Bogan Shire Council has agreed to join a proposed Joint Organisation, on the provision the existing boundaries of the Orana Regional Organisation of Councils (OROC) are maintained.
The NSW government is in the process of establishing Joint Organisations among councils. The organisations would work on projects that cross local government areas.
Under the plan, joining the organisation is voluntary, but the groups need to be within the NSW Planning Regional boundaries. The boundaries separates Western NSW from the Central West and Orana, dividing OROC.
At its February meeting, Bogan Shire Council resolved to join the Joint Organisation on the grounds that the other 12 councils and the existing boundaries of OROC be maintained.
Bogan Shire Mayor Ray Donald said that there were a number of areas functioning well under OROC and urged that they needed to be carried over into a Joint Organisation “or the benefits of the Regional Organisation of Councils will be depleted”.
“We want to preserve OROC and to preserve the good that its done in the past into a new Joint Organisation ... but if they fragment us then we’re not going to agree to join,” Cr Donald said.
Dubbo Regional councillor Greg Mohr slammed the idea of a Joint Organisation and said it was not only a waste of money, but that Western NSW had been “dudded”.
“Western NSW has been dudded … half of our ROC is gone, if we decide to go to a joint organisation,” Cr Mohr said. “Effectively we cut off the blood supply to those smaller councils out in Bourke, Brewarrina, Walgett, Cobar… there’s nowhere left for them to go.”
Cr Mohr said in OROC, Dubbo council was often the big brother to the smaller councils and could provide them with a hand when they needed it.
“It’s absolutely disgusting, the government has totally wiped their hands with Western NSW, they haven’t taken any knowledge of previous of what our ROC has done,” he said.
At this stage the cost to establish a joint organisation is unknown.