29 June 2016

No Smoking :its been a long time

Friday marks the first day of no smoking in all outdoor dining facilities in South Australia. it will be interesting to see how this one goes? What I do know is that I should never have to share my cappuccino  with side stream smoke or angry people who think their right to smoke outweighs my  to fresh, clean air. From arguing in staff rooms in the mid 70's, when over 50% of people smoked, just to be able to attend a smoke free meeting, to arguing that Unley Council should be a smoke free venue (1996) and then now has been a 40 year a journey. Smoking rates are now less than 20% and dropping.

Full Council Meeting; 27th June 2016

Items of interest this week included:
Rugby/ Porter St Bikeway-Design and Community Engagement: this motion called for community engagement with detailed designs for the intersections. However,it involves the change of preference in Malvern for East -West to North South along the entire length of Rugby St. I have significant concerns about these changes and did not support the motion.
Future Grandstand Upgrade-Sturt Football Club Proposal: The new proposal suits Sturt and will cost at least $4.6 million of which Sturt might  be asked to contribute as little as $700,000. This is not what Council agreed to when we decided to consult and to get more detailed design. It was understood by all parties that the funding would be split in thirds: Council, Sturt and grants. My motion to try to ensure this would remain the case was defeated.
Greening Opportunities- Leader St:This would provide additional money for rain gardens when Leader St is upgraded in the next calendar year.
2016-17 Annual Business Plan and Budget Adoption: This motion also was well debated. Bob Schnell and I drove an attempt to raise additional  funds to be spent on projects that Council staff had considered should be funding through borrowings when, infact, they should, in my opinion, be funded through recurrent funding. Despite heated debate this motion lost; the rate rise will be 2.2% and borrowings will spiral to $17 million (double what it was 6 years ago). Despite the feel good feeling of lower rates residents will be paying for some things long after the asset has needed to be replaced.
Motion regarding Page Park and Dog use: This motion, moved by me, was a response to residents request to move back the dog off leash time at Page Park (and other similar parks) form 5pm to 4pm in the winter months. This passed but only after significant debate. The matter will
now be consulted.
Centennial Park Authority-Operating Budget: CONFIDENTIAL

19 June 2016

Special Council meeting: 20th June 2016

Monday the CEO performance review will be debated. Despite protocol that all confidential material is presented to Councillors on green paper this has not been the case. So just as I was about to tell you what it was all about I spotted the confidentiality motion on one single piece of white paper in with all the others. Hopefully, what is debated will soon be available to everyone.

Suicide Prevention network

You might be interesting in an upcoming meeting to establish a suicide prevention network in Unley. The event will be held at Fullarton Park Community Centre (411 Fullarton Rd) from 6pm to 8pm on the 28th June, 2016. If you wish to attend you will need to book by calling 0427982026 or emailing lifeforceworks@wesleymission.org.au.

13 June 2016

Major Development Greenhill Rd and George St, Parkside

Developers of the above site, formerly Carramar Clinic, have written to neighbours inviting them to view plans and discuss with them the upgrading on the site. The old building on the site is heritage listed (State) as as such will be retained. The consultation is on Sat June 18th between 10am and 2pm. The building application will, in due course, be assessed by the Development Assessment Commission and Unley Council  will be able to comment only on the proposal.

Swimming Centre wrap up

During the most recent season the centre welcomed  nearly 90,000 patrons. This is an increase of nearly 2,000 patrons and despite competition from the newly refurbished Burnside Pool. Swimming lesson participation increased by 15%, thus enabling an increasing amount of young people to be safe in the water. The Free Friday initiative morphed into Friday for a Cause and enabled the centre to donate nearly $2000 to Alzheimer's SA. During the winter break the kiosk and administration area will will be getting upgraded to improve customer service. The centre's water pumps will also be re-conditioned during the break. Once again this facility is providing an excellent service to our community.

12 June 2016

Library hours review

Are our opening hours working for you?
The City of Unley Libraries are important and critical community resources and are 
considered to be the backbone for community information, literacy and lifelong learning. 
When we are open is therefore an important facet of our service to you, and we are now
 seeking your feedback on the current opening times of the Unley and Goodwood Libraries.
Please note: there is no intention to reduce or increase the total opening hours of the
 Libraries, and any changes must occur within existing budgets. We are simply seeking
 feedback on a possible redistribution of our existing opening hours to provide a better
 service to you.
There are a number of options that could be considered. However, in the first instance
 we would like to seek open feedback from library users as well as non-users. This 
approach will ensure our community is not limited by a predetermined outcome.
Please complete the following survey, and tell us your thoughts.
This consultation will be open from Wednesday 1 June 2016 until close of business, 
Wednesday 30 August 2016, and will include a range of opportunities for participation, 
including surveys and workshops.
This website will be frequently updated with the latest news and dates of meetings and workshops
, or alternatively you can subscribe to the Libraries' eNewsletter by clicking here(External link).

11 June 2016

Rate capping gone: for now

The state government has recently voted down the Liberal party bill to introduce rate capping for all South Australian councils. You may remember some recent press that reported that Mayor, Lachlan Clyne, lodged a representation at a recent hearing in favour of rate capping. While he is at liberty to express his personal views that were never supported by Unley Councillors. While this is on the back burner for now it is still Liberal Party policy and it is time to lobby them to ensure that the concept, that hasn't worked interstate and was a disaster when trialled here, should be dropped altogether.