You are invited to attend the next Ordinary Meeting of Council:

 

Date:

Monday, 18 November 2019

Time:

6.30 pm

Location:

Council Chamber

62-64 Menangle Street

Picton NSW 2571

 

AGENDA

 

 

Ordinary Council Meeting

 

18 November 2019

 

 

Ben Taylor

Chief Executive Officer

 


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

 


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

Order Of Business

1          Opening. 5

2          Recording of the Meeting. 5

3          Webcast Notice. 5

4          National Anthem.. 5

5          Acknowledgement of Country. 5

6          Apologies and Leave of Absence Requests. 5

7          Declaration of Interest 5

8          Confirmation of Minutes. 5

9          Items to be Tabled. 5

10       Mayoral Minute. 6

10.1          Mayoral Minute. 6

11       Sustainable and Balanced Growth. 7

11.1          Draft Community Participation Plan. 7

11.2          Update - Heritage matters in Appin and Warragamba. 14

12       Management and Provision of Infrastructure. 16

12.1          Traffic Management Upgrades - Warragamba Permissible Parking Scheme Trial 16

13       Caring for the Environment 18

13.1          Repeal of the Requirements for Works Affecting Watercourses Policy. 18

14       Looking after the Community. 19

14.1          Review of Council's Communications Strategies. 19

14.2          Review of the Tourism and Economic Development Strategies. 24

15       Efficient and Effective Council 26

15.1          Establishment of Wollondilly Office of Integrity. 26

15.2          Western Sydney Health Alliance - Western Sydney City Deal 28

15.3          Western Parkland Councils' Governance Arrangements. 31

15.4          Review of Debt Recovery Policy. 36

15.5          Investment of Funds as at 30 September 2019. 38

15.6          Audit, Risk and Improvement Committee (ARIC) - Appointment of External Member 41

15.7          Presentation of 2018-19 Annual Financial Statements to the Public. 43

15.8          Endorsement of the 2018/19 Annual Report 45

15.9          Quarterly Budget Review Statement for the period ended 30 September 2019. 49

16       Notice of Motion/Rescissions. 51

No reports this meeting

 

 

 

17       Closed Reports. 52

17.1          Benefit of Easement within Lot 100 DP 1175654 Oaks Street (Off Penny Lane), Thirlmere - Future Carpark. 52

17.2          Acquisition of Land for Public Purpose - Ruddocks Road, Lakesland. 52

17.3          Code of Conduct Complaint - Conduct Reviewer's Report 52

18       Questions for Next Meeting. 53

No reports this meeting

 


1            Opening

2            Recording of the Meeting

In accordance with Council’s Code of Meeting Practice the electronic recording of the Council Meeting and the use of electronic media during the proceedings is not permitted. This includes devices such as laptops, mobile phones, tape recorders and video cameras.

3            Webcast Notice

Members of the public are advised, in accordance with Section 18 of the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998 (PPIPA), that Wollondilly Shire Council records and webcasts live all Ordinary and Extraordinary Meetings of Council held in open session for the purpose of facilitating community access. The webcasts are publicly available for viewing on Council’s website.

Video footage collected is of the decision making body only, if you do not wish your image to be recorded please remain in the public gallery. Your image, voice, personal and health information may be recorded, publicly broadcast and archived if you speak during the meeting and/or don’t remain in the space provided. Those in attendance are advised to refrain from making any defamatory statements.

The webcasts and webcast recordings are protected by copyright and owned by Council. No part of the proceedings of a meeting of the Council may be recorded, copied or made available to others by members of the public without the authority of the Council.

Council may be required to disclose recordings pursuant to the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009, or where Council is compelled to do so by court order, warrant or subpoena or by any other legislation.

4            National Anthem

5            Acknowledgement of Country

The Mayor will acknowledge the traditional Custodians of the Land.

6            Apologies and Leave of Absence Requests

7            Declaration of Interest

8            Confirmation of Minutes

Ordinary Council Meeting - 21 October 2019

9            Items to be Tabled

·      Disclosure of Interest Register 2018/19

·      Disclosure of Interest Register 2019/20


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

10          Mayoral Minute

10.1       Mayoral Minute

File Number:           10619#937

 

The Mayor may put to a meeting (without notice) any matter the Council is allowed to deal with or which the Council officially knows about.

 

Attachments

Nil

Recommendation

That the Mayoral Minute be accepted.

 

  


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

11          Sustainable and Balanced Growth

11.1       Draft Community Participation Plan

File Number:           10619#843

 

Executive Summary

·        The purpose of this report is to detail the outcomes of the public exhibition of the Draft Wollondilly Community Participation Plan (CPP) and to seek adoption of the plan.

·        The adoption of the draft CPP provides an opportunity to repeal Council’s current Advertising Policy.

·        The draft CPP was publicly exhibited in plain text format from 24 September 2019 to 22 October 2019.  One submission was received.

·        Minor amendments were made to the draft CPP while on public exhibition, in response to a Council resolution from September 2019. The minor amendments will not necessitate further consultation with key stakeholders. The Draft CPP has now been presented in graphic design format.

·        Under the Local Government and Planning Legislation Amendment (Political Donations) Act 2008, a person who makes a relevant planning application or public submission is required to disclose any reportable political donations. The disclosure requirements extend to any person with a financial interest in the application or any associate of the person making a public submission. No disclosure of political donation has been made in association with this draft policy.

·        It is recommended that Council

1.       Adopts the draft Wollondilly Community Participation Plan to be effective from 1 December 2019;

2.       Notifies the Department of Planning, Industry & Environment of Council’s decision;

3.       Repeals Council’s current Advertising Policy GOV0019; and

4.       Amends the Wollondilly Development Control Plan 2016 to remove the existing part 4 of Volume 1 (Community Engagement) and exhibits for 28 days in accordance with Clause 18 of the Environmental Planning & Assessment Regulation 2000.

Report

Background

On 16 September 2019, Council considered a report on the draft CPP and resolved to publicly exhibit the plan. At the meeting, it was resolved to undertake one minor amendment, being that the definitions and explanations of different Planning Proposal types be included in the plan. This minor amendment was undertaken as can be viewed on page 10 of the document. The attached draft CPP is now in its final form for adoption.

The adoption of the draft CPP enables Council to provide the wider community with a single document that provides details on how and when Council both notifies and publicly exhibits planning matters. Planning matters include:

·        Strategic plan making functions such as planning proposals, local strategic planning statements, local environment plans, development control plans and contributions plans; and

·        Statutory planning such as assessment of development applications.

The draft CPP does not propose to change the way in which Council provides for notification and public exhibition of strategic and statutory planning matters. Instead, the draft CPP consolidates information that is currently located in Schedule 1 of the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act 1979, Wollondilly Development Control Plan 2016 and Council’s Strategic Planning – Planning Proposal Policy CP0038 into one document.

Following exhibition of the plan, one additional minor amendment has been made.  A number of recent Council reports has identified the need to provide some clarity in terms of consultation for Development Control Plan amendments. Consequently a new table has been included which responds to the significance of the amendment. The diagram in Part 4 of Volume 1 of Wollondilly Development Control Plan 2016 (WDCP 2016) which demonstrates what is considered to be land adjoining the development site has also been added to the final version of the document.

This plan supersedes the advertising policy therefore GOV0019 will be repealed.

It is also proposed to amend WDCP 2016 to remove the existing section on community participation so that the consultation requirements for development applications are provided in a single location and the Community Participation Plan will be the sole reference point for exhibition requirements for development applications. In accordance with the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act 1979, the proposed amendment to remove the existing section on consultation from WDCP 2016 will need to be publicly exhibited for a minimum period of 28 days. Following the exhibition of the proposed amendments to WDCP 2016, a further report will be provided to Council which will seek endorsement to adopt the proposed amendments which remove these controls.

Consultation

The draft policy was exhibited from 24 September to 22 October 2019 and one submission was received. The following table provides a summary of the concerns raised:

Section of draft CPP

Concerns raised

Planning Officer’s Response

2.1 Objectives of community participation

 

· There is no information in the plan about how council encourages ‘effective and ongoing partnerships with the community’ to enable community engagement in planning.

· Council convenes a number of consultative committees. It would helpful if this plan included information about relevant consultative committees convened by Council and how their work relates to fulfilment of Council’s obligations to consult with the community on planning matters.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

· There is no commitment in the plan to providing information in a plain language, accessible forms suitable for the diverse population groups and communities within the Shire.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

· There is no information in the plan on how council will ensure community participation is inclusive of the diverse population groups and communities within the Shire. In particular, there is no mention of how Council proposes to reach Aboriginal and culturally and linguistically diverse community members, or community members with a disability.

 

· Council does coordinate a number of mandatory and non-mandatory committees that draw membership from a wide variety of stakeholders including Council officers, Councillors, state government agencies, community groups and residents.

· Currently, none of Council’s mandatory committees relate directly to planning.

Of the current non-mandatory community advisory committees, four have relevance to planning being the newly formed Heritage Community Advisory Committee, the newly formed the Inclusion and Access Advisory Committee and the existing Rural Industry Advisory Committee and the Minerals Energy Resources Environment and Waste Advisory Committee.

It should be noted that three of the committees meet on a quarterly basis. The practicalities of time frames are of particular importance when Council places a draft plan or development application on public exhibition for the mandatory 28 days.

It is regular practice for Council officers to encourage committee members, and the wider community to regularly view Council’s ‘Having Your Say’ webpage. This is Council’s primary platform for community engagement and provides a consistent approach to meeting Council’s obligations to consult with the community on planning matters.

 

 

· Council adopted its Disability Inclusion Action Plan (DIAP) in 2017. The DIAP includes actions that Council will undertake to improve inclusion across the organisation and the wider community for four years.

· A number of the DIAP actions relate to accessible and inclusive engagement, two of particular relevance are:- formation of a Plain English Working Group that will enable translation of existing Council documents into Plain English; and

­ Development of an inclusive consultation checklist with regard to Council’s existing Community Engagement Strategy.

­ The DIAP is coordinated by Council’s Community Projects Officer. Council’s Planning Officers will continue to assist in the development of accessible resources and engagement practices that relate to planning matters.

 

· Section 2.2 of the draft CPP ‘Our Approach to Community Participation’ clearly lists the range of consultation tools that Council has and will continue to utilise when engaging with the wider community on planning matters. This includes:

­ online participation through Council’s website

­ Informal face to face participation at community events

­ Scheduled community workshops

­ Requests for written submissions through a public exhibition process.

2.2 Our approach to community participation

This section would be strengthened by the following additions:

 

· A clear statement that the overarching aim of community participation is to gather feedback from the community on planning proposals to inform Council’s decision-making process

 

· A clear statement that consultation tools will be selected with a view to the overall aim of gathering feedback from people or communities affected by a planning proposal to inform Council’s decision-making process

 

· A statement relating to the efforts Council will make to reach ‘hard to reach’ communities on significant proposals

 

· Such amendments are considered unnecessary. The intent of the draft CPP is to advise the community of Council’s legal requirements relating to the public exhibition and notification of plan making and development assessment.

· Council has a stand-alone Communications and Engagement Strategy that was adopted in 2018. This strategy guides Council’s approach to community engagement and provides detailed information with regard to the intent and aims of community engagement.

· The strategy contains significant content with regard to increasing the use of online engagement as a method of best practice. The success of Council’s ‘Having Your Say’ community engagement webpage and the number of planning related community consultations and workshops held per year is a testament to Council’s commitments to ‘reaching’ the wider community of Wollondilly.

· It should be noted that the Communications and Engagement Strategy is listed in Section 1.4 of the draft CPP under ‘Relevant Legislation’.

 

 

3.2 Non-mandatory community participation in plan making

Table 2 proposes a 28 day consultation period for a number of planning proposals.

 

We do not agree that 28 days is a long enough period for consultation on these types of proposals. We suggest 42 days (6 weeks) instead.

 

It takes time to bring people together, gather feedback and write it up. Community members do this in their own time on top of work and family commitments. If Council is genuine about consulting with the community on proposals that will have a major impact on the Shire and the community it needs to allow a reasonable opportunity for the community to consider the proposal and respond.

 

A 42 day consultation period is not much time in the overall scheme of a development which can take years from proposal through to completion.

· The table referred to in the comments was adopted by Council in February 2019, as part of Council’s Wollondilly Strategic Planning – Planning Proposal Policy CP0038.

· The adopted 28 day consultation is in-keeping with industry best practice and enables Council Officers to work within timeframes set by the Department of Planning, Industry & Environment with regard to key performance indicators.

3.2 Non-mandatory community participation in plan making

 

The paragraph at the top of page 8 appears to saying that any preliminary consultation relating to any current or future growth centre will be at the discretion of Council.

 

We strongly disagree with this approach for the following reasons:

 

· It conflicts with the position adopted by Council on 18 February 2019 discussed on pages 6 and 7

 

· It conflicts with Section 2.23(2) of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act – particularly a) ‘the community has the right to be informed about planning matters that affect it’ and d)’the community should be given opportunities to participate in strategic planning as early as possible to enable the community views to be genuinely considered’

 

· It conflicts with the approach to community participation outlined on page 5

 

· It appears to usurp Council’s legislated decision-making authority

 

· It does not outline the factors that Council’s executive leadership team will consider when exercising its discretion

 

· The paragraph referred to in the comments relating to Growth Centres was intentionally included in the draft CPP as it forms part of Council’s Wollondilly Strategic Planning – Planning Proposal Policy CP0038 that was adopted by Council in February 2019.

 

 

3.2 Non-mandatory community participation in plan making

 

The final paragraph and note are unclear. We suggest alternative wording along the following lines:

 

‘where the person lodging a planning proposal modifies the proposal after initial consultations, Council will decide whether the modifications are minor. If they are not, Council will undertake additional consultation and will also notify any previous submitters.’

 

· The suggestion is noted.

 

3.3 Consideration of submissions

 

The wording of the section relating to addresses is very confusing and open to misinterpretation. We think you are attempting to say that where you receive more than one submission from the same address:

· Identical submissions will be considered a single submission, even if submitted by different people

· Non-identical submissions will be treated as separate submissions

 

We believe every person’s submission should count, regardless of address, contents or relationship to other submitters. Therefore, all submissions received should be counted, regardless of whether the submission is identical to another submission received or if more than one submission is sent from the same address.

 

There are a range of reasons why independent households may have the same address such as share housing, or adult child living in same house as parents.

 

We understand Council may decide it needs an approach to identical submissions. We believe the same approach to identical submission should apply, regardless of the address of the submitter.

 

We think there is a typo in the ‘Note’ at the end of this section. Did you mean to say ‘then the first person listed on the petition’?

· The suggestion is noted.

 

Conclusion

The final version of the draft CPP is contained in Attachment 2. This report outlines the changes to the draft CPP as a result of the previous Council resolution and public exhibition.

The Council has three options to proceed:

1.       Adopt the CPP as outlined and attached to this report;

2.       Adopt the CPP subject to minor changes;

3.       Resolve not to support the CPP in its current form.

Option 1 is the recommendation of this report.

Financial Implications

This matter has no financial impact on Council’s adopted budget or forward estimates.

Attachments

1.       Wollondilly Community Participation Plan   

 

Recommendation

That Council:

1.       Adopts the draft Wollondilly Community Participation Plan to be effective from 1 December 2019;

2.       Notifies the Department of Planning, Industry & Environment of Council’s decision;

3.       Repeals Council’s current Advertising Policy GOV0019; and

4.       Amends the Wollondilly Development Control Plan 2016 to remove the existing part 4 of Volume 1 (Community Engagement) and exhibits for 28 days in accordance with Clause 18 of the Environmental Planning & Assessment Regulation 2000.

 


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

11.2       Update - Heritage matters in Appin and Warragamba

File Number:           10619#870

 

Executive Summary

·        The purpose of this report is to provide Council with an update on two resolutions from the 16 June 2017 Ordinary Meeting of Council relating to heritage matters in Appin and Warragamba.

·        It is recommended that the information in this report be noted.

Report

At Council’s Ordinary meeting on 16 June 2017, Council resolved as follows in regards to heritage matters in Appin and Warragamba:

·        That Council investigate options for protecting and preserving the heritage values of Warragamba and buildings associated with the construction of Warragamba Dam.

·        That Council in conjunction with the Appin Heritage Society review the existing heritage assets in the Appin area on the State and Local Heritage Asset Register and assess whether these assets should be included or updated.

It is considered the most appropriate mechanism is a shire-wide Heritage Study, would provide detailed advice and recommendations with regard to heritage values, heritage items and potential heritage conservation areas in Warragamba and Appin.

It was initially proposed that the Heritage study be undertaken as part of the next Local Environment Plan (LEP) review. However, given the available resourcing and funding, and the large number of studies prioritised by Council for the LEP review, the Heritage study has not yet been funded in Council’s Operational Plan. 

The need for the heritage studies in Warragamba and Appin has also recently been identified in Council’s draft Local Strategic Planning Statement (LSPS), under Planning Priority 7: ‘Cultivating A Creative and Cultural Destination Connecting People with Places’.

The following actions sit within Planning Priority 7:

·        Action 7.7 Investigate the need and scope of a heritage conservation area in Appin.

·        Action 7.10 Investigate options for protecting and preserving the heritage values of Warragamba and buildings associated with the construction of Warragamba Dam.

Funding for the required heritage studies will be referred to a future Council budget.

In addition to the references made to heritage matters in Warragamba and Appin in Council’s draft LSPS, a Heritage Community Advisory Committee was established earlier this year, with its first meeting held in July, 2019.

The Heritage Community Advisory Committee meets quarterly, and aims to bring together interested community members and organisations to engage with Council on heritage issues within the Wollondilly Shire. The Heritage Community Advisory Committee will pursue specific actions and strategies relating to the following key focus areas:

1.       Assist and advise on the development and review of policies and other further work to identify, document, protect, conserve and promote heritage in Wollondilly;

2.       To inform reviews of the Local Environmental Plan and preparation of relevant strategic planning policy documents on heritage issues, including the current Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan Review and preparation of the Wollondilly Local Strategic Planning Statement;

3.       Assist and advise Council on a range of heritage-related matters which are of interest to the community;

4.       Assist in the development of positive economic benefits to Wollondilly through appropriate heritage management;

5.       To promote effective communication with other groups and organisations who share similar values and interests and concerns, for example through partnerships and cooperation;

6.       Look at strategic advocacy options for heritage issues in Wollondilly;

7.       Provide an advocacy role for heritage matters within Wollondilly Shire to promote heritage initiatives and opportunities for the Wollondilly community and to raise awareness of the value of heritage within the local communities.

The Heritage Community Advisory Committee currently includes seven community representatives from across the shire, is chaired by Council’s Director of Planning, with support by staff from Council’s Sustainable Growth team.

At its October 2019 meeting, the Heritage Community Advisory Committee was consulted on the draft LSPS, in particular, actions listed under Priority 7 that relate specifically to heritage matters across the shire, including Warragamba and Appin. Comments provided by the Heritage Community Advisory Committee will be included in the post public exhibition review of the draft LSPS.

Council officers will refer the required funding for the proposed heritage studies to future Council budget deliberations.

Consultation

Not applicable.

Financial Implications

Funding for the required heritage studies will be referred to a future Council budget.

Attachments

Nil

Recommendation

That the information in this report be noted.

  


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

12          Management and Provision of Infrastructure

12.1       Traffic Management Upgrades - Warragamba Permissible Parking Scheme Trial

File Number:           10619#896

 

Executive Summary

·        At Council’s meeting of 19 August 2019, it was resolved in part Resolution 189/2109:

o   That we defer the decision to implement the suggested scheme and undertake further community consultation.

o   That we invite all decision makers including but not limited to the local Member, the police and the RMS to an on-site inspection and discussion with the suggestion of the installation of an off road parking provision on narrow roads for the established residential area of Warragamba, using technical direction TTD 2014/003.

·        The purpose of this report is to show that further consultation has been conducted and alternative options considered.

·        This report recommends that the Minutes of the Traffic Committee Meeting held on 8 October 2019 be received and the following recommendations be adopted:

o   LTC Recommendation 1.2 - Warragamba Permissible Parking Scheme

§  The Committee reaffirmed its support of the implementation of a trial installation of permissible parking signs at selected narrow streets in Warragamba at Third Street, Twelfth Street and Thirteenth Street.

§  Community engagement and education be carried out prior to the implementation of the trial.

§  At the completion of the six month trial, the results will be discussed with the Local Traffic Committee regarding the merits of extension or expansion or removal of the Permissible Parking Scheme.

o   That the community engagement and education include but not be limited to:

§  Confirmation that distances shown on the signs are minimum distances only. If a vehicle is able to park fully within the footpath area without straddling the kerb and still leave 2m clear for pedestrians, this would be permissible.

§  Stacking of vehicles on one side of the road would also be permissible, as long as a minimum clearance of 10m is left between vehicles parked on opposite sides of the road.

§  The pedestrian minimum width of 2m has been rounded up from 1.8m to enable ease of measurement by taking “two big steps” as a general guide.

Report

Background & Action

That following an on-site meeting of the Local Traffic Committee which included representatives of the local Member for Wollondilly, Police and RMS, discussions were held regarding the suggestion of the installation of an off-road parking provision on narrow roads for the established residential area of Warragamba using technical direction TTD 2016/001 - Design and Implementation of Shared Zones with the Provision of Parking (which supersedes TTD 2014/003).

It was an unanimous decision of the Committee that the implementation of a shared zone with the provision of parking not be supported.  The decision was reached as it was noted that a Shared Zone is normally implemented in areas with high pedestrian volume where pedestrians are given priority. The designated parking spots required for the Shared Zone would also mean there would be less parking options available. It was also noted that the same issues would still be present with both the Shared Zone and the Permissible Parking Scheme, however, the Shared Zone would require RMS approval and a significant amount of work and resources from Council funding, including:

·    10km speed limit

·    Coloured bitumen road

·    Speed bumps

·    Designated parking spots with a hard stand area behind the kerb would have to be constructed and delineated with line marking.

Please see attached Minutes of the Local Traffic Committee meeting held on the 8 October 2019.

Consultation

As per Council Resolution 189/2109, consultation has been conducted via the Local Traffic Committee Meeting held at Warragamba on 8 October 2019 with relevant stakeholders including RMS, Police and Council.

Financial Implications

The signs and community education program is funded from Council’s current budget allocations.

Attachments

1.       Agenda of Local Traffic Committee Meeting held 8 October 2019  

2.       Minutes of Local Traffic Committee Meeting held 8 October 2019   

Recommendation

That the Minutes of the Traffic Committee Meeting held on 8 October 2019 be received and the following recommendations be adopted:

1.       LTC Recommendation 1.2 - Warragamba Permissible Parking Scheme

·        The Committee reaffirmed its support of the implementation of a trial installation of permissible parking signs at selected narrow streets in Warragamba at Third Street, Twelfth Street and Thirteenth Street.

·        Community engagement and education be carried out prior to the implementation of the trial.

·        At the completion of the six month trial, the results will be discussed with the Local Traffic Committee regarding the merits of extension or expansion or removal of the Permissible Parking Scheme.

2.       That the community engagement and education include but not be limited to:

·    Confirmation that distances shown on the signs are minimum distances only. If a vehicle is able to park fully within the footpath area without straddling the kerb and still leave 2m clear for pedestrians, this would be permissible.

·    Stacking of vehicles on one side of the road would also be permissible, as long as a minimum clearance of 10m is left between vehicles parked on opposite sides of the road.

·    The pedestrian minimum width of 2m has been rounded up from 1.8m to enable ease of measurement by taking “two big steps” as a general guide.

  


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

13          Caring for the Environment

13.1       Repeal of the Requirements for Works Affecting Watercourses Policy

File Number:           10619#894

 

Executive Summary

·        The purpose of this report is to repeal the Requirements for Works Affecting Watercourses Policy.

·        It is recommended that the Requirements for Works Affecting Watercourses Policy PLA0009 be repealed.

Report

The Infrastructure & Environment directorate have been reviewing policies and protocols with the view of improving and streamlining communication with our customers.

Council is required to review existing policies and ensure that they are regularly updated. A review of the Requirements for Works Affecting Watercourses Policy has found that the requirements listed in the policy and the specific objectives now form part of the Subdivision & Engineering Standard (2016). Relevant Information is supplied in Section D05 Stormwater Drainage Design of the Design Specification and the “Guidelines for Riparian Corridors on Waterfront Land” for assistance with controlled activities on or under waterfront land regulated by the Water Management Act 2000.

Accordingly, the specific policy is no longer required.

Consultation

Internal only.

Financial Implications

This matter has no financial impact on Council’s adopted budget or forward estimates.

Attachments

1.       Requirements for Works Affecting Watercourses Policy PLA0009   

Recommendation

That the Requirements for Works Affecting Watercourses Policy be repealed.

  


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

14          Looking after the Community

14.1       Review of Council's Communications Strategies

File Number:           10619#690

 

Executive Summary

·    The purpose of this report is to respond to a June Council resolution regarding an independent review of Council’s communications strategies.

·    Since the June 2019 Council resolution independent survey research regarding community expectations and preferences in relation to communications has been undertaken, and this has informed a series of Communications Plans.

·    This work has largely satisfied the intent of the June 2019 Council resolution.

·    It is recommended that Council:

1.   Endorse the attached Communications Action Plans to improve Council’s engagement with the Community.

2.   Allocate $25,000 through the September 2019 QR to commence implementation of the Communications Action Plans.

3.   Not proceed with any further independent review of Council’s communications strategies at this stage.

 

Report

At the June 2019 Council Meeting, Council adopted the Delivery Program 2017/18 – 2020 including the 2019/20 Operational Plan and budget. As part of its resolution Council included the following:

 

“7. That a report comes back to Council at the next Quarterly review about an independent review of Council’s communications and tourism and economic development strategies and implementation with a focus on deliverable outcomes for the new CSP and delivery plan. The report is to include cost and resourcing implications of conducting this review”.

 

(Note that this report deals solely with the review of Council’s communications strategies. The review of Council’s tourism and economic development strategies is a separate matter).

 

Purpose of the Resolution

A Councillor Workshop was held 2 September 2019 to discuss the purpose of the resolution, how best to implement its intent, and its relationship to the Wollondilly Communications and Engagement Strategy 2018. It was agreed that the purpose of the resolution was not to specifically review this document, but instead to:

·    Better understand the key focus areas that have a significant impact on community perceptions of Council (as identified in the Customer Satisfaction Survey conducted every two years).

·    Further explore three of the eight focus areas identified in the survey that contribute to 60% of overall satisfaction with Council:

Financial management

Long-term planning for the Shire

Maintaining Council roads

·    Identify new approaches to work towards shifting community perceptions in relation to these key focus areas.

·    Identify the resource implications of new initiatives and actions including strategic resourcing considerations for Council’s next Community Strategic Plan and Delivery Program/Operational Plan

 

Current “Communications Deep-Dive” Project

The Communications and Engagement Team has commenced work to substantially address the Resolution through a Communications Deep-Dive project. This project has involved in-depth research work with Micromex Research targeting the three abovementioned focus areas, being financial management, long-term planning for the Shire and maintaining Council roads.

On the basis of the findings from this survey research, consultancy firm Spectrum Communications has worked with Council to develop a series of Communications Action Plans, with the aim of better informing the community about these focus areas, in order to improve satisfaction levels.

 

Key findings of the Communications Deep-Dive Project

Micromex Research undertook in-depth telephone interviews with previous community survey participants on behalf of Council, to explore the key themes that emerged from the 2018 Community Satisfaction Survey. These included Council’s planning and financial management, Council’s roadwork strategy and also touched on Council’s communications and engagement. In addition to the in-depth telephone interviews, Micromex also sent out an online survey to the same stakeholder cohort to complete if they didn’t have the opportunity to participate in the in-depth telephone interviews. In total 71 responses were received, including 51 responses from the in-depth telephone interviews and 20 responses from the online survey.

 

Some of the key findings from the research included:

·    There was a high level of interest from all respondents in all topic areas covered within the survey and interest in being informed and/or consulted on all topic areas was also high

·    The preferred methods of communication that were identified by respondents included:

Direct email

Direct mail

Community newsletters

Print media

Council’s website

Social media

·    Some of the key areas respondents want to know about included:

Where and how funding is being distributed across the Shire

Further clarification and information on long-term plans

Frequent updates regarding roadworks across the Shire and more information on Council’s efforts to improve the local road network

 

 

 

 

·    Some of the key areas respondents identified as points of contention with Council included:

A sense that Council doesn’t value their opinion

Respondents wanting to see a more even distribution of work and money spent across the Shire

Assurances that development will be sustainable and in line with the character of the area, with adequate supporting infrastructure and services

 

Communications Action Plans

Following on from the in-depth research that Micromex Research undertook; Spectrum Communications consultancy has been working with Council officers to develop a number of communications action plans that outline how Council can work towards improving community satisfaction with regards to financial management, long-term planning and maintaining Council’s roads.

These action plans have used the results of the in-depth research by Micromex as well as the information included in our Integrated Planning and Reporting Framework documents to inform the recommended actions and key messaging for each campaign.

As the three topic areas are interrelated, the Communications Action Plans aim to create consistency across each campaign to strengthen key messaging out to the community. In particular, the suggested overarching branding for the communication campaigns focuses on Create Wollondilly. This is because Create Wollondilly is currently used within our Integrated Planning and Reporting Framework and includes five themed focus areas including:

·    Sustainable and balanced growth

·    Management and provision of infrastructure

·    Caring for the environment

·    Looking after the community

·    Efficient and effective Council

It is proposed that under the Create Wollondilly branding, the three focus areas for increasing community satisfaction i.e. maintaining Council roads, financial management and long-term planning for the Shire can be encapsulated and branded under one of the five themes. Create Wollondilly then will become the umbrella branding for:

1.   How we manage sustainable and balanced growth

2.   How we manage our infrastructure

3.   How we care for our environment

4.   How we look after our community

5.   How we manage our Council

·         As a result, the focus of all campaign messaging will be centred around “how we do this for you.”

·         Note: the use of messaging that focuses on ‘We’ rather than ‘Council’ creates a more personal connection with the community.

The Communications Action Plans include a number of elements that focus on increasing the level of general community engagement and interaction with Council especially on our existing platforms; as well as suggested approaches to using communications channels to push out key messaging within the community to improve transparency and community knowledge when it comes to the three focus areas.

 

An overview of these actions include:

·    Implementation of actions to increase Council’s social media reach and registrations by Wollondilly residents, businesses etc. through regular posting, paid advertising and competitions

·    An increased Council presence at community events with giveaways for the community

·    Council street teams popping up at various locations across the Shire with giveaways for the community

·    Implementation of actions to increase Your Say Wollondilly registrations

·    Utilising active communication channels such as:

Footpath decals

Regular social media posting of key messages

Paid social media advertising

Paid advertising

Unpaid media coverage

Advertising on and in Council assets e.g. community newsletter, bus stops, library, construction site signage etc.

Regular internal communication and recruitment of internal communication champions to help drive the key messages of each campaign

 

Implementation and Resource Implications

For any of the Communications Action Plans to be successful it requires a strong commitment across Council. This is because the intention of the Communication Action Plans is to undertake ongoing, consistent and regular communications around the campaign brand Create Wollondilly and in particular communicating key messages relating to Council’s financial management, long-term planning and maintaining Council’s roads. As a result, the Communications Action Plans are intended to be implemented over a long period of time, in order to try and effect change on entrenched community views.

It is proposed that Council commits to the implementation of the Communications Action Plans in the short term until the next community satisfaction survey in late 2020. At that point, it would be appropriate to review and potentially update the Communications Action Plans based on any updated available data from the community satisfaction survey.

In order to effectively implement these Communications Action Plans and attempt to achieve a perception shift within the community, there are significant resourcing implications for this financial year and beyond. In particular it is proposed that a budget of $25,000 be allocated to enable commencement of implementation this financial year, and further consideration be given to allocating a similar ongoing budget to the Communications Action Plans implementation in future financial years.

This funding would go towards the following actions:

·    Social media competitions

·    Purchase of promotional material

·    Staffing costs related to Council stalls at community events and street teams popping up around the Shire

·    Social media advertising

·    Footpath decals

·    Paid advertising

·    Printing

·    Other contractors e.g. outsourcing graphic design etc.

Consultation

Consultation has been undertaken with Councillors at two Councillor Workshops held 2 September and 28 October 2019 regarding the aim of the resolution and the findings and directions of the Communications Deep-Dive Project.

Council’s Strategic Resourcing Advisory Committee also considered this matter at its meeting held on 28 October 2019.

In relation to community consultation, the Deep-Dive Project and the associated Communications Actions Plans have been informed by in-depth community survey research.

Financial Implications

To date the Communications Deep-Dive Project has been undertaken at a cost of $21,075.63. This funding has enabled Council to undertake more detailed research and develop appropriate communications plans.

As discussed previously, in order to effectively commence the implementation of the Communications Actions Plans this financial year there are additional resourcing implications for the organisation. The estimated cost of these actions is $25,000. No funding has been allocated under Council’s 2019/20 Operational Budget so it is proposed that the required funding be allocated through Council’s QR process.

The financial and resource implications of the ongoing implementation of the Communications Action Plans beyond the current financial year will be matters to be considered as part of Council’s 2020/21 Operational Budget preparations and/or its 2021/22 CSP and Delivery Plan preparations.

 

Attachments

1.       Wollondilly Communications Deep Dive Project - Survey Results

2.       Communications Action Plans   

Recommendation

That Council:

1.   Endorse the attached Communications Action Plans to improve Council’s engagement with the Community.

2.   Allocate $25,000 through the September 2019 QR to commence implementation of the Communications Action Plans.

3.   Not proceed with any further independent review of Council’s communications strategies at this stage.

 


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

14.2       Review of the Tourism and Economic Development Strategies

File Number:           10619#910

 

Executive Summary

·        At the 17 June 2019 Council meeting  it was resolved a report be tabled at the 18 November 2019 Council meeting outlining the feasibility, including costs, of an independent review of Council’s communications and tourism and economic development strategies and implementation.

·        This report addresses the review of Council’s tourism and economic development strategies. The review of Councils communications strategies is reported separately.

·        Following the June meeting further briefing sessions with Councillors were undertaken to clarify the scope and extent of the review.

·        As a result a focus will be given to the review of one project from the Destination Management Plan and one project from the Smart Shire Strategy.

·        It is recommended that Council not proceed with an independent review of Council’s tourism and economic development strategies and implementation at this stage and note the 2019/20 key performance indicators, milestones and deliverables of the Wollondilly Trek, 2 Short Walks and the Smart Working Hub.

 

Report

At the June 2019 Council Meeting, Council adopted the Delivery Program 2017/18 – 2020 including the 2019/20 Operational Plan and budget. As part of its resolution Council included the following:

That a report come back to Council at the next quarterly review about an independent review of Council’s communications and tourism and economic development strategies and implementation with a focus on deliverable outcomes for the new CSP and delivery plan. The report is to include cost and resourcing implications of conducting this review.

 

A Councillor Briefing was held 2 September 2019 to discuss the purpose of the resolution, how best to implement its intent, and its relationship with the Wollondilly Destination Management Plan (DMP), the Wollondilly Economic Development Strategy (EDS), and the Wollondilly Smart Shire Strategy (SSS).

It was discussed the purpose of the resolution was not specifically to review these documents, but instead to understand the key performance indicators, milestones and deliverables of the projects within these strategies.

As the Wollondilly Economic Development Strategy is to be reviewed in the 2019/20 Operational Plan it was decided to focus on two projects, one from the DMP and the other from the Smart Shire Strategy.

The Tourism & Business Investment Section have undertaken a review of the Wollondilly Trek and Short Walks Projects from the DMP and the Smart Working Hub Project from the Smart Shire Strategy.

The review of these projects include an overview of the key performance indicators, milestones and deliverables that will enable Council to monitor and measure performance and progress towards the overall goals and objectives of each project.

A copy of each projects 2019/20 key performance indicators, milestones and deliverables are attached to this report.

The Team have commenced the implementation of each project and progress of each project will be monitored and reported on a regular basis.

Consultation

·    Consultation has been undertaken with Councillors at the 2 September 2019 Councillor Briefing.

·    Council’s Strategic Resourcing Advisory Committee also considered this matter at its meeting held on 28 October 2019.

Financial Implications

Funding has been allocated and is available under the 2019-2020 Operational Budget for the planning, feasibility study and business case for the Smart Working Hub.

Funding to engage a consultant to advise on the development of the Wollondilly Trek and 2 Short Walks as key visitor experiences for the Wollondilly has been allocated and is available under the 2019-2020 Operational Budget.

The delivery of relevant infrastructure for the Wollondilly Trek and 2 Short Walks will be informed by the assessment process and considered as part of existing infrastructure budgets and future quarterly reviews.

Attachments

1.       Wollondilly Trek and 2 Short Walks 2019/20  milestones and deliverables  

2.       Smart Working Hub 2019/20 milestones and deliverables   

Recommendation

That Council not proceed with an independent review of Council’s tourism and economic development strategies and implementation at this stage and note the 2019/20 key performance indicators, milestones and deliverables of the Wollondilly Trek, 2 Short Walks and the Smart Working Hub.

 

  


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

15          Efficient and Effective Council

15.1       Establishment of Wollondilly Office of Integrity

File Number:           10619#897

 

Executive Summary

·        The purpose of this report is to outline to Council the planned establishment of a new Office of Integrity for Wollondilly Shire Council.

·        The Office of Integrity is part of a suite of measures planned to strengthen organisational capacity, increase transparency and continue to build community and staff trust in Council. It is based on a model often referred to as an ‘Internal Ombudsman’ in use by many other Councils and the approach is strongly supported by the Independent Chair of Council’s Audit and Risk Improvement Committee (ARIC).

·        It is recommended:

1.       that Council endorse the Chief Executive Officer establishing the Office of the Integrity

2.       that the framework for the Office of Integrity operation be the subject of a future Councillor Briefing to ensure alignment with Council and community expectations. 

Report

Wollondilly Shire Council has a major focus on strengthening organisational capacity, increasing transparency and continuing to build community and staff trust in Council. Integrity is the first of Council’s organisational values and a fundamental expectation of the community in Council.

Council will continue to experience significant change in a number of facets of the business as a result of growth and change. Growth in customer expectations for Council services coupled with a desire for an improved customer experience requires our people, our systems, processes and work practices to be continuously improved, agile and resilient.

It is recognised that organisational growth brings challenges and risks including a greater need to protect the community and Council staff from increased susceptibility to fraud and corruption, misconduct and unethical behaviours.

While Council already has a number of controls in place to respond to these challenges and risks through its existing policy frameworks, it is planned to introduce a suite of further internal measures to strengthen organisational performance in this area. It is recognised that there are opportunities for improvement to enhance Council’s profile in the following areas:

1.   Increasing our focus on customer interaction and experience, while recognising complaints as an opportunity to improve Council’s services

2.   Empowering our people to feel confident and supported in making disclosures about conduct or behaviour that is inconsistent with Councils Policies, Protocols and Procedures

3.   Building a culture of trust between staff, the community and Councillors where the resolution of issues are achieved through collaboration.

 

Office of Integrity

 

The concept of the Office of Integrity is an independent and impartial ear for complaints raised by the community, staff, Councillors and other Council Stakeholders which directly enhances Council’s profile in the areas 1 - 3 above.

 

It is planned the Office of Integrity will be resourced through one temporary full-time position called the Head of Integrity. This role is based on the role of an internal ombudsman, a term which is loosely translated as ‘the citizen’s defender’ or ‘representative of the people’. The tenure of this role will initially be for a three year term.

 

This position will report directly to the CEO and have autonomy and independence to carry out a number of functions including:

 

·    Conduct impartial investigations into allegations of unethical behaviour, misconduct and maladministration and making recommendations for appropriate action

·    Review and provide recommendations to the Chief Executive Officer to improve Council’s systems, processes and work practices

·    Policy development and review

·    Education and training services to staff and Councillors to help them fulfil their responsibilities under the Code of Conduct and to assist in fraud and corruption prevention strategies

·    Champion positive customer experiences through excellence in complaint management

·    Probity advice

Further key responsibilities of the position and how its interaction with other functions of Council is attached to this report.

The position of Head of Integrity is modelled on similar arrangements at Inner West, Cumberland, Parramatta, Liverpool, Wollongong, Sutherland, Ku-ring-gai and Northern Beaches Councils. These Councils have reported positive shifts in customer satisfaction, increased customer service capabilities of staff, improvement in Council administrative processes and greater awareness of Councillor and staff responsibilities.

 

Consultation

The Executive Leadership Team, Manager Corporate Governance and Risk, the General Counsel and the Assistant Director, People, Legal and Governance were consulted as part of this proposal. The models employed in other Councils were reviewed and considered in preparing the framework for the Wollondilly Office of Integrity.

Financial Implications

Funding has been identified as available within Council’s existing internal reserves.

Attachments

1.       Office of Integrity Framework   

Recommendation

1.       That Council endorse the Chief Executive Officer establishing the Office of the Integrity.

2.       That the framework for the Office of Integrity operation be the subject of a future Councillor Briefing to ensure alignment with Council and community expectations. 

 

 


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

15.2       Western Sydney Health Alliance - Western Sydney City Deal

File Number:           10619#888

 

Executive Summary

·        The purpose of this report is to update the progress made concerning the development of a Western Sydney Health Alliance between the 8 Councils of the Western Parkland City, the State Government Local Health Districts and Commonwealth Government Primary Health Networks through the Western Sydney City Deal arrangements and advise the next steps to the implementation of this commitment.

·        It is recommended that Council

o   enter into a high level Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) reflecting principles of place-based and local strategies focused on planning for good health and delivering great health outcomes between eight Western Sydney City Deal Council’s and the Nepean Blue Mountains Local Health District and Primary Health Network and the South Western Sydney Local Health District and Primary Health Network.

o   Note further targeted consultation will be undertaken on the implementation approach for the Health Alliance and this will be tabled at the Western Sydney City Deal Implementation Board early in 2020.

o   Note that Wollondilly Shire Council led on this initiative which was based upon the Wollondilly Health Alliance. 

Report

The implementation of the Health Alliance is a commitment to Improve Community Health, which sits within the Western Parkland City Liveability and Environment initiative of the Western Sydney City Deal (Commitment L5).

The Health Alliance is a once in a generation opportunity for a commitment and partnership across the three tiers of government to work collaboratively, with other partners and stakeholders, to create healthy and equitable communities across the Western Parkland City.

The Health Alliance will foster a shared understanding of regional health issues and work collaboratively across the partner organisations to develop place based solutions.  Locally focused projects and programs that are scalable and have collective impact across the Western Parkland City will be identified and implemented through the Health Alliance and the associated working groups.

This commitment is led by Local Government in collaboration with the South West Sydney & Nepean Blue Mountains Local Area Health Districts (LHDs) and the South West Sydney & Nepean Blue Mountains Primary Health Networks (PHNs).

To date the Health Alliance partners have committed matching funding dollars and in-kind staffing resources for the governance and seed funding for the Alliance.

Consultants and facilitators were engaged to drive and facilitate a key consultation workshop, development of the framework, milestones, KPI’s and a detailed project plan to progress the work of 4 focus working groups and the Health Alliance.

The Alliance is in the process to engage a temporary Project Manager over the 3year timeframe of the MoU to help drive and implement the initiative.  

A Terms of Reference has been established for the Western Sydney City Deal Health Alliance Steering Committee (WSHA Steering Committee). The intent of the Committee is to improve coordination and effectiveness of health initiatives and services in the region and support the planning and design of healthier liveable neighbourhoods throughout the Western Parkland City.

The objectives of the Health Alliance will be implemented through an initial 3 year Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). The MoU is an attachment to this report.

The MoU will:

·    establish a strong governance structure;

·    determine a shared understanding of the roles and responsibilities of members of the Alliance;

·    establish clear parameters for reporting through the Western Sydney City Deals governance framework for collective action; and

·    assist in the development of place-based projects, outputs, timeframes & reporting structures to the steering committee to track progress for each of the four thematic health priorities.

Each of the Health Alliance partners has completed a needs assessment to capture health issues and commence the process of identifying shared priorities for the Western Parkland City.  From this initial needs analysis, a selection criteria was developed to assess and determine four thematic health priorities that the Health Alliance could consider as part of the MoU.

These four thematic health priorities are:

·    Getting People Active

·    Liveability – Connecting and strengthening communities through the built, natural and social environment

·    Access to health and wellbeing services

·    Promoting Healthy Food Access and Choices

 

The WSHA Steering Committee facilitated a co-design and planning workshop in March 2019 where over 55 participants representing the Western Parkland Councils, 2 Local Health Districts, 2 Primary Health Networks, 2 Non-Government Organisations, Department Premier and Cabinet and the Greater Sydney Commission, contributed expertise and input to the development of the four thematic health priorities.

The outcomes of the workshop included the collation of regional indicators for collective impact; actions and strategies that could be developed for each thematic focus area and opportunity to pitch seven ‘Big Ideas’ that the Health Alliance could include in its plan of action.

Since the workshop, working groups have been established to activate each of the four thematic health priorities with the development of outputs, timeframes and reporting structure for each of the working groups back to the Steering Committee

Consultation

•        Blue Mountains City Council

•        Camden Council

•        Campbelltown City Council,

•        Fairfield City Council,

•        Hawkesbury City Council

•        Liverpool City Council

•        Penrith City Council,

•        Wollondilly Shire Council (Lead Council)

•        Nepean Blue Mountains Local Health District (NBMLHD)

•        South Western Sydney Local Health District (SWSLHD)

•        Nepean Blue Mountains Primary Health Network (NBMPHN)

•        South Western Sydney Primary Health Network (SWSPHN)

•        Sector Connect

•        Community Links Wellbeing

•        Western Sydney City Deal Delivery Office

Financial Implications

To date, each of the Health Alliance partners have contributed $20,000 and in-kind staffing resources for the governance and seed funding for the Health Alliance.   It is anticipated that this funding will fully offset the establishment costs to date as well as the engagement of a Project Manager for an initial 2 year period.   Further funding will be required to continue the project into the third year of the MoU.

Attachments

1.       Western Sydney Health Alliance Draft Memorandum of Understanding   

Recommendation

That Council

1.       Enter into a high level Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) reflecting principles of place-based and local strategies focused on planning for good health and delivering great health outcomes between eight Western Sydney City Deal Council’s and the Nepean Blue Mountains Local Health District and Primary Health Network and the South Western Sydney Local Health District and Primary Health Network

2.       Note further targeted consultation will be undertaken on the implementation approach for the Health Alliance and this will be tabled at the Western Sydney City Deal Implementation Board early in 2020.

3.       Note that Wollondilly Shire Council led on this initiative which was based upon the Wollondilly Health Alliance. 

 


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

15.3       Western Parkland Councils' Governance Arrangements

File Number:           10619#889

 

Executive Summary

·        The purpose of this report is to outline the long-term governance arrangements that have been developed for the Western Parkland Councils. 

·        The proposed Deed of Agreement has been endorsed in principle by the Mayoral Forum for consideration by each Council.

·        This is one element of delivering on the Resolution of 21 May 2018, 102/2018 Transitioning from MACROC.

·        It is recommended that Council:

o   notes the information contained in the report on governance arrangements for the Western Parkland Councils be received.

o   formally enter into an alliance with the Western Parkland Councils in accordance with the draft Deed of Agreement and Section 355 of the Local Government Act 1993.

o   contribute $40,000 annually towards resourcing the Western Parkland Councils as outlined in the report.

o   nominate one Councillor to be appointed as an alternate representative on the Western Parkland Councils’ Mayoral Forum should the Mayor be unavailable.

Report

Background

Both the Relationship Framework for the Councils of the Western Parkland City and the subsequent Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed in February 2019 confirm the intention of the Councils to continue to investigate the feasibility and potential mechanisms to establish a formal alliance or partnership for the 8 Councils of the Western Parkland Region, similar to a joint organisation.

While the MoU expands on the operational arrangements for collaboration, it is a non-binding agreement which has been referred to as an interim arrangement and an appropriate step in the evolution of the local government partnership.  The MoU refers to the Councils exploring more formal arrangements as to the management of the partnership, some of the reasons that have been suggested for change include:

•        Formalising arrangements suitable for sustaining a long-term partnership;

•        Supporting good governance in decision making and inter-council activities;

•        Enhancing capacity to advocate effectively on regional issues; and

•        Protecting the interests of Councils acting on behalf of the partnership, for example in procurement or engaging staff.

In June 2019 the Mayoral Forum confirmed its support for investigating long-term governance arrangements and the Executive Officer, Ms Sue Coleman, commenced investigations of the options with the support of the General Managers and City Deal Lead Officers from each Council.

Report

 

Following discussion with various stakeholders and advice sought from relevant agencies including the Office of Local Government, a number of governance options were identified ranging from maintaining the current, non-binding MoU to establishing an independent legal entity such as a company limited by guarantee.

 

Assessment criteria were established to compare each of the potential governance structures and determine the option which is most suitable for the Councils of the Western Parkland region given their current objectives, operating environment and resources.  The options vary, for example, in their flexibility, the ease with which they can be established and the relative complexity and cost of maintaining compliance. 

 

This review confirmed that establishing a structure using s355 and s377 of the Local Government Act offers the greatest alignment with the Councils’ requirements at this time.  This provides a sustainable governance framework and the flexibility to establish a deed that reflects the Councils’ objectives.   It is also a cost effective option that does not require Ministerial approval or more significant investment to maintain compliance obligations. 

 

Examples of other local government activities currently managed through s355 arrangements are CivicRisk Mutual and Western Sydney RID Squad.

 

Proposed Deed of Agreement

 

Organisation Name

 

The Mayoral Forum selected Western Parkland Councils as the preferred name for the new body as it identifies both the region and local government focus while being relatively brief.  

 

Membership

 

The draft Deed of Agreement identifies the 8 Councils who are signatories to the Western Sydney City Deal as Member Councils.  It proposes that acceptance of any new Member Councils would require the unanimous support of the Mayoral Forum, and withdrawal of membership would require 6 months’ notice in writing.

 

The Relationship Framework recognises that, regardless of size or location, each Council partner has equality of rights and status.  This principle is reflected in the new governance arrangements, for example, in membership of the Mayoral Forum, decision making powers and financial contributions.

 

Strategic Framework

 

The draft Deed of Agreement outlines a strategic framework including a vision statement, values, objectives and principle functions for the Western Parkland Councils. 

 

A vision statement describes the desired or “big picture” outcome the Councils are seeking to achieve through this collaboration.  The proposed vision statement included in the draft Deed of Agreement is:

 

Working together to deliver better outcomes for our communities and the Western Parkland region.

 

The values and objectives were previously developed and endorsed by all Councils as part of the Relationship Framework and current MoU and have been retained without change.

 

The principle functions are outlined in the draft Deed of Agreement as being:

 

•      Review strategic regional priorities for the Western Parkland region and develop collaborative strategies for delivering these priorities;

•      Provide regional leadership for the Western Parkland region and be an advocate for strategic regional issues; and

•      Identify and take up opportunities for inter-governmental collaboration on matters relating to regional priorities including the Western Sydney City Deal.

 

The Mayoral Forum acknowledged the importance of evaluating both the performance of the Councils’ partnership and the outcomes for the region from initiatives such as the Western Sydney City Deal.  The Strategic Framework will guide the development of a Delivery Program and Operational Plan which will be regularly monitored and reported to the Member Councils In addition, the Councils will collaborate with the Australian and NSW Governments to track the success of the City Deal and further develop the current performance metrics which are included in the Deed of Agreement.

 

Mayoral Forum

 

The draft Deed of Agreement confirms much of the current practices for the Mayoral Forum including that membership will be limited to one representative (the Mayor) for each Council and one alternate representative for each Council, being a Councillor.

 

The role of the Mayoral Forum will be to:

 

•    Endorse a Delivery Program outlining strategies, principles activities, projects etc. for the term of local government;

•    Monitor implementation of the Delivery Program and performance of the Agreement;

•    Adopt an Operational Plan, including budgets estimates, annually; and

•    Make broad policy decisions within the strategic framework.

 

In addition to the Mayoral Forum, the draft Deed of Agreement establishes the role of the General Managers to direct the proper administration and governance of the partnership including the activities of the Executive Officer and City Deal Lead Officers.

 

Decision Making

 

The current practice of both the Mayoral Forum and the General Managers meetings is to make decisions by consensus of those present at the meeting.  This is consistent with the values expressed in the Relationship Framework and is reflected in the draft Deed of Agreement. 

 

While the consensus approach will be encouraged, it is also proposed to allow for voting by simple majority in order to avoid a potential impasse on critical matters. 

 

Where a decision is made by majority vote rather than consensus, provision is made for dissenting views to be recorded and acknowledged in any subsequent actions including advocacy.

 

The draft Deed of Agreement also proposes that some matters such as changes to the Agreement or inclusion of new Member Councils will require the unanimous support of all members of the Mayoral Forum.

 

Term of Agreement

 

If supported by all 8 Councils, it is envisaged that the new governance arrangements will commence from January 2020 and that the initial term of the agreement will be 3 years.

 

A Council wishing to withdraw from the Agreement would be required to provide 6 months’ notice in writing to the other Councils.

 

Financial Contributions of Member Councils

 

The General Managers have received verbal confirmation of ongoing funding from the Commonwealth and State Governments to support the alliance of the 8 Councils, with both governments committing $100,000 for each of the next three years, in addition to the $200,000 already provided for 2019.

 

It is proposed that each Council also makes a financial contribution of $40,000 each year, to be indexed annually by the allowable rate increase.  This will support the employment of both an Executive Officer and Administration Officer to support the activities of the Western Parkland Councils and provide resources for priority project and activities established through the Delivery Program and Operational Plan. It should be noted that for the 2019/20 period the contribution will be only $20,000 for each council, reflecting the commencing date of the agreement being in January, 2020 and therefore representing only half a financial year.

 

While the first Delivery Program and Operational Plan will not be finalised until the alliance of Councils is formalised early in 2020, it is envisaged that priority projects and activities could include advocacy on regional issues such as integrated transport planning, developing a regional economic blueprint that also articulates the economic assets and opportunities that distinguish each local area, and/or pilot projects to trial initiatives identified in the draft Digital Action Plan or Western Sydney Health Alliance.

 

A budget forecast will be included in the Operational Plan prepared for the partnership to align with the term of local government and the Integrated Planning and Reporting requirements of Councils.  An annual review process and regular financial reporting are also incorporated in the draft Deed of Agreement.

Consultation

·    General Managers and Chief Executive Officers of the 8 Western Sydney City Deal Councils

·    Mayors of the 8 Western Sydney City Deal Councils

Financial Implications

It is proposed that each Council makes a financial contribution of $40,000 each year, to be indexed annually by the allowable rate increase.  This will support the employment of both an Executive Officer and Administration Officer to support the activities of the Western Parkland Councils and provide resources for priority project and activities established through the Delivery Program and Operational Plan.

Risk Implications

Formalising the structure of the relationship between the Councils through a section 355 committee has been assessed and is considered to be the best structure moving forward and will reduce any risks associated with Council’s involvement in the alliance.

Conclusion

Significant progress has been made with respect to the Western Parkland Councils and the frameworks around the alliance. It is appropriate now that Council considers formalising the structure through a Section 355 Committee and adopting the Deed of Agreement attached to this report

Attachments

1.       Western Parkland Council Deed of Agreement   

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recommendation

That Council:

1.       Notes the information contained in the report on long-term governance arrangements for the Western Parkland Councils.

2.       Formally enter into an alliance with the Western Parkland Councils in accordance with the draft Deed of Agreement and Section 355 of the Local Government Act 1993.

3.       Contribute $40,000 annually towards resourcing the Western Parkland Councils as outlined in the report.

4.       Nominate one Councillor to be appointed as an alternate representative on the Western Parkland Councils’ Mayoral Forum should the Mayor be unavailable.

 

 


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

15.4       Review of Debt Recovery Policy

File Number:           10619#871

 

Executive Summary

·        The purpose of this report is to provide Council with an amended Debt Recovery Policy for consideration.

·        It is recommended that Council adopt this amended Debt Recovery Policy.

Report

In November, 2018 the Office of Local Government (OLG) released Debt Management and Hardship Guidelines. The guidelines are issued under section 23A of the Local Government Act, 1993 which requires all NSW Council’s to take the guidelines into account when implementing debt management and hardship policies and/or procedures.

Council’s Debt Recovery Policy was reviewed in May, 2018 and is not due for review until May, 2021 but following release of these guidelines it is recommended that the policy and associated procedures be amended to incorporate the OLG guidelines.

Council has fair, transparent and robust debt recovery and hardship policies and procedures that take hardship into account throughout each step in the debt recovery process but this can be strengthened by a number of the recommendations made in the OLG Guidelines.

A summary of the amendments made to the Debt Recovery policy and reasons for these changes is below:

2.1     The OLG Guidelines give a clear expectation that Council’s debt recovery processes and policies should ensure that Council revenue is collected promptly but fairly. Reference to Council’s policy having been created to maximise revenue has been removed to emphasise that the policy is to ensure that revenue is collected promptly but also fairly.

4.2     The OLG Guidelines require Council to use alternative resolution options to resolve disputes informally where a debt has been disputed before filing a court action. The OLG recommends Community Justice Centres for this purpose. An option for ratepayers/debtors to refer disputed debts internally to Council management or externally to an impartial Community Justice Centre for mediation prior to lodgement of court action has been added to the policy.

4.3     The OLG Guidelines recommend that Council’s make changes to overdue and debt recovery notices to put an emphasis on identifying ratepayers experiencing financial hardship and encouraging them to contact Council and for Council to encourage them to seek support services rather than proceeding through traditional debt recovery and court action processes.

Significant changes will be made to Council’s overdue and reminder notices to encourage this and to provide information on available support services as well as advertising Council’s Debt Recovery and Hardship Policies and options available to ratepayers experiencing genuine financial hardship.

4.5     The OLG Guidelines require Council to offer flexible payment arrangements and contemporary payment options. Council already offers this but this has now been formalised in the amended policy.

4.6     The OLG Guidelines require Council to consider whether a ratepayer is experiencing hardship and to consider the best way to support a person in hardship. A number of amendments have been made to the policy to formalise how and what legal, mediation and financial support information will be provided to ratepayers by Council officers. The amendments also formalise that all matters will be treated confidentially, fairly, respectfully and equitably.

A listing of the available legal, mediation and financial support services recommended by the OLG has been added to the Appendix (9.1) for easy reference.

4.7     The OLG Guidelines recommend that Community Justice Centres be utilised for dispute resolution rather than court. An option for a ratepayer to refer a disputed debt or for Council to refer a debt on their behalf to the Community Justice Centre has been added to the policy.

9.2     The OLG Guidelines require Council’s to adopt robust, fair and transparent debt recovery processes that outline how and when Council will communicate with ratepayers with regard to overdue debts and collect monies owing and requires these procedures to be communicated and available in an accessible format.

Council has previously followed internal debt recovery procedures which have been reviewed by internal and external auditors. These processes have been added to the Debt Recovery Policy Appendix to formalise them and ensure that they are open, transparent and accessible by ratepayers.       

Consultation

Office of Local Government

Relevant Finance staff and external debt recovery agent (Recoveries & Reconstruction’s)

Financial Implications

This matter has no financial impact on Council’s adopted budget or forward estimates.

Attachments

1.       DRAFT Debt Recovery - Amended Policy with OLG Guidelines   

Recommendation

That the amended Debt Recovery Policy be adopted.

 

 


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

15.5       Investment of Funds as at 30 September 2019

File Number:           10619#890

 

Executive Summary

·        The purpose of this report is to provide details of Council’s invested funds as at 30 September 2019.

·        It is recommended that the information and certification in relation to the investment of funds as at 30 September2019 be noted.

Report

At its last meeting, the Reserve Bank reduced the cash rate to 0.75%. In relation to the domestic market, the Board of the Reserve Bank commented that:

The Australian economy expanded by 1.4 per cent over the year to the June quarter, which was a weaker-than-expected outcome. A gentle turning point, however, appears to have been reached with economic growth a little higher over the first half of this year than over the second half of 2018. The low level of interest rates, recent tax cuts, ongoing spending on infrastructure, signs of stabilisation in some established housing markets and a brighter outlook for the resources sector should all support growth. The main domestic uncertainty continues to be the outlook for consumption, with the sustained period of only modest increases in household disposable income continuing to weigh on consumer spending.

Employment has continued to grow strongly and labour force participation is at a record high. The unemployment rate has, however, remained steady at around 5¼ per cent over recent months. Forward-looking indicators of labour demand indicate that employment growth is likely to slow from its recent fast rate. Wages growth remains subdued and there is little upward pressure at present, with increased labour demand being met by more supply. Caps on wages growth are also affecting public-sector pay outcomes across the country. A further gradual lift in wages growth would be a welcome development. Taken together, recent outcomes suggest that the Australian economy can sustain lower rates of unemployment and underemployment.

Inflation pressures remain subdued and this is likely to be the case for some time yet. In both headline and underlying terms, inflation is expected to be a little under 2 per cent over 2020 and a little above 2 per cent over 2021.

There are further signs of a turnaround in established housing markets, especially in Sydney and Melbourne. In contrast, new dwelling activity has weakened and growth in housing credit remains low. Demand for credit by investors is subdued and credit conditions, especially for small and medium-sized businesses, remain tight. Mortgage rates are at record lows and there is strong competition for borrowers of high credit quality.

The Board took the decision to lower interest rates further today to support employment and income growth and to provide greater confidence that inflation will be consistent with the medium-term target. The economy still has spare capacity and lower interest rates will help make inroads into that. The Board also took account of the forces leading to the trend to lower interest rates globally and the effects this trend is having on the Australian economy and inflation outcomes.

It is reasonable to expect that an extended period of low interest rates will be required in Australia to reach full employment and achieve the inflation target. The Board will continue to monitor developments, including in the labour market, and is prepared to ease monetary policy further if needed to support sustainable growth in the economy, full employment and the achievement of the inflation target over time”

The majority of Council’s investment portfolio (97%) is invested in deposits / securities with Australian Authorised Deposit taking Institutions (ADI’s).  Council has been taking advantage of term deposit “specials” from various institutions without overexposing the portfolio to any one institution. Note that the marked to market valuations on some of the direct investment products in Council’s portfolio remain at less than the face value of the investment.  The marked to market value of these investments is expected to be equal to or greater than the face value by the time they reach their maturity date.  Early exit from these products would realise losses.

 

The following chart compares Council’s portfolio yield with the benchmark AusBond Bank Bill Index rate in each month for 2018/19 and 2019/20

 

 

 

As shown in the chart above, Council’s portfolio yield has continually exceeded the benchmark AusBond 3 month Bank Bill Index due to the prudent investment of Council’s portfolio.

 

Under Reg 212 of the Local Government (General) Regulation 2005, Council’s Responsible Accounting Officer must provide Council each month with a written report setting out details of all money that Council has invested under section 625 of the Act.

 

Council’s investment portfolio as at 30 September 2019 is summarised below.

 

Details of Council’s investment portfolio as at 30 September 2019 are provided in attachment 1.

 

Consultation

Independent advice regarding the investment of Council funds was provided by Prudential Investment Services Corp.

Financial Implications

Council continues to invest those funds which, having regard to Council’s Resourcing Strategy 2017/18 – 2020/21 and adopted Operational Plan 2019/20, are not required to manage Council’s day-to-day cash flow or have been identified as required to fund specific future projects and expenditure or anticipated (budgeted) future commitments.

Interest earned is allocated to restricted cash and income in accordance with Council’s adopted budget, policy and legislative requirements. Accrued interest to 30 September 2019 is $526,343. The chart below compares actual interest received to date with budgeted interest for the year.

The Reserve Bank of Australia has continued to keep interest rates low and the expected investment income will be reviewed and revised as more information becomes available.

Certification

I hereby certify that Council’s investments have been made in accordance with Sec 625 of the Local Government Act 1993, clause 212 of the Local Government (General Regulations) 2005 and Council’s Investment Policy.

 

Clair Hardy

Chief Financial Officer

WOLLONDILLY SHIRE COUNCIL

 

Attachments

1.       Investment Summary Report for September 2019   

Recommendation

That the information and certification in relation to the investment of Council funds as at 30 September 2019 be noted.

 


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

15.6       Audit, Risk and Improvement Committee (ARIC) - Appointment of External Member

File Number:           10619#900

 

Executive Summary

·        The purpose of this report is to seek Council’s endorsement of the Audit, Risk and Improvement Committee Panel’s selection of a new member.

·        It is recommended that Council endorse the appointment of Ms Julie Walton to the Audit Risk Improvement Committee.

Report

Council’s external Committee members are appointed for a four year term, with a staggered replacement program of each member.

The rotation of members is in line with best practice principles and supports the oversight of ongoing matters, ensures the continuity of the internal audit function and aids in maintaining the independence of the Audit, Risk and Improvement function.

The appointment of external members to the Committee is important in the ongoing culture of policy compliance, business improvement practices and good governance. The Committee provides an assurance role that promotes the need for accountability.

Council called for Expressions of Interest for an independent member to fill a vacancy. Applications were accepted until 30 August 2019. A total of five strong and competitive submissions were received.

A preliminary assessment of applications was undertaken by a panel comprising of:

·        Director Infrastructure & Environment

·        Chief Financial Officer

·        Manager Governance

A short-list was determined and interviews held. Each of the interviewed applicants were assessed against predetermined criteria with panel members agreeing on Ms Julie Walton as the preferred applicant.

Ms Walton experience includes:

·        Chair Shellharbour Governance, Risk and Audit Committee

·        Member Wollondilly Audit, Risk and Improvement Committee

·        Member Northern Beaches Audit, Risk and Improvement Committee

·        Director – NSW State Transit Authority and member of the Public Transport Advisory Council

·        Trustee of the Australian Museum and Member of the Finance and Audit Committee

·        Chair of the Fair Trading Advisory Council and the Property Services Advisory Council

 

Ms Walton’s experience in Audit, Risk and Improvement, governance principles and practice and strong understanding of risk assessment, corruption prevention, internal audit and probity principles, will support and enhance the functions of Council’s Audit Risk and Improvement Committee.

Consultation

Expressions of interest were assessed by a panel of Executive and Management staff.

Financial Implications

Funding adopted within the Audit, Risk and Improvement Committee budget allocation available.

Attachments

Nil

Recommendation

That Council endorse the appointment of Ms Julie Walton to the Audit Risk Improvement Committee.

 


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

15.7       Presentation of 2018-19 Annual Financial Statements to the Public

File Number:           10619#901

 

Executive Summary

·        Council’s Annual Financial Statements for the year ended 30 June 2019 have been audited and the Auditor’s reports have been received.

·        In accordance with the Local Government Act, the audited Annual Financial Statements must be presented at a meeting of Council and made available to the public.

·        Any submissions received within the 7 day period of notice are to be referred to Council’s auditor.

·        The audited Annual Financial Statements are to be included in Council’s Annual Report and provided to the Minister by the 30th November and made available to the public by placing on Council’s website.

·        This report is recommending

·    Council receive the audited Annual Financial Statements for the year ended 30 June 2019

·    Council thank the NSW Audit Office and Prosperity Audit Services teams for the services provided.

·    Any public submissions on the audited Annual Financial Statements be received up until the close of business Monday 25 November 2019.

·    Any public submissions received by the due date are to be referred to the NSW Audit Office.

·    The audited Annual Financial Statements be included in the 2018/19 Annual Report

·    The 2018/19 Annual Report be provided to the Minister by 30 November 2019 as prescribed by the Local Government Act 1993.

·    The 2018/19 Annual Report be made available to the general public by posting on Council’s website.

 

Report

Council’s Audited Financial Statements for the year ended 30 June 2019 were authorised for issue at the Ordinary Meeting of Council on 21 October 2019.  At the meeting, a date was set to present the Audited Financial Statements to the public, the date being 18 November 2019.

The Annual Financial Statements were tabled at the meeting and showed Council to be in a sound financial position.

Public notice of the presentation of the Annual Financial Statements at this meeting was given in the local newspapers and on Council’s website. The public notice was in accordance with Section 418 of the Local Government Act 1993.

Copies of the audited Annual Financial Statements are available for inspection by members of the public at Council’s Administration Building and in accordance with Section 420 of the Local Government Act 1993, any person can make written submissions to Council with respect to the Statements within the next seven day period.

Section 428 of the Local Government Act 1993 requires a copy of the Annual Financial Statements to be included within Council’s Annual Report and a copy of the Annual Report be provided to the Minister within 5 months after the end of the financial year (ie: by 30 November).

Council has professionally qualified staff to ensure compliance with the reporting requirements.  Council staff have also undertaken additional training in specialised areas.

A higher level of assurance is attained from the Audit Office NSW’s external audit.

Council is now presented with a set of Annual Financial Statements that have been prepared in accordance with the Local Government Act 1993, Australian Accounting Standards and other professional pronouncements and the NSW Code of Accounting Practice and Financial Reporting.

Consultation

The audited Annual Financial Statements were presented to members of Council's Audit, Risk & Improvement Committee on 21 October 2019.

The Audit team from Prosperity Audit Services and the NSW Audit Office have been consulted throughout the preparation of the statements.

The Annual Financial Statements were presented to Council on 21 October 2019.

The statements are now ready for presentation to the public and submissions may be received until 25 November 2019.

Financial Implications

The Annual Financial Statements show Council’s short term financial position to be very sound.  However, Council will need to constantly monitor its long term financial position to ensure it has the ability to maintain its infrastructure to a satisfactory standard.

 

Attachments

Nil

Recommendation

It is recommended that:

 

1.       Council receive the audited Annual Financial Statements for the year ended 30 June 2019

2.       Council thank the NSW Audit Office and Prosperity Audit Services teams for the services provided.

3.       Any public submissions on the audited Annual Financial Statements be received up until the close of business Monday 25 November 2019.

4.       Any public submissions received by the due date are to be referred to the NSW Audit Office.

5.       The audited Annual Financial Statements be included in the 2018/19 Annual Report

6.       The 2018/19 Annual Report be provided to the Minister by 30 November 2019 as prescribed by the Local Government Act 1993.

7.       The 2018/19 Annual Report be made available to the general public by posting on Council’s website.

 


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

15.8       Endorsement of the 2018/19 Annual Report

File Number:           10619#902

 

Executive Summary

·        The purpose of this report is to table the 2018/19 Annual Report with Council for their endorsement prior to lodgement with the Office of Local Government.

·        It is recommended that Council review and endorse the 2018/19 Annual Report of Council.

Report

Under the Local Government (General) Regulation 2005, Councils are required to prepare an annual report that focuses on Council’s implementation of the 4 year Delivery Program and the 2018/19 Operational Plan.

This report is intended for the community and is designed to promote transparency and an understanding of Council operations.

Under the legislation, a Council must:

·    Prepare the annual report within 5 months of the end of the financial year;

·    Outline Council’s achievements in implementing the Delivery Program;

·    Contain Council’s audited financial statements and statutory information as required by the Regulation or Guidelines

·    Submit their annual reports to the Office of Local Government by 30 November.

 

The 2018/19 Annual Report is structured in the following way:

Part A:

Section One:      Information about the Wollondilly Shire and the Council servicing the community;

Section Two:     2018/19 Council Performance and delivery against the Delivery Program;

Section Three:   Statutory Information and Other Relevant Information

Section Four:     2018/19 Annual Audited Financial Statements

 

Part B:

Section Five:      2018/19 Operational Plan Summary

 

Key highlights and achievements

The completion of another record breaking Capital Works Program worth $21 million, of which $14.6 million was spent on transport assets including roads, bridges, kerb & gutter, footpaths and transport/traffic facilities. $4 million spent on open space projects, $1 million on buildings and the rest of the budget on plant and fleet, stormwater drainage improvements and other projects. We successfully secured $1.13M funding from the Federal Government through the Black Spot programme, received $87,000 from the EPA through the Better Waste Recycling Fund, and $7,500 from Local Government NSW for Flying Fox Management plan development. We also contributed $1.5M towards the new multi-purpose sportsground at Wilton Recreation Reserve.

Our team has developed master plans for many of our parks and sportsfields, putting us in a great position to access future funding to develop these sites to their potential. Locations such as Telopea Park in Buxton and Wilton Sportsground have already benefitted from this planning with new facilities and fields completed during the year. Draft master plans are progressing for The Oaks; Appin Park, Appin; Redbank Reserve, Picton; and the Menangle Old School site.

Our Community Nursery continued to deliver both environmental and social excellence in the 18/19 financial year with a total of 3,688 volunteer’s hours (equivalent to $110,640 hours of in kind support) and a total of 17,762 plants given away to schools, the community, restoration and other projects. This was an increase of 781 hours (27%) from the 17/18 year.

In early 2019, we took delivery of our first Reach Arm Tractor and began the implementation of the road side vegetation management plan. By using this equipment, we will be able to focus on maintaining roadside verges to increase road safety as well as treating bushfire risk areas. With additional funding from RFS we successfully delivered a $280,000 fire hazard reduction program.

During 2018, Wollondilly Shire Council implemented several business and process improvements to streamline the DA process. This has included:

·    Creating and testing a new DA tracking system which should be in place by the end of 2019 to allow DA documentation to be viewed online and improving transparency in the development assessment process.

·    Refining the DA submission process for applicants through the provision of simplified checklists and fact sheets used by our Customer Service Team.

·    Adoption of the NSW Development Assessment Best Practice Guide principles by the Department of Planning to guide our internal processes and procedures

The result of these improvements have seen the number of outstanding DAs remain at less than 200 and have significantly improved the median processing time for all DA’s. In 2017/18 the median processing time was 58 days, and post improvement, our median processing time is 34 days which is a remarkable improvement.

Over the 2018/19 financial year, we continue to manage unprecedented growth in the Shire with 54 Council reports on development matters being tabled during the 2018-19 period and issued 324 construction certificates with a net processing time of 4 days which is also a notable achievement.

There is a focus on service support prior to lodgement, so applicants can be ready and prepared for lodgement, translating into a more efficient assessment process and improved customer experience for the community.

We have access to $2.5million of State funding under a joint funding agreement with the NSW Government to accelerate the review of the Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan (LEP) and it is anticipated this will be completed by 30 June 2020. 

We gathered and presented over 13,000 signatures to State Parliament in August 2018 as part of the campaign to save vital koala habitat and hosted the #SaveOurKoalas Summit at the Appin Community Hall in September 2018, bringing together leading experts and koala advocates to discuss the threats to the species.

We facilitated one of Wollondilly’s largest events of the year with the rejuvenated Illuminate Wollondilly Festival attracting thousands of visitors throughout the day and night. This was the fifth year of the popular arts and cultural festival, which was bigger and brighter than ever. Building illuminations showcased many of the town’s historical buildings and new elements were introduced including a silent disco, neon putt-putt golf and LED dancers.

Our team supported the Dilly Youth Advisory Committee to run the ‘Branch Out’ Pool Party at the Wollondilly Leisure Centre in April. The event aimed to raise awareness about wellbeing in the community by providing a range of interactive activities to bring young people together in a drug and alcohol free environment.

The Summer Beach Bus was popular amongst the Shire’s young people as well as families and seniors. Each Friday during January the bus was overflowing with residents keen to take advantage of the warm weather to visit the beach in Wollongong. The program will be extended to include a second bus and an extra route next summer.

For this year’s NSW Seniors Festival we offered free pool entry for seniors to the Wollondilly Leisure Centre and Warragamba Pool for the month of February. This offer was taken up with enthusiasm, with over 600 people accessing the free pool entry or Gentle Aqua Classes. A Seniors Festival 2019 booklet also outlined all the free or low cost activities and events available to seniors during February/March.

We partnered with Ku-ring-gai Council to launch the Get Ready Wollondilly website as part of the Climate Wise Communities initiative. The website was developed in consultation with emergency management agencies and government and was localised with Wollondilly content to support residents to prepare for natural disasters including bushfire, flood, storm and heatwave.

We continue with the commitment to the Western Sydney City Deal and have actively been involved in leading the development of the Western Sydney Digital Action Plan and led 8 Local Government Councils, in collaboration with 2 Local Health Districts and 2 Primary Health Network partners, to establish the Western Sydney Health Alliance. Our team has also participated in the Integrated Intensive Production Hub workshop and associated initiatives with the Agribusiness Precinct at the Western Sydney Aerotropolis.

We engaged with the community on a number of projects as part of the Western City Parkland Liveability Program, including the Wollondilly Community, Cultural & Civic Precinct, Tahmoor Sportsground and the installation of exercise equipment in eight locations across the Shire. These projects will ultimately give our residents more opportunities to connect with each other and stay healthy as the Shire continues to grow and change.

In October 2018, Council adopted The Wollondilly Destination Management Plan (DMP) a high level plan that strategically highlights the many tourism options we have in the Shire and provides a structured approach to sustainable growth, viability and future resilience of our local tourism industry.

We have created a new Learning Management and on-boarding system which also includes E-learning for our staff and implemented a new Total Rewards Framework including a review of Council’s salary system to align with metropolitan standards to enable better attraction and retention of staff. 

We have successfully implemented a new program to automate our business papers and minutes for Council meetings, Local Planning Panel, Property Panel, Audit Risk and Improvement Committee and the Traffic Committee. The establishment of an in-house Legal Counsel Service has generated substantial cost savings and increased staff learning and development in legal matters.

We have a new Work Health Safety record for lowest levels of lost time achieved through a number of Employee Relations initiatives including training, awareness and leadership building.

The Inclusion and Access Advisory committee was established in March 2019, with membership from both community members, service providers and staff and the committee has met Bi-Monthly and is actively involved in making comment on engagements relating to the Wollondilly Community, Cultural and Civic Precinct in Picton, Wollondilly Library Strategic Plan and South East Wilton Growth area with a specific focus on access and inclusion. 56 staff, including all new starters participated in Disability Awareness training incorporated into the Customer Service mandatory training for all staff during the 2018/19 period and 26 staff attended Deaf Awareness Training, facilitated by The Deaf Society in June 2019. New accessible amenities blocks were completed at Emmett Park – Tahmoor, Telopea Park – Buxton and Willis Park – Oakdale.

To provide a future direction for technology with Council and for the community the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) strategy and the Smart Shire Strategy were adopted. 

Some of the great technology initiatives that commenced in 2018/19 include:

•        Piloting the Walton Lane smart lighting project.

•        Establishing partnership to deliver Electric Vehicle Charging stations – harnessing renewable energy and making sustainability part of the ethos in the Wollondilly Shire

•        Introducing ‘IoT’ (internet of things) smart monitoring options to build comprehensive data sets which will see us get a technological ‘blueprint’ of our community.

•        Through the Western Sydney City Deal, an 8 Council working group ‘Collabor8’ has been formed to progress the digital commitments under the agreement. This group has run the largest industry engagement of its kind in NSW to see which vendors can partner with Local Government to drive technological innovation. 

 

Attachments

1.       Part A - 2018/19 Annual Report (under separate cover)  

2.       Part B - 2018/19 Annual Report (under separate cover)   

Recommendation

1.       That Council endorse the 2018/19 Annual Report for submission to the Office of Local Government.

 


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

15.9       Quarterly Budget Review Statement for the period ended 30 September 2019

File Number:           10619#912

 

Executive Summary

·        The purpose of this report is to present the Quarterly Budget Review Statement for the period ending 30 September 2019.

·        The document reports detailed information on Council's financial progress for the first quarter of the 2019/20 financial year.

·        It is recommended that the Quarterly Budget Review Statement for the period ending 30 September 2019 and proposed adjustments to the 2019/20 budget estimates, be adopted.

·        A current list of projects comprising the Capital Works Program will also be tabled for information purposes.

Report

This Quarterly Budget Review reports on the financial progress towards achieving Council’s 2019/20 Operational Plan objectives as at 30 September 2019.

The Quarterly Review also reports on Council's progress towards delivering the Draft Capital Project program 2019/20.  A list of the current projects comprising the 2019/20 Capital Works Program will be tabled.

The Quarterly Budget Review Statement measures Council’s financial health as we progress through the year. It needs to adequately disclose Council’s overall financial position and provide sufficient information to enable Councillors to make informed and transparent decisions. It is also a means by which Councillors can ensure that Council remains on track to meet its objectives, targets and outcomes as set out in the Delivery Program and Operational Plan.

The Office of Local Government has prescribed that the Quarterly Budget Review Statement includes (as a minimum) the following components:

·    Statement by the Responsible Accounting Officer on Council’s financial position at the end of the year based on the information in the review documents

·    Income and Expenses Statement, showing the original and revised budgets, along with any changes proposed in the current Quarterly Review. Actual income and expenditure to date is also required to be shown.

·    Explanation for material variations between the revised budget and projected year end result and likely impacts of the variation.

·    Capital Budget, also showing the original and revised budgets, along with any changes proposed in the current Quarterly Review. Actual income and expenditure to date is also required to be shown.

·    Explanation for variations between the revised capital budget and projected year end result and likely impacts of the variation.

·    Cash and investments position

·    Key Performance Indicators

·    Contracts entered into during the quarter (>$50,000)

·    Expenditure to date for Consultancies and external Legal Fees.

Collectively, these documents form the Quarterly Budget Review Statement (QBRS).  Clause 203 (1) of the Local Government (General) Regulation 2005 requires a QBRS to be submitted to Council within two months after the end of each quarter (except the June quarter).

This is the first Quarterly Budget Review of Council’s 2019/20 Operational Plan, which in turn contributes to the delivery of Council’s four year Delivery Program and the twenty year Community Strategic Plan. In accordance with the Local Government Act 1993, the QBRS for the period ending 30 September 2019 is presented for Council’s consideration.

Consultation

All members of the Executive and Senior Management have had input into the production of this budget review. In addition to this an update has been provided to the Strategic Resourcing Advisory Committee on 28th October 2019. The QBRS is an internally produced document that reports the progress of the 2019/20 Operational Plan. Therefore, in the preparation of this document there was no need for public consultation.

Financial Implications

The QBRS provides Council and the Community with information in relation to Council’s projected financial position. Having regard to the projected budget estimates and the original budget, Council’s financial position is considered to be satisfactory.

For the 2019/20 financial year, Council originally adopted a balanced working funds position. Budgetary adjustments identified during the quarter have enabled Council to maintain its available working funds at a balanced position.

Details of the proposed budget variations for the first quarter of the 2019/20 financial year are provided in the Quarterly Budget Review Statement for the period ending 30 September 2019 (provided under separate cover).

The Quarterly Budget Review Statement for the period ending 30 September 2019 indicates that Council is progressing well in meeting the objectives contained within the 2019/20 Operational Plan.

A copy of the QBRS and the current list of projects comprising the 2019/20 Capital Works Program will be placed on Council’s website.

There are no attachments to this report. The Quarterly Budget Review Statement for the period ending 30 September 2019 will be provided under separate cover and be publicly available by the Community Forum on Monday 11 November 2019.  The current list of projects comprising the Capital Works Program will be tabled at the meeting.

Attachments

Nil

Recommendation

1.       The Quarterly Budget Review Statement for the period ending 30 September 2019 and proposed adjustments to the 2019/20 budget estimates, be adopted.

2.       The information provided in the tabled "Current List of Projects Comprising the Capital Works Program" be noted.

  


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

16          Notice of Motion/Rescissions

No reports this meeting   


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

17          Closed Reports  

Recommendation

1.         That Council considers the confidential report(s) listed below in a meeting closed to the public in accordance with Section 10A(2) of the Local Government Act 1993:

17.1       Benefit of Easement within Lot 100 DP 1175654 Oaks Street (Off Penny Lane), Thirlmere - Future Carpark

This matter is considered to be confidential under Section 10A(2)(c) and (d)(i) of the Local Government Act, and the Council is satisfied that discussion of this matter in an open meeting would, on balance, be contrary to the public interest as it deals with information that would, if disclosed, confer a commercial advantage on a person with whom the Council is conducting (or proposes to conduct) business and commercial information of a confidential nature that would, if disclosed prejudice the commercial position of the person who supplied it

Report contains legal advice and commercial in confidence dealings with third party.

17.2       Acquisition of Land for Public Purpose - Ruddocks Road, Lakesland

This matter is considered to be confidential under Section 10A(2)(c) of the Local Government Act, and the Council is satisfied that discussion of this matter in an open meeting would, on balance, be contrary to the public interest as it deals with information that would, if disclosed, confer a commercial advantage on a person with whom the Council is conducting (or proposes to conduct) business

Council business negotiations if released would affect commercial in confidence to the parties involved.

17.3       Code of Conduct Complaint - Conduct Reviewer's Report

This matter is considered to be confidential under Section 10A(2)(i) of the Local Government Act, and the Council is satisfied that discussion of this matter in an open meeting would, on balance, be contrary to the public interest as it deals with alleged contraventions of any code of conduct requirements applicable under section 440

There will be discussion in relation to the Code of Conduct Reviewers investigation and recommendations.

2.         That pursuant to Section 10A(1) of the Local Government Act 1993, the media and public be excluded from the meeting on the basis that the business to be considered is classified confidential under the provisions of Section 10A(2).

 

3.         That the correspondence and reports relevant to the subject business be withheld from access to the media and public as required by Section 11(2) of the Local Government Act 1993.

 

 

 

 


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

18 November 2019

 

18          Questions for Next Meeting

No reports this meeting