July 2015 PAE Council Meeting Agenda
Another Council meeting beckons and the sky is a hazy shade of winter, as Simon & Garfunkel didn’t quite put it.
I will attempt to unravel and explain the most relevant matters to Northfield Ward (in my opinion) from the agenda of July 14th’s Council meeting.
Item 6.4 WORKSHOP – AGED CARE REFORMS – CHANGES TO COUNCIL’S COMMUNITY SERVICES
At the above workshop held on June 23rd Councillors were gobsmacked to hear of the Federal Government’s cutbacks and rule changes to vital community assistance programs Council administer.
Home and Community Care (HACC) is where Council is funded to provide various in home assistance to those people who need minor assistance to live at home. Now, apart from massive cutbacks in funding, the new model requires people needing care to be referred through the government’s website for assistance rather than directly. This will lead to people who are in need to be overlooked.
Council also looks after the conditions and programs in Supported Residential Facilities (SRFs) but their Commonwealth funding has been pulled for the NDIS – which doesn’t cover SRFs.
Some of our most vulnerable people will be adversely affected by these changes – and as these usually isolated, sick people have no voice other than the handful of community organisations who help them, once these are defunded, who will then listen to them?
More importantly – who will then be looking after them?
Item 12.1.4 CLOSURE OF HAMPSTEAD REHABILITATION CENTRE AND MODBURY AND QEH EMERGENCY DEPARTMENT
On the March 30th Council wrote to the State Health Minister, Jack Snelling MP, asking for the Council meet with him or nominee in a workshop meeting in regard to the above matters, after its February meeting voted to do just that.
On June 30th a reply was sent off to Council saying that a representative of the Minister would be “delighted” to attend as his nominee.
Some tardy work there from both sides I think. Expect said workshop by 2018.
Item 12.3.3 WESTERN ADELAIDE SPORTING FACILITY SUPPLY AND DEMAND STUDY
Council participated in an interesting study of requirements across our Council, Charles Sturt and West Torrens of sporting facility requirements and uses. Some of its findings include a shift to regional sporting facilities away from smaller ones, and that there are enough soccer pitches – if school facilities are able to be used.
It also said there are too many small lawn bowling greens, tennis courts and netball courts.
Of particular relevance to our ward is that LJ Lewis/Edward Smith Reserves (better known to locals as the Greenacres Football Club grounds) are considered a priority regional facility for possible enhancement. I don’t know what that means – yet.
This will be considered as part of our Council’s Sports Development Strategy.
If you would like a copy of this study, please let me know.
Item 12.3.10 COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT POLICY
I note that only one submission was made during our community engagement on our community engagement policy.
I think that says something. What is says I don’t know, but it says something.
Item 12.3.12 LOCAL GOVERNMENT (ELECTIONS) (DISCLOSURE OF POLITICAL AFFILIATION) AMENDMENT BILL 2015
In answer to criticisms at the last local government elections where the Local Government (Elections) Act allowed political party members to say they were ‘independent’ on their electoral material, Robert Brokenshire MLC (Family First).
His proposal is for any political party member standing for Council to have their political party affiliation printed next to their name on the ballot paper – thus at the last election, the Northfield Ward ballot paper would have looked something like this:
OSBORN, Matt Australian Labor Party
COUSINS, Simon Liberal Party
McCARTHY, Kevin James
CUMMINS, Eric Pauline Hanson’s One Nation*
Some people have said this would encourage people to just vote for their normal political party. Some have argued instead that it would cause problems for those who are political party members but wish to represent their constituency independently of their party. Some have also said they doubt it would make any difference at all and that the transparency of it all is what is important.
FYI, I will be moving that we write to the government suggesting that if a candidate is a member of a political party in the 12 months before an election, that party name is listed on the candidate profile ONLY. That I believe will make the issue transparent without giving any candidate an advantage or disadvantage with their party affiliation on the ballot paper.
Our current Council has 4 current ALP members, a number of former ALP members, and a few former members of other political parties of which I am aware. Does that matter? Perhaps not, but I believe you should know who is a party member and who is not.
What do you think?
* One Nation split for a while into two groups, one of which was affiliated with Pauline Hanson and one was not. I am not sure if Mr Cummins was in the Pauline Hanson version or the non-Pauline Hanson version at that time.
PS In the interests of complete transparency I declare I was a member of the Australian Democrats between 1987- 1994 and the ALP in 1997-1998.
Item 13.1 CORRESPONDENCE TO MR RONAK DESAI REGARDING COUNCIL RESOLUTION FOR PETITION TO DEVELOP MARTIN STREET RESERVE
All this means is Council wrote to Mr Desai to inform him that Council would not be building a playground and meeting place on the road reserve in the Martin Street cul de sac, Northfield, which happens to be opposite his home, on a reserve full of trees and about the size of a very small house block, and only 100m from the massive Duncan Fraser Reserve which has a large playground and a club rooms.
However, Council will consult him on the Masterplan for Duncan Fraser Reserve where his suggestions for upgrades will be welcome.
Lest you think Mr Desai received short shrift from the Council, I negotiated with Council staff on his and many of his neighbours’ and Council has installed a park bench as per his request on the road reserve.
Item 14.3 NOTICE OF MOTION – JAMES RESERVE & FJ GARRAD RESERVE, NORTHFIELD
Item 14.4 NOTICE OF MOTION – TRAFFIC & PARKING CONTROLS AROUND ST MARTINS CATHOLIC PS GREENACRES
“That a report come back by the October meeting of Council on fixing the issues with traffic and parking control signs in the vicinity of St Martins Catholic Primary School Greenacres on Whysall Road, Vasey Street, Princes Road and Sutcliffe Road, Greenacres…”
This was after I met with the President of the School’s P&F on the issue and discussed the matter with the School Principal.
Item 14.10 NOTICE OF MOTION – DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
Whilst I was at the recent Australian Local Government Association Conference in Canberra, I had the privilege of listening to Australian of the Year, Rosie Batty, speak, and her words on domestic violence moved me.
Our Prime Minister talks a lot about terrorism but the real terror in our country is the number of women killed, maimed and hurt by domestic violence each year. That is estimated to be 100,000. It takes about a third of police time, and costs our country tens of billions in lost production, medical expenses and welfare payments.
Fifty Australian women each year on average die at the hands of their current or former husband/partner. At the time of writing, we are already at 49 for this year. If this was the result of terrorists, there would be a soldier on every street corner.
I have called for a report on what Council can do about this situation because it is blindingly obvious the Federal Government doesn’t give a shit if Australians are killing each other in their homes at the rate of one a week.
Item 14.11 NOTICE OF MOTION – COUNCIL GRANT PROGRAMS
“That is be a recommendation to Council that a report be brought back to Council on Council reviewing its Community and Arts Programs so that instead of grants being one off project based, that they are based on long term projects which may include being based on Council’s core values for its community and that Council staff may include a workshop on this matter if they so desire.”
Item 14.12 NOTICE OF MOTION – PARKING ISSUES NEAR BUS STOP 33A WALKLEY SERVICE ROAD, VALLEY VIEW
Around 5 to 7 cars per week day park near this bus stop (which is located on Walkleys Road) on the adjacent service road which has residences one side and by parking both sides of the road it prevents anything larger than a car moving down the street.
Item 14.13 NOTICE OF MOTION – FOOTPATH ON WHISTLER DRIVE, OAKDEN
“That a report come back to a subsequent meeting of Council on the construction of a footpath on the western side of Whistler Drive, Oakden, between numbers 11 and 47, and that provision for same be brought back to a subsequent budget meeting.”
And if you really want to read the whole agenda – here it is on the CoPAE website: