Restoring the social balance in resource-rich communities is edging closer to reality as a green light is given for a new childcare provider is primed for Glenden.
This week Council approved a peppercorn three-year lease arrangement for Glenden Childcare Centre and has awarded it to DBS Child Care Services, which operates in other centres across Central Queensland.
It also follows a call to arms for thought leadership for better future planning for communities, spearheaded by Isaac Regional Council at State Government headquarters recently.
Mayor Anne Baker met with the Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning Cameron Dick after the $1.76 billion Byerwen mine opening.
Councillors and senior officers met with community stakeholders at Glenden Recreation Centre on Tuesday to update them about the Isaac region’s mission for urgent assistance to the small mining community’s social imbalance.
Mayor Baker said Council’s stamp of approval is the confidence booster Glenden needed.
“This is the step in the right direction to enable Glenden to once again become the resilient liveable community it once was,” Mayor Baker said.
“The absolute dichotomy for Glenden is that within a short commuting distance from the town there are substantial long-life new mining projects, approved projects and established mines.
“We are at the beginning of a resource sector upswing, but we need to find a balance to ensure everyone has the services they need.
“In normal circumstances this would see an increase in activity by way of families, housing and businesses to communities. This is not what is happening in Glenden. The reality is the bakery has closed, the Golf and Bowls Club have closed, the newsagency will close in December.
“These dynamics have created a high degree of uncertainty and Glenden is a township which is poised ready to continue to be a community of liveability, sustainability and economic prosperity in its part of the Isaac region.”
Division 1 Councillor Greg Austen described the green light as fantastic for working families of Glenden.
“We are incredibly excited that we are able to make this critical decision in the heart of Glenden, where it matters as part of our monthly ordinary meeting,” Cr Austen said.
Division 7 Councillor Jane Pickels said this is Council’s way to show the community that social balance is high on the priority list and that resource-rich Isaac towns like Glenden is not forgotten.
“We are a region that feeds, builds and powers and this decision by Council today paves the way to our commitment to providing people ways to continue to either live, work and play in Isaac,” Cr Pickels said.
The positive outcome follows Council resolving to reaffirm its commitment to offer the Glenden Child Care Centre a peppercorn lease for the purpose of a child care service in September this year through an expression of interest process.
Over the years Council had worked with Glencore and other stakeholders to source a potential provider.
In December 2015, Council approved the Licence to Occupy for a standalone care through the Glenden Community Group to operate a childcare centre.
The Glenden Community Group have a memorandum of understanding with a qualified provider with restrictions to no more than six children in care, according to State legislation.
Discussions are ongoing with the Office of the Coordinator General to find solutions to the social imbalance being experienced in Glenden.