RESIDENTS are being urged to comment on plans to hive off part of Speers Point to create a new suburb called Lake Macquarie.
Lake Macquarie City Council has given residents a month to have a say, but some have already shown their hand.
Speers Point resident Terry McCormack said the council had dismissed his proposal for residents to be given a vote on the matter.
Mr McCormack said that prompted him to conduct a survey of affected residents, which he said he did on two weekends.
The survey included one vote for each household.
‘‘I knocked on 234 doors and 143 were against the plan, 14 for it, 11 were undecided and 66 not home,’’ Mr McCormack said.
The council plans to give the Lake Macquarie name to an area of Speers Point that includes about 200 houses, Speers Point Park and the council administration centre.
In a poll on the Newcastle Herald website last year, 47 per cent of people supported the change and 53 per cent were against it.
As well as the name change, the council wants comment on its plan to name the main road from Morisset to Wallsend ‘‘Lake Macquarie Way’’.
Mayor Greg Piper said the plans would improve tourism and ‘‘make the city easier to find’’.
A council statement said it would ‘‘provide resources’’ to help people change their address.
‘‘Australia Post, Australian Electoral Commission, Telstra, Hunter Water and Ausgrid will be notified of any suburb change,’’ the statement said.
‘‘Residents would have to make their own arrangements to change mailing address details on personal items such as licences, bank accounts, electricity and water accounts.’’
Geographical Names Board guidelines said community support was needed to change suburb names.
Cr Piper said an ‘‘information session’’ would be held at the council chambers on Wednesday, February29, from 6.30pm to 8pm to ‘‘find out more on the benefits of having a suburb called Lake Macquarie’’.
Mr McCormack said the council denied him the chance to speak at the meeting, but he was told it may be possible to ask questions.
Public submissions on the plan close on March 23.