30 September 2015

Special Council meeting: 29th september 2015 Brown Hill Creek

Last's night's meeting wasn't quite the marathon that the first debate on Brown Hill creek was but still went for well over 2 hours. It took 3 well debated motions before one was passed. The first and the original motion as recommended by staff gained only one vote (Option D-widening). The second, which supported Option B2 (dam) lost 4 to 5. The final motion was in effect an amendment to Option D in that it included a lot of  conditions under which Option D would be acceptable. None of these conditions would have been necessary if a dam was to be constructed. However, given that the other 4 Councils had already voted to support Option D the chance of a dam ever being constructed was already at zero. This was passed 5 to 4. Cr Hewitson spoke against and voted against all 3 motions as he believed that none provided the necessary harvesting of water.
This means that Unley has now agreed with the other Councils and the Stormwater management Authority will now be able to direct Councils to proceed with more detailed design and scheduling and funding options for the work to begin. There won't be a rush though as I don't foresee even the essential clearing starting anytime soon.

29 September 2015

Special Council meeting: 29th september 2015 Brown Hill Creek

Tonight, the 29th of September Council will again debate Brown Hill Creek upgrades: the likely outcome is that the matter will again not result in a decision as it is unlikely that any of those present will have changed their minds. It is disappointing that the agenda  has not given a balanced argument between Option D and option B2 but rather chosen to try to convince us that Option D is preferable and why this is so? The agenda has some fundamental inaccuracies that is also disappointing.
Council owned stretch of creek near Victoria St

Win or lose we should be debating on the facts!

Work that needs to be prioritised is still the clearing of the creek, and this can't wait for further argument and debate.

28 September 2015

Full Council: 28th September 2015

The following items may be of interest;

  • Tour to Pozieres; Lachlan is still keen on leading this tour. From my chats with people none have supported the idea. As such I will not be voting for the tour, if it goes ahead, to be funded by Council. PASSED with a $6,500 cap.
  • Community Grants Program; this allocates funding to Community Groups and events. PASSED
  • Leader St, Forestville street upgrade; this proposes to spend over $1,000,000 on upgrading Leader St between Anzac Hwy and the train line. The street would be vastly improved with this and make a better entrance way into the City of Unley.PASSED
  • A Mother's Milk; Councillors remain concerned that the build out that was approved by Council has still not been built and that Council continues to bear half of the  costs of the water filled protective bollards.
  • Lease of Council Property; CONFIDENTIAL
  • Unley Central; CONFIDENTIAL

22 September 2015

Join us at the next Unley Business Breakfast: 7am Tuesday 13 October

Family business is the dominant form of business. Its reach extends from the local corner store to some of the world’s largest companies such as Walmart and arguably News Corp.
The media often talks about the massive intergenerational shift of wealth that will take place in the coming decade or so as baby boomers retire from their family businesses, but how easy will the transition be?

Michael is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants and recently a retired partner of Price Waterhouse Coopers. Michael’s professional career spans nearly 40 years.
Michael is now pursuing his interest in family business through ongoing research into family business particularly the business model characteristics of family business. In addition, Michael also acts as a business mentor and coach to locally owned and operated businesses.
VENUE: Unley Town Hall, 181 Unley Road
COST: $25 – includes breakfast (incl. GST)
DATE: Tuesday 13 October 2015
TIME: 7am for a 7.15am start .Concludes at 8.30am.
RSVP: Essential COB by Thursday 8 October 2015

Unley celebrates Every Generation Festival

Free workshops & events from 1-16 October.
Bring your friends, parents, grandchildren and grandparents, everyone is welcome!

Each year the City of Unley participates in the every generation festival by hosting a variety of activities that bring together the community in a celebration of life. Our theme in 2015 is ‘share what you know and watch it grow’ which aims to bring people of all ages together to share their skills. Bookings are required for all workshops and places are limited.
Please note that all children under 12 years must be accompanied by a parent/guardian, please consider the suitability of the activity for your child’s age.

Download the full Program of Events.

Spring has sprung

Ellesmere Tce has it's new footpath

People feel like spring cleaning.
Just remember to book a time for a collection before you start.

Hartland Ave is in full bloom 

This garden is delightful.

New plantings are appearing, some even have trees planted
that can grow to significance.

20 September 2015

Show:parking fines

this matter has also raised some media attention.This year 1100 people were fined over $74,000 for illegally parking in Unley streets during the show. This money goes into Council revenue and is an important part of it. As the pay for parking trial starts in Railway Tce and the Boffa St car park in the near future Council will gain some idea of the cost v benefit of this scheme. It may then be expanded or abandoned depending on the outcome. However, I believe that making free parking in Unley streets for people from south of Cross Rd will either encourage them to catch the bus/tram or train form home or pay the fee. Either will be of benefit to Unley residents.

Pozieres or not?

Following the discussion, that was deferred, at the last Council meeting in August there has been much media attention and discussion with residents about the concept. In a nutshell, the idea has been dismissed by residents as a rort or junken and seen as unacceptable. While some believe the trip may have merit no one
believes that it should be anything other than self funded. Given the feedback, I doubt that there will be any continued support for the tour.



A new digital literacy program will be launched across the City of Unley’s libraries this month.

The Reboot program has been created in response to an increasing demand from the community for support and training with new technology, in particular mobile devices.

 Unley Libraries are actively  offering an opportunity for residents to develop capabilities and competencies in digital literacy and help them to  appreciate the benefits of new technology. 

The program will provide a flexible learning environment for residents of all ages to increase their online engagement and better understand the opportunities created by new and emerging technologies.

The program is designed to be interactive, collaborative and confidence building. Topics covered include how to use an iPad or tablet, participating in social networking, creating new content, and the importance of online security.

Reboot will be officially launched at Unley Town Hall on Thursday, September 24, at 6pm. The event will be opened by guest speaker Associate Professor Katrina Falkner, who is the University of Adelaide’s Head of School of Computer Science, followed by demonstrations of creative and innovative technologies.

For more information call (08) 8372 5100 or visit www.unley.sa.gov.au.

15 September 2015

Brown Hill Creek: no decision

After nearly five hours of debate Unley Council was no closer to making a decision on the damming (or not damming) of Brown Hill Creek. It was refreshing to see some new faces making a deputation and highlighting aspects of the project that suited each person own agenda. Option D (widening) was debated first with it eventually losing 6 votes to 5. Then followed Option B2 (dam) which also lost  6 votes to 5. Cr Hewitson refused to vote for either option and instead had the opportunity to put his own motion and this lost 3 votes to 8. Those in favour of a dam are Hudson, Sangster, Rabbitt,Salaman and Boisvert: those against Lapidge, Hughes, Koumi, Smolucha and Palmer.  Cr Palmer, Smolucha nd Hewitson have always said in the public arena that they supported a dam and yet, in this instance voted against one.
It is certain that we need a whole lot of additional information and that more water saving initiatives could be included in the project but I had hoped that these would be included as the project moved to detailed design.
What next?
Council will again debate the matter on the 29th September. It could be all over in 3 minutes if we simply ask the Stormwater Management Authority to make a decision or we could be there for 5 hours again and still get the same result.

12 September 2015

Brown Hill Creek: it just gets more difficult

After more meetings than I've had had time for hot dinners this week it seems Unley Councillors seem to be no closer to making a decision next Monday night. While it is now clear that some will now move and  vote for Option D I would have difficulty in saying how many.
Why the change?

  • Some additional information has been provided to councillors
  • there has been a lot of lobbying from both sides
  • there is now pressure (if you want to know what this means you will need to call me) from the state government to push us toward Option D 
The latter beggars the question as to why they asked anybodies opinion in the first place? Why did we bother to consult? Why have we wasted all this time and lead people to believe that they had a choice? I wasn't silent on the matter.

09 September 2015

Burnside happy to wait

Last night I made a representation to the Burnside Council meeting regarding Brown Hill creek. It my impassioned speech I asked that they defer making a decision on their preferred treatment of the  creek. The motion put to them is heavily biased toward Option D (widening and clearing). This is the same motion that Unley will be asked to vote on next week. my fear was that if Burnside set a precedent for Option D at this stage it might  guide the decision making of the other 4 councils.
Mitcham agreed to defer the motion and debate it at their next meeting. This buys a little time for the lobbying and politicking in Unley to continue. The motion I intend to put reads;

05 September 2015

Dog track closed

I believe the so called 'dog track' that connects Millswood Cres and Arundel Ave to Millswood Station is to be closed. After repeated attempts to get the track upgraded to a level that could be described as safe ARTC have taken the easy option. They've done this without asking you what you want and really not caring if you don't like their decision. I'm happy to receive your complaints or you can direct them straight to ARTC. I think this is an appalling decision and will lead to unsafe behavior (people walking along the track without even the semblance of a fence) that may well not end well.

East Ave more pedestrian friendly

 Seem to have take forever but the pedestrian islands have now been completed on Ease Ave. These have been through two rounds of consultation and I hope residents are feeling a little safer when crossing the street. There has been some criticism from cyclists who see them as a squeeze point. There are no cycling lanes on this section of East tce as it is anticipated that cyclists will be on the Mike Turtur or Greenways bike paths if they are travelling into the city. Hope you like them?

01 September 2015

Speed cameras make money

Interesting to see that the speed camera at Goodwood PS on Goodwood Rd is such a revenue raiser. What is frightening is that people continue to speed, even through what is a thriving and busy shopping street and past a school. This seems to have taken over from the camera on South Rd next to Black Forest PS, once again the last place that cars should be speeding! Yes, they make money but they also save lives.

Brown Hill Creek vote 14th Sept

Council will meet on the 14th September to debate the possible outcomes from the recent consultation. If you have read the consultant's report you may have ascertained that after all the consultation and reports that Council really has no more guidance than it did two years ago. The consultation tells us that slightly more creek owners prefer a dam option than not. This result is consistent with creek owners in Mitcham. While there were hundreds of others that sent in a response, most favouring a no dam option, the consultation was flawed in that it was only those with a vested interest who were likely to make a response. It must be remembered this was not a vote or poll and each group and what they have said should be considered separately and for what they are worth.
For me, I need to go back to the facts and vote on what I believe is the best solution for  Unley and the solution that Unley people are telling me they want.
All five Councils will be presented with a motion that is the same, from what I can tell it will recommend Option D, the no dam option. This does not mean that Unley has to even debate this motion if it would prefer an alternate. What is certain is that the matter will be hotly debated and make a very interesting  evening if you have time. The meeting starts at 7pm.