30 August 2011

Footways Asset Management Plan 30th August 2011

This plan was presented to the Audit Committee tonight. It gives a comprehensive answer to the motion put by me in February 2011 asking for acceleration of the footpath replacement plan. This outlines how Council can achieve a target of all bitumen footpaths being replaced by 2018/19, only 8 years. This is much better than the currently proposed 23 years with a completion by 2034. This is being debated by the Audit Committee, it will then be work shopped by elected members before it proceeds to Council for endorsement. This makes interesting reading if you have the time and your feedback would be valued. I know some will be disappointed, what this report doesn't tell us is when it would be expected that your street will be done; this would follow this report. I will pursue if further acceleration is possible through the work shop process.


23 August 2011

No Deputy Mayor for Unley

This is a huge loss to good governance in the City of Unley. After talking to other Councillors, letting them all know my intentions, seeking the support from Anthony Lapidge to accept the position and emailing my colleagues seeking support for a quick and decisive debate,this was not to happen. I went into the meeting with 7 assurances for a yes vote (and 5 nos) to see this eroded by a Mayor who suddenly decided that it was no longer his wish to have a deputy. He had not at any time prior to Monday night indicated to me that my motion did not have his support. I think Councillors lost sight of the fact that it is us that make the decisions of Council and not the Mayor. Those voting for the motion were Boisvert, Tipper and Saies and those against Hudson, Schnell, Hughes, Lapidge (yes this is true), Sangster, Salaman, Palmer, Koumi and Hewitson. This motion should have been quick and united and yet others chose to consider the motion divisive. This was never my intention. I believe the City would be better served by the certainty that a Deputy Mayor would provide and the City has lost an opportunity for better governance.

Kelvin Avenue pocket park

The item regarding the pocket park should have been reserved out before Saturday evening if further discussion was to take place. The Mayor sought fit to accept a motion from Cr Schnell that was contrary to our meeting procedures so that the item could be deferred for further debate at the City Strategy meeting on the 19th September and then again on the 26th September if reserved out next time. The original committee made a decision in favour of the pocket park after to listening to both sides of the debate. After considerable lobbying from both sides to Councillors on the weekend one of the emails said that a petition had been signed by 150 people. At this point in time I have still not seen a copy of the petition and it was not available last night. There is clearly two sides to this debate, much stems around the lack of understanding about the purpose of a pocket park and the other relates to traffic management. It is time now to take stock, to see if the opportunity to have an innovative park concept developed in our area out weighs the the very valid desires of people using the road as their current exit and entry point to East Avenue (perceived to be safer) or if it does not. I will be working in the next couple of weeks in trying to gain a deeper understanding of the issue, working at ways to improve access from George St and Mills St to East Ave and to look at other ways of developing the park area such as allowing a driveway link exit from Kelvin Ave but not into Kelvin Avenue. If there are other suggestions I would love to hear and discuss them.

21 August 2011

Full Council meeting August 22nd 2011

No items were reserved out for further discussion at the Full Council meeting. This means that all decisions made at committee level will stand and be acted upon by staff. Don and I have requested a site meeting with staff to ascertain ways that the entry and exit from both George St and Mills St to East Avenue can be achieved. Suggestions and observations of other similar corners would suggest that reducing on street parking near the corners and painting Keep Clear signs on the roadway in East Avenue would alleviate some of the problems occurring at these corners. It is likely that Council will proceed to install speed pillows in Leah St, which may well deter many drivers from using East Avenue and keep them on South Rd. However, it may also mean that more drivers are looking for shortcuts, one of these would have been Kelvin Ave.
Items to be debated are;

  • Eastern Region Alliance; it is hoped that by establishing an Alliance group for Burnside, Campbelltown, Norwood, Prospect, Tea Tree Gully, Unley and Walkerville that the Alliance will achieve greater influence when Federal funds are being allocated and more monies will be available for large projects.

  • Outdoor Dining-Provision for discounted rates for non-smoking areas; This is my initiative and if will allow restaurants and cafes to reduce their costs and and to provide smoke free outdoor dining areas if they choose to. There are no losers in this debate and potentially a lot of winners. Outdoor dining area can remain the domain of smokers if each individual restaurant or cafe wants them to. However, I would like to see smoking areas on the footpath reduced especially on the main street alignment. The highest fee for footpath dining is currently $1.65 per square metre per week, this would be reduced to 80 cents.

  • Inner Metro Ring Structure Plan; Council is now supporting this plan with the modifications that the state government have been prepared to make. Most now fits the proposed Development Plans. No area in Goodwood South is within this plan.

There are 3 Motions on Notice

  • Rufus Salaman wants some modifications to the new entrance to Culvert St, I will support his view as he has worked tirelessly with residents and staff to seek a simple solution that is in the best interests of all stakeholders. The decision on this was to deferred to the next Council meeting

  • John Koumi wants a some extra detail in the Agenda that we receive, this was supported.

  • I am seeking the support of Council for a Deputy Mayor to be elected. I will be supporting Anthony Lapidge for this position, at this time I have had no negative feedback from my fellow Councillors. As this what the Mayor has stated publicly that he wants (June Mayor's Report)I see no reason why it will not be supported. (see separate blog)

The Agenda can be found at;


18 August 2011

Eastern Courier Article 17th August 2011

Unley moves to a deputy
16 Aug 11 @ 08:50am by Sarah Garvis

DEPUTY MOVES: Unley Council may appoint a deputy to assist Mayor Lachlan Clyne after his recent arrest.
MAYOR Lachlan Clyne’s arrest has prompted some of his Unley Council colleagues to move to appoint a deputy mayor to act in his place when he is unavailable.
Calls to the council’s 12 elected members last week found at least six supported having a deputy, two did not, and one was undecided. Three did not return calls.
Cr Jennie Boisvert said she would move a motion next week (Monday, August 22) in favour of appointing a deputy mayor.
“The deputy mayor can act in the place of the mayor if they’re not available to chair meetings or attend functions,” Cr Boisvert said.
“In light of the current circumstances I think it is imperative we elect a deputy mayor.”
Under the Local Government Act, an elected member can only be forced to step down if convicted and ordered to serve jail time.
Since being charged this month, Mr Clyne has chaired full council meetings, while other members chair council committees.
Police arrested him at his Unley Park home on August 2, after a complaint about an email sent in the 2010 election campaign.
The Eastern Courier Messenger has previously reported Sturt police seized a computer from Mr Clyne’his family business on the day of the November 11 election.
Mr Clyne, 28, was charged with two counts of dishonestly dealing with documents, and single counts of improper use of another identity, criminal defamation and publication of misleading material.
The council voted not to appoint a deputy mayor in December, after Mr Clyne said he did not want nor need one.
Cr Boisvert lodged a complaint of bullying against Mr Clyne after an email he sent to members in November encouraged them not to support her bid to be deputy mayor.
Mr Clyne was made to publicly apologise for the email in March, after a Local Government Governance Panel investigation found he had breached the council’s code of conduct.
Cr Michael Saies agreed the council needed a deputy.
“There are going to be times when Lachlan won’t be able to comment on things because of a conflict of interest between the private defence of his charges and his role as the council’s public spokesperson,” Cr Saies said.
Cr John Koumi did not think it was necessary to elect a deputy mayor yet.
“I’d like to see how the issue pans out, I don’t think we need to panic.”
Cr Rob Sangster said: “I wouldn’t support a deputy mayor until I’m satisfied with what’s happening with our current mayor.”
Mr Clyne refused to say whether he would support having a deputy.
“That’s not my focus.“My focus is on the important tasks of getting what the residents want.”
If convicted, the charge of dishonestly dealing with documents carries a maximum jail term of 10 years.
He was bailed to appear in court next month.
How they would vote?
Yes;Michael Saies,Peter Hughes,Anthony Lapidge,Jennie Boisvert,Mike Hudson (with the support of the mayor),Michael Hewitson (with the support of the mayor)
No;Rob Sangster,John Koumi
Undecided;Rufus Salaman
Councillors Tipper, Palmer and Schnell did not return calls.

Would love you to add your comments to add to the debate on Monday evening. Clearly it is something I have always thought would be of benefit to the Council and my view hasn't changed. Interestingly, I emailed all Councillors of my intention to move this motion and sort the consent of my preferred candidate. Not one has replied to my email.

15 August 2011

City Strategy August 15th 2011

This was a short Agenda but very relevant to Goodwood South.

  • Kelvin Avenue pocket park; 6 people chose to make a deputation to support their letter submitted during the consultation phase for the most recent consultation on this issue. The pocket park was approved by Council in September 2010, this meeting was to discuss the road closure. All residents were letter boxed that lived near the proposed road closure, and an advertisement was placed in both The Advertiser and the Eastern Courier. Both Don and I put out a newsletter at that time asking people to put in their submissions, both he and I have mentioned it in the blogs that we keep. About 11 submissions were in favour of the closure and 9 against, additional to this a petition was lodged with 23 signatures supporting the proposal. All emergency services have been consulted and were happy, with slight modification required by ETSA. My understanding is that the key issues are the lack of understanding about the purpose of a pocket park and the rerouting of traffic that currently use Kelvin Ave to turn north and south on East Ave rather than using Mill St or George St. Less than 300 cars a day use the street, anecdotal evidence suggests well over half use this as a short cut, they neither start nor finish their journey in Unley. Local residents are used to using this street as it seen to be an easier access point. In the end the debate for the road closure won the day. Don Palmer suggested some modifications to the parking and signage at the East Ave and Mills St corner and the East Ave and George St corner which should be able to make entrances and exits safer. The link to the pocket park design is; http://www.unley.sa.gov.au/webdata/resources/files/Atts_Item_359_CSP_Sept_2010.pdf

  • Undergrounding of power lines in Goodwood Rd is now a real possibility as the Power Lines Environment Committee have asked Council to fund a portion of the cost (about a third) of this service. This would dramatically improve the amenity of Goodwood Rd. Design work would need to be funded next financial year.

  • The fees and charges Register has now been updated with some changes. I was successful in ensuring that family entrance to the pool is still for 2 adults and 3 children.

  • The small sponsorship and donations scheme has allocated $8,000 to children, living in Unley , to help defray the costs of travel and competition in elite sports competitions, eg SAPSASA tennis, U14 basketball. At least 50 children have benefited from this in the last year. Amounts up to $150 have been paid.

05 August 2011

Refused entry to a meeting; 3rd August 2011

On Wednesday 3rd August the Recruitment Panel chosen (see separate blog) to select the next CEO met with the selected recruitment consultants. The consultants had been selected at a meeting on Monday 1st August. This decision was with held from all other Councillors until Thursday evening when we received the minutes of the meeting. The Panel is described as a Section 41 Committee which means that other Councillors are allowed to attend as observers. The purpose of the meeting was allegedly to meet and greet but decisions were to be made at the meeting. I entered the meeting room to be confronted by the Mayor and asked to leave, this request was repeated many times and after a stand off of about 10 minutes I stayed in the room for the remainder of the meeting. Once again the Mayor has chosen to treat me in a manner different from other Councillors. At a meeting earlier in the week the CEO Performance Review Committee (of which I am a member) allowed a Councillor who was not a member of the committee to both observe and participate. I was shocked and humiliated by this treatment especially as I had expressed to all panel members that I wished to have input into the gender issue before or during discussions about the recruitment with the selected consultant.

04 August 2011

Should the Mayor stand down?

Mayor Lachlan Clyne was arrested on Tuesday on 4 charges, all of which are serious. They allegedly relate to some emails sent during the election campaign last October and November. Mayor Clyne ran against Goodwood South Councillor, Les Birch, and former State member of parliament, Mark Brindal and won by some 300 votes.
At this point in time Council has no power to request that he stand down, he must choose to do this on his own account. We can, however, appoint an alternate spokesperson and remove him from any committee positions that he holds. We also need a Deputy Mayor should at any time Lachlan be unable to fulfill his duties. This time I don't think it will be a job I want. Ultimately the Council will decide what will happen if the Mayor decides to stay or if he decides to stand down. The courts will decide if he is guilty or not, however, although there will be a directions hearing in September the matter may not be decided until this time next year.
This has been very damaging for the Council image, my many emails tell me that you are not happy with the current situation. Will he stand down? Should he stand down? Two different arguments, he will decide one you will decide the other.
You comments are very welcome.

01 August 2011

Update August 2011

I noticed that this has been finished on the corner of Grantley Eve and Goodwood Rd, it looks great and should deter graffiti. A development application had to be lodged with Council and the owners got the go ahead last week.

I attended the Centenary dinner for the Goodwood Saints last weekend, it was well attended and well organised. it was good to see the level of commitment from local people and past and present players and their families.

I also attended the Clarence Park Community Centre July meeting. It is in good financial shape judging from the preliminary end of year figures. for those who are interested the AGM will be on September 28th at 4pm at CPCC. The new partnering agreement with the Council is ready to sign.

This month the following should be of interest;

  • Railway electrification; It seems that this is behind schedule and consultation due for July is now more likely to occur in September. DTEI have undertaken to publicly notify and to call a meeting of concerned and interested residents. Thanks to a concerned resident for this information.

  • Buildings and fences along East Avenue were attacked with graffiti several times during the school holidays. This has now been painted out. If you notice graffiti please let me know and I will ensure it is painted out quickly.

  • Page Park; the new toilet block seems to be missing, I'm sure it will be installed shortly. The dog poo bag dispenser should also be installed in the near future. Adding play equipment in the park will be considered in the 2012/13 budget.

  • Merlon Avenue has come in for some criticism recently. The footpaths have been all but ruined by building works and the trees are in a pretty poor state. Discussion has commenced with staff to see if some of the necessary repairs can be completed this year with in the existing budget.

  • Repairs have commenced on Kylie's Bakery. As soon as they are completed the barricades will be removed from the corner.

  • I'm trying to get a time for the commencement of the small pocket park that is to be completed in Spiers St, this will not involve a road closure.

  • The left had turn bans to Laught St and Dunrobin St will be removed on East Avenue. 60 of the 62 forms returned supported this initiative. This is the highest response rate ever received by Council and probably the most consistent.

  • the Aroha Tce consultation wasn't as consistent, it would seem the the outcome will be 2 hour parking on the southern side and no time limits in the parking bays. The extra parking bays will also be commenced shortly. Norman Tce will be bitumenised in the near future as well.

  • The report into smoke free footpaths will be presented to the next City Strategy meeting. This will give coffee shops and restaurants the opportunity to save money and discourage smoking on the footpaths where there is outdoor dining. They will be encouraged to make the main street frontage no smoking. There are no losers in this as they can continue to do what they have always done at the same price or they can try something different, spend less money and allow for a more pleasant outdoor dining experience for those who don't smoke (now 80% of the population). There will still be places for those who wish to smoke if they wish.