Citizens' Panel

Citizens Panel cartoon image.JPG

Every year, 50 people from randomly selected households will help shape the future of our Peninsula.

This all started back in 2021, where the community helped shape our future through a new Community Vision to 2040.

Next, we set up our very first Citizens’ Panel to develop this Community Vision. It was such a great success that Council resolved to recruit a new panel each year comprising of all ages and abilities to help them make better and more informed decisions!

How is the panel selected?

Invitations are posted out to 10,000 randomly selected addresses on the Mornington Peninsula from our residential and ratepayer address database.

Of the people who register their interest, we’ll randomly select 50 people to join the Panel.

Anyone 16+ who receives the invitation can apply and we’re happy to help with any technical, mobility, disability or language support.

What does the Citizens' Panel do?

The Panel will discuss and influence a range of issues that impact our community; from how we manage the environment, arts and culture, planning and infrastructure, coastal management, green wedge and transport to how we plan our services and programs such as roads and assets maintenance and community health and wellbeing.

In particular, we want them to see how we are going in the delivery of our new four-year Council and Wellbeing Plan, plus some other long-term planning.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a citizens' panel?

A citizens’ panel is a randomly selected group of people who broadly represent their entire community. The people on the panel learn about issues, discuss them with one another, and then make recommendations to Council about what should happen in their community and if/how things should change.

What impact does the panel make?

All feedback and recommendations from every panel session is presented to Council for their consideration. Panel feedback is also used to guide other Shire work.

Who can apply?

Anyone aged 16+ who lives at an address that has received this invitation can apply. We encourage everyone eligible to register, but a maximum one person from any single household will be selected.

You will not be eligible if you are an elected representative from any level of government, a previous Councillor at the Mornington Peninsula Shire, a previous Citizens’ Panel member or Council staff.

I haven't received an invitation but I want to be involved. What can I do?

Only the 10,000 randomly selected people who received an invitation can register their interest to be involved in the Citizens’ Panel.

That doesn’t mean we don’t want to hear from you though! We do lots of community consultation of a wide range of projects and issues.

Check out the projects open for community feedback.

2024 sessions

Tuesday 26 March 5:30pm – 7pm
Meet and greet - Safety Beach Sailing Club

This session was held in-person at the Safety Beach Sailing Club and gave all panel members an opportunity to meet each other in person and to hear about the year ahead. The Mayor and CEO, John Baker, welcomed the panellists and spoke about the importance of this unique public forum. Additionally, we had 2023 panel member Hannah O’Loghlin, and the Shire’s Young Citizen of the Year Award winner share her experiences from the previous year. The evening concluded with some light refreshments while panel members mingled with Shire staff and Councillors.

Wednesday 3 April, 6pm – 9pm
Session 1: Get to know your council – online session

The panel members had their first online Zoom session with a few exercises to get the panel comfortable with the online environment and tools. The evening started with a welcome and included an opportunity for the panel to discuss their working agreements for the year and engage in a conversation about deliberative engagement and critical thinking. After a short break, 22 council officers joined the panel for a speed dialogue to talk about their roles, departments, and showcase some of their projects.

See what the 2023 panellists achieved See what the 2022 panellists achieved