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Future at risk

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The future of the Romsey Region Business and Tourism Association is in doubt if the group is unable to recruit new members to its committee of management before its annual general meeting on November 14.

The association has been functioning with five committee members and no secretary but with two committee members set to retire after a decade of service, the group is concerned about its future.

As a minimum of four committee members are required under Consumer Affairs Victoria regulations, the association will no longer be able to legally exist unless these positions are filled.

President Jenny Stillman said the minimal requirement for a committee of management position was attendance at four meetings each year.

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“Everyone is very busy these days. Businesses are very busy just focusing on keeping their doors open every day,” she said.

“While there is a basic amount of work with the governance requirements, the reality is many of the other activities or representations are done by working groups, not by the committee of management.

“We’re asking for interested community members or businesses being prepared to attend four meetings a year as committee of management members, particularly a treasurer and secretary, none of which should be onerous if we’re sharing the load.”

The association is the group responsible for many of the projects and events which occur in Romsey and the eastern Macedon Ranges throughout the year.

Ms Stillman said association initiatives included Romsey Streetscape Project, Christmas in Romsey, Romsey Online website, advocacy for the Romsey region with local, state and federal governments, agencies and other stakeholders, and promotion of the district’s businesses, economic development and the positive effects of the visitor economy.

“I think RRBATA’s profile and standing with prospective funding bodies, whether it be the bank or council, has facilitated very generous funding to support a festival like that,” she said.

A lot of those projects could be under threat if the association is unable to get new members for its committee of management.

“We’ve received funding to support our business dinner next April but obviously that’s potentially in peril,” Ms Stillman said.

“With the digital plaques project which is currently underway, council and bank funding was obtained by RRBATA.

“If we don’t have RRBATA, we don’t have the website for that.”

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