Port Macquarie-Hastings Council mayor Peta Pinson says joining the regional cities NSW alliance is further evidence of the growing stature of the local government area.
Cr Pinson said the alliance would help focus political attention on issues confronting some of the fastest growing centres across the state.
She said the alliance was about influencing state and federal government policy.
"Our aim is to help put the spotlight on regional cities," she said.
"We will focus on issues including population strategy, regional investment and connectivity.
"The community should be quite pleased that we are considered in this area and that representations are being made on their behalf at this level," she said.
"The alliance is working on getting a good slice of the funding pie."
Cr Pinson said the alliance featured a vast contingent of burgeoning regional cities.
It presents good opportunities (for better outcomes), she said.
"The alliance is truly a good way for us to have local government muscle in front of the state government," she added.
The mayor said regional cities within the alliance can better understand the difficulties that communities face during growth phases.
The alliance is truly a good way for us to have local government muscle in front of the state government.Peta Pinson
She said the population of the Port Macquarie-Hastings was keeping pace with other larger regional cities.
"We are referred to as a regional city in state government planning," she said.
Cr Pinson said Port Macquarie-Hastings Council had the added pressure of being a coastal regional city.
She said those pressures included infrastructure, water, road, sewer, place making and waste along with the expectations of being a regional city.
"As we continue to grow and expand, all these things impact on our lifestyle," she said.
"We have people who want to live close to the coastline so that builds pressure on diversity of housing, which could see more townhouses or units being constructed.
"This impacts on the changing face of our coastal communities," she said.
"As well, some growing regional cities - like ours - are looking at being more inclusive which extends to having more people from different cultures living here."
The mayor said all these changes meant that the face of the Port Macquarie-Hastings region is changing.
During Friday's meeting the membership of the alliance was confirmed with the following cities agreeing to be active participants, Tamworth, Albury, Armidale, Bathurst, Cessnock, Coffs Harbour, Dubbo, Griffith, Lismore, Maitland, Orange, Port Macquarie-Hastings, Queanbeyan-Palerang, Tweed and Wagga Wagga.
The regional cities NSW alliance met to elect its chair and deputy chair in Sydney on Friday, February 8. It next meets in April, again in Sydney.
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