Alex Column - January 2022

December 5, 2023

Business Port Macquarie is pleased to introduce our new President, Alex Glen- Holmes.  After a four year stint at the helm Michael Mowle has stepped down and Alex was elected as the new President by the Executive following the 2021 AGM.

Alex has been a Chamber Board member for the past 10 years. During this time she has held the roles of Vice President and Treasurer.  Alex has a wide range of business experience with a background in Hospitality and Medical prior to going into Real Estate 15 years ago.

During the past four years she has ventured out on her own as a contractor to an RTO Unique Training Providers, providing Real Estate Licensing training as well as her own boutique Real Estate Agency Holmes 4 U. Alex has also been in business with her husband Tim for the past 33 years with Port Macquarie Tilt Tray Towing.

A strong advocate for community and bringing people together Alex, supported by  Janette Hyde, has worked in conjunction with Port Macquarie-Hastings Council for the past eight years to bring the annual Countdown to Christmas celebrations to the community and also New Year’s Eve Fireworks. Being involved for many years with the Business Awards and other events.  Community is very important so Alex has also served on various other boards in the past including President of Telegraph Point Community Association (two years), Willing and Able (six years) as well as for sporting groups and Pre Schools.

Alex looks forward to working with the Chamber Board to provide a service to the business Community to ensure that their voices and needs are heard at all levels of government. To work towards this Chamber will be conducting a Planning & Strategy Session on 26th February to determine the vision for 2022 and beyond.

Chamber members are encouraged to bring forward any issues, policy matters or concerns by calling Alex on 0414 772 771 or Mark Wilson, EO on 0412 221 204.

A hot topic in recent times has been housing affordability, land supply and infrastructure for our growing region.  NSW Planning Minister, Rob Stokes has recently announced that newly-elected Council’s will have clear performance benchmarks to meet in delivering planning decisions under reforms released today to create jobs, boost housing supply and attract investment.

Minister Stokes said Councils would be required to adhere to clear maximum timeframes for assessments and determinations.   “The NSW Government sets its own strict benchmarks for assessing rezonings and development applications to ensure timeliness and certainty and we are now asking Councils to do the same,” Mr Stokes said.

A new planning Order and a new discussion paper released recently include the following reforms:

  • Consistent timelines for planning decisions across the planning system;
  • Powers for the Minister for Planning and Public Spaces to intervene where councils are not upholding their responsibilities;
  • Proposed improvements to the rezoning process to support prompt decision-making, more informed community consultation, and risk-based approaches to assessments, timeframes and fees; and
  • A new planning guarantee requires councils to make timely decisions or face having to refund planning application fees.

This is welcome news for our local housing and construction industry who have been advocating for more zoned land and infrastructure to be provided in the short term to support our growing region.