2021 AGM Presidents Report


Membership numbers have slowly grown over the past year. The Challenge that businesses face is keeping
doors open for business with the impacts of Covid-19 not going unnoticed, We have lost some members but we
have also gained lots of new member over the past 12 months with many new businesses starting up. New
members were welcomed at most meetings and membership going in to the future will undoubtedly continue to
grow. The Chamber has relied on attracting members through word of mouth and utilising resources for
members that show value.

Visit Batemans Bay

This campaign has had to shift its focus over the last 6 months due to travel restrictions. It’s purpose of
promoting small business and telling stories to our audience, focused mainly in Sydney and Canberra, has
continued but we have had to pivot the page to also support local businesses and promote them locally. It has
attracted lots of attention to those businesses that participate and we have had members join due to that page

To date since April we have had over a 2 million reach. There is huge potential for growth this in this space and
we have seen all the other towns in the region follow suite with @VisitMogo, @VisitNarooma, @VisitMoruya and
@VisitBodalla pages all starting and becoming active.

Cross Chamber Communication

That leads into our work with other Chambers. We have a great relationship with the other Chambers in the
region and have met multiple times to both collaborate and be cohesive in our needs and wants when
approaching council. We have started the process of creating a Eurobodalla Chamber to be a voice for the
region. We believe having a stronger region benefits us all and having a voice that can speak to local, state and
federal governments would be a huge benefit to us all.

Business in CBD

The last 12 months have been especially trying for Batemans Bay coming off the back of the previous year with
Bushfires. We have seen far less foot traffic and tourist to the region due to lockdowns from Covid-19. At the
same time, we have seen lots of new small businesses coming to the region and the future has never been
brighter we believe.


We have had lots of projects happening in our region recently including the new bridge completion, Bay
Pavilions and foreshore completion. While some of these projects have been slowed down due again to covid
the money coming into the region for infrastructure is great. We know there has been various issues regarding
the new Bay Pavilion we will continue to work with council and our member businesses concerned about the
way it will impact their business.

We have worked with Transport NSW and RMS on the closing of the Clyde Mountain which saw concessions
made in favour of business. We have participated in many reviews for bushfire preparedness and hope that
council continue to work towards being on the front foot if this was to ever happen again.
We have met with Michael Holland and the other members of the ONE Eurobodalla Hospital on the need for
Level 4 facilities. We will continue to support and advocate for these services for the region.


The obvious challenge over the past year has been navigating through the pandemic. We held the New Year’s
Eve commemorative event last year only to see the borders closed the following morning. We also had a
community and emergency services day planned in July which has been postponed 3 times due to lockdowns.
While we are not out of the woods with just yet, it appears as if we can see the light at the end of the tunnel. I
have no doubt the region will bounce back and see business owners come together alongside the community in
supporting small business


While many events have stopped over the past year, we look forward to them all being successful in 2022 and
council proactively supporting them to bring vibrancy back to the region. We would also like to congratulate the
Sculpture for Clyde Committee on its successes as it now is a stand-alone event not under the Chamber. It has
had huge success over the years and brought an enormous amount of public art in the shire.


It has been an extremely tough year for the country and in particular for this region based so much around
tourism. With travel bans lifting I believe we have set ourselves up for one of the biggest summers ever. It is also
great to see how we have pivoted to be more sustainable year-round. I want to say a massive thanks to the
committee around me because without everyone lifting each other’s spirts and pulling extra weight at times lots
of what we accomplished would not have happened. The Chamber is in a great position going forward and we
look to the new incoming council as hope that we will have a great relationship with them and continue the
advocacy at higher levels of government to continue growing this region. It has been my pleasure to work
alongside the executive.

Mathew Hatcher
6 October 2021

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