Council Meeting 28 July 2009

Posted: July 27, 2009 by admin in Uncategorized

There’s quite a large agenda for the July meeting of the Council. The five reports which I think are most interesting this month are;

The proposals include:

  • a. Newstead Pond Bushcare – Control of Noxious and Environmental Weeds;
    b. Long Beach Landcare – Karana Close, Weed Eradication and Revegetation;
    c. Kianga/Dalmeny/Narooma Dunecare – Implementing Plan of Management Remote
    Planting and Weed Control;
    d. Eurobodalla Indian Myna Action Group – Control of Indian Myna Birds;
    e. South Durras Landcare – Pedestrian Access Track to Viewing Platform, Cookies

the Council has endorsed each of the programs and provides support to them

This project is a pilot funded by the Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts, and we should see it in action by the end of July.  A good practical way to mitigate some of the effects we are all having on the environment.

This report is interesting in that it is recommending for economic reasons that the Eurobodalla no longer has a local water testing facility.  Perhaps there is a place for community discussion about when we decide to reduce services for economic reasons, and when we decide that services are too important to make decisions just on economic criteria alone.  Is ensurig we have good and rapid access to water testing facilities one of those times?

This is to confirm a draft policy that had been circulated for comment earlier in the year.

There are also a few notices of motion from the Councillors.

Graham Scobie is proposing that we have a Renewable Energy Display Centre and is also suggesting that Councillors not have their post meeting drinks.

Chris Kowal wants to develop a Genetically Modified – Free, Agriculture Policy. This is interesting in that I’m not exactly sure what Cr Kowal is wanting here.  Is he wanting no genetically food to be sold in the Shire, or just for the Shire not to agree to any GM crops being grown?  Does the Council have the power to stop someone growing a GM crop?  Don’t get me wrong, I think it would be good if there were no GM crops, and I hope that noone is silly enough to decide to grow them here, but if this is just a bit of symbolism without any force, then it seems to be a waste of time.  It would be better to develop some policies supporting people engaging in small scale agriculture, ranging from backyard gardens to making sure our five acre plots become more viable.

Draft LEP

There are also some interesting procedural reports this meeting.  One in particular is to give Councillors exemptions from Pecuniary Conflict of Interest provisions for the Draft LEP, so that there will be a quorum to actually make valid decisions on the Draft LEP.

In some ways this is good. If the Councillors do have a personal interest in the LEP, it does give them an impetus to ensure that it works for this local area.  On the other hand we do need to make sure that the Councillors look after the general good, rather than their interests, which is why there are conflict of interest provisions.  In this case there are other measures which do protect us from Councillors using undue influence, including oversight of the process by the relevant NSW Departments, and it is important that there is a local voice which can be heard in the debates about this important document. What we need to see is a public record of where the Councillors do have a potential pecuniary interest in this matter so we can make judgements about their decisions on the LEP.

Cr Vardon also has a notice of motion confirming that the exhibition and comment period for the Draft LEP finish on 24 July, and that there then be an amended LEP drawn up and open for exhibition for a period of six weeks, which would include a comparison with Council’s adopted structure plan(s) and settlement strategies. This sounds like a very sensible way to work through the process of getting the best we can from the new LEP.

Traffic Matters

There are also some interesting minutes from the Traffic Committees. Some of the resolutions from these meetings were:

In Batemans Bay:

  • to keep the reverse parking in Orient St

In North Street and Orient St

  • 1. The Taxi Zone located in Orient Street, Batemans Bay be shortened to 24m – making
    allowance for two maxi cabs plus one car.
    2. The No Stopping zone located at the southern end of the bus stop in Clyde/Orient Streets,
    Batemans Bay be changed to a “No Stopping – Taxis Exempt 1 Minute Only” zone.
    3. The full length of North Street, Batemans Bay be converted to a 1 hour limit – except for
    the small length of ¼ hour parking in front of the Village Centre and that these restrictions
    be in operation from 8.30am to 6.00pm Monday-Friday and 8.30am to 12.30pm Saturday.
    4. The existing ¼ hour parking restrictions in North Street and Perry Street, Batemans Bay
    be changed to 8.30am to 6.00pm Monday-Friday and 8.30am to 12.30pm Saturday to be
    consistent with the CBD.
  • Further discussion of more parking restrictions in Clyde St.   The proposed restrictions were agreed to. However, teh Council is carrying out a Traffic Study in the “Batemans Bay CBD precinct and one of the desired outcomes of this study is the analysis of existing parking within the precinct and to make recommendations regarding future parking requirements. Issues such as additional pay parking and further changes to the time limits of parking within the CBD should be dealt with after the completion of the proposed Traffic Study.”

There were also changes made in Bodalla and in Narooma. You can see more here and here

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