June 2010 Edition

  • Whittlesea hosts community consultation expert
    More than 100 people, including Local Government representatives from around Victoria, recently attended community planning workshops at the City of Whittlesea in Melbourne’s outer north.
  • Understanding acceptability

    After the General Election, with no party able to command a majority in the House of Commons, the options available were endlessly analysed under the glare of television cameras, and drawn out negotiations in private ensued.
  • Looking beyond incentives to manage growth

    Out of Premier Anna Bligh’s Growth Management Summit held in Brisbane in March came the idea of a Regionalisation Strategy for Queensland.
  • Books to talk about on City of Melbourne’s website
    The City of Melbourne’s Library Service is going digital with the addition of downloadable audiobooks to its suite of book borrowing services.
  • Ipswich Council on the prowl
    Ipswich Council has had an overwhelming response to its Cats Management Plan, with almost 3,600 cats now registered.
  • Recognising councils’ top performers
    At the recent Local Government Managers Australia National Congress in Adelaide, Local Government FOCUS invited delegates to nominate staff members or teams from their council who are excelling in their professional field by improving their council’s operations and enhancing services for their community
  • Management Plan to improve health in the Territory
    In May, West Arnhem Shire Council’s Gunbalanya community passed a milestone in its campaign against the misuse of volatile substances in the area, with the gazetting of the Volatile Substance Abuse (VSA) Management Plan by the Northern Territory Government.
  • Pan Da the koala a Redland City star
    Redland City Councils star Facebook marsupial, Pan Da the Koala, was once again released into Redlands bushland recently, with a clean bill of health from Australia Zoo hospital, where he spent the previous two months being treated for cystitis.
  • Mens Shed proves there is life after retirement
    The recently opened Castle Hill Men’s Shed in northwestern Sydney’s The Hills Shire is proving that there really is life after retirement.
  • Up, Up, Up

    In opening the Local Government Association of Tasmania (LGAT) 98th Local Government Conference, Association President Barry Easther said that it is an important time for Local Government as it strives for excellence and uses innovation to shape the future.
  • Stirling awarded for engineering excellence
    The City of Stirling’s unique approach to designing bicycle infrastructure has recently been recognised at the Western Australian Institute of Public Works Engineering Australia (IPWEA) 2009 Engineering Excellence Awards.
  • New guide to cut deaths and injury in high risk public works jobs
    In an effort to reduce injuries and fatalities caused by driver fatigue, Pro-Visual Publishing is reminding Local Government and works officers of the National Heavy Vehicle Driver Fatigue Reforms with the 2010 edition of the National Guide to Public Works and Services Safety.
  • Coffs Harbour lifeguard wins prestigious award
    Coffs Harbour City Council’s popular Senior Lifeguard, Sonny Tisdell, was recently named Australian Professional Ocean Lifeguard of the Year 2010.
  • Councillor Profiles
    Councillor Profiles is a regular feature. This month we feature two Councillors from the South Victoria.
  • Port Macquarie leads the way in water industry safety
    Port Macquarie-Hastings Council water supply division employees have played starring roles in a new educational safety DVD developed for water industry operat
  • Canterbury getting tough on graffiti
    New South Wales’ City of Canterbury is offering residents free graffiti removal kits in an aim to stamp out graffiti in the local area.
  • Towong a tourist attraction
    Towong Shire Council has developed a Tourism discussion paper to inform local communities of past and present success, while developing ideas for the future.
  • Ecotourism – Opportunities to be tapped

    In recent months, I’ve been featuring regions with potential to build on particular competitive advantages. Let’s now dwell on Canberra, while also drawing lessons for other regions.
  • 2010 Australasian Management Challenge finalists announced
    The regional winners of Local Government Managers Australia’s 2010 Management Challenge were announced recently.
  • Editorial: on the way to a fairer tax system
    As part of the review into Australia’s Future Tax System (the Henry Tax Review), the Federal Government recently announced its intention to pursue tax reform in a gradual and considered manner.
  • President’s comment
    In each edition we feature the views of a Local Government Association president. The following is from Mayor Felicity-ann Lewis, President of the Local Government Association of South Australia (LGASA).
  • Year of Women in Local Government

    Chair of the National Steering Committee of the Year of Women in Local Government, Ray Pincombe, said that the Local Government sector will require an innovative workforce to drive change over the next two decades. He was speaking at the opening session of the 2010 Local Government Managers Australia’s (LGMA’s) National Congress and Expo held in Adelaide from 16 to 19 May.

  • Planning to visit Mount Alexander?
    An outline of things to see and do.
  • Greenhouse Action Plan progress
    Council’s Greenhouse Action Plan (GAP) set a target of reducing emissions of greenhouse gases by 30 per cent, from a base year of 2000 by 2010. The target applies not just to Council’s own activities, but across the whole community.
  • Wash Against Waste Trailer
    As part of the popular Castlemaine State Festival’s journey towards being a carbon neutral event, a local initiative called the Wash Against Waste Trailer was launched last year.
  • Long term walking and cycling strategy gets the go ahead
    Council recently adopted the 2010–2020 Walking and Cycling Strategy.
  • Community Environment Grants Program
    Each year, Council provides grant funding to local community groups as part of the annual Community Environment Grants program.
  • Low energy solar display house
    A few years ago, the Mount Alexander Sustainability Group (MASG) saw a need for a local example of an environmentally sustainable home. The aim was to create a home that could assist in educating people of design and material options when choosing to renovate or build their homes.
  • Locally designed electric car for Mayor
    In 2007, as part of a commitment to reducing emissions from Council’s car fleet, the Mayor’s car was changed from a large six cylinder petrol vehicle to a smaller four cylinder diesel car.
  • Water is Life
    Water is Life Mount Alexander (WiLMA) was formed specifically to advocate around the issue of water security and has been successful in raising local awareness. It is a water users’ network of primary producers, industry, business, forestry, river flows and town residents.
  • Connecting Country
    Connecting Country is a unique landscape scale project that aims to increase, enhance and restore biodiversity across Mount Alexander Shire. It is being run by the community and involves a wide range of groups and agencies.
  • Community based Environment Advisory Committee
    Last year Mount Alexander Shire established a community based Environment Advisory Committee to provide Council with advice and support on environment and sustainability issues. It will also help to guide Council as a new Environment Strategy is developed and implemented in 2010.
  • Mount Alexander Sustainability Group maintains momentum
    Community members have provided great inspiration and momentum in the journey towards a sustainable future in Mount Alexander. This has been demonstrated by the strong membership numbers for Mount Alexander Sustainability Group (MASG).
  • Maine’s Power project

    Doubling business production while reducing greenhouse emissions is one of the outcomes from the Mount Alexander Shire Maine’s Power project.
  • Efficient home improvements for older people
    A new initiative that aims to make Home and Community Care clients more comfortable in their homes, save them money on energy bills and care for the environment by saving energy and water is now underway across Mount Alexander.
  • Central Victoria Solar City
    The Central Victorian Greenhouse Alliance (CVGA), of which Mount Alexander Shire is a member, wrote the winning business case submission for the Central Victoria Solar City project. It established its commercial arm, ZCO2e, to manage the project and the consortium.
  • Electronic waste recycling – dealing with a mounting issue*
    Mount Alexander is situated in Central Victoria, just over one hour from Melbourne via a freeway and fast rail link. It is located between the regional centres of Ballarat and Bendigo.

Feature: Environmental Management

  • Green buildings – new Local Government Task Group
    The Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) has established a new task group to encourage local councils to accelerate the green building agenda.
  • Recycling water at Frankston
    The tap has been turned on for Stage 1 of the Ballam Recycled Water Project, sending recycled water to maintain sporting grounds in the Frankston City area.
  • Eurobodalla secures its water future
    Residents of Eurobodalla will feel safe in the knowledge that a new water treatment plant is being built to secure their water supply for up to the next 30 years.
  • Removing a Myna issue
    Residents in Tweed and Byron Shires are working together to tackle an increasing natural threat from Indian Myna birds.
  • Website increases public awareness of river health status
    In 2009 the Georges River Combined Councils’ Committee (GRCCC) launched an interactive website that provides the community with regular updates on the catchment’s rehabilitation.
  • Turning trash into treasure
    A new Resource and Recovery Centre recently opened by Wellington Shire Council in Gippsland in eastern Victoria has reached in excess of 40 per cent recovery of waste disposal.
  • SA councils support renewable energy
    Six South Australian metropolitan councils are set to champion renewable energy solutions to communities as a result of a 12 month pilot scheme established by the Local Government Association of South Australia (LGASA) in partnership with ZEN Home Energy Systems.
  • Palmerston safe and healthy
    Palmerston has become the first Northern Territory Council to receive a Healthy Community Grant.
  • Port Adelaide Enfield environmental education
    South Australia’s City of Port Adelaide Enfield Council is teaming up with KESAB (Keep South Australia Beautiful) environmental solutions to offer residents free bus tours to local waste and recycling sites.
  • Queensland needs a new approach to waste management
    The Local Government Association of Queensland (LGAQ) is calling on councils and the State Government to start looking at sustainable solutions for Queensland’s waste problems.
  • Climate Change and Business Conference
    The 6th Australia-New Zealand Climate Change and Business Conference will be held in Sydney from 10 to 12 August. This conference brings together business leaders and policymakers from both Australia and New Zealand to facilitate taking action on climate change.
  • Marrickville rainwater tank scheme to target low income households
    Marrickville Council’s successful Rainwater Tank Incentive Scheme will be expanded to target people on low incomes, those that live in multi unit dwellings (MUDs) and culturally and linguistically diverse communities.
  • The natural alternative*
    With the emphasis these days being on clean and green, local councils are at the forefront of looking at more environmentally safer alternatives and leading the way in ecofriendly practices.
  • Carpooling initiative reduces costs and environmental impact
    Six New South Wales councils are supporting a new regional carpooling initiative aimed at reducing the travel costs and environmental impacts of commuters.
  • Manly Arts Festival sculpting the way
    Residents from Sydney’s northern beaches are being invited to make electronic waste into art as part of the 2010 Manly Arts Festival.
  • Hurstville City Council cuts its electricity bills
    Hurstville City Council is one of 17 Sydney councils set to save money on their electricity bills after accepting the recommendations of the Southern Sydney Regional Organisation of Councils (SSROC) to award a tender for the supply of electricity for large sites and street lighting.
  • Melville assesses energy use
    A new portable kit that measures energy and water consumption in the home is now available for loan at all City of Melville libraries.
  • Port Augusta promotes water as a healthy choice
    Port Augusta Council in conjunction with the South Australian and Federal Governments launched its ‘Water – the original cool drink’ campaign in February this year to encourage local residents to drink healthy products.
  • Hume City getting back to nature
    Hume City Council is in the process of introducing a new Native Vegetation Offsets Policy.
  • Trigeneration key to emission reductions
    Electricity could be cheaper and cleaner if regulations blocking local, efficient energy systems in Australia were removed, according to a City of Sydney submission to the Prime Minister’s Task Group on Energy Efficiency.
  • Carbon Insight helps councils reduce carbon footprint*
    Intelligent Pathways introduces Carbon Insight, the easy solution to carbon emissions monitoring and environmental data management for councils
  • Climate change risk adaptation program – call for an industry wide approach
    According to Gary Okely, General Manager Jardine Lloyd Thompson (JLT) Risk Services, South Australia, with the increase in extreme weather events and natural disasters, councils need to be acting now to avert the potential for rising claims and escalating insurance related costs, down the track.
  • Randwick street lights go solar
    Randwick has become the first council in New South Wales to trial a new solar powered street lighting technology developed by solar lighting company Point Energy Group Australia.