City of Swan sets course for recovery

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Pictured: City of Swan Mayor Kevin Bailey pays a visit to the free Dreambuilders Care seniors morning tea, an initiative funded under the City’s Covid-19 Community Response and Relief Grants Scheme.

At its Ordinary Council Meeting on July 29, the City of Swan Council made a number of key decisions in its response to COVID-19.

Council voted to adopt the City’s Recovery Strategy, reinstate paid parking in Midland and provide rent relief to local businesses who lease City owned premises.

City of Swan Mayor Kevin Bailey said the decisions are key steps forward to rebuilding our economy and making our community stronger than ever.

“Covid-19 has changed the course of history, and the lives and futures of everyone across our community of 150,000 people,” he said.

“Forming our strategy is an early step towards recovery, but we’re proud to already see our community and local businesses adapting to a new normal and reconnecting with one another.”

“We’ll continue to listen to the needs of our community, not for profits and local businesses as we walk the road to recovery together.”

Rent relief for City owned buildings will come in the form of 100% waiver of rent and variable outgoings for the period of the emergency for those requesting businesses which meet the eligibility criteria, except for other Government agencies and Banking Corporations.

Estimated to save local businesses over $545,000, the relief package will also include a six month moratorium on termination for certain breaches and freezing rent increases during the period of emergency.

Midland/Guildford Ward Councillor Ian Johnson said paid parking and proactive enforcement in Midland CBD will be reinstated this week to ensure there’s enough parking available.

“We’re pleased to see businesses reopening and more people out and about in our community, and bringing back the original paid parking regulations will result in a higher turnover of parking bays which in turn will help our business community,” he said.

“We’ll be taking an education and caution approach prior to the issue of any infringement notices for non-payment of parking fees, and customers can still access the one-hour free parking in our on-street car parking bays.”

Council will also consider changing the current one hour free on-street parking bays in the Midland CBD to two hours, with a report to be presented to a future Council Meeting.

Free 24/7 parking has been in place since April, when parking fees were paused to provide economic relief to our community early in the COVID-19 pandemic.

The City’s recovery strategy is linked to a supporting action plan which is designed to change regularly depending on the needs of our community. Actions already carried out or underway include:

  • Delivery of the City’s Stimulus Package worth $8.85 million dollars
  • Delivery of food and water supply and welfare checks to vulnerable community members
  • Partnerships implemented with a number of business and community organisations to support response and recovery
  • Rapid deployment of a COVID-19 Response and Relief Grant Program providing $64,000 to 17 local community organisations
  • Launch of the City of Swan hotline as a one stop referral point inclusive of business support advice and mental health support information
  • Various initiatives promoting local businesses and tourism
  • Re-orientation of City services to maintain service delivery including online services and redeployment of staff to support community response and recovery

The recovery actions will be informed by the WA State Recovery Plan, released by the McGowan Government this week.

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