Wrap of February 2021 Meeting

A man sitting at a desk behind a stack of folders

New tree policy not supported
Councillor Kennedy requested that Council develop a policy to remove sick and dying trees, outline the cost of their removal and replacement, and that Council consider outsourcing the work to contractors. Council’s Acting General Manager clarified that Council is already in the process of replacing dying trees. Councillors voted to defer the formation of any further policies until Council’s Tree Management Plan is completed in April.
Water restrictions considered
Councillor Kennedy requested that Council write to Essential Water and ministers asking why the city was on water restrictions. The motion was supported despite water restrictions already being lifted yesterday.
No support for 24/7 dog catching
Councilor Kennedy requested a report on companion animals and dog attacks, and requested that Council implement a 24/7 dog catching service. The motion was not supported, with Councillors instead voting for a report outlining information on companion animals and Council’s responsibilities under the Companion Animals Act. Councillors also asked that the message of responsible pet ownership continue to be promoted.
Wetlands work underway
Councillor Kennedy requested a report asking why the wetlands near the Jubilee Oval were not being used for their original purpose of education, stormwater catchment, and a recreational space. Council instead voted to see a report on flood mitigation and maintenance works that are currently being carried out on the wetlands, asked that the wetlands future operations be included in a memorandum of understanding with Landcare.
Fine under review
Councillor Kennedy requested that Council waive a parking fine received by John Wren for illegal parking, and that Council apologise for being ‘heavy handed’. Council’s acting General Manager noted that the review process for the fine was already underway, and Councillors voted to install a drop-off area at the front of the cinema.
Nominees for water meeting
Councillors were asked to nominate to attend the Murray Darling Association National Conference and AGM to be held in Wentworth on May 16-19. Cr Browne confirmed she would attend, and several other Councillors flagged interested pending their availability. Councillors will also determine motions to be tabled at the meeting.
Motions requested for Local Government meeting
Motions were requested for the 2020/21 National General Assembly of Local Government.
Council will put forward motions that delegates be able to participate by video link in future meetings, and that the Federal Government investigate development of new electricity infrastructure to cope with the rapid expansion of renewable energy sources across the country. Council will also push for the provision of electric car charging points on roads leading to the city.
Construction Certificates queried
Councillors reviewed various Council key performance indicators for the period ending December 31 2020. Concern was expressed over the lack of Construction Certificates that are being completed, and a report into the shortfall was requested.
Plan of Management adopted
Councillors adopted a new Plan of Management for Queen Elizabeth Park. The plan includes the masterplan for the park upgrade which includes the relocation of the Picnic Train from Kintore Reserve. The plan will be added to Council’s website and be found on page 140 of this month’s business papers.
Renewable Energy Plan endorsed
Councillors adopted a Renewable Energy Plan. Through the plan Council is aiming to increase the use and availability of sustainable energy, reduce and measure its environmental footprint, and reduce fuel consumption. The plan would also see Council look to construct medium scale solar arrays to increase renewable energy in the city. The plan will be added to Council’s website and can be found on page 203 of this month’s business papers.
Heritage plan updated
Council adopted an updated Heritage Strategy. The strategy contains a number of recommendations to manage the city’s heritage, and focuses on the protection of the built heritage in Broken Hill. It also focuses on the city’s cultural and indigenous heritage. The strategy will be added to Council’s website and can be found on page 281 of this month’s business papers.
Budget update
Council presented its financial position for the second quarter of the financial year. The projected deficit increased by around $222,000, primarily due to $50,000 being allocated to employ a contract building surveyor to help clear the backlog of construction certificates. Capital expenditure will increase by 1.47 million, primarily due to $2m being spent to replace four garbage trucks.
Waste truck upgrades
Council spend around $2m to purchase four new waste to replace its ageing plant. The large purchase will covered via a low-interest loan to protect Council’s current unrestricted cash position.
Auction of equipment
Council will auction off a variety of surplus equipment including office furniture, whitegoods, pre-used and abandoned vehicles, plant, and other items. Pickles Auctions have been engaged to handle the auction, and the auction will be advertised at least 10 days prior to its commencement.
Community boost from Heritage Walk Tour funds
The hospital’s Palliative Care Unit, Silverlea Early Childhood Services, Lifeline and the RSPCA will all receive $2,000 in funding. The money was raised by via donations received by the City’s Heritage Walk Tour group. The volunteer guides who run the walk tour program received a round of applause in the Chamber for their significant contribution to the community.
Lighting tender awarded
A $1.8 million tender for the replacement of Aeronautical Lighting Construction works at the airport to AFB Safegate Australia Pty Ltd.
Licence for fitness operator
Council approved a 12-month non-exclusive licence to Megan Cumming for use of the swimming club rooms in Sturt Park. The annual rent was set at the minimum of $505 per annum.
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