Statements


CITY OF GREATER BENDIGO Budgeted Standard Capital Works Statement For the four years ending 30 June 2017 Strategic Resource Plan Projections 2013/14 $'000

2014/15 $'000

2015/16 $'000

2016/17 $'000

Capital Works Areas Land Buildings Roads Bridges Drainage Plant & Equipment Other Land Improvements Furniture and Fittings Total Capital Works

12,228 16,515 772 4,185 3,449 94 3,572 1,618 42,433

8,731 16,786 815 4,305 3,638 99 5,269 1,706 41,349

8,634 18,099 1,410 4,432 4,339 105 18,976 2,052 58,047

8,253 18,957 907 4,566 4,050 110 7,394 2,199 46,436

Represented by: Asset renewal New assets Total Capital Works

29,241 13,192 42,433

30,850 10,499 41,349

42,547 15,500 58,047

34,336 12,100 46,436

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Council Plan 2013 2017 (Final)  

Council Plan 2013 2017 (Final)