29 January 2015

Response from Minister Mullighan

This link will take you to the correspondence recently received from Stephen Mullighan regarding the issues Council raised with him regarding the freight  and Seaford line. I have to acknowledge that the graffiti has been removed at least once but the rest is either trying to shift responsibility to the federal government or making more excuses. I'm not happy with the answers.


U-tube clip on the Gourmet Gala

Hope you were there to enjoy the atmosphere?

New public spaces along King William Road

In keeping with the Council’s long term vision for King William Road, the Precinct will take on a new look this summer with the creation of two parklets along the popular shopping strip.

The new ‘temporary’ public spaces will be created within the footprint of two car-parks and will provide areas for people to meet gather and enjoy the local environment.

City of Unley CEO Peter Tsokas says the Parklet program would provide an innovative and practical solution for supporting local business and activating public spaces.

“We are really excited to welcome people into these new spaces and see how our local community use the settings to their advantage,” Mr Tsokas said.

“It is important that we keep trialling new initiatives to ensure our major precincts continue to attract shoppers and visitors. It is also equally important that visitors feel like they are in a safe and inviting environment.”

26 January 2015

Full Council meeting: Jan 27th 2015

Well it's back to business with a very full agenda. Seems like a long time since the caretaker period started in September 2014, meetings since that time have not had very meaty agendas. This meeting was long and complicated and as the Mayor is still on holiday I chaired the meeting. It's a bit stifling not being able to enter the debate.
Items this month included;
  • Centennial Park Cemetery Authority Charter; a recent report was commissioned into the functioning of the Board and has made 21 recommendations for change. These include what seem to be quite sensible changes but are also an attempt to reduce the influence of elected members in the Boards decision making. Most were supported  but many changed to allow the majority of Board members to still being the hands of the Councils that own the authority. Decisions on many items were also put off while further information is sought. Mitcham must agree with our position or the matter will bounce back to Council until we can agree. 
  • Funding for Eastwood Community Centre: Council currently funds the Eastwood Community Centre to tune of $12,700 a year. This historically has been to offer some support to the centre in recognition of the use that Unley citizens make of centre programmes. However, Burnside Council who usually fund the centre  have decided to cut funding this financial year. This begs the question then as to why Unley should be giving them any money at all? This motion was PASSED and funding will cease at the end of this financial year.
  • Changes to Encroachments Policy;This motion attempts to clarify and simplify the current policy and to also include overhanging balconies (as on King William Rd).PASSED
  • Final Expert Panel on Planning Reform: This reform as been widely written about in the press and all I can say is that they didn't listen to the people who know the most and I doubt that this is the reform that anyone one wants except the government an developers.PASSED
  • Unley Central Development Plan Amendment; This will allow staff to further develop  a plan that would allow for more intense development in and around the Unley Shopping Centre area.PASSED
  • Unley Corridor Development 246-252 Unley Rd; This is the first high rise development proposed for Unley Rd, Council has little say in this development as the current government have made themselves the planning authority. PASSED
  • Forestville and Everard Park Local Area Traffic Management Study; Unfortunately, I feel there will be very few people in Black Forest  (and maybe Millswood and Clarence Park as well) who read this report and are happy. It does not recommend the removal of the speed cushions in Leah St or to replace the humps in Everard Tce. Instead it recommends a number of options to reduce the diversion of traffic that occurred when these devices were either installed or removed. This was PASSED but only with serious amendment. At least 3 options are to be further developed and then it will go to consultation.
  • Appointment of Deputy Mayor; Bob Schnell will be deputy again until Jan 2016. We agreed on one year terms for this position.
  • Appointment of Elected Members to Centennial Park Board: Anthony Lapidge and Luke Smolucha will take a place on the Board.
  • Appointment of  Development Assessment Panel Members: Robin Sangster, Rufus Salaman and Jennie Boisvert will be on this committee
  • Review of Committee Structure; This is to recommend that Council again have 4 Section 41 committees that have independent and elected members. There will an Infrastructure Committee, Development and Strategy Committee, Community and Culture Committee and the Unley Business and Economic Development Committee. Each councillor is on at least one of these committees, chairpersons will be Peter Hughes (Community and Culture), don Palmer (Development and Strategy), Michael Hewitson (Infrastructure) and John Koumi (UBED).
  • Nominations-LGA President and Board Members; the Mayor wishes for Council to renominate him for this committee. Council also get to lodge a vote for the LGA President, this time they must come from a  country council.Council nominated the Mayor for this position.
  • Nomination-Development Assessment Commission;Don Palmer is again going to have a shot at  this.

25 January 2015

New from the Libraries

Unley Libraries header

Author Talk with Simon Cameron
One of the most famous assaults of the Gallipoli campaign took place on 6 August 1915 on a small plateau, no bigger than a football field. Author, Simon Cameron, will talk about his book, Lonesome Pine: The Bloody Ridge, and give us an insight into the lives of the men who fought, died and survived the battle at Lone Pine.

Thursday 5 February, 7 - 8pm
Unley Town Hall

Oxford Terrace, Unley
Entry by gold coin donation. Light refreshments provided.
Bookings essential, ph 8372 5100 or book here.

Domestic Bliss exhibition
Domestic Bliss exhibitionCreate crafts, take home recipes, and travel back in time to your great-grandmother's living areas. Domestic Bliss is an exhibition featuring household objects common to homes of the past. Explore kitchen and parlour items, and activities and stories from Unley households. Free exhibition sponsored by the Friends of the Unley Museum.
Exhibition launch
Unley Museum
Free, no bookings required.
Exhibition open during Museum hours
Monday - Wednesday, 10am - 4pm, Sunday 1.30 - 4.30pm
Free, no bookings required.
For further information, please contact the Unley Museum, ph 8372 5117, or visit our website.
Storytime Babytime 
With the start of term, our Storytime and Babytime programs are resuming.
Enjoy a story and a craft with your 2-5 year old.

Tuesdays, 10.30am
Unley Civic Library
Thursdays, 10.30am
Goodwood Library

For times and dates, please visit ourStorytime page
Enjoy songs, rhymes and fingerplays with your baby in your lap. For 0-2 years and their carer.

Fridays, 10.30 and11.30am
(two half-hour sessions)
Alternating between Unley Civic and Goodwood Libraries each week. 
For times and dates, please visit ourBabytime page, or pick up aChildren's brochure in our libraries.
Unley Voices choir Unley Voices
Unley's community choir meets on Wednesday afternoons in St Augustine's Church, 183 Unley Road, Unley. Each practice is followed by a cuppa. We sing harmonies, but the ability to read music is not essential. Practices will recommenceon Wednesday 11 February, 2 - 4pm.
For further information, please contact the Unley Libraries, ph 8372 5100.
Library Lovers

Library Lovers' Day 2015
We are joining libraries across Australia to celebrate Library Lovers' Day. 
Blind Date with a Book
Visit our libraries and borrow a blind date, a covered book for you to unwrap at home, along with a token of our appreciation.
Unley Civic and Goodwood Libraries

Coming soon...
Ignite UnleyMarch sees our annual Unley in Harmony celebrations. This year we are celebrating all things French with a Mayoral Afternoon Tea, a French Travel Talk course, and some memorable French music from Trio Montagne.
As part of our continuing Anzac Centenary celebrations
  • Bravest of the Brave : South Australians awarded the Victoria Cross in the First World War exhibition
    3 February - 27 March
    Bravest of the Brave tells the story of eight South Australian men who were awarded the Victoria Cross for their heroic deeds during the First World War (1914-1918).
    The exhibition gives an introduction to the First World War and South Australia's part in the conflict, a brief history of the Victoria Cross, and a short profile of the eight men.
  • Remembering those who served from Unley: a photographic tour of Unley's WWI Honour Roll.
    To commemorate the Anniversary of the Gallipoli Landing, join Faithe Jones, a local family history researcher, on a photographic  journey through the soldier's and nurses listed on The City of Unley Honour Roll Board. 
Keep an eye out for these, and other events, in the coming months!
Unley Libraries header
Unley Civic Library
181 Unley Road,
Ph (08) 8372 5100
Goodwood Library
101 Goodwood Road, Goodwood
Ph (08) 8372 5166
Fullarton Park Library
411 Fullarton Road,
Ph (08) 8372 5167
Home Service Library
Ph (08) 8372 5137 
Unley Toy Library
(inside Unley Civic Library)
Ph (08) 8372 5174
Family History
(inside Goodwood Library)
Ph (08) 8372 5426
The City of Unley 
Forward this email

This email was sent to jboisvert@em.unley.sa.gov.au bylibraryfb@unley.sa.gov.au |  

City of Unley | PO Box 1 | Unley | 5061 | Australia

23 January 2015

East Ave: road improvement

Council received a letter this month  to say that East Ave had been selected for $200,000 of funding from Roads to Recovery money from the federal government. I'm sure I will find out what is intended to be done from staff sometime in the near future.

Rates; Pensioner Concessions

Councils have now been caught up in a funding argument between state and federal government regarding rate rebates for pensioners. These are $190 per eligible property and amount to $400,000 rate revenue  each year to Unley Council. It would seem that this is just another attempt to cost shift between levels of government with local government expected to bear the brunt once again.
While this matter has yet to be discussed by Council it will be considered as we develop the budget for 2015/16. Can Council afford to walk away from this amount of money? Or should Council raise everyone else's rates to cover the shortfall? This amount is about 1% of rate revenue.
Seems to me that this should be pushed back where it belongs and people should be asking the tough questions of both governments. I've already had a letter from Christopher Pyne to say it wasn't him but am yet to get any personal messages from members of the state government. Needless to say pensioners can not afford the increase and someone will have to pay.

Expressions of Interest – Council Committees

Expressions of Interest – Council Committees

The City of Unley is seeking expressions of interest from suitably qualified individuals regarding membership of four (4) Council Committees in the roles of Independent Members. The four (4) committees are Community & Culture Committee, Development Strategy & Policy Committee, Infrastructure & Sustainability Committee and Unley Business & Economic Development Committee.
In addition to Independent Members, each committee will include a number of members selected from the Elected Members of the City of Unley.
Applicants who have expertise relevant to the Committee in which they are interested are encouraged to submit their interest. Terms of Reference are available on the website via the link below.
It is expected that the Committees will meet for approximately two (2) hours, every three (3) months. Independent Members will receive a sitting fee.
Please submit your confidential submission outlining your qualifications and experience to:
Carol Gowland
Executive Assistant to the Chief Executive Officer
City of Unley
PO Box 1, Unley SA 5061
Applications will be received until 5pm Friday 30 January 2015.

22 January 2015

Gourmet Gala

I attended this event, always good to see if at least in  my own opinion this event good value for money. As it costs in excess of $200,000 it needs to represent what rate payers want as a celebration event. The event this year saw over 30,000 people enter the event, hopefully each of those people saw some friends, had something to eat and drink and spent longer there than they anticipated. It seemed to me that everyone was enjoying the atmosphere.
The Unley Community bus got a makeover at the same time.

20 January 2015

Ugly wall not a sound idea

This story also caught my eye this morning. While residents in Millswood and Forrestville are told that the noise from the trains is insufficient to warrant any sound treatment the residents in Darlington are unhappy about they way the one that they got looks. This barrier is corton steel (read rusty) held in place with metal post and rails that don't seem to match in colour. If it were me I would have placed the post and rails toward the road but that may have enabled undesirables to climb the wall (this doesn't seem to be a problem at the end of Cowper Rd). However, if the residents in Arundel Ave were offered thick steal as a barrier to the noise I doubt that they would have said no. All they got was some plastic lattice that is already falling to bits, and even this doesn't extend far along the street and needless to say does nothing for the noise and little for the overlooking.

First multi-storey development application lodged

The changes to the Unley Development Plan have resulted in the first application to build a multi-storey building on Unley Rd. A 6,000 square metre site between Opey Ave and Hart St. Council were briefed on this project last night and the plans will be available to view at the Council Chambers this week. However, Council is no longer the assessor of projects over 4 storeys or over $3 million. All comments will need to be made directly to the Development Assessment Commission and only from those people who live or own property within 60m of the site.
The Adelaidenow article can be found  at  http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/messenger/east-hills/apartments-including-some-penthouses-in-80m-unley-rd-revamp/story-fni9lkyu-1227190788950

Call to level out rates

Should Council rates be included in this year's state government tax review?
It would seem the so called Industry Coalition Advocating Council Reform is once again  muscling in on matters that they believe are stifling what they want. I have trouble working out what this could possibly have to do with the shop assistant's union? For once, it seems Tom Koutsantonis had something sensible to say. That is "I believe Councils should be autonomous, they should have their own  revenue base'. Where the end of the so called reforms will end up I can't predict. However, if you want a higher voter turnout simply make it compulsory to vote.

17 January 2015

Unley does it's bit for bushfire support

The recent Adelaide hills bushfires have resulted in considerable remedial work for the Adelaide Hills Council, particularly for their tree units as they worked towards remedying fire-affected trees which present a danger to road users in particular.
Unley were able to help in preparing Mt Barker Rd, Stirling for their Tour Down Under event.  
Unley's  tree unit, utilising the Elevated Work Platform, removed AHC's aerial X-Mas decorations, and installed the TDU decorations. 
Some of the crew, along with their chain saws, also made themselves available on Sunday 4th January at the height of the fires to support the CFS with the removal of high risk trees.

15 January 2015

Unley celebrates Australia Day

Last year this was a great one for the kids and adults were happy too so add it onto your to do list for this year.
11.30am-1pm, Monday 26 January 2015
Street Party, Oxford Terrace, Unley
Please join us to celebrate Australia Day at our Oxford Terrace Street Party!
Celebrations include free children’s activities including face painting, giant games and roving performers.
There will be a sausage sizzle, live music and treats available fromLa Scala Café. Bring your family and neighbours and enjoy the 2015 Australia Day Celebrations!

14 January 2015

ICAC; When is it needed?

After reading the article in today's paper and the comments on line I am left wondering just what the role of the ICACis. If a judge can find that the Gillman deal between the state government and their preferred developer (without going to tender) was both irrational and unlawful and did not ensure the best return for taxpayers and then uphold the contract anyway leaves me with too may questions unanswered. So who was it that authorised the sale in this way and how are they being disciplined by the government? Who will be asking ICAC to ask the same questions? How will they investigate to see who profited from the sale? it certainly wasn't the people of South Australia.
Interestingly, one of the big pushes to have a independent body looking at corruption was the state government belief that there were too may dodgy deals being done in local government. The ICAC report stated that only about 10% of complaints were actually
Surely not in South Australia?
about local government!

See you at the Unley Gourmet Gala

The Unley Gourmet Gala returns to  King William, Hyde Park in 2015.

One of Adelaide's most prestigious events, the annual Unley Gourmet Gala is an exciting outdoor gourmet experience showcasing some of South Australia's finest local food, wine, fashion, music and entertainment.
The City of Unley is also thrilled to have won its bid to host a stage of the 2015 Santos Tour Down Under (TDU).
The Stage 2 Start of the TDU will be held on Adelaide’s premier retail strip, King William Road at the Opey Avenue intersection, on Wednesday, January 21 at 11am. Click here for details.
To view the Unley Gourmet Gala line-up of entertainment, including food and wine stalls on offer, click on the Program below.
Unley Gourmet Gala 2015 Program


Visit our entertainment page to find out more about performers at the Gala.


Temporary Road Closures and Parking Restriction 

Click here for details on Temporary Road Closures and Parking Restrictions during the Gala and Santos Tour Down Unde

08 January 2015

Regulated trees to go in Heywood Park

Hopefully, further events like this can be avoided!
An application to remove 9 regulated trees in Heywood Park has been to public consultation and no objections have been raised. Each tree has been recommended for removal as it identified with a high risk of failure. A further 3 trees that have been identified as  needing to be removed have been assessed as significant and their fate will be need to be decided by the Development Assessment Panel. Hopefully, this will make the park safer for all users and give an opportunity for staff to replant as appropriate.

Construction of Ridge Park Storm Water Detention Dam

Artist's impression of the completed project

What’s been happening?
York Civil completed the bulk excavation for the concrete core wall.
In addition, placing of steel reinforcement and below ground concrete for the main structure core
wall was also completed.
This was a critical milestone as all major below ground works have now been completed. It was
particularly crucial to ensure that this was achieved so that the works would not be damaged in
the event of any rain and stream flows over the Xmas New Year break.
What next?
Minor earthworks will proceed upstream and downstream of the dam for works outside of the
core wall. This will also include construction of the northern levee bank.
Erection of formwork and falsework will commence in anticipation of pouring concrete to the
above ground sections of the core wall. York Civil plan to have the above ground core wall
concrete completed by the end of January.

07 January 2015

How many councils does it take to change a light bulb?

This article is definitely worth a read if you think Council should be changing street lighting to LEd technology. The initial outlay has the potential for huge savings!

06 January 2015

Love to ride Challenge

Unley in partnership with the Adelaide City Council and Cities of Burnside; Charles Sturt; Norwood, Payneham & St Peters; and West Torrens is participating in the Love to Ride 2015 Challenge. This important initiative demonstrates our commitment to a collaborative approach to the promotion of bike riding across Adelaide. We recognise that whilst we are actively improving cycling infrastructure within Unley, we also need to actively participate in programs that promote the take-up of cycling as an alternative travel mode for our residents and commuters travelling through Unley. The Rugby Street and Porter Street corridor is an example of a popular cyclist route into the CBD, as well as providing important local connections to schools, childcare, parks, community services and shops within Unley. The Love to Ride 2015 Challenge compliments the improvements in physical infrastructure and continues our collaboration with Adelaide City Council with the implementation of the signage strategy for this cycling route.

Known previously as the Tour de Work, the Love to Ride Challenge is a FREE competition to see which workplace can encourage the most staff to ride a bike for 10 minutes or more. It’s simple, fun and is based on numbers taking part not kilometers cycled and participants can ride anywhere, anytime to be eligible to win great prizes. All that participants need to do is register online at www.lovetoride.net/adelaide and encourage others to participate. Participants also can win great prizes just for logging a ride and a free movie ticket for encouraging a new rider to experience the fun of being on a bike again.
The focus on a short, easily achievable goal of 10 minutes helps the program to reach the key target audiences of non and occasional bike riders, who are then encouraged by experienced and regular cyclists.  Free courses are available for new riders and riders that want more experience of being on a bike – click here for more information.

Further information can be found at www.lovetoride.net/adelaide.

05 January 2015

For want of a little water!

Residents have alerted me on a number of occasions regarding the health of the recently planted  shrubs and trees in Arundel Ave, Cromer Pde and Devon St. The plants were planted by a contractor selected by Unley Council. They are responsible for the life of the plants for a 12 month period. For them it may well be cheaper to let the plants die and then replant in early winter. For residents it is distressing to see the plants dying and loosing another year of possible growth and return to a well vegetated and attractive street. Some plants seem to be quite healthy, I suspect that these are being watered by residents. I have, once again, alerted staff to the issue and, hopefully, there
will be a water truck out this week. However,
for many of the plants it will be too late.

02 January 2015

You can now recycle more items than ever.

Additional items are now accepted in your recycling bin.
  • Pots and pans
  • Rigid plastic items such as laundry baskets, buckets and power tools cases
  • Kitchenware
  • Plastic toys
  • Plastic cup and reusable drink bottles
  • Pot plant pots
  • Plastic bottles with lids on including spray bottles and pump bottles

01 January 2015

Amalgamations again

When the last round of Council amalgamations were proposed (1997), encouraged and almost enforced there was much discussion around cost saving for rate payers. To this date I have not seen any reports or studies that were completed after the amalgamations took place to show that there were any financial benefits to anybody.
So why are they again on the agenda?
This time it is a coalition of industry groups  (Industry coalition Advocating Council Reform) that are about to push their own self interest into the debate. They see small Councils and inconsistent regulations a barrier to investment.
Also on their agenda is on-line voting, better timing of elections and maximum terms for Councillors. (I don't have too many fundamental arguments against these)
I suggest that these comments are largely made from ignorance as most Councils have now been working for years toward using shared services and bigger contracts to get cheaper rates, eg rubbish collection, IT support, ranger service, environmental officers, etc.
I would like to see a comparison of the rate burden to each individual household depending on the size of Council. Are Council rates really less in  Salisbury, Port Adelaide or even Mitcham, especially for same value housing?
If you want some light reading on the subject you might like to read on.

New Year 2015

Happy New Year  to everyone. Had a lovely dinner with friends in Unley. Had a great conversation about where we would see the first multi storey buildings on Unley Rd. It's my bet that by the end of this year there will be at least one under construction and many more approved. Remember, under the current development rules Unley is unlikely to be the allowed planning authority for Unley highrises and under proposed changes will be the planning authority in Unley for little more than fences, sheds and very complying extensions.