President’s December Monthly Musing

Published on Thursday, 2 December 2021 at 7:07:30 AM


December and Summer are here! Where has 2021 gone? For some 2022 can’t come quick enough. I encourage everyone to reflect in the reversion mirror on the ups and downs of the year 2021, embrace the positive and negatives, look for difference, and flex into the new year and season ahead. It has been one for the history book. Council senses the sentiment that waves across our community and understands it has not been an easy year. Please know your council is right here beside you.

I am delighted to announce Katie Lowe to council for a two-year term. Katie was endorsed and appointed at council’s November OCM. Katie has been involved with her local area of White Peak through the PRA and is an educator in our region. Welcome Katie.

Before the office closes and crew wind down for the festive period, the focus is on implementing budgeted projects, considering new opportunities, working through compliance and ongoing reporting, and advocating community needs. You may have noticed some changes internally when you have visited or rang the shire office. Please take time to get to know new faces and be mindful that it will take some time for new employees to understand processes and workings of the shire. A smile will go a long way.

For a sizeable area of the shire, it has been a buzz with harvesting crops. The roads are extremely hectic. I urge everyone to continue to drive defensively and stay safe during this busy period. Thanks go to the shire roads crew who are diligently working on upgrading and maintaining the road network in the shire. Staff and councillors hear the concerns from the community about roads, and we endeavour to triage these concerns the best way we know how. If you are noticing anything needing urgent attention, please contact the CEO or a councillor to discuss.

This time of year, also means fire season. Are you bush fire ready? How fireproof is your plan? There are numerous resources on the Department of Fire and Emergency Services website that can assist you in understanding fire emergency risks and planning. Understanding fire hazards and knowing the daily fire danger rating is an important part of planning. And please heed the harvest and vehicle movement ban information from our shire’s Chief Fire Control Officer when implemented. Local harvest and vehicle movement bans are broadcasted via shire SMS, Bushfire What’s App groups, and ABC radio. If you are not on these channels and wish to be, please contact the shire office to be added to SMS, or Andrew Vlahov CFO for What’s app.

The ongoing understanding of the newly introduced (January 2022) Work Health and Safety Act is consuming much time of officers and council. There is a lot of grey areas to the Act, in particularly how it applies to volunteers on a fire ground. Rest assured we are advocating for what is practicable and reasonable from a grassroots level and seeking clarity to the areas of concern. Local volunteer brigades would have received up to date information about training and vaccinations that has been pushed from a state level. We will continue to work with the relevant departments, volunteers, and agencies to ensure outcomes that can meet the highest level of safety possible.

The Shire’s Strategic Community Plan process is underway with the assistance from external consultant Marg Hemsley. This is the community-councils plan which guides decision making in the future. Council strongly encourages everyone to participate where possible. A postcard and an online survey are currently live with face-to-face workshops proposed for early 2022 across the shire. Details can be found on the Shire website/ Facebook page, or by calling the shire office or councillors.

The end of year hype is upon us with primary school concerts, graduations for primary and high school students, community Christmas trees, windups, a local cricket match and several local events at local businesses. Tireless hours go into these events, and I thank the volunteers and businesses who coordinate these social opportunities for our community. Get along to one or many if you can as it sure is enjoyable to celebrate together, and keeps our community connected.


Wishing all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. May you enjoy some rest and relaxation in the coming weeks.


Kirrilee Warr

Shire President



 5th December 2021: Family Fun Day, Valley Tavern, 12pm

10th December 2021: Yuna Primary School End of Year Concert 7pm

12th December 2021: Yuna Community Christmas Tree 5pm

12th December 2021: Whitepeak Santa Drive by 3pm and Christmas Celebration BHP 5pm

13th December 2021: Chapman Valley Primary School End of Year Concert 6pm

15th December 2021: Ordinary Council meeting, Shire Chambers, 9am

18th December 2021: Nabawa Community Cricket Match (2pm), Christmas Tree (5pm), Mucky Duck Band (6-9pm)

 24th December 2021, 1pm- 4th January 2022, 8:30am: Shire office closed

 26th January 2022: Australia Day Community Awards and Ceremony, venue TBC

31st January 2022: Shire Community Strategy Plan Postcards and online survey to be returned or completed

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