The Drysdale Landfill and Resource Recovery Centre services the waste and recycling needs of the Bellarine Peninsula and broader Geelong region. It receives kerbside collected household waste as well as material from residential and business customers. The Centre enables the safe, efficient and cost effective disposal of waste.
The City of Greater Geelong (The City) aims to be responsive, transparent and inclusive by encouraging community input into its operations and future plans. To this end CoGG will set up a Drysdale Landfill Community Consultation Group (DLCCG). Through representation on the Group, community members will be able to provide feedback and stay informed.
The DLCCG will support open and transparent communication, transfer of information and better understanding and relationships between the community, CoGG and EPA Victoria. It will provide a community sounding board for future proposals and will enable community concerns and aspirations regarding the landfill to form part of CoGG’s decision making process. The focus of discussions will be on the operation and management of the Drysdale Landfill, acknowledging, considering and learning from the past where relevant, appropriate and constructive.
The purpose of the DLCCG is to provide a forum for exchange of information and perspectives relating to the operation and management of the Drysdale Landfill with respect to;
- operational and compliance matters including impacts on the surrounding built and natural environment;
- the future use of the site as a community asset;
- the City’s current waste management strategy as it applies to the Drysdale Landfill; and
- input into the City’s future waste/resource management strategy more broadly.
DLCCG is not a decision making forum. Council, as the manager of the site, will retain the decision making authority. The viewpoints of the community and of the DLCCG will inform those decisions.
Issues raised in the City forum that are relevant to Council but beyond the scope of this group will be elevated to an appropriate decision making level within the City as required. This may involve a delegation of DLCCG members to ensure that community voices are appropriately represented.
The City will:
- Provide an independent facilitator and provide the group with administrative support,
- Provide members with appropriate, timely and relevant information,
- Promptly respond to residents’ requests for information that are relevant to the operations or management of the landfill,
- Listen to community members,
- Respond to concerns of the community within a given timeframe,
- Act ethically, and
- Implement any agreed actions or changes to operations or site management within a given timeframe.
3. DLCCG membership and meeting attendance
DLCCG membership is available to representatives from a range of sectors including, but not limited to:
- environmental groups
- community groups
- Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning
- Environment Protection Authority Victoria 1
The City will make every effort to ensure each of these sectors are invited to participate.
In addition, there will be representatives from the City of Greater Geelong.
The meeting is an open forum available to any members of the community at any time. To assist in building a bank of knowledge created through regular attendance at these forums, newcomers are encouraged to review this Terms of Reference and previous meeting snapshots available on the City website prior to their attendance.
- have an active interest in community and/or local environmental issues
- have strong community networks to ensure the views of the broader community are represented
- possess a broad understanding of key issues in the Drysdale area.
An independent facilitator will be appointed by the City. The facilitator is responsible for the orderly running of the meeting, setting the agenda and managing business of meetings. They are to act in the interests of a fair and constructive process and endeavour to remain independent and impartial and will consider all viewpoints and information presented.
The facilitator will be responsible for the production of meeting notes that reflect a balanced record of key points of agreement, action and conclusions.
If the facilitator or any other attendee of the meeting becomes aware of any circumstances that might reasonably be considered to affect the facilitator’s ability to act impartially, the meeting will be informed of those circumstances and its advice will be sought on how best to manage them.
In the event the facilitator is unable to attend a meeting, an interim facilitator will be nominated to chair the meeting in his or her absence.
Meetings will be arranged by the City, which will provide administrative support. The City will nominate a person to perform secretarial duties.
Frequency and timing of meetings
DLCCG will meet quarterly, potentially in line with seasons and/or key milestones such as Council budgetary processes.
Additional meetings may be convened as required, with notice given at least two weeks prior. Meetings will generally be held between 6:30pm and 8:30pm on a weekday evening in Drysdale or Geelong at a venue to be determined.
The frequency and timing of meetings will be reviewed every twelve months.
Attendees may submit agenda items or questions for meetings in writing to the City a minimum of 2 weeks before the scheduled meeting. Whilst this 2-week timeframe is preferred in order to enable officers to prepare responses, Council will also take questions during meetings.
The agenda will be compiled by the council and distributed 1 week before each meeting.
Agenda items will be given priority, but there will be opportunities to raise general business which may be taken on notice.
Minutes will be taken at each meeting. A draft will be available for review within three weeks of a meeting taking place (or earlier if possible). Participants of the meeting will be given one week to review the draft minutes.
A ‘meeting snapshot’ will also be produced for dissemination within the wider community.
5. Code of Conduct
It is expected and encouraged that members will respect and value the breadth of contributions made by attendees and any invited guests in a manner that fosters trust, honesty, open communication and strengthened relationships.
In achieving these goals it is agreed that everyone will;
- focus on the purpose of the meeting,
- keep comments short and succinct, trying not to repeat or dominate the discussion,
- help each other to understand the issues and how they may be resolved,
- share information, listen and be responsive in an open, honest and transparent manner,
- make space for everyone to contribute and refrain from interrupting others,
- disagree respectfully – focussing on the issues, not the person,
- use language, tone of voice and body language that supports open communication,
- listen for the intent in what is being said, and
- not take information shared in DLCCG meetings out of context.
The role of EPA Victoria in compliance and community engagement is documented on their website.