Archive:  Rural Land

Last Updated  23/5/19



NEW  The Macedon Ranges' Rural Conservation Zone Survey.   Well, That's What It's Called But This Cut-And-Paste Survey Is About The Farming Zone And Economics Not Conservation

(23/5/19 - P)   Looks like you are only supposed to have access to this survey if you live in the Rural Conservation Zone in Macedon Ranges Shire.


Property owners in the Rural Conservation Zone are reporting that Macedon Ranges Shire Council has sent them letters announcing the Shire's Rural Land Review along with a hard-copy of the Rural Conservation Zone survey.  There isn't an online link to the survey on Council's website but the letter supplied one:    The letter says surveys are to be returned by 4 June 2019. 


MRRA Says:


Only lately rebadged as a "Rural Land Review" after addition of the Rural Conservation Zone, this project started several years ago as the quizically named "In The Farming Zone" strategy,  addressing only the Farming Zone.  Back then a survey about the Farming Zone was sent to property owners in that zone, and it looks like Council is getting its moneys-worth from the survey by doing a quick cut-and-paste of zone names in the heading and recycling it in the guise of a survey about the Rural Conservation Zone.  Ah, but there's always one that's missed though, isn't there?  Question 26 in fact asks for a series of responses to statements about the FARMING ZONE (oops), while the very last question (#33) asks if you have any other comments about issues and opportunities FOR FARMING LAND AND AGRICULTURE within Macedon Ranges Shire.   Goes a long way towards explaining why there's nothing in this survey that even vaguely suggests an understanding or interest in the purposes of the Rural Conservation Zone or why that zone is applied in Macedon Ranges Shire. 


The letter comes with a reply paid envelope addressed to Metropolis Research Pty Ltd at a post office box in Carlton, suggesting ratepayers are paying an external consultant to conduct the survey. 


Councillors didn't sign off on the survey because it didn't make it into the Council chamber before being circulated.


On top of all of that, the survey itself is pretty nosy, asking a lot of personal and census-type questions, the relevance of which to the Rural Conservation Zone is elusive.  But it's the preponderance of questions about farming and business incomes, and not least Question 20 which wants to know which nominated circumstances are a barrier to expansion of your business, that puts the seal on this survey's irrelevance to the Rural Conservation Zone.  Deja-vu:  same old, same old economic priorities and direction, with environment firmly running a bad last. 


Is anyone really expected to take this survey seriously or consider it a genuine attempt to understand and analyse the Shire's Rural Conservation Zone?