NSW Minister for Planning and Housing, Anthony Roberts has appointed two new Regional Commissioners, Miriam Dayhew and Frank Holles to provide expert advice on regional planning issues.
Minister Roberts said Ms Dayhew, Chair of Regional Development Australia Riverina, and Mr Holles, a barrister and Member of the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal would provide independent and expert advice on these topics.
“These new NSW Regional Commissioners will play a vital role in making sure the voice of regional NSW is heard even more loudly and clearly in the planning process,” Mr Roberts said, “Miriam and Frank will work closely with the NSW Department of Planning’s regional teams and with other Local, State and Federal authorities to deliver regional projects.”
Minister Roberts said the Commissioners will become advocates for economic opportunities to support thriving regional communities and will provide him with advice on how the Government can address the impacts that come from declining populations.
“They will help to facilitate greater consultation and engagement with stakeholders, including government, community, farmers and industry on regional planning issues,” Mr Roberts explained.
The NSW Regional Commissioners will:
- Provide independent and expert advice on regional and strategic planning matters, including the development of local plans.
- Work collaboratively with the Department’s regional teams to provide advice and support and assist in resolving issues.
- Coordinate State, Federal and Local Government efforts and work collaboratively with stakeholders to support regional planning objectives, deliver regional projects and infrastructure.
- Engage and partner with community groups to facilitate good regional outcomes and ensure the concerns of regional communities are properly incorporated into Government programs.
- Ensure greater transparency and accountability in planning decisions.
Mr Holles commented that his firsthand experience of growing up in country NSW will assist him in his newly appointed role as NSW Regional Commissioner.
“I grew up in country NSW and have spent much of my working life in regional and rural communities,” he said, “I look forward to making a positive impact on the lives and future planning that this role will offer.”
Ms Dayhew added that constructive and active engagement with regional stakeholders will be key to her success as a NSW Regional Commissioner.
“I believe it is critical to have constructive engagement with regional stakeholders and this position has a significant role to play in that space,” she said, “I look forward to meeting with the key stakeholder groups in regional NSW and broadening my appreciation of issues that are locally and regionally significant.”