Mayor Peta Pinson is optimistic about the year ahead.
She said the optimism felt in the latter part of 2017 continued into the new year.
The 2018 calendar year holds 11 council meetings.
“We have 11 opportunities to make a big difference to our community and those 11 opportunities come from February to December meetings,” Cr Pinson said.
“That’s when change and decisions are made within the chamber on behalf of the community.”
Cr Pinson encouraged people to speak up and get involved in community consultation.
“Do not complain about it after the horse has bolted,” she said.
“Let’s work together, let’s talk about what you want for our future, and work towards building it and delivering it.”
The mayor urged community members to voice their views to the councillor group in a constructive way about what direction people would like them to take.
“That is what we are elected to do – listen to our community,” she said.
Cr Pinson said the council was looking at next financial year’s budget and addressing areas of concern for the community where the budget needed to be spent.
Those draft budget discussions are continuing.
Meanwhile, the mayor hopes 2018 will see the start of construction on the Ocean Drive upgrade and “more than just talk” on the aquatic centre issue.
“Given our population growth, it’s certainly timely that we look to the possibility of eventually relocating the pool,” she said.
“With the possibility of relocation, means the opportunity of what an aquatic centre might look like.
“These are discussions that will no doubt be had throughout 2018.”
The Port Macquarie pool was built in 1966 and the pool’s structure continues to deteriorate.
The development of a strategic concept plan for a new pool, including site selection, is a key action within the council’s 2017/18 Recreation Action Plan.
The mayor said the area’s growth didn’t seem to be slowing down.
“We are seeing our western region in the Wauchope area continuing to grow and the southern area growing in the Camden Haven,” she said.
Cr Pinson said the council had great partnerships with the area’s state and federal MPs who were focused on the same goals as the council – solid delivery for the area.
It was a fantastic time to be the mayor, she said.