A copy of the 2036 Community Strategic Plan, which was adopted by Council on 20 February 2013 can be downloaded here or can be viewed at the Council Chamber, 158 Russell Street, Bathurst or the Bathurst Library in Keppel Street.
The State Government has introduced a new planning and reporting framework for Local Government in NSW, this is called Integrated Planning and Reporting (IP&R). The reforms replace the former Management Plan and Social Plan with an integrated framework. It also includes a new requirement to prepare a long-term Community Strategic Plan and Resourcing Strategy.
The highest level plan to be produced from the process is the Community Strategic Plan. The Department of Local Government guidelines advise as follows:"The Community Strategic Plan".
The Community Strategic Plan is the highest level plan that a Council must prepare. The purpose of the plan is to identify the community's main priorities and aspirations for the future and to plan strategies for achieving these goals. In doing this, the planning process will consider the issues and pressures that may affect the community and the level of resources that will realistically be available to achieve its aims and aspirations. While a Council has a custodial role in initiating, preparing and maintaining the Community Strategic Plan on behalf of the Local Government area, it is not wholly responsible for its implementation. Other partners, such as State agencies and community groups may also be engaged in delivering the long-term objectives of the plan.
Bathurst Regional Council has in the last three years undertaken an extensive program of public consultation, on a large number of areas, and a review of its long term objectives.
During 2011 Council prepared its Community Strategic Plan which sets the objective that the community hopes to achieve during the next 25 years. It utilised much of the knowledge obtained through processes of public consultation on areas such as the Bathurst Region Rural Strategy, Bathurst Region Urban Strategy, Bathurst Retail Strategy, Bulky Goods Business Development Strategy, Bathurst Regional Council Social and Community Plan 2011 and many other strategies. Council also held a 2036 People’s Convention and conducted the Bathurst 2036 Survey to ask more specific questions on people’s objectives for the future of Bathurst.
This has culminated in the adoption on 15 February, 2012 by Council of the Inaugural Bathurst 2036 Community Strategic Plan. The Plan must be reviewed by Council following a general local government election. A new Council was elected for Bathurst in September 2012 and since that time, Council has, in accordance with the legislation, reviewed its Community Strategic Plan.
As part of its commitment to the Integrated Planning process, Bathurst Regional Council developed a Community Engagement Strategy and a policy framework in which to guide the Community Strategic Planning development and any future community consultation across the organisation.