Part III: The final boundaries - Bacchus Marsh
- Under the proposed boundaries, most of Moorabool Shire was included in the Buninyong district, the north-eastern fringe of the Shire in Macedon, and the Bacchus Marsh urban area in Melton district. The Moorabool Shire Council suggested that the area east of Korkuperrimul Creek and north of the Western Freeway be transferred from Melton to Macedon district, and the area south of the freeway go from Melton to Buninyong. The Council argued that Moorabool Shire is semi-rural in nature and should be in semi-rural electorates, and that under the proposed boundaries, residents of Bacchus Marsh would feel a minority in the urban Melton electorate. The Council also suggested that Buninyong district be renamed Moorabool, not so much after the Shire as after the Moorabool River, which is a central feature of the district. Ms Tonia Dudzik of Long Forest wrote that all of Moorabool Shire should be in included in the seat of Buninyong, to increase the Shire’s future bargaining abilities with the State Government.
- The numbers requirements of the Act rule out the Moorabool Shire Council’s proposal; under the Council’s suggested boundaries, Melton district’s enrolment would be well below the allowable 10 per cent deviation from the average, while Buninyong’s and Macedon’s enrolments would be close to 10 per cent above the average. Buninyong and Macedon districts are growing fast, and under the Council’s suggested boundaries would very soon breach the 10 per cent threshold. In addition, the EBC considers that the Council’s proposal would split the Bacchus Marsh community of interest. In relation to Bacchus Marsh’s place in an urban Melton district, it should be noted that Bacchus Marsh has been in the Melton district since 2002, and that Bacchus Marsh could now be regarded as urban rather than semi-rural.
- On the name of the district, the EBC is reluctant to give an electoral district the same name as a shire. No name will cover the whole district. The name Buninyong refers to a central point in the district, between the urban area of Ballarat and the rural areas to the south and east.