Public Meeting 18/09/13: Minutes

Present:David Heath (Chair), Kelly Aitken, Donna McMahon, Robin Miller, Jacqueline Brodie-Hanns, Ayron Teed, Max Murphy, Vera Hemke, Judy Kent, Chris Walters (MASC), Peter Church, Michael Lane

Apologies: Annette Smith, Paul Mizzi, Craig Watkins

Matters arising from previous meeting:


Jacqueline outlined steps required for incorporation and suggestions for proposed name, Statement of Purpose and membership eligibility.

Names suggested: Harcourt Progress Group, Harcourt Community Association, Harcourt Progressive Community, Harcourt Progress Association. Although the group wanted the community to be at the forefront of the focus, it was felt that the Statement of Purpose encompassed this and that “progress” was an action word.It was decided to adopt the name of Harcourt Progress Association.

Discussion about statement of purpose: What are we trying to achieve: to advance Harcourt into the future; to unite the community. Craig had flagged in an email that supporting economic growth might need to be included, but it was felt that the broad nature of the statement incorporated this. It was agreed to adopt the following Statement of Purpose:

The Harcourt Progress Association aims to:

  • Support and encourage initiatives which benefit and strengthen the Harcourt community.
  • Strengthen community connections by promoting local sporting, educational, recreational and cultural activities.
  • Encourage, support and acknowledge the role and contribution of volunteers within Harcourt.

Membership:need to reside / own land within 20kms; beyond 20km memberships will be considered individually on application.Controls to be incorporated to allow for vetting by the Steering Committee, with transparency and accountability to broader membership. Other membership criteria approved including the statement:

There is no joining fee for the Harcourt Progress Association but an annual subscription of $20 per person / $10 concession is payable to ensure you are a financial member who is able to vote and participate in decision making. Annual memberships full due on 1st July each year.

Active participation by all members is encouraged. The Harcourt Community Association is facilitated by a Steering Committee elected by the members annually. Decision making at regular meetings is made by all financial members.

It is proposed to have a steering committee of 6 members (Chair, Vice-Chair, Secretary, Treasurer and 2 executive members). The Secretary role will encompass the former public Officer role and a quorum for decision making of 10 members was agreed. The Model Rules requires some further tweaking and a legal analysis to ensure it complies with legislation. At the next meeting, need to move motion to accept Model Rules, elect Committee, authorize Secretary to incorporate group, nominate signatories to bank account.

Peter advised that the tax status & funding eligibility of a group can be affected by what’s contained in the Statement of Purpose. ACTION: Peter to investigate and notify Jacqueline.

Newsletter (Robyn)

Robyn has met with John Ellis of Chewton Chat. CC publishes 800 copies of a 32 page newsletter each month, 200 copies are printed on the Council community photocopier and $800 is paid to the Copy Centre for 600 copies.CC is published by the Chewton Domain Society & the position of editor needs to be approved of by the group.CC uses InDesign, but Robyn might opt for Publisher initially.

A request was made to allocate training funds to pay for 2 people to attend CNAV conference on Saturday 12th October in Frankston. MASC have $800 for training needs of community planning group. The HPA group identified establishing a community newsletter as a key priority and support allocating funding to this purpose. Suggestion that we encourage a young person to attend as well.

At previous meeting it was agreed to Council Community Grants program to secure a laptop/ scanner / printer.

Applefest Committee (Donna)

Donnas has had very encouraging discussions with Katie Finlay and Heather Barrett about incorporating elements of the Harvest Festival into Applefest, including workshops and community juicing using the bike powered juicer. Also keen to incorporate workshops involving the CWA. Seeking to make links with tourism providers, encouraging them to incorporate apple theme

A number of small event fundraisers are being planned, including a jazz performance at Harcourt Valley Winery on Melbourne Cup day and a karaoke night at the Tavern organised by Richard Thompson. Michael Lane offered the services of local band Wood Dance who play Mediterranean music.

Community Plan (David)

Feedback received from Drew Henry and Amanda from the shop – concern about reference to “boutique business” and not enough emphasis on industry

David has prepared preamble and inserted narrative into Plan; Jacqueline has edited and re-arranged running order including removing some dry statistical material and limiting the plan to “Objectives” and “Strategies”. It was felt that a more specific action plan with named groups / individuals attached to actions and timeframes can come next.

David read out the Community Plan starting with his preamble. Edits were made electronically and a number of clunky passages were identified which require re-working.

ACTION:David to add sentence about indigenous past and importance of heritage – under Heart and Hub vision statement

ACTION: Donna to rework strategy item regarding upgrading the playground more generally. It currently reads: “Install a fence around the playground.”

Discussion about the absence in the plan about anything to do with the NBN towers which has concerned the group in previous meetings

ACTION: Max suggested including a statement to reflect a commitment to innovative technology which will benefit the community as a whole.

General consensus that the Plan is 95% complete – requires some photos, quotes from primary school kids, slight tweaking / tightening of text. Ready for endorsement at Oct meeting; launch in early December, combine with community Christmas celebration.

General business

Donna reported on Harcourt meeting convened by MASC to discuss play space strategy. This is shire-wide strategy, not specific to Harcourt, but the timing will benefit proposed upgrade / replacement of Harcourt playground which has been identified as part of the master plan. ACTION: Donna to check with Wayne O’Toole as MASC representative of After the Bypass what the intention is for the upgrade of the playground.

Mount Alexander Volunteer Network (convened by Jacqueline) is running two workshops at Harcourt Valley Primary School in October – one a food safety session; the other a first aid training day.

Meeting closed at: 9.15 pm

Next meeting: 16th October at 7pm

Recent Posts