Walcha Shire

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This article is about the local government area. For the regional city, see Walcha, New South Wales.
Walcha Shire
New South Wales
Walcha LGA NSW.png
Location in New South Wales
Coordinates 30°59′S 151°36′E / 30.983°S 151.600°E / -30.983; 151.600Coordinates: 30°59′S 151°36′E / 30.983°S 151.600°E / -30.983; 151.600
Population 3,021 (2011 census)[1]
 • Density 0.48205/km2 (1.24850/sq mi)
Area 6,267 km2 (2,419.7 sq mi)
Mayor Janelle Archdale (Unaligned)
Council seat Walcha[2]
Region New England
State electorate(s) Tamworth
Federal Division(s) New England
Website Walcha Shire
LGAs around Walcha Shire:
Uralla Armidale Kempsey
Tamworth Walcha Shire Port Macquarie-Hastings
Upper Hunter Mid-Coast Council Mid-Coast Council

Walcha Shire is a local government area located in the New England region of New South Wales, Australia. The Shire is situated adjacent to the junction of the Oxley Highway and Thunderbolts Way and is 20 kilometres (12 mi) east of the Main North railway line passing through Walcha Road.

The Mayor of Walcha Shire Council is Cr. Janelle Archdale an unaligned politician.

Main towns and villages[edit]

The towns and villages of Walcha Council include Walcha, Walcha Road, Niangala, Nowendoc and Woolbrook. Settlements include: Brackendale, Yarrowitch and Tia.

Demographics[edit]

Incomes[edit]

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics[3] during 2003-04, there:

  • were 927 wage and salary earners (ranked 146th in New South Wales and 470th in Australia, less than 0.1% of both New South Wales's 2,558,415 and Australia's 7,831,856)
  • was a total income of $27,787,248 (around $28 million) (ranked 147th in New South Wales and 478th in Australia, less than 0.1% of both New South Wales's $107 billion and Australia's $304 billion)
  • was an estimated average income per wage and salary earner of $29,975 (ranked 153rd in New South Wales and 517th in Australia, 72% of New South Wales's $41,407 and 77% of Australia's $38,820)
  • was an estimated median income per wage and salary earner of $27,590 (ranked 154th in New South Wales and 517th in Australia, 78% of New South Wales's $35,479 and 81% of Australia's $34,149).

Council[edit]

Walcha Shire Council
Welcome sign near the Shire boundary.

Current composition and election method[edit]

Walcha Shire Council is composed of eight Councillors elected proportionally as four separate wards, each electing two Councillors. All Councillors are elected for a fixed four-year term of office. The Mayor is by the Councillors at the first meeting of the Council. The most recent election was held on 8 September 2012. In the D Ward only two candidates, being those below, nominated for election. There being no additional candidates, the election for this Ward was uncontested.[4] The makeup of the Council is as follows:[4][5][6][7]

Party Councillors
  Unaligned 8
Total 8

The current Council, elected in 2012, in order of election by ward, is:

Ward Councillor Party Notes
Ward A[5]   Janelle Archdale Unaligned Mayor[8]
  Scott Schmutter Unaligned
Ward B[6]   Robert Thomson Unaligned
  Clint Lyon Unaligned
Ward C[7]   Maria Woods Unaligned
  Lloyd Levingston Unaligned
Ward D[4]   Kevin Ferrier Unaligned
  Bill Heazlett Unaligned

At the 2012 local government elections, a referendum to abolish the four wards and elect Councillors as one entire ward was defeated, with 56.1% voting against the resolution.[9]

History[edit]

The Shire of Apsley, its predecessor, was constituted by proclamation on 7 March 1906 and is located in the Vernon, Hawes, and Inglis counties, and comprises about 60 parishes. The area is 1,605,590 acres (6,497.6 km2). The Shire of Walcha was constituted by the union of the Municipality of Walcha and the Shire of Apsley on 1 June 1955.[10]

On 28 and 29 November 2008, torrential rain that caused severe flooding in the Apsley River and Macdonald River led to the area being declared a natural disaster area. Walcha Council estimated that it will cost approximately $1.7 million to repair damage caused to roads and infrastructure across the shire.[11]

Proposed amalgamation[edit]

A 2015 review of local government boundaries recommended that the Walcha Shire merge with adjoining councils. The government considered two proposals. The first proposed a merger of Walcha Shire with the Tamworth Regional Council to form a new council with an area of 16,146 square kilometres (6,234 sq mi) and support a population of approximately 64,000.[12] An alternative proposal, submitted by the Armidale Dumaresq Council on 1 March 2016, was for an amalgamation of the Armidale Dumaresq, Guyra, Uralla and Walcha councils.[13] On the 12th of May 2016, the merger proposal was struck down - leaving Walcha Council to stand alone as a solo entity.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (31 October 2012). "Walcha Shire". 2011 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 9 April 2015. 
  2. ^ "Walcha Council". Department of Local Government. Retrieved 3 December 2006. 
  3. ^ "Regional Wage and Salary Earner Statistics, Australia (catalogue no.: 5673.055.003)". Australian Bureau of Statistics. Retrieved 11 March 2007. 
  4. ^ a b c "Walcha Council - D Ward: Summary of First Preference Votes for each Candidate". Local Government Elections 2012. Electoral Commission of New South Wales. 8 September 2012. Retrieved 12 October 2012. 
  5. ^ a b "Walcha Council - A Ward: Summary of First Preference Votes for each Candidate". Local Government Elections 2012. Electoral Commission of New South Wales. 14 September 2012. Retrieved 12 October 2012. 
  6. ^ a b "Walcha Council - B Ward: Summary of First Preference Votes for each Candidate". Local Government Elections 2012. Electoral Commission of New South Wales. 15 September 2012. Retrieved 12 October 2012. 
  7. ^ a b "Walcha Council - C Ward: Summary of First Preference Votes for each Candidate". Local Government Elections 2012. Electoral Commission of New South Wales. 14 September 2012. Retrieved 12 October 2012. 
  8. ^ "New England North West News". ABC News. Australia. 27 September 2012. Retrieved 12 October 2012. 
  9. ^ "Walcha Council - Referendum". Local Government Elections 2012. Electoral Commission of New South Wales. 14 September 2012. Retrieved 12 October 2012. 
  10. ^ Walcha 100 years of Local Government. Walcha: Walcha Shire Council. 1989. 
  11. ^ "Flood clean up". Walcha News. 11 December 2008. 
  12. ^ "Merger proposal: Tamworth Regional Council, Walcha Council" (PDF). Government of New South Wales. January 2016. p. 7. Retrieved 7 March 2016. 
  13. ^ Armidale Dumaresq Council (1 March 2016). "Merger proposal: Armidale Dumaresq Council, Guyra Shire Council, Uralla Shire Council and Walcha Council" (PDF). Government of New South Wales. Retrieved 7 March 2016.