Wrap up of November Council meeting.
Tidy Towns Accolades
Councillor and Tidy Towns Committee Chair, Christine Adams, opened the meeting by presenting awards won by Broken Hill at the recent Keep Australia Beautiful NSW 2018 Tidy Towns Awards. Broken Hill took out the Heritage and Culture Award in our population category for management of the Regeneration Area, and were highly commended for the ongoing work to beautify the cemetery.
Option 7 from Kevin
Member for Barwon Kevin Humphries addressed the Council at length regarding water issues, and also took questions from Councillors. Some key points from his address included:
- A new seventh option for making the water savings required as part of the Murray Darling Basin Agreement. This would involve the construction of a regulator between Menindee Lake and Lake Cawndilla at Morton Boolka. Once Lake Cawndilla reaches an agreed capacity, it would be given over to the Murray Darling Basin Authority who could draw down from the lake to meet end of system water requirements. Meanwhile Lake Menindee would remain under NSW control, with some flow-through rules to meet stock, irrigator and domestic water needs downstream. The plan could also include works to enlarge the capacity of Cawndilla Creek and the Panelco channel, and increase the storage capacity in Weird 32 to support the fruit industry.
- Mr Humphries said local support would be needed for the seventh option to gain traction, as NSW Minister for Regional Water, Niall Blair, has indicated he is willing to investigate the option provided it has community support.
- Mr Humphries warned against undertaking major works to reopen Imperial Lakes due to the contamination levels in the water and the large costs that would be associated with works around any potential project. He said the city should perhaps instead investigate how Stephens Creek could be utilised for public amenity.
Water documentary supported
A Mayoral Minute was tabled calling for Council to provide $2,650 funding to the Australia Institute for the production of a documentary titled "Trickle Out Effect". The documentary will investigate the management of the Murray-Darling Basin and its link with agribusinesses. The recommendation was supported.
Council endorses recycling message
A second Mayoral Minute called on Council to endorse Local Government NSW's 'Save Our Recycling' campaign. The campaign advocates for 100 per cent of the State's Waste Levy to be utilised to fund waste management, recycling, and resource recovery across NSW. The recommendation was supported.
NOTICES OF MOTION
Push for 'Option 7'
Councillor Tom Kennedy tabled a notice of motion calling on Council to hold a workshop to create a submission to voice opposition to the proposed reconfiguration on Menindee Lakes. An amendment was instead passed opposing the previously proposed options to save water in the Murray-Darling Basin, and calling on Council makes representations to the Government to consider the State Member for Barwon’s 'Option 7'.
Pipeline costs should stay with State
Councillor Kennedy tabled a second Notice of Motion calling on Council to send correspondence to the State Government and Opposition requesting that Broken Hill should never be accountable for the cost of operating the Wentworth to Broken Hill pipeline. The motion was supported, with an addendum from Councillor Marion Browne stating that it should be noted that the pipeline is State-significant infrastructure, and has benefits beyond Broken Hill.
Council's audited Financial Statements for the 2017/2018 financial year were presented, and are now on public display on Council's website for public comment until December 5. The audit process produced no addverse findings, with Council received a 'clean' audit opinion.
Annual Report wins praise
Councillors accepted the draft Annual Report 2017/2018. The report includes Council's audited Annual Financial Statements, and updates on Key Performance Indicators for Council's Delivery Program and Disability Inclusion Action plan. The report also contains a wealth of other information about the performance of Council across its operations, and the services and facilities it provides. Councillors commended staff on the quality of the report.
More money for community groups
Councillors accepted funding requests for Round Two of the Community Assistance Grants (CAG) scheme, with $47,250 available. The Civic Orchestra received $2,199 for a new digital piano, and the local branch of the Country Women's Association received $1,270 for a new barbecue and marquee. YMCA received $5,000 for their StreetgYm program, while Western Landcare NSW received $3,000 for a student leadership program. $7,500 in rent and facility hire assistance was also shared by the Harness Racing Club and Philharmonic Society. The remaining $28,281 of funding will be rolled over to Round 1 of 2019/2020.
Reconciliation on the agenda
Councillors voted in favour of the creation of a working group to create a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP). The RAP will outline practical actions Council will undertake to contribute to reconciliation both within the organisation and across the community.
Living Desert Management Plan adopted
Councillors adopted the Plan of Management (PoM) previously prepared for The Living Desert. The PoM has been developed to reflect the values and aspirations of the community for the Living Desert and the environmental and cultural significance of the site. These aspects were established through consultation with Living Desert staff and volunteers, and desktop and field research undertaken by qualified ecologists. The PoM will also ensure that activities undertaken as part of the plan conform to NSW and Commonwealth legislative requirements.
CAG panel to consider waiver request
Councillors considered a request from AFL Broken Hill to waive $32,237 in development fees associated with the $2.35 million upgrade of the Jubilee Oval. Councillors voted to refer the request to the next meeting of the Community Assistance Grants (CAG) panel.
New pound gets tick of approval
Council will convert a vacant workshop at the airport into the city's new pound, after the Development Application was passed at last night's meeting. The new facility will provide 20 dog cages, a cattery and veterinary room, and two dog exercise yards. Construction costs for the project are estimated at $250,000.
Ralph, Reardon step up for Memorial
Councillors welcomed two new community representatives onto the Section 355 Committee for the Memorial Oval, with Layne Ralph and Dinny Reardon coming on board to support the running of the facility.
GBM to undertake roadworks
Councillors voted to award a $1.1 million tender to GBM Consulting Services for tender T18/5, which will involve reconstruction of various intersections and areas of road along Oxide Street, and the intersection at Blende and Sulphide Streets.
Lease extended, hangar subleased
Councillors voted to extend the lease of Livebetter Services Limited at 72-74 Gypsum with two 2-year options, and authorised the sublease of Hangar 30 at the airport between Consolidated Broken Hill Holdings and Consolidated Aviation Services Pty Ltd.