Kiama Councillors yesterday made important decisions at an Extraordinary Meeting on a number of pivotal matters that will help re-establish Council’s path to financial sustainability.
Councillors unanimously re-confirmed the divestment of all aged care services and assets at the Blue Haven Bonaira site. They also appointed StuartBrown Advisory as the aged care experts coordinating the tender and divestment process on behalf of Kiama Council.
It was decided to retain the independent living units at Blue Haven Terralong, while seeking a dilapidation/asset report on all the five stages of buildings located at this site. Council will also explore options for the subdivision, redevelopment or sale of Havilah Place and the potential subdivision and excising of the portion of land occupied by Kiama Community Garden at the Terralong site.
Councillors also voted to accept the following:
- Liquidity management plan
- Cash flow plan
- TCorp repayment of debt plan
- Distribution of proceeds of the Akuna Street sale
- Property divestment plan
- Service review scope for commercial services
- Exhibition of the Planning Proposal for the reclassification of the land at Blue Haven Bonaira
The Extraordinary Meeting marked a crucial stage in Council’s journey to establishing a financially sustainable future. During the past 12 months, we have openly shared information about significant financial issues, many of them involving Blue Haven.
The seriousness of the situation was confirmed by the NSW Auditor General and the issuing of a Performance Improvement Order by the NSW Minister for Local Government.
Mayor Neil Reilly said the meeting, which was held at The Pavilion Kiama due to the large amount of community interest (approx. 150 registered attendees), was a difficult but important one for Kiama Council.
“I commend the Councillors and Council staff for their vital contributions to yesterday’s meeting. I am pleased that we reached a consensus, with some give-and-take from all sides. Tough decisions were made, the outcomes of which have given us a solid path forward towards a sustainable future for our Council and our municipality.”
“The community knows we have wrestled with the issues around our finances and Blue Haven since we were sworn into office back in January 2022. Debates have swung back and forth many times because of the significance of these decisions,” he said.
“I’ve been speaking all year about the need for compromise and for us to work as a team. This all came together yesterday and I’m proud of what we achieved,” Cr Reilly said.
The Blue Haven Bonaira land reclassification exhibition period is expected to begin this month.
The tender for the Bonaira sale is expected to be ready to go live in April. Council anticipates this process could be resolved by the end of the year.
Council will begin working through the next steps for all of yesterday’s Extraordinary Meeting agenda items and will keep our community up to date.
Kiama Municipal Council’s Blue Haven aged care business comprises:
Blue Haven Bonaira
- 134-bed Residential Aged Care Facility
- 59 Independent Living Units
- 220 In Home Aged Care and Commonwealth Home Support Aged care clients
- 300 Community Transport clients
Blue Haven Terralong
- 203 Independent Living Units
- Decommissioned Aged Care Facility at Havilah Place
- Kiama Community Garden