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July 2017
Shire Matters is a monthly newsletter which summarises events and news within the Shire of Katanning. Community members can subscribe at and hard copies are still available at the Shire Administration, Library, Visitors Centre and Katanning Leisure Centre. If you have any suggestions or feedback please send them to

Extension of Time 
Event Holders EOI

The Hidden Treasures of the Great Southern have extended their timeframe to submit an Expressions of Interest to host events in the 2017 Bloom Festival. This year the festival will run from Friday 15 September to Sunday 15 October, with the launch event scheduled for Saturday 16 September.

The popular Hidden Treasures Bloom Festival is an opportunity for community groups and local businesses in the Hidden Treasures Region to offer new or existing events to help promote and showcase their towns. Last year the Bloom Festival attracted some 15,000 visitors to the region over the course of the festival!

Event holders benefit from a range of marketing campaigns and exposure including a printed programme, posters and flyers, press releases, newspaper, TV and radio advertising, at no cost. They will also receive support from the Bloom Festival Coordinator as well as resources with tips on running the event.

Expressions of Interest and Memorandum of Understanding form is available to download at, containing further information for event holders.
Please submit your completed and signed form by no later than 4.00pm, Monday 10 July 2017, to or mail to 18 Albert St, Centennial Park WA 6330, Att. Katy Shekell.

The Hidden Treasures of the Great Southern would like to take this opportunity to introduce Katy Shekell who will be the Bloom Festival Coordinator for 2017. Should you have any questions or queries about the festival, or require assistance with developing a ‘Bloom’ theme for your event, please do not hesitate to contact Katy on 0422 118 839 or via
Please note the best contact method for Katy during 29 May-23 June 2017 is via email as she will be out of range most of that time.

We look forward to receiving your EOI and working together to create a vibrant and successful 2017 Bloom Festival.

Katanning to host Techspo
12-14 September 2017

Southern Dirt is one of Western Australia’s leading grower groups, encompassing some of WA’s most productive land and representing some of the states’ most innovative farmers. Our region extends from Boddington to Frankland and everywhere in between from the coast to the Wheatbelt.  An area that encompasses over 2600 mixed farming enterprises. If you farm, live and/or run a business within this area, Southern DIRT can have direct relevance to you.
Supported by a dedicated committee of farmers and industry specialists our aim is to create and sustain vibrant, healthy, prosperous farms and communities through:
  • The delivery of innovative research and development activities that have high value impact on farmers in our region and throughout Australia
  • Introduction, information and showcasing of innovative technologies and systems
  • Interactive collaborations with Government – local, state and federal, Leading R and D companies, Industry bodies, other Grower Groups, Agricultural R and D funding bodies, education institutions and local community organisations and businesses within the region.
  • Alliances and amalgamations with smaller grower and NRM groups in the region.
  • Development of a highly interactive hub model to manage local engagement
  • Social and community events and workshops
We also have a young farmer’s network that aims to support, coach and inspire our young and developing farmers to grow a sustainable agribusiness and cultivate personal and professional relationships across WA’s Southwest and TECHSPO 2017 beyond.
Visit our website at

Southern Dirt’s TECHSPO 2017 aims to be Australia’s premier technology and innovation event for the Agricultural community and associated industries. We are bringing technology developers, farmers, advisors, expert researchers and officials together for two days of advanced agriculture technology, information sharing and collaboration with an optional study tour for those who want to experience more.  The event will cover areas that are critical for farming in this state: Livestock technologies for sheep, cattle, and other animals, aquaculture; broadacre; horticulture; data and genetics.
TECHSPO will be held at the Katanning Leisure Centre and include a Conference, Exhibition and Field Events in and around Katanning.  This year’s TECHSPO is all about Dirt Data Droids.
TECHSPO will bring a significant economic benefit to Katanning with 300+ for our Conference, around 100 exhibitors and 1,000+ visitors to town. Additional benefits will include:
  • Use of local accommodation providers;
  • Use of local business/service providers wherever possible; and
  • Provide local community groups an opportunity to fundraise by assisting us with our event.
TECHSPO 2017 would like to invite any local businesses who would like to support this event to contact them – they have opportunities for sponsorship and well considered marketing ideas to promote your business in the Great Southern and beyond. The Techspo website can be viewed at if you would like to find out more. To contact the Event & Conference Coordinator, call Lisa on 0403 204 660 or email to
Early Childhood Hub update
The Shire of Katanning has called for Expressions of Interest for contractors to construct the Early Childhood Hub. The Expression of Interest documentation is available through Tenderlink. Submissions close at 3pm on Thursday 6/7/2017. The Shire will select suitable contractors based on the selection criteria included in the Expression of Interest document. The selection criteria includes financial capacity, demonstrated completion of similar size projects and demonstrated experience of undertaking construction work in regional Western Australia and the Great Southern. Once the list of contractors selected to quote is finalised the Shire will publish the list so that local trades and suppliers can approach contractors. Quotes to construct the Early Childhood Hub will be requested later in July.
Leisure Centre Update

The Great Southern Middle School committee has successfully secured funding through the Great Southern Development Commission Community Chest Fund and the Katanning Shire to begin an important study into education in our local area.
The GSMS committee, supported by the Katanning Regional Business Association, has engaged the services of Marsden Jacob Associates and an education consultant Dr Gregory Clarke to undertake a scoping study.
The study began in May 2017 and will explore educational issues in the local area, examine the demand for a new non-government regional middle school campus in Katanning and deliver recommendations to build capacity in existing schools including recommendations for local government strategic planning and decision making.
Results of a 2016-17 online survey, supported by the Shire of Katanning, highlight concerns of local residents about education for their children. An astonishing 317 surveys were completed and this valuable data will be analysed and presented in the final study report.
Natalie Nicholson from the GSMS committee, “The survey represents 1196 individual adults and children with an overwhelming 79% who replied with a positive response to whether they would use or would consider using a new non-government middle school in Katanning. The GSMS would like to thank the community for taking part in this survey and are thrilled with the unprecedented response. “
Since the change by the Department of Education to include Year 7 in high schools there has been a shift in regional areas with families who would traditionally send their children to boarding school in Year 8. Families appear less willing to send 11 year olds away from the family unit and are moving to metropolitan areas to accompany their children during their education in middle school. Some families are choosing to have one parent in the city while the other parent remains in the region. All these issues result in increased stress on the family unit, increased financial pressure on families, reduced expenditure in the region and the risk of serious mental health problems for those parents now living alone a rural area while their family is in the city.
A broad range of educational options need to be accessible and available to students and families in regional areas. There is evidence in this region of families leaving for education to metropolitan areas because of dissatisfaction with regional education and training options, in particular pertaining to streaming children into tertiary education.
Natalie Nicholson from the GSMS- “To improve retention and attraction of residents to the town and region there needs to be strategic action to tackle this fundamental issue and provide alternative choices for families who want to stay in the region and educate their children here.“
Expanding the range and quality of education in Katanning will attract and retain residents to the town, keep young families together in our region and ensure education dollars are spent in the Great Southern. Education is KEY to regional growth, if Katanning is serious about attracting and retaining residents, positive, honest, practical action must be taken now to support regional growth.
The GSMS look forward to presenting the findings of the final report from the study in September. END


Ranger Information
Firewood Collection
Now that winter is upon us and many have wood burning heaters the Shire would like to remind residents that the cutting down of dead timber and collection of firewood from all public land, including road reserves is prohibited.  The only legal way to take firewood is by obtaining a permit and inquiring where the allocated areas for fire wood collection is permitted.  Your enquiries should be directed to the Katanning office of Department of Parks and Wildlife by phoning 9821 1296.  Areas of known fire wood collection are being actively patrolled and any illegal collection may be reported to DPAW and they may commence legal proceedings by way of prosecution.  The collection of fire wood from private property is an arrangement made between yourself and the property owner.

Dog Attacks
In relation to dog attacks the Ranger has attended and investigated recent dog attacks only to be informed that the dogs involved had previously attacked stock or people, yet there are no documented and recorded incidents.  This means that unless there is a recorded history of previous attacks the incident is treated as being a “first off” attack and dealt with accordingly.  It is important that all dog attacks, whether injury has or has not be caused the matter is reported to the Shire Ranger, this will assist in dealing with the attack and formulating outcomes to prevent further attacks from occurring.  



Romeo and Juliet: Rewind

Date: Wednesday 2 August 2017
Time: 2:00 - 3:00pm
Location: Katanning Town Hall
Tickets: $5 each, available to purchase from the Shire Administration

Popcorn and drinks will be available for purchase

Witness the greatest love story ever told, like never before. In this illuminating and heart-rending show, The Players flip the journey of the star-crossed lovers, from tragic consequence through to first love. In a new interactive format, students will question choices made, infer different possibilities, and test the age-old question – can we fight our fate?

For further queries regarding the performance should be directed to Sophie Justins on 9821 9999 or

Public Art Gallery Update
Coming up in the gallery...

Gallery Opening Hours:   
Monday and Friday: 10.00am - 5.00pm
Tuesday and Thursday: 10.00am - 6.00pm
Wednesday: 1.00pm - 5.00pm
Saturday: 10.00am - 1.00pm
Closed Sundays

Free entry to all Gallery exhibitions- call James on 9821 4310 for more information.
Council Meeting Highlights
June 2017
The following items were approved at the Council meeting:

1. The application for Development Approval - Service Station Signage Lot 520 (76) Dore Street, Katanning
Strategic Implications:
Shire of Katanning Strategic Plan 2013 - 2023
Environment & Land Use - Land Use Development:
  • Flexible Land Use Planning (CBP Ref. P8.5.2
Development & Leadership - Governance:
  • Legal & Ethical Compliance (CBP Ref. P10.5.3)

2. The request for additional changes to the approved Club Restricted Liquor License Area Extensions - Katanning Wanderers Football & Cricket Clubs
Strategic Implications:
  • Shire of Katanning Strategic Plan 2013 - 2023
    Facilities and Services
    Facility Development

3. Proclamation of Clive Street Rotary (M406) and De-Proclamation of Moojebing Road (M031)
Strategic Implications:
Development & Leadership - Governance:
  • Legal and Ethical Compliance

All Council Agendas and minutes can be found at
Library Update
Life Long Readers Book Club
Meeting date: Friday, July 7.
Time: 2:00pm - 4:00pm
Talking about: A man called Ove by Fredrik Backman
Next Book: Lord of the Flies by William Golding

When a plane crashes on a remote island, a small group of schoolboys are the sole survivors. From the prophetic Simon and virtuous Ralph to the lovable Piggy and brutish Jack, each of the boys attempts to establish control as the reality - and brutal savagery - of their situation sets in.
The boys' struggle to find a way of existing in a community with no fixed boundaries invites readers to evaluate the concepts involved in social and political constructs and moral frameworks. Ideas of community, leadership, and the rule of law are called into question as the reader has to consider who has a right to power, why, and what the consequences of the acquisition of power may be. Lord of the Flies represents a coming-of-age story of innocence lost.

Urgent information for library patrons:
After a recent review of the inter-library loan system within Western Australia, State and Public Libraries WA will be making some changes to inter-library loans, commencing 1 July 2017 for a 6 month trial period:
  • Fiction items will be available for inter-library lending from 12 months after purchase.  This applies to fiction in all formats for both metropolitan and country libraries. 
    What does this mean for you?
    Regrettably, it means we will no longer be able to inter-library loan new release fiction for our patrons (including DVDs and sound recordings). We will do our best to keep up with purchasing new release titles, however please keep in mind that our resources are limited so not all titles will be able to be purchased.
  • Customers from country libraries will be have access to a total of 24 inter-library loans per member per annum
    What does this mean for you?
    If you are a regular borrower; 2 inter-library loan requests per month, per borrower membership.
  • If an external loan (from outside the WA public library system) is requested by a library customer, a fee based on recovering costs will be charged. 
    What does this mean for you?
    Items that are requested from interstate, medical or university libraries will incur a minimum charge of $16.50, plus delivery/administration charges if applicable.
  • The trial will be evaluated at the end of the 6 month period.
    What does this mean for you?
    From January 2018 borrowing statistics and feedback given during the trial will be used to evaluate the success of the trial and to consider what, if any, changes are required.
We understand that this will be a difficult adjustment to make for many of our patrons however we will do our best to cause the least disruption to your reading.
Visiting Author – Fiona Palmer
Meet best-selling WA Author, Fiona Palmer, on the tour of her new novel Secrets Between Friends.
11 September, 2017 – 6:30pm
Where: Katanning Public Library – Austral Terrace, Katanning
RSVP: 9821 4300 / / Facebook

21  June – 19 July
Showing in the Library

The Travelling Sketchbook Exhibition is an extension of The Sketchbook Project, presented by Propel and the Department of Local Government and Communities as part of the annual KickstART Festival, held during National Youth Week each April. Every year, young people (aged 12 - 26) from across WA sign up and are sent a free blank sketchbook, ready to be filled however they wish. All sketchbooks returned to Propel are then displayed as part of the exhibition, sharing participants’ stories and artworks to the Perth public at the State Library of WA during KickstART, before touring rural and suburban libraries around WA for over six months.
The Travelling Sketchbook Exhibition is presented by Propel Youth Arts WA and is proudly supported by the State Library of WA. The Sketchbook Project is presented by Propel Youth Arts WA as part of the KickstART Festival and is proudly supported by the Department of Local Government and Communities.

Library Community Room
Toy Library
Tuesdays & Saturdays
10:30am – 11:30am

Why buy toys when you can borrow something new and different each week at your local toy library!

1:00pm – 4:00pm
Have you ever wanted to trace your family history but don’t know where to start?
Have you already begun the journey but have hit a wall?
Do you have the skills, time and know-how to help others in their ancestry search?
Drop in on Thursday afternoons during school terms to meet Wyn and Irene of the Katanning Genealogical Society. 

Did you know…?
You can have full access to free from within the Library! is an amazing tool for researching and mapping your family tree and normally full access requires an ongoing membership that costs $30 a month. Come on in, grab and cuppa and get lost in!

Copyright © 2017 Shire of Katanning, All rights reserved.

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