Vibrant and successful AGM for Bingara and District VISION 20/20

June 18, 2016

The recent Bingara and District VISION 20/20 Annual General Meeting had a ‘theatrical twist’ at the Roxy. Four “Presidents” were invited to reflect on their fourteen years in power from 2016 to 2030.

Presidents Chrissie Smyth, Tanya Heaton, Megan Stammer and Bernadette Allport spoke passionately about the achievements of The Republic of Gwydir under their ‘presidency’ and of their vision for the future. A common theme from them all was the growing vibrancy of the Republic, the caring for people and the health and wellbeing of its citizens.

The “mock Presidential addresses” were conducted to reflect on the progress and consider the prospects for Bingara and the Gwydir Shire. All of the Presidents had attended the Gwydir 2030 Forum earlier this year.

The Presidents were asked to consider: What will Gwydir look like by 2030?  What will be the population and age mix?; Describe the town and district facilities; What will be the sources of employment?; How will the town of Bingara interact with Gwydir Shire?

Good fresh food, excellent health care, a full and varied education system and creative and meaningful lives, were popular themes. Energy self-sufficiency, an increase in population by people who valued living in small but vibrant communities, and communicating instantly with the rest of the planet by way of a fast and efficient internet service were championed.

Questions from the good people of Gwydir, (nearly 40 of them) in attendance, asked the “Presidents” for details on their education policies, water policies and the role of Local Government.

In summing up, the ‘convenor’ Garry McDouall thanked the “Presidents” for their leadership, enthusiasm and speaking prowess.

Prior to the “Presidential EXPO”, VISION 2020 President, John Bishton conducted the AGM for the organisation. In his President’s Address John spoke of a busy year, concentrated on supporting the ‘anti council amalgamation’ effort after the “Fit for the Future” assessments of Gwydir Shire Council.

“The battle continues,” said John Bishton, who then vacated the Chair for the conducting of the election of the new committee. For the 2016-17 Year, the VISION 20/20 Committee consists of President John Bishton, Vice President Garry McDouall, Secretary Philippa Morris, Treasurer Ray Thomas and Committee Members, Chrissie Smyth, Meaghan Stammer, and Barry Rogers.

President John Bishton, thanked outgoing committee member Alec Lucke for his contributions especially in his ongoing endeavours to keep the releases of “cold water pollution” from Copeton Dam and the health of the Gwydir River in the public and political eye. The Greens Candidate for New England, Mercurius Goldstein, and his team attended the meeting having been given a tour of The Living Classroom earlier that day.

Bingara and District VISION 2020 will hold their meetings on the first Thursday of the month, at the Imperial Hotel, unless advertised otherwise. All are welcome to attend and to have input into the meetings.