Vale Diana Harlow Wachman
A Mayoral Minute was delivered by Mayor Corrigan paying tribute to local resident Diana (Diane) Wachman, who passed away in early September. Together with her husband Stanley, Diane made an outstanding contribution to the Mosman community. Diane was a founding member of the Festival of Mosman Committee and she and Stanley dedicated 22 years of their lives as volunteers at Mosman Art Gallery following its opening in 1998. Diane’s dedication to the cultural life of Mosman her and long history of working for the community was recognised in 2007 when she was named Mosman Citizen of the Year.
2020/21 Community Grants
Council resolved to allocate grants totalling almost $70,000 to community organisations as part of its 2020/21Community Grants program. Funding applications are assessed on their potential to make a difference to the well-being of the Mosman community. This year 31 applications were received and assessed, including nine applications from organisations that had not previously received funding under the annual grants program.
Amended Spring Events Calendar
Council received and noted a report on changes made to its Spring Events calendar, necessitated by the numerous restrictions that have accompanied the COVID-19 pandemic. Council’s regular biennial ‘Out and About’ events series is not proceeding as planned, although alternate events including family movie nights at Mosman Art Gallery have been organised and well supported by the community. Business workshops will also be held at the Gallery in late October as part of Small Business Month.
Depending on the length and nature of ongoing restrictions, there may be opportunities to reschedule some activities in early 2021 including the popular Pet’s Day Out.
Draft 2019/20 Financial Statements
Council adopted its Draft Financial Statements for the year ending 30 June 2020, which will now be formally referred for audit in accordance with Council’s responsibilities under the Local Government Act 1993.
Council’s Income Statement for the year to 30 June 2020 discloses an operating deficit before capital grants and contributions of $169,000. This compares favourably to the $722,000 deficit projected at the end of the March quarter and reflects careful management of Council’s finances and the implementation of austerity measures during the latter part of the financial year.
Given the very trying circumstances in which Council, like many businesses, has operated since March 2020, Councillors acknowledged the excellent work undertaken in recent months to deliver this budget result.
Asset Management Policy, Strategy and Plans
Councillors considered a suite of documents presented to the meeting which are designed to guide Council’s efforts in asset management over coming years. These documents, including the 2020 Asset Management Policy and Strategy and Asset Management Plans for Buildings, Marine Structures, Parks and Open Space, Roads and Stormwater Assets, were subsequently adopted by Council. The associated financial modelling will be further reviewed during preparation of Council’s next Community Strategic Plan (due mid 2022) to take into account factors such as the impact of COVID-19.
Planning Panel Reforms
A report outlining recent changes made by the NSW Government to the operation of planning panels as part of its Planning Acceleration Program was presented to Council. In receiving the report, Council noted its appreciation for the excellent work done by the Mosman Local Planning Panel (MLPP) and how it values, in particular, the maintenance of open and transparent DA review meetings. The planning panel reforms will be the subject of future discussions with the Chair of MLPP.
COVID Summer Action Plan
Council discussed the COVID Summer Action Plan prepared by staff to assist in managing local beaches and major open spaces during the busy summer period. The plan, prepared in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and in line with NSW Health requirements, will be further updated as required and will be the subject of ongoing discussions with key agencies including NSW Police.
Climate Action Community Consultative Committee
Councillors considered applications received in response to its recent call for membership of Mosman’s newly established Climate Action Community Consultative Committee. Noting the high calibre of applications received, Council resolved to appoint six community members to the Committee which will meet for the first time later this year. The community representatives join Mayor Corrigan and Councillor Tom Sherlock on the Committee, with Councillor Simon Menzies being Council’s alternate delegate.