17 July 2021
Recently, I was asked how they can know when their street is scheduled to be swept? Streets are supposed to be swept on a 6 weekly rotation. While playing around on the Council website, which has a search engine that is particularly troublesome, I discovered the following. If you search for the day that your bins will be emptied you will see a screen that will also tell you what day your street will be swept. You need to put Rubbish Collection Date in the space and then your street address. The screen will look like this:
Published in this week's Eastern Herald.
Councillors are elected because they are people who will act responsibly, have an interest in the Council area, working with people and problem solving.
We get voted into the job and we vote on every decision that needs to be made at Council.
I’d like to explore in this article what goes into making that decision.
Many matters are raised by residents, followed up my questions on notice, a motion on notice and then debated at Council. But what evidence do we look for in making these decisions? At last month’s Council meeting we had three decisions that were likely to be contentious. The first was to progress a Sensory Garden (to be donated by a well-meaning Rotary club) to consultation and design following this consultation. We received maybe a dozen emails from residents aghast at the concept and there were 20-25 residents at the meeting when there’s usually only a few. The alternate motion to not proceed was resoundly supported.
Later in the same evening we considered The Climate and Energy Plan for which there were quite a few submissions including one with 70+ signatures. When it came to debating the plan an alternate motion was put to Councillors that we had not had time to consider the implication of bringing forward Carbon neutrality to 2022 from the proposed 2030. After much debate this motion was passed but not unanimously. I was taken aback that while we had all considered the people present, we had trouble determining the value of double that number when in a written submission.
Again, on the same evening we had to again vote on the number of elected members Council would have moving forward. We went out to consultation suggesting 10+1, two less that we now have. In the meantime, the parliament deleted a clause from legislation that would now allow 13 people on Council, so it was now legally possible to keep the status quo. With only a handful of representations (34) we made a decision to stay as we are. With just .12% of the ratepayers having a say we changed our minds even though the majority of these favoured a smaller Council. What would have been the result if the losing side had gathered a few friends to attend the meeting! The research is clear smaller council numbers made better decisions.
In recent decisions that have gone to consultation Council received 3 responses for The Budget, 21 for the Cultural Plan and 173 for The Living Well Plan. We need to generate more ways to make consultation authentic, informative if we are to make decisions based on the results.
11 July 2021
The good news is that the government has at last agreed to fund the bikeway to align with the overpass at Goodwood. After announcing that this would happen quite a while ago and acquiring at least one this project is going to be funded. Last week I caught the train at Goodwood and was reminded one again that the underpass tunnel at the station is woefully inadequate, dangerous and unsafe.
While I rarely get comments about the good stuff that happens when things go wrong it is a different matter. As most people are aware the MTB is being upgraded between Goodwood Rd and KWR. This upgrade was long overdue and many were looking forward to using it. DIT were to upgrade the path and Council will replace and maintain the landscaping.
What could go wrong?
When preparing the surface the bull dozers were a little over zealous and additional trees need to be removed (DIT is not required by law to seek the same approvals for removals others would)
The path is taking a very long time to complete.
The finished work appears to not be flat or even.
Both Rogers and Almond street surface and signage have been damaged.
Access to the tram stop at Wayville has been difficult and somewhat muddy.
The City of Unley is officially becoming a “Gig City”.
We have been successful in our application to join of the South Australian GigCity Network (gigcity.com.au), the first such network in Australia. Unley will be connected to the broader innovation network that includes high-tech innovation and co-working spaces including Lot Fourteen and the Tonsley Innovation Precinct.
09 July 2021
I met with Carolyn Power and Vickie Chapman at Rise and Grind on Tuesday morning. Also in attendance were The Mayor and CEO. Items discussed were both Clarence Park centric or would involve the entire city. These included:
- Safety at Clarence Park Station pedestrian crossings
- South Rd motorway and its affect on residents and housing acquisitions
- Cross Rd and its potential upgrade for bigger trucks. I was assured that the preferred option will still be Portrush Rd. The Liberal party are still very keen to see a diversion from Murray Bridge for heavy vehicles.
- Secondary school access for Year 7's
- Funding for additional building works for Millswood Croquet
- Speeding up the upgrade of Brown Hill Creek ( State government tipping in more money)
- Funding the LIDAR date that gives an accurate picture of our tree cover.