Council’s Operational Plan ensures continued support

Council’s Operational Plan ensures continued support

Thursday, 7 May 2020

Penrith Mayor Ross Fowler OAM at the Ordinary Meeting on 27 April outlined the significant measures Penrith City Council has implemented in supporting the community during the Coronavirus pandemic. 

 Council endorsed to further expanded its community assistance by adopting the 2020-21 Operational Plan.

“The strength of our City is our community and supporting the community during this challenging time has been our key priority,” Cr Fowler said.

“We have focused on maintaining essential services along with responding to specific needs throughout our communities. We're looking at our recovery and want to ensure Penrith retains its strength now and into the future.”

So far Council has: 

• Waived all hire fees for sports groups in winter 2020 ($72,000), irrespective of any shortened season being proposed.

• Provided rental relief to community groups that provide essential support for some of the most vulnerable in our community.

• Ensured Council’s Childcare Centres have remained open so that parents can continue to work.

• Reconfigured Council’s work teams to ensure service levels are maintained across the City.

• And continued to assess DAs, answer increased calls to our Contact Centre, and collect waste services, including more than 5,000 bulky waste requests in the last 3 weeks.

Council has provided support to impacted local businesses via relief from fees for outdoor dining, food shop inspections and Annual Fire Safety Statements. While commercial rents for those affected by mandatory government closures have also been waived.

These measures have provided over half a million dollars in immediate relief. Furthermore, the adoption of the 2020-21 Operational Plan ensures continued support for the Penrith Community and the ability to rise again on the other side of COVID-19.

A COVID-19 Hardship Relief Fund has been established to enable those in the community impacted by the pandemic can gain fee relief, by application, on Community and Business based fees. Sporting Ground hirers will have all fees waived for 2020-21, providing $216,623 of immediate relief.

The Plan commits to nearly $300 million of investment into the local economy that will help maintain vital services and community programs. It will see the commencement of significant expenditure on infrastructure projects including the Regatta Park upgrade, Soper Place multi deck car park and Commercial building, City Park, and final planning for the Gipps Street recreational precinct.

“In addition to these measures, Council will be supporting the local government sector’s campaign, which is being coordinated by Local Government NSW (LGNSW) and the Australian Local Government Association (ALGA),” Cr Fowler said.

“It is critical that the sector receives adequate resources to coordinate and deliver the goods and services needed as we navigate through the challenges presented by COVID-19, and its massive impacts on our people and our local economy.”

Information contained within this news release was correct as at Thursday, 7 May 2020.