Gorn fishin’: Meetings with Councils from Port Stephens to Shoalhaven (excuse the puns)

Whilst many at this time of year might be dreaming about (or lucky enough to actually visit) warmer northern waters, here at Shelter NSW we have been responding to the ‘siren‘ of mostly coastal LGAs around Sydney that feature in our Regional Housing Need Report.

A photo from our visit to the Shellharbour Council building

All of the Councils we have ‘caught in our net’ are also in the Greater Cities Commission’s 6 cities footprint. As our 2022 submission on that Discussion Paper outlined, we are gravely concerned the vast growth plans for the Lower Hunter & Greater Newcastle City, Central Coast City, and Illawarra-Shoalhaven City will be marred by worsening social inequality through inadequate and unaffordable housing.

To summarise so far, we have ‘harpooned‘ an array of Mayors, Administrators, General Managers, Senior Planning Staff, and other Council staff at:

  • Central Coast Council
  • Port Stephens Council
  • Shellharbour City Council
  • Shoalhaven City Council.

We have ‘orca‘-strated future meetings with:

  • Cessnock City Council
  • Wingecaribee Shire Council
  • Illawarra-Shoalhaven Joint Organisation of Councils (including Kiama and Wollongong).

These ‘expeditions‘ have been very fruitful and we’ve gained a lot of local insights. A common theme from all the meetings is that Councils do not necessarily want to feature in our Regional Housing Need Report, but that they are also very grateful to have it as a resource for them to lobby for more attention and social housing from the State Government. Additionally, we are finding out about many projects underway to deliver more targeted affordable housing in partnership with local community groups, service providers, and CHPs. 

If you’d like to find out more about our fishing adventures and their outcomes for relation-‘ship‘ building, contact Kayla Clanchy our regionally based Policy Officer via kayla@shelternsw.org.au