In 2011 Council reviewed its approach to community engagement - that is how and when our community has the opportunity to provide feedback on key Council decisions that may affect them.
As part of this review, we drafted a Community Engagement Framework with the aim of providing the community, Elected Members and council staff with shared principles, clear definitions and a high level view of the City of Tea Tree Gully's approach to community engagement.
Council also amended its Public Consultation Policy which is now called the Community Engagement (Public Consultation) Policy to reflect the change in thinking across the sector regarding public participation in decision making. This policy also guides our approach in terms of minimum requirements and legislative obligations with regard to public consultation, as per the Local Government Act 1999.
We are, however, committed to going beyond minimum legislative requirements for public consultation and have made efforts to better engage with residents about issues such as playground upgrades and landscaping and tree works. Activities such as the create20forty community café workshops in 2010 and the draft City Master Plan youth workshops in February 2011 are examples of a more innovative, best practice approach to engaging the community in a meaningful way.
The draft framework and policy were available for comment by the community in April this year. We reviewed the responses and prepared amended versions of these documents which were endorsed by Council in August 2011.