The Draft Community Engagement Framework provides Council with an opportunity to renew its commitment to engage with the community. The intent of the draft framework is to raise the standard of community engagement by strengthening planning, active participation and feedback components in each engagement process used throughout the organisation. The draft framework directly responds to the 2017 Victorian Auditor-General’s Office (VAGO) audit into public participation and community engagement across the Local Government sector. The structure and content of the framework is directly based on the recommendations resulting from the audit and the better practice guidance notes provided by the VAGO.

The purpose of the draft Community Engagement Framework is to inform the community about the City of Ballarat’s commitment and approach to engagement and to encourage residents and ratepayers to be involved. The draft framework recognises the diversity of our community and incorporates this into the planning and design of engagement activities. A clear priority addressed in the new draft framework is to enable a consistent, transparent and high-quality approach to the design and delivery of community engagement. The draft also seeks to provide guidance to officers, Councillors and the community on Council’s principles, methods and available resources in relation to engagement.