New chamber 'positive change', says Holstein
Gosford mayor Cr Chris Holstein has heralded the establishment of the Umina District Chamber of Commerce as a "a positive change" for the Umina business community.
"The benefit of the new chamber to council is that we have a proactive group on the Peninsula who will constantly keep us updated," Cr Holstein said.
"The chamber also has a benefit to the community in having the ability to get their message, needs, desires and objectives heard and addressed."
Cr Holstein was commenting after walking with Chamber representatives around the Umina commercial area on March 27.
"I have been invited here by the Umina Chamber to go out on the main street and listen to what business owners have to say," Cr Holstein said.
"We understand business owners here in Umina have a number of issues that need to be addressed including the upgrade of footpaths, kerbs and guttering, as well as vandalism, and graffiti.
"While all of these issues may not be council's responsibility, we can be sure enough to consult the relevant parties in getting the problems addressed."
Cr Holstein said: "I was contacted by the new chamber about a month ago because they believed they weren't getting just acknowledgements of some of the issues they were having.
"They intend to build a good relationship with council which is always a positive thing.
"They might not always agree with council and there are sure to be differences in opinion from time to time but we at least have an understanding.
"The chamber has my attention and the things that we can start addressing we will.
"Look what has been achieved in Gosford through a cooperative approach between the chamber and council and they have as many, if not more, issues than Umina have.
"But we are working on those.
"I can't wave a magic wand - I wish I could. And if I could, we would fix everything.
"I think the chamber's biggest challenge will be instilling acknowledgement within the business community.
"It's no secret that business people are under undue stress at the moment in these hard economic times."