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

 

Date:

Tuesday, 16 March 2021

Time:

6.30pm

Location:

Council Chamber and remotely via Audio Visual Link.

Open to the Public in person and online via webcast

 

AGENDA

 

 

Ordinary Council Meeting

 

16 March 2021

 

 

 

Ben Taylor

Chief Executive Officer

 


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

 


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

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       Items by exception. 7

12       Sustainable and Balanced Growth. 8

12.1          Reappointment of Wollondilly Shire Local Planning Panel Members. 8

12.2          Western City Planning Panel Membership. 10

12.3          Draft Picton Place Plan. 13

12.4          Planning Agreement - Station Street, Menangle. 17

12.5          Picton Town Centre - Government Services Building Planning Proposal 20

12.6          Wollondilly Local Housing Strategy - Outcome of Public Exhibition and Finalisation. 41

12.7          Notification of Bingara Gorge No. 2 Planning Agreement 50

12.8          Wollondilly Centres Strategy - Outcome of Public Exhibition and Finalisation. 53

12.9          Wollondilly Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy - Outcome of Public Exhibition and Finalisation. 61

13       Management and Provision of Infrastructure. 69

13.1          Amendments to Master Plan for Old Menangle School Site. 69

13.2          Building Better Regions Fund (Infrastructure) and NSW Public Spaces Legacy Program Project Applications. 71

13.3          Traffic Management Upgrades - March 2021. 74

14       Caring for the Environment 76

14.1          Draft Waste Management Strategy and Action Plan. 76

14.2          Minerals, Energy, Resources, Environment & Waste Advisory Committee - February 2021 Meeting Minutes. 80

15       Looking after the Community. 81

15.1          Re-establishing the Shire's Alcohol Free Zones. 81

15.2          Preschool Service Commencement Update. 83

16       Efficient and Effective Council 90

16.1          Annual Financial Statements for the Year ended 30 June 2020. 90

16.2          Investment of Funds as at 31 January 2021. 93

16.3          Half Yearly Progress Report on Delivery and Operation Plan 2020/21. 97

17       Notice of Motion/Rescissions. 99

17.1          Notice of Motion - Water Symposium.. 99

17.2          Notice of Motion - Road Repairs and Renewal 100

17.3          Notice of Motion - Conditions Imposing on the Approval of Changes to the Wollondilly LEP.. 101

17.4          Notice of Motion - Animal Breeding. 102

17.5          Notice of Motion - Business Break-Ins. 104

17.6          Notice of Motion - Mining Subsidence. 105

18       Closed Reports. 106

18.1          Wollondilly Neighbourhood Occasional Care Service. 106

18.2          Quarterly Legal Status. 106

19       Questions for Next Meeting. 107

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.

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 - 16 February 2021

9            Items to be Tabled


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

10          Mayoral Minute

10.1       Mayoral Minute

File Number:           12275#182

 

Recommendation

That the Mayoral Minute be accepted.

 

 

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     


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

11          Items by exception


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

12          Sustainable and Balanced Growth

12.1       Reappointment of Wollondilly Shire Local Planning Panel Members

File Number:           10100-4#13

 

Executive Summary

The purpose of this report is to seek endorsement from Council to reappoint the current chairs, experts and community representatives for the Wollondilly Shire Local Planning Panel up to 30 June 2021.

The Minister for Planning and Public Spaces has requested the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment conduct an expression of interest during early 2021 to refresh the chair and experts pools from which councils make appointments to their local planning panels.

As this coincides with the end of term for current local planning panel representatives, councils have been requested to reappoint chairs and alternate chairs up to 30 June 2021, with the selection an appointment of community representatives remaining a responsibility of Council.

It is recommended Council reappoint all existing Local Planning Panel (LPP) members including community representatives until 30 June 2021.

Recommendation

That Council endorse the reappointment of all existing Local Planning Panel members, with the exception of Keith Dedden and Stella Whittaker, who have resigned from their planning panel duties with the Department.

 

Report

From March 2018, the NSW Government introduced legislation making it mandatory for all Sydney Council’s to establish a Local Planning Panel consisting of one chair, two independent experts and one community representative.

In line with this requirement, a pool of chairs, experts and community representatives were endorsed for the Wollondilly Shire LPP at its Ordinary Meeting held 19 February 2018:

RESOLUTION 22/2018

Resolved on the Motion of Crs Hannan and Banasik:

1.       That Council note the appointment of Mr Steven Kennedy (Chair), Mr Keith Dedden (Alternate Chair 1) and Mr Ian Reynolds (Alternate Chair 2).

2.       That Council endorse the appointment of Stella Whittaker & Vince Hardy as the Expert Panel Members.

3.       That Council endorse the appointment of Elaine Treglown; Mark Carlon and Fiona Gainsford as the Alternate Expert Panel Members.

4.       That Council endorse the appointment of David Smith as the ‘Shire Wide’ Community Representative (representing all three Wards).

5.       That Council endorse the appointment of David Eden and Ian Tait as the ‘Shire Wide’ Community Representative Alternates (representing all three Wards).

6.       That Council receive a quarterly report on IHAP’s costs and performance and that we liaise with Local Government NSW regarding potential benchmarks for the performance of IHAP’s.

7.       That Council write to the State Government and the opposition asking them to rethink the mandatory imposition of new local planning panels (IHAP’s).

8.       That this matter be included in our State Issues paper.

9.       That the IHAP’s agendas and minutes be placed on Council’s website.

On being put to the meeting the motion was declared CARRIED.

Vote: Crs Briggs, Banasik, Khan, Deeth, Lowry, Landow, Hannan, Gould and Smith

Advice was received from the Planning Panels Secretariat in December 2020 to reappoint current members to 30 June 2021 to cover DPIE conducting an expression of interest during early 2021 to refresh the pool of chair and experts.

A separate process will be undertaken by Council from March 2021 for the appointment of Panel members beyond 1 July 2021, to be endorsed at a future Ordinary Council meeting.

Consultation

Existing Wollondilly Shire LPP members have been consulted regarding their interest to continue on the Panel. All members confirmed their willingness to continue until 30 June 2021, with the exception of Keith Dedden, who has resigned from planning panel duties with DPIE.

It should be noted Stella Whittaker resigned from the Panel in June 2019 to move overseas.

Financial Implications

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

Attachments

Nil


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

12.2       Western City Planning Panel Membership

File Number:           5449#415

 

Executive Summary

This report considers recent updated advice received from the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE) regarding Council’s representatives on the Sydney Western City Planning Panel.  The advice notes a requirement for at least one of Council’s representatives at each Western City Planning Panel meeting to have expertise: in one or more of the following areas: planning, architecture, heritage, the environment, urban design, land economics, traffic and transport, law, engineering or tourism.

On 19 August 2019, Council nominated then Mayor and Deputy Mayor as its representatives on the Panel, with all other Councillors as Alternates.  Additionally, on 21 April 2020, Council resolved to appoint two external experts as Alternates if Councillors are unavailable.

In response to the clarified DPIE advice, it is recommended that Council confirms its representatives for the Panel in line with the Operational Procedure, and that the Mayor and one of the external experts are nominated as its representatives, with the Deputy Mayor as an alternate if the Mayor is unavailable. It is recommended that all Councillors remain as alternate members if the Mayor and Deputy Mayor are unavailable.

Recommendation

That Council nominates its representatives to the Sydney Western City Planning Panel from 16 March 2020 as follows:

1.       The Mayor as its Panel member 1 of 2.

2.       The Deputy Mayor as its Panel member 1 of 2, in the event the Mayor is unavailable.

3.       The following candidates as its Expert Panel member 2 of 2:

(a)     Rachel Harrison; or

(b)     John McFadden.

4.       All Councillors remain listed as alternative members, in the event the Mayor or Deputy Mayor are unavailable.

 

Report

At the Ordinary Council meeting of 19 August 2019, Council appointed the then Mayor and Deputy Mayor as its representatives on the Western City Planning Panel, with all other Councillors nominated as alternates.

RESOLUTION 200/2019

Moved: Mayor Matthew Deeth Seconded: Cr Matthew Gould

That Council:

1.       Disendorse all previous nominated panel members and alternative panel members once their existing considerations have concluded.

2.       Nominates the Mayor as its panel member 1 of 2.

3.       Nominates the Deputy Mayor as its panel member 2 of 2.

4.       Ensures all Councillors be listed as alternative members.

5.       Delegates to the Chief Executive Officer the authority to nominate an alternative Panel Member for Panel members 1 & 2 as may be required from time to time.

6.       Establishes a panel of appropriately qualified and experienced consultants and community representatives capable of being nominated as an alternative Panel Member by the Chief Executive Officer and endorsed by Council. This should include a disbursements schedule for community representatives. The consultants or community member be the fall back option in the event a Councillor is unavailable.

On being put to the meeting the motion was declared CARRIED 8/0

In Favour: Crs Judith Hannan, Robert Khan, Michael Banasik, Blair Briggs, Matthew Deeth, Matthew Gould, Simon Landow and Noel Lowry

Against: Nil

 

A further resolution was made at the Extraordinary Council meeting held on 16 December 2019 noting Councillors would conduct further recruitment of Council representatives in the event a Councillor is unavailable.

RESOLUTION 292/2019

Moved: Mayor Matthew Deeth Seconded: Cr Michael Banasik

1. That a panel consisting of the Mayor, Deputy Mayor, and Cr Hannan meet with the five recommended applicants to the Sydney Western City Planning Panel (SWCPP) as alternative Council representatives in the event a Councillor is unavailable to represent the community.

2. That the panel consider a further round of recruitment if required.

3. That a report be brought back to Council for Council approval of the members.

On being put to the meeting the motion was declared CARRIED 6/0

In Favour: Crs Judith Hannan, Michael Banasik, Matthew Deeth, Matthew Gould, Blair Briggs and Simon Landow

Against: Nil

 

Upon the completion of recruitment, two candidates were nominated as additional representatives for the Western City Planning Panel and endorsed at its Ordinary Council meeting held 21 April 2020:

RESOLUTION 66/2020

Moved: Mayor Matthew Deeth Seconded: Cr Judith Hannan

1.       That Council appoint the following candidates as alternative Council representatives in the event a Councillor is unavailable to represent the community at the Sydney Western City Planning Panel:

·        Rachel Harrison

·        John McFadden

1.       That Council resolves another round of recruitment is not required.

On being put to the meeting the motion was declared CARRIED 8/0

In Favour: Crs Matthew Deeth, Judith Hannan, Robert Khan, Michael Banasik, Matthew Gould, Blair Briggs, Simon Landow and Noel Lowry

Against: Nil


 

 

In light of the advice received by the Planning Panels Secretariat, it is recommended that Council make a further resolution of the Ordinary Council meeting of 19 August 2019 to note that the Mayor and one of the external experts are nominated as its representatives, with the Deputy Mayor as an Alternate if the Mayor is unavailable.  All other Councillors should remain as Alternates if the Mayor and Deputy Mayor are both unavailable.

Consultation

DPIE has provided further recent advice regarding Council representatives on the Western City Planning Panel.  The Planning Panels Secretariat noted that at least one Council representative must have expertise in one or more of the fields listed in the Sydney and Regional Planning Panels Operational Procedure: planning, architecture, heritage, the environment, urban design, land economics, traffic and transport, law, engineering or tourism.

Financial Implications

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

Attachments

1.       Sydney and Regional Planning Panels Operational Procedures 2020    


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

12.3       Draft Picton Place Plan

File Number:           12275#164

 

Executive Summary

The purpose of this report is to seek Council’s support to publicly exhibit the draft Picton Place Plan.

The Picton Place Plan will provide Council and the community with a shared vision for the town and guide the delivery of future programs, events and infrastructure projects.

This place plan (master plan) is identified as a strategic project in Council’s Operational Plan 2020/21.

The Wollondilly Community Cultural Civic Precinct (WCCCP) is identified in Wollondilly 2040Councils 20 year land use vision for the Shire. Our Local Strategic Planning Statement identifies the important emerging role Picton needs to play now and into the future to ensure that we have a vibrant, strong community cultural and civic centre balanced against the emerging new town centre in Wilton which will play an alternative important role for the residents of Wollondilly.  The Picton Place Plan is a vital piece of the planning framework to help affirm this emerging role.

A further report on the outcomes of the public exhibition of the draft Picton Place Plan will be provided to Council detailing any proposed amendments to the Plan and seeking its adoption.

Recommendation

That the draft Picton Place Plan be placed on Public Exhibition in accordance with the Community Participation Plan.

 

Report

CONTEXT

Wollondilly 2040 outlines our vision for land use planning over the next 20 years and identifies key planning priorities and actions that focus on protecting and retaining the many elements that make Wollondilly extraordinary. It also aims to embrace the future and create environments that help to make people feel happier and healthier.

Wollondilly 2040 identifies a number of specific planning priorities and actions that relate to the Picton township, including:

·    Planning Priorities 7: Cultivating a creative and cultural destination connecting people with places

Action 7.1: Implement the Cultural, Civic and Community Precinct at Picton

Action 7.2: Progress a planning proposal to amend the LEP to facilitate the Picton Cultural, Civic and Community Precinct

·    Planning Priorities 8: Enhancing vibrant, healthy and sustainable local towns and villages

Action 8.5: Develop a Picton Place Plan.

This report relates specifically to the development of the Picton Place Plan. However, the findings and inputs of the Picton Place Plan and the planning and development of the Cultural, Civic and Community Precinct are closely intertwined.  Therefore, these projects are being undertaken in parallel to ensure a consistent outcome. The Cultural, Civic and Community Precinct projects will be reported separately to Council.


 

 

PICTON PLACE PLAN

The Picton Place Plan is a guiding document that creates a shared goal and vision for the town centre and will assist Council and the Community in working together to identify the purpose and character of Picton, now and into the future.

Picton is the administrative, commercial and services hub of Wollondilly. This will be further strengthened with the new Community, Cultural and Civic Precinct and upgrades to local infrastructure.

The Place Plan will incorporate these strengths, utilise all the documents, strategies, plans, reports and past engagement previously prepared for the town centre and overlay new expectations and constraints identified as part of the Plan development. Together, this information will create a framework and a series of projects that can be delivered by Council and the Community, either independently or in collaboration.

The objectives for the Place Plan are:

·     To understand and reinforce the current character of the Picton Town Centre.

·     To establish and understand the important role and needs for Picton’s viability as the commercial, cultural, and civic centre for Wollondilly.

·     To undertake a place-based approach to the town centre.

·     To review the zones, land uses, and the planning and development controls.

·     To develop a permeable public domain with pedestrian connections.

·     To identify the constraints and opportunities to realise Picton’s vision and emerging role.

 

Engagement

The draft Picton Place Plan has undergone considerable consultation and engagement, utilising the following methods:

Historical Engagement

This method brings together the studies, reports, data, and plans produced for Wollondilly and Picton over the past three years, including the suite of documents prepared as part of the Local Environmental Plan review project. Each of the past processes included detailed engagement. The key themes, ideas, constraints and opportunities were drawn from these documents and used to inform the draft Place Plan.

One-on-one virtual meetings and workshops

Individual or small group virtual meetings were held during the engagement process. The meetings were with individuals who live and work in the area, know the area well or have businesses or business ties. All participates were also strongly encouraged to participate in the online engagement.

Online Engagement

Online engagement was held between November 2020 and February 2021 and was located on Councils “Having Your Say” webpage. This included a survey which encouraged the community to provide information on their vision for Picton into the future.

Online Video

A video explaining the process of the Place Plan and initial ideas was placed on the online engagement platform and on social media. This was to assist the community in understanding the purpose and process of the Place Plan.

 

The Councillor Briefing Session held on 27 October 2020 also identified a number of key stakeholder groups who were also consulted during the engagement process and in the preparation of the draft Place Plan. The key stakeholders consulted included a variety of groups, individuals, local businesses, local schools, veterinarian practices, dog walking groups, community and sporting groups, the Picton Chamber of Commerce and the general public through an online community survey.

The consultant (Artscape) preparing the Picton Place Plan has also been working collaboratively with the Picton Chamber of Commerce and the consultant undertaking the Township Marketing Plan to share their findings and experiences and directing shop owners to the online community survey.  This approach was utilised to ensure small businesses were not over consulted on similar matters during these difficult times of COVID restrictions.

 

Picton Place Plan Key Themes

The engagement process has drawn out ten key themes for the Picton Township, being:

·        Open space and more trees

·        Desire to engage with nature

·        Maintain a small town or village lifestyle

·        Protect rural views and rural buffers

·        Support local

·        Continue the High Street model with fine grain built form

·        More variety, more things to do and longer operating hours and an evening economy

·        Reduce traffic and congestion and make it easy to visit Picton

·        Integrating history and protecting the towns history

·        Better connected spaces and activities

These themes influence the principles and implementation framework for the draft Place Plan.

 

Related key projects

A critical underpinning of the Picton Place Plan is its assessment and incorporation of significant projects within the vicinity. These projects have an influence on the future shaping of the Picton town Centre, including:

Wollondilly Community, Cultural and Civic Precinct

The Plan acknowledges the important role the Community, Cultural and Civic Precinct will play in establishing and shaping the core of Picton. The bulk and scale of the proposed built form will help define the Village Green and pedestrian links, which in turn will connect to Menangle Street and the vibrant main spine of Argyle Street.

The Precinct has an opportunity to provide the community with much needed facilities within the town centre. The need for these facilities was also highlighted during the engagement process.

Picton Parklands Master Plan

The Master Plan provides an opportunity to establish an attractive network of open space and recreational activity within close proximity to the heart of Picton. 

The Place Plan will propose to extend the Parklands to the Picton Station in the south, which is a significant anchor for the town centre.

 

Picton Bypass

The State government has identified the preferred route for a Picton Bypass. The bypass is proposed to connect Picton Road with the intersection of Remembrance Driveway and Wonga Road, south of the town centre.  A formal approval or timeframe for the construction for the bypass has not been announced at this stage. This has significant ramifications on the planning and delivery for Place Plan projects and actions.

The Place Plan recognises the importance of this bypass on the future functioning and amenity of the main street.  It also identifies Actions, for pre and post bypass construction, to ensure projects, programs and infrastructure delivery reflects the likely traffic volumes along Argyle Street.

 

Place Plan Implementation

To assist in the successful delivery of the Place Plan, the implementation framework breaks down specific projects into smaller components or stages, and establishes a program that can be delivered when time and funds are available.

This allows Council to consider these projects as it prioritises investment across the Shire and align infrastructure and placemaking projects.

The Plan then establishes a series of actions to identify projects, ideas and methods to activate and redevelop key places identified in the framework and are categorised by different spatial typologies or development mechanisms. It should be noted that many projects are connected and may benefit from being developed at the same time.

It is important to note that the potential Picton Bypass has implications on the priorities and actions for the Place Plan. The existing road movement has a significant impact upon the amenity of Argyle Street and it is impractical to propose any changes to the main street until the bypass has been constructed. However, changes to Picton cannot wait. Therefore, the actions in the Plan identify whether a project is beneficial before or after the construction of the bypass. Some actions can commence straight away, while others are significantly influenced by the traffic and may need to be delayed or staged.

Consultation

The draft Picton Place Plan has been developed in consultation with internal Council staff, an internal working group, local businesses, community and sporting groups, the Picton Chamber of Commerce and the general public through an online community survey, as outlined in the report above.

The report recommends the undertaking of a community consultation process by placing the draft Plan on public exhibition prior to a subsequent report to Council seeking the adoption of the Plan.

Financial Implications

The project is currently within budget.

Funding for the exhibition and engagement process are available from within existing budget allocations.

The funding of any identified actions within the draft Place Plan would be subject to further consideration as Council prioritises projects across the Shire and integration with Council’s future budgeting.

Attachments

1.       Picton Place Plan - Draft Part A  

2.       Picton Place Plan - Draft Part B    


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

12.4       Planning Agreement - Station Street, Menangle

File Number:           12275#167

 

Executive Summary

On 21 December 2018, a site at ‘Station Street, Menangle’ was rezoned by State government for urban purposes to enable 350 future dwellings.  The site includes land at 45 Stevens Road, 15 Menangle Road and 1370 Moreton Park Road, Menangle.

Since the rezoning, Council and the developer, MIRVAC, have negotiated a Draft Voluntary Planning Agreement for the site to provide net community benefits.

This matter was last reported to Council on 12 December 2020, where Council resolved to publically notify the Draft Voluntary Planning Agreement and Explanatory Note. These documents were publically notified from 20 January 2021 to 19 February 2021. No submissions were received during the notification period. The Draft Voluntary Planning Agreement is now reported to Council for its adoption.

In summary the Draft Voluntary Planning Agreement offers the following:

·     construction and dedication provision of quality open space within the new development;

·     a significant contribution towards open space embellishment within the Menangle village;

·     construction and dedication of stormwater facilities;

·     maintenance of parks and stormwater facilities; and

·     payment of remaining development contributions.

Recommendation

That Council:

1.    Adopts the Draft Voluntary Planning Agreement attached to this report.

2.    Authorises the Chief Executive Officer to Execute the Voluntary Planning Agreement on behalf of Council.

3.    Accepts the dedication of the land as provided for in the Voluntary Planning Agreement.

4.    Agrees to the classification of the proposed land dedication as Community Land under the Local Government Act, 1993.

 

Report

The Draft Voluntary Planning Agreement Draft VPA was reported to Council 15 December 2020 to authorise its public notification, which occurred between 20 January 2021 and 19 February 2021. This report notes the significant time taken to negotiate the Draft VPA, and the public interest in securing public amenities for the new and existing community of Menangle village. No changes have been made to the Draft VPA since Notification.

Description of VPA Offer

The table below summarises the Development Contributions offer in the Draft VPA.

Development Contribution

Value in Offer

Land Area*

Comments

Open Space (East and West Parks)

$1,583,139 works

$2,979,025 land

16,990 sqm

Parks will be provided to the standard and value adopted in the contributions plan suitable for a new residential community. 

Old Menangle School site embellishment - Monetary Contribution

$1,217,184.50

(at a rate of $3,477.67 per Final lot indexed)

Existing Public Reserve

This is a significant monetary contribution towards the embellishment of Council’s adopted $2.1m Old Menangle School site Masterplan and forms an important role in linking the new development with the existing community.

Stormwater Facilities and Land Dedication

Development Works and Maintenance

20,226 sqm

5-years maintenance of each completed stormwater facility undertaken by the developer.

Monetary Contribution for Stormwater Facility Maintenance

$189,000 per basin)

-

Contribution towards maintenance and calculated in in accordance with Council’s Dedication of Land Policy.

Maintenance of East and West Park

-

-

2-years maintenance of park undertaken by the developer.

Monetary Contributions

Approximately $3,062,500.00 (being $8,730 per final lot or dwelling and $7,973 per medium density dwelling) and indexed with the movement of CPI.

-

Monetary Contributions for Transport, Community Facilities and Plan Administration.

Total

$9,030,848.50

37,216 sqm

(3.7 ha)

 

*Note – land area is subject to development consent, surveyor and registration of final plans of subdivision.

Compliance with the Planning Agreements Policy

The Draft VPA seeks to partially offset Section 7.11 development contributions for the provision of open space. This is permitted by the Act and is consistent with Council policy as it provides for public amenities identified in the Contributions Plan. The offset value is calculated at the open space rate in the superseded Wollondilly Development Contributions Plan 2011, which was in-force at the time the offer was made and the Stage 1 development (DA.2019.93.1) was approved.

 

The remaining monetary contributions will be levied towards Transport, Community Facilities and Plan Administration. This is approximately $3,062,500.00 (and indexed with the movement of CPI).

It is important to acknowledge that the developer will also undertake direct development works (in additional to the heritage restoration works of the Rotolactor / Creamery precinct) as part of the development including footpaths and connections, roundabout construction, and footbridge connection over the Main Southern Railway Line.

For clarity and to safeguard the community, the benefits in the Planning Agreement apply to the delivery of the first 350 final lots, without limiting any further development that may be lawfully approved beyond that number.

Any additional lots will be subject to the full development contributions rate calculated in accordance with the prevailing Contributions Plan (currently $20,000 per lot/dwelling).

Compliance with the Dedication of Land Policy

In accordance with the Dedication of Land Policy, the Planning Agreement provides for 5-years maintenance of stormwater detention basins by the developer and a monetary contribution towards 30-years maintenance and for 2-years maintenance of each of the parks prior to handing over to Council.

Consultation

The Draft VPA and Explanatory Note were publically notified from 20 January 2021 to 19 February 2021. No submissions were received during the notification period.

Financial Implications

The Draft VPA and development contributions will provide public benefits of $9m (or the equivalent of $25k per lot). This figure excludes the land and works value of stormwater facilities required as a result of the development.

The Draft VPA provides for the developer to undertake 5 years maintenance of stormwater facilities and make a contribution towards a further 30 years maintenance; and 2 years maintenance of public parks. These contributions can only be secured by way of a Planning Agreement, which ensures that Council and the community are not unreasonably burdened by the maintenance costs of infrastructure associated with new developments.

The Draft VPA will also make a significant contribution of $1.2m towards the implementation of the old Menangle school site master plan which is a facility that will provide a public benefit to the wider community.

Attachments

1.       Station Street Menangle PA Execution    


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

12.5       Picton Town Centre - Government Services Building Planning Proposal

File Number:           12275#165

 

Executive Summary

This report seeks Council’s approval to progress a Planning Proposal for land at Lot 21 Section 3 DP939379, Part Lot 1021 DP1071455, part Lot 4 DP580175) at 6-8 Colden Street and 62-64 Menangle Street, Picton, NSW 2571 (the Site), subject to the preparation of a site specific DCP that takes into consideration the wider Wollondilly Shire Cultural, Civic and Community Precinct.

The planning proposal seeks to amend the Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan 2011 (WLEP 2011) by increasing the building height control established for the site under clause 4.3 of the WLEP 2011 from 9m to 16m. The purpose of this amendment is to enable the development of a new Government Services Building, which forms part of the wider Wollondilly Shire Cultural, Civic and Community Precinct.

Wollondilly Shire Council is both the owner of the site and the proponent for the Planning Proposal. To ensure an independent and transparent process, Keylan Consulting has been engaged by Council to undertake an independent assessment of the Planning Proposal. Keylan also engaged specialist traffic and heritage consultants to provide independent reviews and advice on the Planning Proposal. Keylan has provided the content of this Council report to ensure its independence and transparency in the process.

The proposal has been subject to preliminary notification with no public submissions received. The proposal has been referred to the relevant Public Agencies.

The site is located to the rear of the existing Wollondilly Shire Council Administration Services Building and is currently in use as a public car park. The site is located within the Picton Town Centre Conservation Area and is in close proximity to several buildings of heritage significance.

The Planning Proposal was reported to the Wollondilly Local Planning Panel (LPP) for its advice on 25 February 2021. At the time of the writing of this report the LPP had not met and therefore their comments on the PP will be provided via a separate memo to Council.

Council’s final adopted Wollondilly Shire Cultural, Civic and Community Precinct master plan inclused a new Government Services Centre because of significant issues with the current building, and the benefits of having a service centre. These include providing space for local and NSW Government Services, generating higher productivity from staff (and higher service levels for the community), and provide greater efficiencies in operational costs.

3D-Precinct-Williams-Ross-v1

Figure 1 Wollondilly Shire Cultural, Civic and Community Precinct Master Plan

It is noted that the Wollondilly Shire Cultural, Civic and Community Precinct will be covered by the new Picton Place Plan.  The Picton Place Plan is a guiding document that creates shared goals and a vision for the broader town centre and will assist Council and the community in working together to identify the purpose and character of Picton, now and into the future.

The draft Plan acknowledges the important role the Community, Cultural and Civic Precinct will play in establishing and shaping the core of Picton. It notes the bulk and scale of the proposed Government Services building as an anchor, and that it will help define the Village Green and pedestrian links, which in turn will connect to Menangle Street and the vibrant main spine of Argyle Street.

 

Recommendation

That Council:

1.       Supports the Planning Proposal for 6-8 Colden Street and 62-64 Menangle Street, Picton, NSW 2571.

2.       Supports the preparation of a site specific DCP for the wider Wollondilly Shire Cultural, Civic and Community Precinct to establish controls to guide the future redevelopment of the site;

3.       Agrees to support the Planning Proposal as a relevant planning authority; and

4.       Forwards the Planning proposal to the Department of Planning, Industry & Environment for a Gateway Determination.

 

Report

Background

The Planning Proposal (PP) seeks to amend the Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan 2011 (WLEP 2011) by increasing the building height control established for the site under clause 4.3 of the WLEP 2011 from 9m to 16m. Wollondilly Shire Council is the applicant. A copy of the PP is provided at Attachment [1].

The purpose of this amendment is to enable the development of a new Government Services Building, which forms part of the wider Wollondilly Shire Cultural, Civic and Community Precinct (CCCP). Council adopted a Master Plan for the CCCP on 19 August 2019 and has since been granted funding for the first stage as part of the Western Sydney City Deal programme for Liveability.

Council’s vision for the CCCP is to provide a flexible, multipurpose community space that supports a diversity of community, cultural and civic activities and attracts a wide range of community members, businesses and visitors. The Precinct also seeks to be a community gathering place that provides a safe and inclusive venue for a wide range of formal and informal events and activities.

Council’s adopted Wollondilly Shire Cultural, Civic and Community Precinct master plan includes a new Government Services Centre because of significant issues with the current building, and the benefits of having a new service centre. These include providing space for local and NSW Government services, generating higher productivity from staff (and higher service levels for the community), and provide greater efficiencies in operational costs.

The delivery of the CCCP will involve four main stages including:

·       Stage 1: Demolition of buildings and relocation of some services, new car parking, initial refurbishments of the Shire Hall, construction of a new performance space and construction of a new childcare building.

·       Stage 2: Construction of a new Council Service Centre/ Administrative Building and basement parking.

·       Stage 3: Creation of a new green civic square, demolition of existing Council building, further Shire Hall improvements, additional car parking.

·       Stage 4: Construction of new library and learning centre, repurposing of existing library, and public domain works across the Precinct and to Colden Street and Corbett Lane (formerly Manolis Lane).

As detailed above, the Government Services Building is to be delivered within Stage 2 of the CCCP.

A copy of the CCCP Master Plan is provided in the Figure below.

 

FIGURE 2: Extract Wollondilly Shire Cultural, Civic and Community Precinct Master Plan (Source: Wollondilly Shire Council)

 

Site Description

The PP relates to the land at the junction of Colden Street and Manolis Lane known as 6-8 Colden Street and 62-64 Menangle Street, Picton. The land on which the site is located is legally described as Lot 21 Section 3 DP939379, part Lot 1021, DP1071455, part Lot 4 DP580175 and is outlined in red in Figure 3 with the wider CCCP outlined in blue.

The site comprises a rectangular portion of the above properties that is approximately 2,500m2 in size. It is zoned B2 Local Centre under the WLEP 2011 and is subject to a maximum building height control of 9m. There is no FSR control for the site.

The site is owned and managed by the applicant, Wollondilly Shire Council, and is currently utilised as an at-grade hard stand car park, which is accessible from both Colden Street and Manolis Lane.

The site is bounded by Colden Street to the east, a Masonic Temple and Wollondilly Council Buildings and associated at-grate car park to the south, at-grade car park to the west and Manolis Lane to the north.

 

The development on the northern side of Manolis Lane comprises the Picton Mall, which is an approximately 9 metres high single storey indoor shopping centre with at-grade parking accessed from Manolis Lane and Margaret Street. Servicing of the shopping centre is located on Colden Street.

To the east of the site, on the opposite side of Colden Street is a single storey residential-scale retail building containing the Vinnies charity shop.

To the south-east of the site accessed from Colden Street is the single storey Picton Masonic Hall, constructed out of redbrick with dual pitched roof, it contains a neo-classical façade with pillared detail to the street frontage. The Former Catholic Presbytery is located perpendicular on the opposite side of Colden Street at number 7.

The existing modernist two storey Government Services Building is located to the south accessed from Menangle Street, adjacent to the listed Former Wollondilly Shire Hall located to the south west of the site. Further to the south-west is the existing Council library building with pedestrian access to the neighbouring at-grade car parking.

The west of the site is predominantly at-grade car parking and the rear of retail premises located on Argyle Street.

The site gently slopes away from Colden Street and lies within the Study Area for the Stonequarry Creek watercourse with parts of the site located either within the overland flow or mainstream Flood Planning Areas.

The site does not include any items of heritage significance. However, it is located within Precinct 1 (Commercial Centre) of the Picton Conservation Area (PCA), which is identified as item C2 in Schedule 5 of the WLEP 2011. There are several individually listed heritage items in the vicinity of the site, including:

·       Former Catholic Presbytery, 7 Colden Street (item I168);

·       Former Wollondilly Shire Hall, 48-60 Menangle Street (item I188 in LEP);

·       St Anthony’s Catholic Church and school hall, 63 Menangle Street (item I187); and

·       Soldiers Memorial School of Arts, 65 Menangle Street (item I190).

FIGURE 3: Location map – Subject site outlined in red, 6-8 Colden Street and 62-64 Menangle Street, Picton outlined in blue (Source: SixMaps)

 

FIGURE 4: WLEP 2011 Heritage Map extract – site outlined in blue (Source: WLEP 2011)

 

Description of proposal

This PP seeks to amend the WLEP 2011 by increasing the building height control established for the site under clause 4.3 from 9m to 16m.

The purpose of this amendment is to enable the development of a new Government Services Building, which forms part of the wider Wollondilly Shire CCCP.

No change to the current B2 Local Centre land use zoning for the site is proposed under this PP. This is due to the fact that commercial premises, which include business, office and retail premises, are permitted with consent in the B2 zone.

 

FIGURE 5: Extract maximum building height map (Source: WLEP 2011)

 

FIGURE 6: Proposed maximum building height map (Base map source: WLEP 2011)

 

Gateway Determination

This PP will be sent to the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment for a Gateway determination if Council supports the proposal.

 

PLANNING CONTEXT

Wollondilly Community Strategy Plan 2033 (CSP 2033)

The Create Wollondilly Community Strategic Plan 2033 (CSP) is Council’s highest level long term plan. It identifies and expresses the aspirations held by the Community of Wollondilly and sets strategies for achieving those aspirations. This proposal is consistent with the key policy directions outlined in the CSP. A full assessment on the suitability of the PP against the CSP is included in Attachment [2].

 

Wollondilly 2040 Local Strategic Planning Statement (LSPS)

Council’s Local Strategic Planning Statement 2040 (LSPS) is a 20 year land use vision for Wollondilly. This proposal is consistent with the key planning directions outlined in the LSPS. A full assessment against key Planning Priorities relevant to this proposal is included in Attachment [2].

 

Greater Sydney Regional Plan and Western City District Plan 2018

The Greater Sydney Commission’s A Metropolis of Three Cities – the Greater Sydney Region Plan and the Western City District Plan were finalised by the Greater Sydney Commission in March 2018. These 20-year plans with a 40-year vision are a bridge between regional and local planning. They inform local environmental plans, community strategic plans and the assessment of planning proposals.

 

 

There are over 100 actions between these plans, many of which are relevant to Wollondilly. These plans are structured around strategies for:

·       Infrastructure and Collaboration; supportive infrastructure, use of public resources such as open space and community facilities, working through collaboration.

·       Liveability; social infrastructure, healthy communities, housing supply and affordability, great places.

·       Productivity; the 30 minute city, land use and transport infrastructure, leveraging from the Western Sydney Airport and Badgerys Creek Aerotropolis, jobs.

·       Sustainability; green spaces and landscape, tree canopy, using resources efficiently, managing rural areas, resiliency, bushland and biodiversity, waterways, green grid.

·       Implementation; local strategic planning statements, monitoring and reporting.

While the Plans do not provide strong direction on how to prioritise Planning Priorities against each other, a dominant focus for Wollondilly throughout the plan is the Metropolitan Rural Area (MRA), which is discussed in detail below.

 

Metropolitan Rural Area (MRA)

The MRA is identified as the part of Greater Sydney which is generally outside the established and planned urban area. For Wollondilly, this takes in the whole Shire with the exception of the Wilton Growth Area and areas in Appin within the draft Greater Macarthur Growth Area. Picton Town Centre is within the MRA for the Shire.

The diverse values of the MRA are recognised for their contribution to habitat and biodiversity, supporting productive agriculture, providing mineral and energy resources and sustaining local rural towns and villages. There is a commitment to preserving rural uses and housing growth and development in this area is restricted.

The Greater Sydney Regional Plan identifies that the towns and villages of the MRA offer opportunities for people to live and work in attractive rural or bushland settings, close to a major city. Furthermore, the Regional Plan indicates that maintaining and enhancing the distinctive character of each rural and bushland town such as Picton is a high priority. As such, ongoing planning and management of rural towns should respond to local demand for growth, the character of the town and the values of the surrounding landscape and rural activities.

As identified, Picton is within the MRA area in its entirety but this designation does not appear to take into account the well-established, urbanised nature of Picton Town Centre. The MRA mapping of established urban areas such as Picton does not align with the intent or objectives of the MRA designation.

The Region Plan states that the growth and intensification of business activity within rural villages is supported where they maintain or enhance local character. Further, Action 78 of the Western City District Plan seeks to ensure new development maintains or enhances the values of the MRA using place-based planning to deliver targeted environmental, social, and economic outcomes. In this regard, the PP is considered to support growth in a managed way, by encouraging the development of local services within an established urban setting in the MRA.

The PP will enable the development of the Government Services Building within the CCCP and will contribute to Picton’s ongoing role as the municipal centre of Wollondilly Shire providing major regeneration benefits to the town. Furthermore, it will allow Picton and Wilton to co-exist rather than compete with each other, with each centre being capable of functioning independently.

This proposal seeks to facilitate and supports planned growth through the development of the CCCP in an existing town centre. Furthermore, it will not reduce or compromise the capacity of MRA land to be used for agricultural purposes nor does it propose residential housing. The PP is therefore considered consistent with the District Plan and Regional Plan.

An assessment of the PP against the Greater Sydney Region Plan and Western City District Plan is provided in Attachment [2] to this Report.

 

Section 9.1 Ministerial Directions

The Minister for Planning has issued a number of Directions under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 which apply to the assessment of planning proposals. This proposal is consistent with the relevant Ministerial Directions, including Direction 4.3 Flood Prone Land which is addressed later in this report. A full assessment against directions relevant to this proposal is included in Attachment [2].

 

State Environmental Planning Policies

The NSW Government publishes State Environmental Planning Policies (SEPPs) and Sydney Regional Environmental Plans (SREPs). These documents deal with matters of state or regional planning significance. This proposal is consistent with all applicable SEPPs and SREPs.

The following SEPPs and SREPs apply to the proposal:

·       State Environmental Planning Policy No 55—Remediation of Land

·       State Environmental Planning Policy (State and Regional Development) 2011

·       State Environmental Planning Policy (Sydney Drinking Water Catchments) 2011.

A full assessment against all SEPPs and SREPs relevant to this proposal is included in Attachment [2].

 

CONSULTATION

Community Consultation

In accordance with Council’s Community Participation Plan and adopted Planning Proposal Policy, and initial community consultation has been undertaken. The PP was exhibited on Council’s website and at Wollondilly Library for a period of 28 days between 28 October 2020 and 24 November 2020. A letter was sent to residents on 28 October 2020 and details of the exhibition were also published in local newspapers.

No submissions were received from the community during this preliminary consultation period.

 

Consultation with Public Agencies

Comment was sought from relevant government agencies as part of preliminary consultation for comment on the PP. These agencies included:

·       Subsidence Advisory NSW

·       Heritage Council NSW

·       Transport for NSW

·       Sydney Water.

A complete assessment of matters raised by public agencies is provided in Attachment [3]. In summary, the Subsidence Advisory NSW and the Heritage Council NSW did not raise any issues or concerns with the proposal. TfNSW did requested additional traffic and modelling information.

Sydney Water advised that the site is within the Picton WRP catchment which currently has no capacity to accept growth that has not previously been considered. This matter is discussed in detail later in this report.

 

Consultation with Internal Council Staff and External Consultants

The PP was provided to internal Council staff to provide specialist advice. In addition, independent Traffic and Heritage Consultants were engaged by Keylan to undertake a review of the PP. A complete assessment of matters raised by Council Staff and External Consultants is provided in Attachment [4]. A detailed assessment of the key matters identified is provided below.

 

Building Height and Design

Matters Raised

A number of Council Departments, including Sustainable Growth, Development Services and the Social and Health Impact Assessment Working Group commented on the proposed building height and design. In summary the matters raised include:

·       Impact on important views and vistas.

·       There is potential for the building to overlook private property on the eastern side of Colden Street.

·       The indicative designs provided with the Planning Proposal suggest that the Colden Street frontage will be only two stories. However, there is nothing in the proposal to guarantee that this frontage will not utilise the full 16m.

·       Queried why the PP does not seek to increase building height across the entire Precinct.

·       It is unclear whether the proposed walkway running from Colden Street to the Village Green between the Government Services Building and the Masonic Hall is part of the land to which the Planning Proposal applies. This walkway provides permeability and is important to the social viability of the Precinct.

·       Wollondilly’s DCP currently enables a zero setback for commercial development. This may be inappropriate given the proposed 16 metre height limit.

·       A site specific DCP should be prepared, particularly on the basis that the design, architecture and setting will be critical in achieving a quality outcome for the site.

·       The site specific DCP could also incorporate landscaping/ vegetation requirements to mitigate any urban heat island effect of any future building.

These issues have been considered as part of the assessment of the PP as detailed below.

Assessment

The site is currently utilised as an at-grade car park, accessed off Manolis Lane and Colden Street. The site is set among a mix of built form and land uses. While the scale is generally low density with building heights of one to two storeys, the adjoining Picton Mall development has a height of approximately 9 metres, generally equivalent to a three storey development.

The proposal seeks to increase the building height from 9 metres to 16 metres for the site. No other built form controls are proposed.

Contextually, the proposed Government Services Building would be the tallest building within the precinct, at a height of 16m or comparative four storeys. The Urban Design Report indicates that the mass of the building would be broken down to fit the context of the site. The purpose of this design approach is to enable the future Government Services Building to provide an appropriate transition to neighbouring buildings and to respond to the character of the area.

In particular, the concept design seeks to respond to the topography of the site and the scale of surrounding development by transitioning height across the site from two to four storeys, as illustrated in the below figures.

 

FIGURE 7: East-west cross-section through the concept design

FIGURE 8: North-south cross-section through the concept design – Colden Street frontage (Source: e8urban)

FIGURE 9: North-south cross-section through the concept design – future village green frontage (Source: e8urban)

 

 

As illustrated in Figures 6 and 7 above, the eastern elevation of the building is to comprise a two storeys façade, similar to the existing scale of development along Colden Street. This design approach will avoid privacy impacts to properties on the eastern side of Colden Street. The two storey building height would be achieved through the incorporation of a large building setback to Colden Street, together with a design that responds to the sloping nature of the site by transitioning the ground floor level to underground basement car parking.

As illustrated in Figure 9, the western façade of the building is four storeys or 16 metres in height fronting onto the proposed village green within the CCCP. This design approach provides a ceremonial entrance to the building and frames the new village green centre. In addition, building articulation including upper floor setbacks at 3rd floor are illustrated to provide further transition to the neighbouring buildings to the north and south.

The Urban Design Report also states that enhanced public domain with street trees and verge planting will be provided. It is considered that suitable landscaping should be incorporated into the future design at the site to soften its setting within the surrounding landscape.

If built to the maximum building envelope with a height of 16 metres across the entire site, the Council administrative building could result in a relatively large and bulky building in the context of the surrounding character of the surrounding area, particularly noting the nil setback control for commercial development within the Wollondilly Development Control Plan 2016 (WDCP 2016). However, the development of suitable urban design controls including building storey heights, setbacks (such as the indicative upper level setback to Colden Street), site coverage and landscaping could ensure the proposed building height is suitable for the site by facilitating it’s future redevelopment in a manner that appropriately responds to its surroundings.

With regard to view loss, it is noted that a view analysis was included within the Urban Design Report prepared by e8urban and includes key views including:

·       Corner of Colden Street and Menangle Street looking North

·       Corner of Colden Street and Margaret Street Looking South

·       Menangle Street looking East

·       East Towards the Shire Hall from Menangle Street

·       North through the Shire Hall and current council offices.

This view analysis details the impact of the concept design on both the existing and emerging site context through the future redevelopment of the site CCCP. The view analysis details that the proposal will have limited impact on views. In particular, the views provided of Wollondilly Shire Hall (I188) and the former Post Office (I185) from Menangle Street show minimal impact. It is noted the proposal will block a portion of the expansive view of the hills to the south of Picton when viewed from the intersection of Colden and Margaret Street. Notwithstanding this, while the proposal is visible the view of the Hill’s ridgeline is maintained and the setback of the upper levels provides for a visual continuation of the street scale.

It is noted the Government Services Building forms a key part of the CCCP which is envisaged to be developed over a staged period until 2036 commensurate with the growth of the Shire. The building would accommodate up to 400 council administrative staff. The CCCP will re-focus the centre of Picton and provide vitality and viability to the town centre. Accordingly, the redevelopment of this site as part of the wider CCCP requires a building of sufficient scale to accommodate its proposed future use and to bring major regenerative benefits to the centre and strengthen Picton as the community, cultural, civic centre of Wollondilly Shire.

The Urban Design Report does not detail the heights of adjoining buildings within the CCCP. These buildings are depicted as two storey buildings, which when applying standard floor to ceiling heights for commercial buildings, would appear consistent with the 9m height control. Notwithstanding, it is considered that the applicant should clarify the building heights proposed across the entire precinct through more detailed controls.

 

On the basis of the above assessment the preparation of a site-specific DCP which includes the adjoining CCCP is recommended. Subject to the preparation of this DCP it is considered the increase in height at this location would not harm the prevailing and emerging character of the centre of Picton. This approach would ensure the proposed increase in height is contextually managed and planned with regards to the adjacent buildings and surrounding built form.

 

Heritage

Matters Raised

Council’s Sustainable Growth Team and the Social and Health Impact Assessment Working Group identified the need to ensure the proposed building height does not adversely impact on neighbouring heritage items or the character of the Picton Town Centre Conservation Area. In particular, Council’s Sustainable Growth Team stated the following:

The PP needs to ensure that the height proposed would not lead to a building dominating or detracting from the heritage items in the Picton Town Centre (in particular the Post Office and Former Bank and Coachhouse) or impact the character of the Heritage Conservation Area. Appropriate measures, such as DCP controls, would also need to be in place to manage bulk and scale of a future building.

Heritage NSW advised that the PP will not have a direct physical or visual impact on any heritage items listed on the State Heritage Register and/or State significant historic archaeology. However, Heritage NSW noted the mitigation methods outlined in the Heritage Impact Statement (HIS) comprising built form controls relating to use, setbacks, scale and articulation are appropriate and should inform the detailed design stage.

GML Heritage were engaged to undertake an independent technical review of heritage matters in the HIS prepared by GBA Heritage that was submitted with the PP. In particular, this review focussed on the proposed effect of the increased building height on the heritage significance of the HCA and items in the vicinity. A copy of the GML Heritage Review is provided at Attachment [5].

In summary, GML Heritage concluded that while the proposed height increase does not in and of itself create a direct physical impact on Picton’s heritage significance. it would establish a new height control that will give rise to impacts on heritage significance of varying degrees.

GML therefore made the following recommendations if Gateway determination is achieved:

·       Council’s consistency and compliance with the Wollondilly LEP’s should be demonstrated including the aim ‘to protect, conserve and enhance the built, landscape and Aboriginal cultural heritage’, and section 5.10 Heritage Conservation to conserve archaeological sites and Aboriginal objects and places of heritage significance.

·       Council should adopt a Due Diligence to the protection of Aboriginal objects, this would be a reasonable and practical measure to determine whether the proposal will potentially harm an Aboriginal object and enable measures to be planned for to mitigate that harm. Such assessment would be consistent with Council’s controls (see DCP 2016 Vol 1 Aboriginal Heritage 7.1(c)) and the requirements under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974.

·       Undertake an historical archaeological assessment given the historical development of the subject site and to inform the planning, management, and mitigation of any identified potential impacts on known or potential relics.

·       The description from the Heritage Inventory states ‘the Picton Urban Conservation Area contains a number of different elements which are harmoniously combined and framed by the surrounding steep hills’. If the height limit of the subject site is increased any new built form should sit harmoniously within this historic landscape setting, rather than visually competes with and dominating the ‘frame’. Compliance with the LEP heritage conservation objective to conserve the heritage significance of heritage items and heritage conservation areas, including associated settings and views will be required. Views to and from heritage items will need to be considered as part of any development on the subject site if the PP proceeds.

·       Council could consider a review of the Picton Heritage Conservation Area and subject to the findings of the assessment and review amend the HCA boundaries to ensure the heritage significance of the area is grounded in up to date assessments.

·       Council should also consider identifying contributory items within the Heritage Conservation Area to provide more certainty for owners and to ensure heritage areas are managed consistently and equitably.

·       The GBA HIS assesses the Masonic Hall as satisfying one or more of the assessment criteria for heritage listing as an item of environmental heritage at local level. Given this, Council should demonstrate best practice heritage management and consider formally listing this building. As part of the PP Council should plan to respond to the building in a manner that recognises and respects its assessed heritage significance.

·       The character, scale, form, site materials, colours, and detailing of any proposed development to a new increased permissible height limit of 16 metres will need careful consideration if it is be consistent with the LEP objectives for Heritage Conservation.

·       If the height limit is increased from 9 to 16 metres the limit should only be applied to the area required for built form and every effort should be made to reduce and stay beneath that limit, especially where additional storeys are proposed.

·       Detailed design development will be required to modulate building facades. Podiums and upper storey setbacks will also need careful planning and detailed design resolution especially to the north, south and east to mitigate impacts on heritage significance.

It is also noted that the GML report states that the Masonic Hall satisfies one or more of the assessment criteria for listing as an item of environmental heritage in the LEP. It therefore recommends that Council consider formally listing this building. Whilst this recommendation is noted, it is beyond the scope of the subject planning proposal and not further considered in this report. It is also noted that the recommended site specific DCP would include controls to ensure the future Government Services Building is designed in a manner that recognises and respects the Masonic Hall.

Assessment

The site does not include any items of heritage significance. However, it is located within Precinct 1 (Commercial Centre) of the Picton Conservation Area (PCA), which is identified as item C2 in Schedule 5 of the WLEP 2011. There are several individually listed heritage items in the vicinity of the site, including:

·       Former Catholic Presbytery, 7 Colden Street (item I168);

·       Former Wollondilly Shire Hall, 48-60 Menangle Street (item I188 in LEP);

·       St Anthony’s Catholic Church and school hall, 63 Menangle Street (item I187); and

·       Soldiers Memorial School of Arts, 65 Menangle Street (item I190).

With regard to Aboriginal heritage the site is an existing at-grade car park so it is unlikely to be considered an Aboriginal place of heritage significance or contain Aboriginal objects. Notwithstanding, it is recommended that an Aboriginal Due Diligence Assessment be required at DA Stage, as per GML’s advice.

The proposed increase in building height has the potential to adversely impact on the heritage setting and significance of the neighbouring heritage items and the wider conservation area. Furthermore, the HIS prepared by GBA Heritage identifies that the visual character and scale of the adjoining Masonic Hall at 4 Colden Street contributes to the character and streetscape of the wider PCA. This building is therefore also considered within this assessment.

Both Heritage Reports acknowledge the need for careful consideration of the future building design in order to ensure it is consistent with the relevant heritage objectives under clause 5.10 of the WLEP 2011.

Whilst the site is located on the edge of the PCA and it is not located on a main street in the conservation area (Argyle Street or Menangle Street), the increase in height still needs to respect the character of the conservation area.

If developed to the full building envelope, it is considered the proposal would result in a new built form element in the conservation area in terms of scale and bulk and could impact on the setting of the neighbouring heritage items on Colden Street, the Masonic Hall and the former Wollondilly Shire Hall. Accordingly, the design of the building and choice of materials should be appropriate for the setting of the site within the conservation area and developed to a scale that is harmonious with the prevailing character of the conservation area.

The concept building design within the Urban Design Report seeks to mitigate adverse impacts on neighbouring items of heritage significance by transitioning the building height from four to two storeys as it presents to Colden Street. In addition, building articulation including upper floor setbacks at 3rd floor level are illustrated to provide further transition to the neighbouring buildings to the north and south, noting the Masonic Hall adjoins the site to the south.

It is therefore considered design controls should be developed to sensitively manage and mitigate any impact on the setting of neighbouring items of heritage significance. The HIS prepared by GBA Heritage includes the following design recommendations:

·       The increased permissible building height be applicable only to that part of the subject site to be occupied by the proposed Government Services Building;

·       Means of reducing the area and height of the top (fourth) storey of the proposed Government Services Building be further explored;

·       A two storey podium with set-back upper storeys be applied to the east and, insofar as possible, the north and south facades of any future development; and

·       The facades of any future development be articulated so as to achieve greater consistency with the character of the PCA.

It is noted that the Heritage Council of NSW has reviewed and supports these design mitigation measures.

On the basis of the above assessment, it is considered that appropriate design controls can be incorporated into the recommended site specific DCP should be prepared for the site and the wider CCCP. This DCP should contain provisions specifically aimed at ensuring that future development accords with the prevailing and emerging character of the PCA and setting of neighbouring heritage items. This would include controls to modulate the building façades and specify materiality which is appropriate within the Conservation area. Furthermore, podiums and upper storey setbacks should be developed with particular regard to the north, south and east to mitigate impacts on the heritage significance of adjacent buildings and prevailing character of the conservation area.

 

Traffic

Matters Raised

Transport for New South Wales

The PP was referred to TfNSW as part of the preliminary notification undertaken. The matters raised by TfNSW are summarised below:

·       Consideration should be given to the provision of pedestrian refuges to assist pedestrians in crossing the local roads and to encourage mode shift through safe crossing opportunities to access the site.

·       TfNSW recommends a site specific DCP accompanies this planning proposal to set out the access points, service vehicle arrangements and travel demand management measures to guide the assessment of the future development application(s).

 

·       The intersection performance should be modelled to assess the impact of the development on the network in the absence of the Picton Town Centre Transport Plan 2026 network improvements. TfNSW notes that the status of proposed changes to the road network outlined within the Picton Town Centre Transport Plan 2026 are uncommitted/unfunded, as it was prepared “to discuss this plan with elected members and the wider community, with a view to securing support and funding to allow delivery of the plan by 2026”. As these improvements are not funded at this stage, modelling should be conducted to assess and document the impact of the planning proposal on the road network without these improvements in the event they are not delivered.

·       TfNSW requests that the electronic copies of the AIMSUN modelling files (and any model development/calibration and validation report) are provided for our review and comment.

·       Table 12 of the Traffic and Transport Report – Trip rates: The trip rate assumed (presumably vehicle trip rate) for Government Services Building (1.65 vtph AM and 1.28 vtph PM per 100sqm) appears to reflect the average rate for office premises from the former RMS TDT 2013/04a Updated Traffic Surveys. It should be noted that the mode share of the localities surveyed had high public and active transport mode share and were mostly in close walking distance to high frequency heavy rail services in Sydney. It is not expected that these rates would be reflective of the subject locality which has an approximate mode share of 4.74% to public transport for travel to work according to ABS Census data from 2016. TfNSW recommend that a rate is sourced from a comparable site with consideration to mode share and accessibility factors.

·       An appropriate funding mechanism should be in place to help ensure that developer contributions are obtained on an equitable basis for the provision of state and regional transport infrastructure required to support development uplift and future growth in the Picton Town Centre.

A copy of TfNSW’s submission was provided to the applicant who provided a response on 16 December 2020. The applicant’s response was provided to TfNSW which advised that it will provide a further response in early February. At the time of writing this report the response from TfNSW is yet to be received.

GTA Consultants – Peer Review

GTA Consultants (GTA) undertook a traffic and parking peer review of the PP, having regard to the methodology and conclusions of the Traffic and Transport report prepared by SLR Consulting Australia (SLR). The purpose of this review was to objectively consider the impacts of future traffic generation, parking demand and accessibility characteristics of the proposal. A copy of this peer review is provided at Attachment [6].

GTA raised a number of matters for further clarification and a request for additional information was issued to the applicant. On 16 December 2020, a response prepared by SLR was provided (Attachment [7]). This response was then reviewed by GTA (Attachment [8]). The key matters raised through the peer review and ongoing correspondence with the applicant are summarised below, while a detailed overview is provided in Attachment [4].

·       Vehicle Access

·       Parking Rates

·       Parking Requirements and Demands

·       Parking Layout

·       Service Vehicles

·       Trip Generation

·       Intersection Modelling.

The above issues have generally been resolved through additional information provided by the applicant and subsequent review by GTA. On this basis, no fundamental parking or traffic issues remain outstanding at this stage.

Assessment

An assessment of the key traffic and parking matters is provided below. This assessment has primarily focused on the peer review of the PP undertaken by GTA, noting that final comments from TfNSW are outstanding at this stage.

Access and Servicing

Vehicular access to the car park for the Government Services Building will be from Manolis Lane and Colden Street. These locations have been reviewed by GTA and are considered to be acceptable.

The PP does not nominate a location for service vehicles to use. SLR have advised that the future location for service vehicle access will be provided elsewhere within the CCCP.

While not specifically a planning proposal consideration, the ability to service the site needs to be rationalised in the context of the wider CCCP. It is considered that vehicle servicing arrangements can be satisfactorily addressed in the recommended site specific DCP.

Parking

The Traffic and Transport Report prepared by SLR Consulting Australia identifies that the Government Services Building will require 148 car parking spaces. The methodology for calculating this parking demand has been reviewed and is supported by GTA.

The proposal seeks to provide a total of 159 car parking spaces:

·        78 parking spaces within the basement car park of the Government Services Building; and

·        81 additional spaces split between the Council Depot on Margaret Street (34 spaces) and the expansion of the Council Staff car park at Margaret Street (47 spaces).

An excess of 11 car parking spaces is proposed which is considered acceptable as there will be no adverse impact on parking availability or traffic generation. Furthermore, the proposed off-site car parking areas are located within a suitable walking distance of the site (less than 400 metres).

It is considered that parking rates, including accessible, motorbike and bicycle parking, can be satisfactorily addressed in the recommended site specific DCP.

Traffic

GTA have undertaken a review of both the trip generation and intersection modelling provided by SLR and confirmed that the trip generation rates for all land uses within the CCCP are acceptable.

The Traffic and Transport Report prepared by SLR included intersection modelling to determine the traffic impacts arising from the development of the CCCP. This modelling included:

1.     A 2019 base case

2.     A 2036 ‘do minimum’ scenario

3.     A 2036 base case plus development scenario, incorporating the CCCP volumes.

GTA have reviewed this modelling and confirmed that the network is currently (utilising the 2019 base case scenario) performing satisfactorily.

The SLR Report, however, does not test the addition of any of the proposed development volumes under the CCCP against the 2019 scenario. The only scenario tested for additional volumes is the 2036 scenario which assumes the completion of intersection upgrades in the Picton Town Centre identified under the Picton Town Centre Transport Plan 2026. SLR have confirmed that this approach was adopted on the basis that Council has committed to constructing these road upgrades.

 

GTA have advised that the results of the 2036 development scenario indicate satisfactory performance, demonstrating that the network will cope with increases in background traffic volumes together with the CCCP when fully developed. However, the assessment does not confirm if the CCCP can be partially or fully operational at a timeframe before these upgrades are implemented.

Due to this deficiency in the modelling, GTA have recommended that additional modelling be undertaken if it is proposed to open the Government Services Building before the year 2036.

These issues are considered relevant to the DA stage of the Government Services Building rather than the current PP.

It is also noted that issues including access points, service vehicle arrangements and travel demand management measures to guide the assessment of future development applications can be addressed through the recommended site-specific DCP.

 

Flooding

Matters Raised

Council’s Engineering Department reviewed the PP in relation to flooding. The comments received identified that the northern portion of the site is located within the Overland Flood Planning Area associated with a valley system that approximately aligns with Keable Close to the east. Notwithstanding, Council’s Engineering review concluded that:

the subsequent development proposals will need to address the challenges of the flood behaviour at the Site but the increased building height itself does not have any implications from a flood perspective.

Assessment

Whilst it is acknowledged that the site is flood prone land, the PP only seeks to increase the maximum building height at the site from 9 meters to 16 meters and does not propose any built structures at this stage.

The PP is supported by a Preliminary Flood Assessment prepared by WMAwater. This report concludes that the construction of the Government Services Building:

…would have a localised effect on flood behaviour, redirecting the overland flow around the buildings. However, given the relatively shallow depths occurring at the site (less than 100 mm), it is likely that the degree of flood hazard would not be substantially increased elsewhere. An impact assessment would be needed to confirm this assumption, and to ensure that overland flow is not directed into new buildings within the precinct. The flood impact assessment will need to be undertaken in the subsequent stages of this project when proposed designs have been progressed further.

The need for a flood impact assessment at the DA stage is acknowledged and recommended.

The PP and Preliminary Flood Assessment has been reviewed by Council’s Engineering Department. This assessment is supportive of the PP and concludes that the proposed building height increase does not have any implications from a flood perspective.

The PP has been assessed against the relevant Section 9.1 Ministerial Direction relating to Flood Prone Land. The proposal does not rezone the site nor alter the uses that are permitted within the B2 Local Centre zone. As such, the proposal does not permit a significant increase in the development of the site. The PP is therefore consistent with the relevant ministerial direction relating to flood prone land.

On the basis of the above assessment, it is considered that a flood impact assessment would need to be undertaken to support any future DA for the site. In addition, it is recommended that the site specific DCP include appropriate flood planning controls. This may include the establishment of an appropriate freeboard at ground floor level within the site and wider CCCP.

 

Wastewater

Matters Raised

Council

Council’s Health and Regulatory Services Team have advised that at this stage Sydney Water is unable to service the development due to capacity issues at their Picton Sewage Treatment Plant (STP). Capacity issues of Picton’s STP are expected to change over the medium term.

It is also noted that Council will have to undertake significant works to increase the size of the sewer carrier line in Picton. The proposed development will therefore be subject to the availability of Sydney Water’s reticulated sewer. Notwithstanding, Health and Regulatory Services Team concluded that Council should ensure that Sydney Water can provided the necessary wastewater disposal prior to the issue of any Construction Certificate for the works.

Sydney Water

On 26 November 2020 Sydney Water provided comment on the PP. The matters raised in this submission included:

·       The development of the site and wider CCCP will required extension and amplification of the existing wastewater network.

·       The site is within the Picton WRP catchment which currently has no capacity to accept growth beyond what has been previously considered by Sydney Water. It is understood that this is due to a lack of land to support the irrigation of effluent.

·       Development within the Town Centre may need to be delayed until an Effluent Management Strategy for the Picton WRP is finalised and any upgrades to the plant are confirmed. This Strategy was to be completed in the second half of 2020.

Assessment

The above correspondence from Sydney Water was issued to the applicant and the applicant’s response was received on 27 January 2021. This response outlined the correspondence undertaken by the applicant with Sydney Water to date and included two undated planning advice letters from Sydney Water. These letters confirm the Picton WRP is at capacity but also advise that Sydney Water can provide services to the proposed expansion of the CCCP. An extract of this advice is provided below:

Picton Town Centre is currently serviced by Sydney Water. The updated growth number indicates that additional EP has increased from 100 to 158, resulting additional average dry weather flow increase from 0.2 l/s to 0.3 l/s Since it is a minimal dry weather flow increase to WRP, Sydney Water can provide services to proposed expansion based on the following conditions.

·        Health check should be carried out on all new development to ensure that no wet weather flow is discharging into Sydney Water system.

·        The new assets from the development will reduce the current inflow infiltration in the system.

In addition to the above, the applicant also provided a Feasibility Letter from Sydney Water dated 20 May 2020 (Attachment [9]). This letter specifically relates to the Government Services Building rather than the wider CCCP and advises that:

Development within the Town Centre may need to be delayed until the effluent management strategy is finalised and any upgrades to the plant are confirmed. The strategy is due for completion in the second half of 2020 and it is anticipated that upgrades to the plant should be completed by late 2025, subject to Sydney Water funding approvals.

 

 

Based on the above timeline, it is expected that the upgrades with the Picton WTP will be completed by 2025. Should the PP proceed to Gateway, it is considered it would not be finalised until late 2021. A DA for the Government Services Building would then need to be formal lodged and assessed by Council. On this basis, the timeframe of 2025 for the completion of the Picton WTP upgrade works is considered acceptable as it aligns with the delivery of the Government Services Building.

This position is supported by Council’s Health and Regulatory Services Team who advised that Council should ensure that Sydney Water can provide the necessary wastewater disposal prior to the issue of any Construction Certificate for the works.

Given the timeline for the Government Services Building PP it is considered that this matter can be dealt with the DA stage and should not preclude the PP from progressing to Gateway Determination.

 

Wollondilly Local Planning Panel Advice

As required by the ministerial direction issued on 27 September 2018, the proposal was reported to the Wollondilly Local Planning Panel (LPP).

The PP was reported to the LPP at its meeting on 25 February 2021. At the time of the writing of this report the LPP had not met and therefore its comments on the PP will be provided via a separate memo to Council.

 

Consultation

This PP seeks to amend the Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan 2011 (WLEP 2011) by increasing the building height control established for the site under clause 4.3 of the WLEP 2011 from 9m to 16m. The purpose of this amendment is to enable the development of a new Government Services building, which forms part of the wider Wollondilly Shire Cultural, Civic and Community Precinct.

The PP is consistent with Council’s key strategic planning policies and is considered essential to the future redevelopment of the site to accommodate the new Government Services Building and the broader Wollondilly CPPP.

It is therefore recommended that the proposal is recommended for Gateway determination.

However, it is also recommended that the PP is supported by a site specific DCP for the CCCP given the urban design and heritage matters raised in the assessment of the PP. In particular, the site specific DCP should address the following key items:

·       Built Form Design

·       Heritage

·       Landscaping

·       Parking and Access

·       Flooding.

 

Options for Moving Forward

The PP has been prepared in accordance with Section 3.33 of the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act 1979 and the guidelines published by the Department of Planning, Industry & Environment.

 

 

 

The options to be considered by Council are:

1.       Resolve to support the Planning Proposal in the form as described in the Description of Proposal section of this report.

2.       Resolve to support the Planning Proposal subject to the preparation of a site specific DCP for the site and wider CCCP.

3.       Resolve not to support the Planning Proposal. With this option there is no further action to be taken on the Planning Proposal other than to inform the applicant, landowner/s and submitters that the Planning Proposal has not been supported. There are no appeal rights through the Land and Environment Court against Council’s refusal to support the Planning Proposal at this stage of the process.

Option 2 is the recommendation of this report.

 

Financial Implications

Given the preliminary stage of the proposal, no detailed analysis of infrastructure or financial implications for Council has been undertaken. It is noted that a comprehensive assessment of the relevant financial implications to State or regional infrastructure has also not yet occurred.

 

Attachments

1.       Copy of Picton Government Services Building Planning Proposal  

2.       Assessment against State and Local Legislation and Planning documents  

3.       Agency Submission Summary  

4.       Consultation with Internal Council Staff and External Consultants  

5.       Heritage Review - GML Heritage  

6.       Traffic and Parking Peer Review - GTA Consultants  

7.       Response to Traffic and Transport Matters – SLR Consulting Australia  

8.       Response to Comments – GTA Consultants  

9.       Sydney Water Feasibility Letter dated 20 May 2020  

10.     Minutes Local Planning Panel - 25 February 2021 (under separate cover)    


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

12.6       Wollondilly Local Housing Strategy - Outcome of Public Exhibition and Finalisation

File Number:           12275#172

 

Executive Summary

This report presents the outcome of the public exhibition of the Wollondilly Local Housing Strategy and seeks Council support to adopt the Local Housing Strategy.

The Local Housing Strategy has been prepared as part of the Accelerated LEP Review Program and in accordance with the NSW Government’s Local Housing Strategy Guideline and Template.

It provides a 20 year vision for housing across the Shire.  In doing so, the Strategy recognises that Wilton Growth Centre will provide over 90% of local housing and that additional local growth throughout the Shire is often limited by a complex mix of infrastructure, bushfire, flooding, mining and other environmental constraints.

The Local Housing Strategy provides Council with clear direction on managing growth so that it is sustainable and supports liveability. A key recommendation is the establishment of a local housing monitor to support planning and decision making on housing development, and enable monitoring and review of the Strategy.

35 submissions were received in response to the public exhibition, including 26 community stakeholder submissions and nine public agency submissions.  Some of the key issues raised in the submissions included:

·        Advocating for either an increase or decrease in growth with many submissions advocating for rezoning of individual parcels of land.

·        Advocating for further action regarding affordable housing.

·        Identifying the need for further collaboration around infrastructure delivery.

·        Comments with regard to character, environmental concerns, heritage and design.

A number of amendments have been made to the draft strategy in response to the submissions.

Recommendation

That Council:

1.    Adopts the Wollondilly Local Housing Strategy.

2.    Submits the Wollondilly Local Housing Strategy to the Department of Planning, Industry & Environment for approval in accordance with the Department’s Local Housing Strategy Guideline.

3.    Authorises the Chief Executive Officer to make any minor amendments to the Wollondilly Local Housing Strategy arising from the Department’s assurance process so long as they do not change the overall principles of the Strategy.

4.    Notifies anyone who made submissions regarding the Draft Wollondilly Local Housing Strategy of Council’s decision.

5.    Notes that if further significant changes are required to the Wollondilly Local Housing Strategy, these will be reported to a future meeting of Council.

6.    Repeals the Wollondilly Growth Management Strategy.

 

 

 

 

 

Report

Background (The Accelerated LEP Review Program)

In response to a number of planning related announcements and legislative changes introduced by the NSW Government, Wollondilly along with other Councils within the Greater Sydney Region are required to undertake a review of their local environmental plans (LEPs).

The purpose of the LEP Review Program is to update the Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan 2011 (WLEP 2011) to give effect to the Western City District Plan through upfront strategic planning.

The LEP Review Program is being undertaken over six phases and includes seven main project deliverables as follows:

1.    Submission of LEP Review Report (completed in November 2018);

2.    Submission of Project Plan (completed in January 2019);

3.    Submission of draft Local Strategic Planning Statement (completed in September 2019)

4.    Completion of Local Housing Strategy and specialist reports;

5.    Submission of final Local Strategic Planning Statement (LSPS) (completed in February 2020);

6.    Submission of Planning Proposal to the Department for a Gateway determination (completed in December 2019); and

7.    Submission of draft LEP to the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment to make the plan (completed in August 2020).

This report relates to project deliverable 4.

Wollondilly is one of 13 priority Councils that were selected on the basis of their opportunity to bring forward housing supply and housing diversity by updating local environmental plans to reflect District Plans. The priority Councils include high growth Councils in the Western City Deal.

As a priority Council, Wollondilly was offered, and signed a funding agreement with the NSW government to receive up to $2.5 million to fund this review in an accelerated timeframe.

The tight timeframes under the accelerated program heavily influenced the study preparation process, however, the availability of funding has provided a significant opportunity to undertake strategic planning work that would otherwise not have been possible.

The process for prioritising matters to be covered by the specialist studies and appointing consultants to undertake the work was outlined in a report to Council on 16 December 2019.

 

Strategic Planning Framework and the role of the Strategies

The Local Housing Strategy is one of six planning led strategies prepared as part of the Accelerated LEP Review Program. The other strategies include:

·    Rural Lands Strategy

·    Centres Strategy

·    Employment Lands Strategy

·    Scenic Landscape Study and Management Strategy

·    Urban Tree Canopy Plan & Landscape Strategy

The studies have been prepared by external consultants with technical expertise and demonstrated experience for the relevant study matters.

The strategies, once finalised, will establish the high level direction over the next 20 years and help inform future land use planning for Wollondilly, including updates to Wollondilly 2040 Local Strategic Planning Statement, Create Wollondilly Council’s Community Strategic Plan, and amendments to the local environmental plan, development control Plan. In particular, the strategies will collectively inform future work to identify the local growth needs of the community and future land use opportunities.

They have been prepared on the basis of Wollondilly 2040 Council’s local strategic planning statement and the Western City District Plan.

They will also contribute towards:

·    Establishing the local growth needs for Wollondilly,

·    Future amendments to policies that control and guide development such as the Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan 2011 and the development control plan,

·    Inform land use planning decisions such as planning proposals to rezone land,

·    Inform decisions on community assets including streets, buildings, parks and reserves, and

·    Enable advocating strongly to Federal and State government for the interests of Wollondilly.

The Strategies have been informed by an analysis of local context and evidence.

In adopting the strategies Council would be endorsing the high level principles that will inform decisions on land use planning.

The Strategies also include actions. The role of the actions is to provide measures or steps to focus the strategies implementation. For the most part, the actions identify areas of further work to understand the finer grain detail of opportunities for action. Future projects would then be presented to Council prior to implementation. For example, an action recommending investigation of amendments to the local environmental plan would need to go through the Gateway process, including a public exhibition, prior to implementation.   Once adopted, the next step will be to prioritise the actions across the strategies for progression over the coming years.

The Road Map provided at Attachment 1 seeks to demonstrate how the strategies interlink moving forward, the range of other considerations that may be relevant, how the level of detail becomes finer grain as the strategies are implemented and the overall aim to deliver on Wollondilly’s 20 year land use vision for an enviable lifestyle.

Although the strategies have been prepared on the basis of a 20 year timeframe they will need to be reviewed regularly to ensure they remain responsive and relevant. They provide a solid basis to inform land use planning decisions now and can be reviewed and strengthened as resources become available.

 

Wollondilly Local Housing Strategy

The Local Housing Strategy establishes the long-term housing vision for Wollondilly LGA. It has been prepared in accordance with the NSW Government’s Local Housing Strategy Guideline and Template.

The housing vision for Wollondilly LGA is:

“Housing in Wollondilly is diverse and provides appropriate housing options for all households at all stages of life and supports affordable living across the LGA. We will live in connected, liveable neighbourhoods that are supported by infrastructure and services and are in the right locations; reducing impacts on and celebrating our natural environment and scenic landscape.”

In summarising housing opportunities presented in the Local Housing Strategy, the 20-year housing supply forecasts identified provide a time profile of housing to be delivered across Wollondilly LGA to 2041. These forecasts (by id.), are developed with a sound understanding of sites zoned and planned for housing and the timing of housing delivery based on the level of development activity. The forecasts provide a consistent basis for future planning activities across Council. Wollondilly LGA is forecasted to deliver an additional 16,829 houses by 2041, of which over 90% will be provided by the Wilton Growth Area. The Local Housing Strategy confirms that there is sufficient land currently zoned for housing or planned housing in Wollondilly.

Importantly, the Local Housing Strategy notes that Wollondilly is part of the Metropolitan Rural Area (MRA) which aims to protect and enhance the character of existing towns, villages and rural lands.

In addition to the MRA, opportunities for local growth is impacted in many localities across the shire by flood and bushfire risk, infrastructure constraints relating to water and transport and the presence of high value ecological communities. The Local Housing Strategy confirms that additional local growth will be considered, on merit, with a preference to localities that are already somewhat serviced by existing infrastructure and where additional local growth will contribute to the economic and social viability of a town. Localities to be prioritised include Picton, Tahmoor and Thirlmere.

Four directions will guide sustainable growth in both greenfield and infill areas that align with the objective of providing affordable and diverse housing that is supported by infrastructure; aligns with community expectations; and protects and enhances the local character of Wollondilly, these are:

·     Provide housing in areas that are adequately serviced by infrastructure; Growth is appropriately serviced by infrastructure

·     Promote housing diversity and affordability; Diversity in housing and tenure to cater for all stages of life, meeting the needs of the current and future residents of Wollondilly

·     Plan and coordinate growth for emerging communities; New housing in Growth Areas is planned and co-ordinated with adequate provision of hard and social infrastructure, and access to services

·     Build sustainable and resilient communities that protect and celebrate our environment; Housing is safe, built to a high quality and is located away from areas at high risk to flooding and bushfires and respects and enhances the local character of the Shire.

Key recommendations of the Local Housing Strategy include the development and maintenance of a local housing monitor to track and report on delivery of housing which can inform infrastructure planning and importantly, updating the Wollondilly Social Planning Strategy to identify social and community infrastructure needs to support growth. The strategy also acknowledges the continued need for collaboration with key state government agencies with regard to infrastructure planning and provision.

 

Affordable Housing Short Paper

The Local Housing Strategy is supported by and was exhibited with an Affordable Housing Short Paper. The Department’s Local Housing Strategy Guideline and Template require commentary on local affordable housing, and the Short Paper satisfies this requirement.

The Affordable Housing Short Paper provides a summary of the analysis on affordable housing demand and supply in Wollondilly, including the key indicators for affordability. The intent of the Short Paper is to provide baseline data on housing affordability across the shire, and in doing so, the paper introduced the concept of inclusionary zoning policies for new development in growth areas and suggests that Wollondilly may wish to further explore this concept when planning for additional social and sub-market housing in Wollondilly in the future.

It is also noted that Wollondilly along with other Western City District Councils and Blacktown City Council have partnered to prepare a Western City District Affordable Housing Strategy. Wollondilly’s contribution has been funded from the Accelerated LEP Review Program to meet its commitments under the Western City District Plan.

Supporting a greater mix and diversity in housing types and sizes also provides more housing options for households of different sizes and income levels to find housing that is appropriate and affordable. The Affordable Housing Short Paper will be utilised in Council’s involvement in the Western Sydney Planning Partnership’s Regional Council’s Affordable Housing Project Advisory Group discussions.

 

Greater Sydney Region Plan (Region Plan) and Western City District Plan 2018 (District Plan)

The Greater Sydney Commission’s A Metropolis of Three Cities – the Greater Sydney Region Plan and the Western City District Plan were finalised in March 2018. The Region Plan aligns land use, transport and infrastructure planning to reshape Greater Sydney as three unique but connected cities. The Western City District Plan along with the four other district plans guide the implementation of the Region Plan at a District Level.

Action 11 under Planning Priority W5 Providing housing supply, choice and affordability, with access to jobs, services and public transport requires Wollondilly, along with other Councils in the Western Parkland City, to prepare a local housing strategy which address the following:

·     The delivery of five-year and 6-10 year housing supply targets,

·     Capacity to contribute to longer term 20-year strategic housing target for the District,

·     The housing strategy requirements outlined in the Greater Sydney Region Plan

Creating capacity for more housing in the right locations

Supporting planning and delivery of growth areas and planned precincts

Supporting investigation of opportunities for alignment with investment in regional and district infrastructure

Supporting the role of centres.

 

Wollondilly 2040 Local Strategic Planning Statement

Wollondilly 2040 is Council’s Local Strategic Planning Statement (LSPS) outlining a 20 year land use vision for Wollondilly. It will guide the implementation of the District Plan at a local level. It is also required to be consistent with the community strategic plan.

Action 5.1 under Planning Priority 5 Providing housing options that meet local needs and match the local character of towns and villages prioritises the preparation of a local housing strategy.

The preparation of a local housing strategy is also recognised in Wollondilly 2040 as contributing to Planning Priority 3 Establishing a framework for sustainable managed growth.

 

Consultation

The six draft LEP Review Program draft Strategies were concurrently publicly exhibited for an extended period (40 days) from 24 August 2020 until 2 October 2020.

The exhibition documents were published on Council’s engagement platform, ‘Your Say Wollondilly’, along with supporting information including background technical documents, summary document and frequently asked questions.

The exhibition was undertaken in accordance with the Wollondilly Community Participation Plan and stakeholder and community engagement were encouraged through:

·     Council’s website,

·     Public notice in local newspapers

·     Hardcopies of the draft strategies and background technical documents were available for inspection at Wollondilly Library and councils’ administration building

·     Notification letters sent to relevant public agencies

·     Notification letters sent to adjoining Council’s

·     Written notification to everyone who made a submission to either of the following recent engagements:

LEP Review Program Stage 1 Planning Proposal

Wollondilly 2040 Local Strategic Planning Statement

·     Written notification to a number of relevant special interest groups, for the Local Housing Strategy this included;

Shelter NSW

Community Housing Industry Association

NSW Council of Social Services

Argyle Housing

Property Council of Australia

Urban Development Institute of Australia

·     Written notification to all proponents who have a planning proposal submitted with Council

·     Email notification to database of interested stakeholders

·     Email notification to all members of Council’s relevant Community advisory Committees (CACs)

·     In addition, where requested, presentations to CACs including the Rural Industry CAC and the Minerals, Energy Resources, environment and Waste CAC

·     Promotion through Council’s shire wide community newsletter (Spring Edition)

·     Promotion through a series of coordinated Facebook posts

·     Presentation to Picton Chamber of Commerce

The need to socially distance and protect communities during the ongoing COVID-19 situation meant that it was not possible for face-to-face engagement during the exhibition period, for example, in the form of drop-in sessions. However Council staff remained available and facilitated a number of enquiries.

In response to the public exhibition 69 submissions were received. Consisting of:

·     61 community and stakeholder submissions and

·     10 public agency submissions

·     1 submission from a Community Advisory Committee (CAC).

As the strategies were exhibited concurrently some submitters provided comments on more than one strategy within the one submission whereas other submitters made separate submissions on individual strategies.

The split of comments from submissions across the strategies was as follows:

 

 

No. of submissions that provided comment on each strategy by stakeholder type

 

 

Community & Stakeholder

Public Agency

CAC

Draft Strategies

Local Housing

26

9

-

Rural Lands

23

7

1

Employment Lands

13

5

-

Centres

7

5

-

Scenic & Cultural Landscapes

13

5

1

Urban Tree Canopy & Landscape Strategy

7

5

-

 

For example, while only 1 submission was received from a Community Advisory Committee the submission provided comments on 2 of the draft strategies.

There were a number of themes that were shared across feedback on the strategies. These included:

·     Expectations around the role and implementation of actions

·     Interrelationships and consistency across strategies

·     Timing and prioritisation of actions

·     Strategies as opportunities to achieve many different things

These common themes are discussed in greater detail at Attachment 2.

 

Community & Stakeholder Consultation

The community and stakeholder submissions were received from a range of groups and included individual, special interest groups, industry associations and consultants representing landowner interests. A number of late submissions were also received and have been considered.

The key issues raised in the submissions include:

·     Submissions advocating for either an increase or decrease in growth with many submissions advocating for the rezoning of individual parcels of land.

·     Advocating for further action regarding affordable housing.

·     The need for further collaboration around infrastructure delivery.

·     Comments with regard to character, environmental concerns, heritage and design.

A detailed assessment of the submissions is provided at Attachment 3.

A number of amendments have been made to the draft Strategy in response to Community & Stakeholder Submissions.

Further comment is provided on the feedback either due to the interest from the public exhibition or to explain proposed changes to the planning proposal in response to the exhibition.

 

Consultation with Public Agencies & Adjoining Councils

Submissions were received from the following public agencies:

·     Department of Primary Industries (Fisheries)

·     Environment, Energy and Science Group (DPIE)

·     Heritage NSW

·     NSW Rural Fire Service

·     School Infrastructure NSW

·     Subsidence Advisory NSW

·     Sydney Water

·     Transport for NSW

·     Water NSW

A detailed assessment of the public agency submissions is provided at Attachments 3.

The feedback did not result in any significant changes to the Local Housing Strategy.

 

Planning System Acceleration Program (Legacy Planning Proposals)

Towards the end of last year, the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment sought to accelerate the finalisation of long standing planning proposals as part of the Planning System Acceleration Program. Wollondilly Council received advice from the Department in late December 2020 that nine (9) of Council’s long standing planning proposals were considered under the legacy program and were deemed not to proceed.

The Local Housing Strategy was amended in January 2021 to reflect the discontinuation of the nine (9) planning proposals, as advised by the Department. This included the removal of the proposed lots associated with the nine (9) discontinued planning proposals, and the adjustment of housing forecasts accordingly. As over 90% of housing over the next 20 years will be delivered through Wilton Growth Centre, the removal of approximately 800 proposed local growth lots (through outcomes of the Acceleration Program) does not change the intent or outcomes of the Local Housing Strategy.

 

NSW Government Endorsement

The NSW Government’s Local Housing Strategy Guideline requires Council Local Housing Strategies to be endorsed by the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE). This is to ensure a high level of quality and consistency across the State.

On 12 November 2020 the Department advised it had developed a collaborative process to ensure a rigorous assessment against the requirements outlined in the Local Housing Strategy Guideline. The process will involve the Department seeking advice from other State agencies, including the Greater Sydney Commission and Transport for NSW, and then working with Council to resolve any issues prior to proceeding to approval. However, further advice is still to be provided on this process, including a clear timetable and steps.

Subject to Council’s endorsement, the Strategy will be forwarded to DPIE for consideration and approval.

 

CONCLUSION

Following the public exhibition a number of refinements have been made to the Local Housing Strategy in response to submissions received from the community, public agencies and other stakeholders and an internal review of the documents.

In summary, these include:

·        A number of minor amendments across the strategies to improve consistency and to remove any irreconcilable conflicts.

·        Minor text amendments and mapping corrections across the strategies to enhance the strategies (for example to reflect other considerations) and correct anomalies.

·        Minor adjustments to action wording, where relevant, so that it is clearer that these are matters for further investigation and consideration, and reduce the likelihood to be misinterpreted as decisions.

·        Inclusion of a table within the Local Housing Strategy to identify current and projected population increases for the towns and villages to illustrate where population growth is expected, and contextualise the growth relative to the existing population in those centres.

·        Inclusion of a new action to investigate options for providing affordable housing in Wollondilly following the completion of the Regional Affordable Housing Study.

·        Updates to reflect the outcome of DPIE’s Planning System Acceleration Program and the determination of nine legacy planning proposals not to proceed.

The draft strategy has been updated and the strategy proposed for adoption is provided at Attachment 4.

The proposed refinements are considered to strengthen the strategies and do not change the high level approach or principles that will be established.

It is recommended that Council support the Local Housing Strategy as it will:

·        Provide a sound evidence base to inform a review of Wollondilly 2040 Local Strategic Planning Statement, Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan 2011, and the Wollondilly Development Control Plan 2016;

·        Provide a sound evidence base to inform land use planning decisions, this includes the consideration of development applications and planning proposals. The absence of these strategies presents a risk for Council;

·        Represent a significant investment for Council in planning for the future needs of the Shire and delivering on the vision of ‘an enviable lifestyle’;

·        Provide clear direction in terms of the steps required for implementation; and

·        Provide a robust basis to inform land use planning decision and can be reviewed and strengthened into the future as resources become available.

In adopting the Local Housing Strategy, it is also recommended that Council repeals the Growth Management Strategy 2011. The new Strategy provides a clear position for growth moving forward.

 

Financial Implications

Funding for this project has been available through the Accelerated LEP Review Program subject to contractual conditions.

Funding under the Accelerated LEP Review Program was only available until 31 December 2020. Any work conducted on LEP review strategies post December will need to be carried out within the existing operational budget.

Moving forward, actions arising from the Local Housing Strategy along with the other strategies will be prioritised and funding secured through the Operational budget or grants.

 

Attachments

1.       Road Map for Progressing Plannind led LEP Review Program Strategies  

2.       Common themes raised across strategies and stakeholders  

3.       Table summarising feedback on the Draft Wollondilly Local Housing Strategy  

4.       Final Wollondilly Local Housing Strategy    


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

12.7       Notification of Bingara Gorge No. 2 Planning Agreement

File Number:           12275#173

 

Executive Summary

The existing Bingara Gorge Planning Agreement was executed on 3 November 2007, which provides net community benefit in line with the original proposal for 1,165 lots. There have been separate discussions between Council staff and Lendlease Communities Pty Ltd (Lendlease) regarding the additional 635 lots since concept approval was granted by the Land & Environment Court on 30 August 2016, taking the development yield of Bingara Gorge to 1,800 Residential lots.

In October last year, Lendlease made an offer to enter into a Voluntary Planning Agreement (VPA). Council approval is now sought to publicly notify the draft VPA.

Recommendation

That Council:

1.       Receives and notes this report;

2.       Delegates authority to the Chief Executive Officer to approve minor amendments to the final Planning Agreement and thereafter publicly notify the Planning Agreement; and

3.       Receives a further report advising notification outcomes.

 

Report

An Offer and Draft Planning Agreement for land in Bingara Gorge were made to Council by Lendlease.

The Bingara Gorge Planning Agreement (the VPA) was executed on 3 November 2007. This voluntary planning agreement applies to and from the 1,166th to 1,800th residential lot that will be created under the Concept Approval and includes contributions that will be vested in the Council and works that will be vested in Community Association DP270536.

Description of VPA Offer

The table below summarises the Development Contributions offer in the draft VPA.

Development Contribution

Value in Offer

Monetary Contributions towards roadways, share ways, Sports fields, community liaison officer, Community Facilities in the Wilton Growth Area and

$6,457,580

Monetary Contributions towards Bingara Gorge Homestead restoration.

$1,125,000

Dedication of Land for roads

$188,300 (753 sqm)

Dedication of Land for Bingara Gorge Homestead.

$940,000 (2,350 sqm)

Roadworks including new oval road and widening of part of Fairways Drive.

$4,300,000

Local Open Space Parks, inc dog park and skate park.

$16,070,000

Other Benefits (Maintenance)

$3,370,000

Total

$32,450,880

 

 

The Homestead

 

This offer makes reference to Council’s Notice of Motion of 20 October 2020, to investigate bringing Condell Park Homestead (at Bingara Gorge, Wilton) into Council ownership. It is also noted that Lendlease foreshadowed a Voluntary Planning Agreement offer to dedicate the Homestead to Council and to make payment of $1.25M for Council to undertake all building restoration and embellishment works.

 

It is considered that there is community benefit in bringing Condell Park Homestead into Council ownership as it secures an item of historical significance in public hands and enables Council to preserve and upgrade the site for community benefit. However it is also noted that there are a significant number of due diligence issues that need to be worked through if the Council is inclined to bring the homestead in to Council’s ownership. There is no capital funding beyond the monetary contribution from Lendlease, and there is no operational budget allocated to the operation of the homestead in any capacity. At this early stage and based in the minimal information available, it is estimated these issues identified for investigation may bring the capital cost to greatly more than the cost offer.

 

Council will have to investigate full capital and life cycle (operation) costs, to ensure all costs covering works, subdivision, full costs of environmental surrounds, car park considerations, universal access, fire safety and other building compliance upgrade costs, Land Title implications (including, Community Association obligations), land classification, environmental study/reports (including land and building contamination), DA documentations, plans and report preparations, statutory declarations, probity planning and third party assessment, services being connected such as water, sewage, power, phone/internet connections, building fit out and specifications costs, land transfer conveyancing fees including payment of legal fees and disbursements to establish the land transfer and all other legal advice pertaining to the proposal.

Consultation

The Environmental Planning Assessment Act 1979 and Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation 2000 requires a draft VPA and Explanatory Note to be notified for a period not less than 28 days.  A future report will be prepared for Council on submissions received during the Notification process.

It is advised that should any changes to the draft VPA occur following Notification, that this will necessitate the VPA having to be re-notified for at least another 28 days.

Should Council resolve to publicly exhibit the Planning Agreement, a further report will be brought to Council following notification for Council to consider exercising its plan making powers if it is satisfied that suitable arrangements have been made in respect of local infrastructure required to support the development.

Financial Implications

The benefits offered in the draft VPA total $32,450,880 (or $51,103 per lot). Section 7.11 Development Contributions under Wollondilly Contributions Plan 2020 would equate to $17,616,170 (or $27,742 per lot).

There is currently no identified funding source for the capital shortfall for the Homestead restorations nor for future operational expenses. However it is considered that restoration of such a building is likely to be attractive to numerous grant programs in the future.

Attachments

Nil


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

12.8       Wollondilly Centres Strategy - Outcome of Public Exhibition and Finalisation

File Number:           12275#175

 

Executive Summary

This report presents the outcome of the public exhibition of the Draft Wollondilly Centres Strategy, and seeks Council support to adopt the Centres Strategy.

The Centres Strategy has been prepared as part of the Accelerated LEP Review Program. It considers the role and function of each commercial and retail precinct, and establishes key principles needed for each of our centres to become vibrant, sustainable and better ‘places’ to support the population.

12 submissions were received in response to the public exhibition; including 7 community and stakeholder submissions and 5 public agency submissions.

A number of amendments have been made to the draft strategy in response to the submissions.

Recommendation

That Council:

1.    Adopts the Wollondilly Centres Strategy.

2.    Writes to the Department of Planning, Industry & Environment with a request to endorse the Wollondilly Centres Strategy.

3.    Notifies anyone who made submissions regarding the Draft Centres Strategy of Council’s decision.

 

Report

Background (The Accelerated LEP Review Program)

In response to a number of planning related announcements and legislative changes introduced by the NSW Government, Wollondilly along with other Councils within the Greater Sydney Region, is required to undertake a review of the local environmental plan (LEPs).

The purpose of the LEP Review Program is to update the Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan 2011 (WLEP 2011) to give effect to the Western City District Plan through upfront strategic planning.

The LEP Review Program is being undertaken over six phases and includes seven main project deliverables as follows:

1.       Submission of LEP Review Report (completed in November 2018);

2.       Submission of Project Plan (completed in January 2019);

3.       Submission of draft Local Strategic Planning Statement (completed in September 2019)

4.       Completion of Local Housing Strategy and specialist reports;

5.       Submission of final Local Strategic Planning Statement (LSPS) (completed in February 2020);

6.       Submission of Planning Proposal to the Department for a Gateway determination (completed in December 2019); and

7.       Submission of draft LEP to the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment to make the plan (completed in August 2020).

This report relates to project deliverable 4.

Wollondilly is one of 13 priority Councils that were selected on the basis of their opportunity to bring forward housing supply and housing diversity by updating local environmental plans to reflect District Plans. The priority Councils include high growth Councils in the Western City Deal.

As a priority Council, Wollondilly was offered, and signed a funding agreement with the NSW government to receive up to $2.5 million to fund this review in an accelerated timeframe.

The tight timeframes under the accelerated program heavily influenced the study preparation process, however, the availability of funding has provided a significant opportunity to undertake strategic planning work that would otherwise not have been possible.

The process for prioritising matters to be covered by the specialist studies and appointing consultants to undertake the work was outlined in a report to Council on 16 December 2019.

 

Strategic Planning Framework and the role of the Strategies

The Centres Strategy is one of six planning led strategies prepared as part of the Accelerated LEP Review Program. The other strategies include:

·        Local Housing Strategy

·        Rural Lands Strategy

·        Employment Lands Strategy

·        Scenic Landscape Study and Management Strategy

·        Urban Tree Canopy Plan & Landscape Strategy.

The studies have been prepared by external consultants with technical expertise and demonstrated experience for the relevant study matters.

The strategies, once finalised, will establish the high level direction over the next 20 years and inform future land use planning for Wollondilly, including updates to Wollondilly 2040 Local Strategic Planning Statement, Create Wollondilly Council’s Community Strategic Plan, and amendments to the local environmental plan, development control Plan. In particular, the strategies will collectively inform future work to identify the local growth needs of the community and future land use opportunities.

They have been prepared on the basis of Wollondilly 2040 Council’s local strategic planning statement and the Western City District Plan.

They will also contribute towards:

·        Establishing the local growth needs for Wollondilly

·        Future amendments to policies that control and guide development such as the Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan 2011 and the development control plan

·        Inform land use planning decisions such as planning proposals to rezone land

·        Inform decisions on community assets including streets, buildings, parks and reserves

·        Enable advocating strongly to Federal and State government for the interests of Wollondilly.

The Strategies have been informed by an analysis of local context and evidence. The Centres Strategy has been informed by the preparation of the Background and Baseline Information Report. This background technical document establishes the background, context and analysis of the evidence.

In adopting the strategies Council would be endorsing the high level principles that will inform decisions on land use planning.

 

 

The Strategies also include actions. The role of the actions is to provide measures or steps to focus the strategies implementation. For the most part, the actions identify areas of further work to understand the finer grain detail of opportunities for action. Future projects would then be presented to Council prior to implementation. For example, an action recommending investigation of amendments to the local environmental plan would need to go through the Gateway process, including a public exhibition, prior to implementation.   Once adopted, the next step will be to prioritise the actions across the strategies for progression over the coming years.

The Road Map provided at Attachment 1 seeks to demonstrate how the strategies interlink moving forward, the range of other considerations that may be relevant, how the level of detail becomes finer grain as the strategies are implemented and the overall aim to deliver on Wollondilly’s 20 year land use vision for an enviable lifestyle.

Although the strategies have been prepared on the basis of a 20 year timeframe they will need to be reviewed regularly to ensure they remain responsive and relevant. They provide a solid basis to inform land use planning decisions now and can be reviewed and strengthened as resources become available.

 

Wollondilly Centres Strategy

The purpose of the Centres Strategy is to provide the key principles for Centres and make specific recommendations for ‘Priority Centres’ to inform decisions on land use, policy, consultation, public works and other actions for those Centres where resources, further studies and works should be focused in the short term.

The Centres Strategy identifies ‘opportunities’ for Centre improvements within overarching broader principles for future planning. Specific opportunities/actions have been aligned with these broader principles to prioritise and implement the desired outcomes for Centres for the next two decades.

The Centres Strategy has been informed by a detailed and comprehensive Centres Study - Background and Baseline Information Report which provides the background and broader context of the Shire’s Centres, as well as providing a series of individual reports giving the history, current status and recommended opportunities for sustaining each settlement area in Wollondilly. Overall, the Study looked at how Centres in Wollondilly could perform better for their communities including:

·        How to improve vitality and sustainability in Centres.

·        Shifting from the current over-reliance on function (over form) to planning for adaptable buildings, mixed uses and dynamic spaces.

·        Expanding the settings and opportunities for business within and adjacent to Centres.

·        Expanding the settings for mixed density and adaptable buildings as dynamic and resilient support for Centre growth and/or Centre stability.

·        How to achieve greater flexibility and diversity in use and activity.

·        The costs to residents of designing Centres to cater primarily to private car travel.

·        The benefits of enhancing opportunities for walking, activity and interest.

The Centres Strategy recognises the hierarchy, role and capacity for growth for each centre and identifies where further ‘place’ planning or urban design work is needed to encourage more vibrant and sustainable centres.

There are opportunities identified and a Structure Plan illustrates these opportunities for each Priority Centre, with recommendations for growth and change, for LEP and DCP opportunities, and for Council or other government-led opportunities to revitalise the key centres.

The Strategy sets out an Implementation Plan containing a total of 37 Guiding Principles within which a number of actions and/or opportunities are identified both on a broader centre-wide scale and also specific to key centres.

 

The key findings of the Study relate to:

·        Hierarchy and Role of each Centre

·        Centres Growth Opportunities

·        Placed Based Centres.

The Centres Strategy seeks to validate and support the basic hierarchy, role and function of each centre outlined in Wollondilly 2040 Local Strategic Planning Statement.

·        The Centres Strategy covers all 38 settlement areas or centres and supports the basic hierarchy, role and function of each centre as outlined in Wollondilly 2040, with the Primary Centres being Wilton New Town as the Potential Future Strategic Centre, and Picton as the Community, Cultural and Civic Centre.

·        The current role of Centres will not change, with limited future population growth anticipated outside the Wilton Growth Area.

·        Most Centres will have limited to no opportunities for commercial or retail expansion within the next 15 years.

·        The Strategy supports increasing diversity, intensity and density of land use within existing Centre boundaries.

·        The Strategy provides the key principles for vibrant sustainable Centres and to make them better ‘places’:

o   Walkability - focus on moving away from ‘main roads’ to ‘local roads’ and encouraging walking and other transport modes to improve physical and mental health and reduce crime.

o   Adaptable building types for a range of uses - focus on more than just retail, by encouraging and allowing for a diversity of land uses and adaptable multi-use buildings within and adjacent to commercial and retail precincts.

o   Planning for Health and Wellbeing for sustainable Centres.

·        Eight (8) Priority Centres are identified where resources, further studies and works should be focused in the short term, being Wilton New Town (new Strategic Centre), Picton, Tahmoor, Bargo, Thirlmere, Appin, The Oaks and Silverdale.

·        The Strategy suggests public realm improvements to enhance existing character and sense of place.

 

Wollondilly 2040 Local Strategic Planning Statement

Wollondilly 2040 is Council’s Local Strategic Planning Statement (LSPS) outlining a 20 year land use vision for Wollondilly. It will guide the implementation of the District Plan at a local level. It is also required to be consistent with the community strategic plan.

Action 8.1 under Planning Priority 8 Enhancing vibrant, healthy and sustainable local towns and villages prioritises the preparation of a Centres Strategy.

The need for a Centres Strategy is also recognised by:

·        Planning Priority 3 Establishing a framework for sustainable managed growth.

·        Planning Priority 5; Providing housing options that meet local needs and match the local character of towns and villages, and

·        Planning Priority 10; attracting investment and growing local jobs.

 

 

Consultation

The six draft LEP Review Program draft Strategies were concurrently publicly exhibited for an extended period (40 days) from 24 August 2020 until 2 October 2020.

The exhibition documents were published on Council’s engagement platform, ‘Your Say Wollondilly’, along with supporting information including background technical documents, summary document and frequently asked questions.

The exhibition was undertaken in accordance with the Wollondilly Community Participation Plan and stakeholder and community engagement were encouraged through:

·        Council’s website

·        Public notice in local newspapers

·        Hardcopies of the draft strategies and background technical documents were available for inspection at Wollondilly Library and councils’ administration building

·        Notification letters sent to relevant public agencies

·        Notification letters sent to adjoining Council’s

·        Written notification to everyone who made a submission to either of the following recent engagements:

o   LEP Review Program Stage 1 Planning Proposal

o   Wollondilly 2040 Local Strategic Planning Statement.

·        Written notification to a number of relevant special interest groups

·        Written notification to all proponents who have a planning proposal submitted with Council

·        Email notification to database of interested stakeholders

·        Email notification to all members of Council’s relevant Community advisory Committees (CACs)

·        In addition, where requested, presentations to CACs including the Rural Industry CAC and the Minerals, Energy Resources, environment and Waste CAC

·        Promotion through Council’s shire wide community newsletter (Spring Edition)

·        Promotion through a series of coordinated Facebook posts

·        Presentation to Picton Chamber of Commerce.

The need to socially distance and protect communities during the ongoing COVID-19 situation meant that it was not possible for face-to-face engagement during the exhibition period, for example, in the form of drop-in sessions. However Council staff remained available and facilitated a number of enquiries.

In response to the public exhibition 69 submissions were received consisting of:

·        61 community and stakeholder submissions;

·        10 public agency submissions; and

·        1 submission from a Community Advisory Committee (CAC).

As the strategies were exhibited concurrently some submitters provided comments on more than one strategy within the one submission whereas other submitters made separate submissions on individual strategies.

 

 

 

The split of comments from submissions across the strategies was as follows:

 

 

No. of submissions that provided comment on each strategy by stakeholder type

 

 

Community & Stakeholder

Public Agency

CAC

Draft Strategies

Local Housing

26

9

-

Rural Lands

23

7

1

Employment Land

13

5

-

Centres

7

5

-

Scenic & Cultural Landscapes

13

5

1

Urban Tree Canopy & Landscape Strategy

7

5

-

 

For example, while only 1 submission was received from a Community Advisory Committee the submission provided comments on 2 of the draft strategies.

There were a number of themes that were shared across feedback on the strategies. These included:

·        Expectations around the role and implementation of actions

·        Interrelationships and consistency across strategies

·        Timing and prioritisation of actions

·        Strategies as opportunities to achieve many different things.

These common themes are discussed in greater detail at Attachment 2.

 

Community & Stakeholder Consultation

The community and stakeholder submissions were received from a range of groups and included individual, special interest groups, industry associations and consultants representing landowner interests. A number of late submissions were also received and have been considered.

The key issues raised in the submissions include:

·        General comments and feedback supporting and advocating for the Draft Centres Strategy

·        Acknowledging awareness of the importance that commercial areas provide in meeting social interaction needs of the community.

·        Support for the hierarchy of centres

·        Support for the confirmation of the priority centres and where resources, further studies and works should be focussed in the short term

·        General support for the directions and actions and welcome the focus of opportunities for centre improvements to deliver benefits for their residents and visitors

·        Submissions advocating for development potential on private land (for example, increased height and density in Tahmoor, rezoning land, revitalising centres on the Southern Highlands Line).

A detailed assessment of the submissions is provided at Attachment 3.

Minor amendments have been made to the draft Strategy in response to Community & Stakeholder Submissions.

 

 

Consultation with Public Agencies & Adjoining Councils

Submissions were received from the following public agencies:

·        Department of Primary Industries (Fisheries)

·        Environment, Energy and Science Group (DPIE)

·        Heritage NSW

·        Subsidence Advisory NSW

·        Sydney Water.

Most of the matters raised in public agency submissions were general in nature and not necessarily specific to the Centres Strategy. The only feedback, with specific reference to the Centres Strategy sought greater consideration/acknowledgement of cultural values of Wollondilly’s towns and villages.

A detailed assessment of the public agency submissions is provided at Attachments 3.

The feedback did not result in any significant changes to the Centres Strategy.

 

NSW Government Endorsement

There is an expectation that the draft strategies may require approval from the Department of Planning, Industry & Environment in order to inform future updates to the Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan 2011. However, there is uncertainty around the pathway.

As part of the public exhibition, Council wrote to the Department of Planning, Industry & Environment (DPIE) to seek guidance on the approval pathway for endorsement for the strategies as part of the Accelerated LEP Review Program.

The Advisory Notes that accompanied the Greater Sydney Commission’s letter of assurance for the local strategic planning statement advised Council to confirm with DPIE if Council’s strategies will require approval to inform LEP updates. To date no confirmation or clarification has been provided by DPIE on this matter.

An ‘endorsed’ strategy would hold considerable weight in the consideration of planning proposals to amend the Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan 2011 and would assist in their implementation.

 

CONCLUSION

Following the public exhibition, a number of refinements have been made to the Centres Strategy in response to submissions received and an internal review of the documents.

In summary, these include:

·        A number of minor amendments across the strategies to improve consistency and to remove any irreconcilable conflicts;

·        Minor text amendments and mapping corrections to enhance the strategies (for example to reflect other considerations) and correct anomalies;

·        Minor adjustments to action wording, where relevant, so that it is clearer that these are matters for further investigation and consideration and reduce the likelihood to be misinterpreted as decisions; and

·        Minor text adjustments in the Centres Strategy to clarify which Centres are recommended for Place Plans, more detailed urban design work, heritage analysis, or detailed precinct planning.

 

The draft strategy has been updated and the strategy proposed for adoption is provided at Attachment 4.

The proposed refinements are considered to strengthen the strategies and do not change the high level approach or principles that will be established.

It is recommended that Council supports the Wollondilly Centres Strategy as it will:

·        Provide a sound evidence base to inform a review of Wollondilly 2040 Local Strategic Planning Statement, Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan 2011, and the Wollondilly Development Control Plan 2016.

·        Provide a sound evidence base to inform land use planning decisions, this includes the consideration of development applications and planning proposals. The absence of these strategies presents a risk for Council.

·        Represent a significant investment for Council in planning for the future needs of the Shire and delivering on the vision of ‘an enviable lifestyle’.

·        Provide clear direction in terms of the steps required for implementation.

·        Provide a robust basis to inform land use planning decision and can be reviewed and strengthened into the future as resources become available.

 

Financial Implications

Funding for this project has been available through the Accelerated LEP Review Program subject to contractual conditions.

Funding under the Accelerated LEP Review Program was only available until 31 December 2020.

Moving forward, actions arising from the Centres Strategy along with the other strategies will be prioritised and funding secured through the Operational budget or grants.

 

Attachments

1.       Road Map for progressing planning led LEP Review Program Strategies  

2.       Common themes raised across strategies and stakeholders  

3.       Table summarising feedback on the Draft Wollondilly Centres Strategy  

4.       Final Wollondilly Local Centres Strategy    


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

12.9       Wollondilly Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy - Outcome of Public Exhibition and Finalisation

File Number:           12275#178

 

Executive Summary

This report presents the outcome of the public exhibition of the Draft Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy and seeks Council support to adopt the Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy.

The Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy has been prepared as part of the Accelerated LEP Review Program. It provides an understanding of the existing urban canopy cover in Wollondilly and provides high level strategy direction to implement policies, programs and operations to protect, maintain and enhance a health and diverse urban tree canopy now and into the future.

Urban tree canopies provide a wide range of environmental, social and economic benefits and is part of the network of green infrastructure.

12 submissions were received in response to the public exhibition; including 7 community and stakeholders submissions, 5 public agency submissions.

A number of amendments have been made to the draft strategy in response to the submissions.

Recommendation

That Council:

1.    Adopts the Wollondilly Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy.

2.    Writes to the Department of Planning, Industry & Environment with a request to endorse the Wollondilly Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy.

3.    Notifies anyone who made submissions regarding the Draft Wollondilly Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy of Council’s decision.

 

Report

Background (The Accelerated LEP Review Program)

In response to a number of planning related announcements and legislative changes introduced by the NSW Government, Wollondilly along with other Councils within the Greater Sydney Region are required to undertake a review of their local environmental plans (LEPs).

The purpose of the LEP Review Program is to update the Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan 2011 (WLEP 2011) to give effect to the Western City District Plan through upfront strategic planning.

The LEP Review Program is being undertaken over six phases and includes seven main project deliverables as follows:

1.       Submission of LEP Review Report (completed in November 2018);

2.       Submission of Project Plan (completed in January 2019);

3.       Submission of draft Local Strategic Planning Statement (completed in September 2019);

4.       Completion of Local Housing Strategy and specialist reports;

5.       Submission of final Local Strategic Planning Statement (LSPS) (completed in February 2020);

6.       Submission of Planning Proposal to the Department for a Gateway determination (completed in December 2019); and

7.       Submission of draft LEP to the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment to make the plan (completed in August 2020).

This report relates to project deliverable 4.

Wollondilly is one of 13 priority Councils that were selected on the basis of their opportunity to bring forward housing supply and housing diversity by updating local environmental plans to reflect District Plans. The priority Councils include high growth Councils in the Western City Deal.

As a priority Council, Wollondilly was offered, and signed a funding agreement with the NSW government to receive up to $2.5 million to fund this review in an accelerated timeframe.

The tight timeframes under the accelerated program heavily influenced the study preparation process, however, the availability of funding has provided a significant opportunity to undertake strategic planning work that would otherwise not have been possible.

The process for prioritising matters to be covered by the specialist studies and appointing consultants to undertake the work was outlined in a report to Council on 16 December 2019.

Strategic Planning Framework and the role of the Strategies

The Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy is one of six planning led strategies prepared as part of the Accelerated LEP Review Program. The other strategies include:

·       Local Housing Strategy

·       Rural Lands Strategy

·       Centres Strategy

·       Employment Land Strategy

·       Scenic Landscape Study and Management Strategy.

The studies have been prepared by external consultants with technical expertise and demonstrated experience for the relevant study matters.

The strategies, once finalised, will establish the high level direction over the next 20 years and inform future land use planning for Wollondilly, including updates to Wollondilly 2040 Local Strategic Planning Statement, Create Wollondilly Council’s Community Strategic Plan, and amendments to the local environmental plan, development control Plan. In particular, the strategies will collectively inform future work to identify the local growth needs of the community and future land use opportunities.

They have been prepared on the basis of Wollondilly 2040 Council’s local strategic planning statement and the Western City District Plan.

They will also contribute towards:

·       Establishing the local growth needs for Wollondilly

·       Future amendments to policies that control and guide development such as the Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan 2011 and the development control plan

·       Inform land use planning decisions such as planning proposals to rezone land

·       Inform decisions on community assets including streets, buildings, parks and reserves

·       Enable advocating strongly to Federal and State government for the interests of Wollondilly.

The Strategies have been informed by an analysis of local context and evidence. The Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy has been informed by the preparation of the Wollondilly Urban Tree Canopy Background and Analysis. This background technical document establishes the background, context and analysis of the evidence.

In adopting the strategies Council would be endorsing the high level principles that will inform decisions on land use planning.

 

The Strategies also include actions. The role of the actions is to provide measures or steps to focus the strategies implementation. For the most part, the actions identify areas of further work to understand the finer grain detail of opportunities for action. Future projects would then be presented to Council prior to implementation. For example, an action recommending investigation of amendments to the local environmental plan would need to go through the Gateway process, including a public exhibition, prior to implementation.   Once adopted, the next step will be to prioritise the actions across the strategies for progression over the coming years.

The Road Map provided at Attachment 1 seeks to demonstrate how the strategies interlink moving forward, the range of other considerations that may be relevant, how the level of detail becomes finer grain as the strategies are implemented and the overall aim to deliver on Wollondilly’s 20 year land use vision for an enviable lifestyle.

Although the strategies have been prepared on the basis of a 20 year timeframe they will need to be reviewed regularly to ensure they remain responsive and relevant. They provide a solid basis to inform land use planning decisions now and can be reviewed and strengthened as resources become available.

Wollondilly Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy

The Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy provides an understanding of the existing urban canopy cover in Wollondilly and provides high level strategy direction to implement policies, programs and operations to protect, maintain and enhance a health and diverse urban tree canopy now and into the future.

The urban tree canopy provides a wide range of environmental, social and economic benefits, some of which are summarised in the table below:

Economic benefits

Environmental benefits

Social benefits

·    Reducing energy costs

·    Increasing property values through better aesthetics

·    Avoiding costs of infrastructure damage and renewal

·    Decreasing health costs

·    Boosting the viability of businesses by drawing shoppers into pleasant environments

·    Providing shade and cooling

·    Reducing stormwater flows and nutrient loads

·    Reducing air pollution and airborne particles

·    Storing and sequestering carbon

·    Providing crucial habitat and connectivity for the long-term survival of native plans and animals

·    Providing sense of place, aesthetic beauty and reflect local history

·    Improving community cohesion

·    Encouraging outdoor activity and connection with nature

·    Reducing exposure to sun, improving mental and physical health and reducing heat-related illness

 

The Strategy considers the ‘urban canopy’, which refers to the canopy cover percentage of trees on public and private land within urban areas. It indicates that existing tree canopy cover in urban areas across Wollondilly is 32% with the majority of existing towns having an existing canopy cover of between 20-40%.

The Strategy identifies 40% as an appropriate urban tree canopy coverage target for Wollondilly for the total area of existing towns and villages by 2056 and 40% mature canopy cover for each new development. In particular, the following targets are identified for different land use types:

·       15% for business zones,

·       25% for medium-high density residential, and

·       40% for low density residential.

 

The Strategy also recommends the following species diversity and survival targets:

·       No more than 10% planting of the same species in a single development

·       95% survival rate of planted trees 12 months form planting.

50 actions are identified under four strategic areas of focus:

o   Create; Strategic planting of more trees to meet Wollondilly’s urban canopy targets.

o   Manage; Protect and maintain a diverse, health, connected and resilient urban canopy.

o   Bushfire Management; Plan and manage canopy in bushfire prone areas to no increase bushfire risk.

o   Community; Collaborate with and education our community.

Wollondilly 2040 Local Strategic Planning Statement

Wollondilly 2040 is Council’s Local Strategic Planning Statement (LSPS) outlining a 20 year land use vision for Wollondilly. It will guide the implementation of the District Plan at a local level. It is also required to be consistent with the community strategic plan.

Wollondilly 2040 recognises a need to establish a strategic framework to plan for more trees in urban areas and better tree retention as part of development. The preparation of an urban tree canopy plan is an important step towards delivering an urban tree canopy.

Action 15.1 under Planning Priority 15 Delivering an urban tree canopy, prioritises the preparation of an urban tree canopy strategy.

Consultation

The six draft LEP Review Program draft Strategies were concurrently publicly exhibited for an extended period (40 days) from 24 August 2020 until 2 October 2020.

The exhibition documents were published on Council’s engagement platform, ‘Your Say Wollondilly’, along with supporting information including background technical documents, summary document and frequently asked questions.

The exhibition was undertaken in accordance with the Wollondilly Community Participation Plan and stakeholder and community engagement were encouraged through:

·       Council’s website,

·       Public notice in local newspapers

·       Hardcopies of the draft strategies and background technical documents were available for inspection at Wollondilly Library and councils’ administration building

·       Notification letters sent to relevant public agencies

·       Notification letters sent to adjoining Council’s

·       Written notification to everyone who made a submission to either of the following recent engagements:

o   LEP Review Program Stage 1 Planning Proposal

o   Wollondilly 2040 Local Strategic Planning Statement

·       Written notification to a number of relevant special interest groups

·       Written notification to all proponents who have a planning proposal submitted with Council

·       Email notification to database of interested stakeholders

·       Email notification to all members of Council’s relevant Community advisory Committees (CACs)

·       In addition, where requested, presentations to CACs including the Rural Industry CAC and the Minerals, Energy Resources, environment and Waste CAC

·       Promotion through Council’s shire wide community newsletter (Spring Edition)

·       Promotion through a series of coordinated Facebook posts

·       Presentation to Picton Chamber of Commerce.

The need to socially distance and protect communities during the ongoing COVID-19 situation meant that it was not possible for face-to-face engagement during the exhibition period, for example, in the form of drop-in sessions. However Council staff remained available and facilitated a number of enquiries.

In response to the public exhibition 69 submissions were received. Consisting of:

·       61 community and stakeholder submissions and

·       10 public agency submissions

·       1 submission from a Community Advisory Committee (CAC).

As the strategies were exhibited concurrently some submitters provided comments on more than one strategy within the one submission whereas other submitters made separate submissions on individual strategies.

The split of comments from submissions across the strategies was as follows:

 

 

No. of submissions that provided comment on each strategy by stakeholder type

 

 

Community & Stakeholder

Public Agency

CAC

Draft Strategies

Local Housing

26

9

-

Rural Lands

23

7

1

Employment Land

13

5

-

Centres

7

5

-

Scenic & Cultural Landscapes

13

5

1

Urban Tree Canopy & Landscape Strategy

7

5

-

 

For example, while only 1 submission was received from a Community Advisory Committee the submission provided comments on 2 of the draft strategies.

There were a number of themes that were shared across feedback on the strategies. These included:

·       Expectations around the role and implementation of actions

·       Interrelationships and consistency across strategies

·       Timing and prioritisation of actions

·       Strategies as opportunities to achieve many different things.

These common themes are discussed in greater detail at Attachment 2.

Community & Stakeholder Consultation

The community and stakeholder submissions were received from a range of groups and included individual, special interest groups, industry associations and consultants representing landowner interests. A number of late submissions were also received and have been considered.

 

The key issues raised in the submissions include:

·       The need for consultation

·       The robustness of the Strategy/canopy target/planning controls to retain trees

·       Urban canopy and managing bush fire hazard

·       Areas where tree canopy can be prioritised

·       Potential community involvement to increase canopy coverage

·       Potential impact on agricultural land

·       Recognition of challenges in the planning system to the retention of trees, for example, complying development, accommodating trees on small lots

·       Concerns with a blanket approach to new development which does not consider site constraints, precinct approach, or previous offsetting contributions

·       Concern with the practical application of actions within the strategy

·       Support and criticism for the nominated target, its application and measuring success

·       Opportunities for urban cooling, and

·       How an increased urban canopy will be funded/resourced.

A detailed assessment of the submissions is provided at Attachment 3.

A number of minor amendments have been made to the draft Strategy in response to Community & Stakeholder Submissions. Many of the submissions refer to matters that are either beyond the scope of a strategy and/or considerations focussing on enhancing urban tree canopy.

A number of submission include matters that can more appropriately be considered in progressing the implementation of the strategy. For example, if the issues raised relates to a planning control this can be considered as part of a future review of the development control plan.

Consultation with Public Agencies & Adjoining Councils

Submissions were received from the following public agencies:

·       Department of Primary Industries (Agriculture)

·       Department of Primary Industries (Fisheries)

·       Environment, Energy and Science Group (DPIE)

·       Heritage NSW

·       Subsidence Advisory NSW.

Most of the matters raised in public agency submissions were general in nature and not necessarily specific to the urban tree canopy or advocated for references in the strategy to their area of focus.

The Environment, Energy and science Group (Department of Planning, Industry and Environment) (EES) made a detailed submission. However, the matters raised in EES’s submission can broadly be summarised as follows:

·       A preference for avoiding the removal of trees by limiting new development to cleared areas

·       Recommend only using local native trees and discouraging the use of exotic non-indigenous tree species.

The strategy recognises that there are a number of considerations that inform tree species selection and also recognises Wollondilly’s rich and diverse indigenous and European history. In increasing Wollondilly’s urban canopy it is not considered practicable or appropriate to only consider local native trees.

A detailed assessment of the public agency submissions is provided at Attachments 3. Public agency feedback has not resulted in any significant changes to the Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy. However, some minor adjustments have been made.

NSW Government Endorsement

There is an expectation that the draft strategies may require approval from the Department of Planning, Industry & Environment in order to inform future updates to the Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan 2011. However, there is uncertainty around the pathway.

As part of the public exhibition, Council wrote to the Department of Planning, Industry & Environment (DPIE) to seek guidance on the approval pathway for endorsement for the strategies as part of the Accelerated LEP Review Program.

It is noted that the advisory notes that accompanied the Greater Sydney Commission’s letter of assurance for the local strategic planning statement advised Council to confirm with DPIE if Council’s strategies will require approval to inform LEP updates. To date no confirmation or clarification has been provided by DPIE on this matter.

An ‘endorsed’ strategy would hold considerable weight in the consideration of planning proposals to amend the Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan 2011 and would assist in their implementation.

 

CONCLUSION

Following the public exhibition some minor refinements have been made to the Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy in response to submissions received from the community, public agencies and other stakeholders and an internal review of the documents.

In summary, these include:

·       Adjusting the title to the Wollondilly Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy and changing the cover photo so that the document is more reflective of an ‘urban’ setting to reduce the potential for confusion about what areas it covers;

·       Minor text amendments to enhance the strategies (for example to reflect other considerations) and correct anomalies and

·       Minor adjustments to action wording, where relevant, so that it is clearer that these are matters for further investigation and consideration and reduce the likelihood to be misinterpreted as decisions. A statement has also been included in the Strategy to clarify the role of the actions to identify areas for further investigation and acknowledging the need for additional community and stakeholder engagement before implementation.

 

The draft strategy has been updated and the strategy proposed for adoption is provided at Attachment 4.

The proposed refinements are considered to strengthen the strategies and do not change the high level approach or principles that will be established.

It is now recommended that Council support the Wollondilly Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy as it will:

·       provide a sound evidence base to inform a review of Wollondilly 2040 Local Strategic Planning Statement, Wollondilly Local Environmental Plan 2011, and the Wollondilly Development Control Plan 2016

·       provide a sound evidence base to inform land use planning decisions, this includes the consideration of development applications and planning proposals. The absence of these strategies presents a risk for Council.

·       represent a significant investment for Council in planning for the future needs of the Shire and delivering on the vision of ‘an enviable lifestyle’,

·       provide clear direction in terms of the steps required for implementation,

·       provide a robust basis to inform land use planning decision and can be reviewed and strengthened into the future as resources become available.

Financial Implications

Funding for this project has been available through the Accelerated LEP Review Program subject to contractual conditions.

Funding under the Accelerated LEP Review Program was only available until 31 December 2020.

Moving forward, actions arising from the Wollondilly Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy along with the other strategies will be prioritised and funding secured through the Operational budget or grants.

 

Attachments

1.       Road Map for progressing planning led LEP Review Program Strategies  

2.       Common themes raised across strategies and stakeholders  

3.       Table summarising feedback on the Draft Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy  

4.       Final Wollondilly Urban Tree Canopy Plan and Landscape Strategy     


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

13          Management and Provision of Infrastructure

13.1       Amendments to Master Plan for Old Menangle School Site

File Number:           12275#169

 

Executive Summary

The purpose of this report is to seek Council’s consideration to amend the following item within the 2019 adopted Master Plan for the Old Menangle School Site.

Removal of the reference to the new pathways being ‘2.5 metres’ in width to minimise the potential impact of the pathways on visual amenity.

This amendment has been identified through the detailed design process undertaken for the accessible pathways and are considered to be more beneficial for the use and amenity of the site.

Recommendation

1.       That the proposed amendments to the Master Plan for the Old Menangle School Site, as identified in Attachment 1, be adopted.

2.       That the community be notified of the proposed design for the pathways through the installation of onsite signage prior to construction.

 

Report

Following a process of community engagement, Council adopted the Master Plan for the Old Menangle School Site in October 2019 as a way to proactively plan for new and improved park embellishments and to determine the future use of the Old Menangle School building located onsite.

Council further considered and adopted a funding strategy for the Master Plan’s implementation at its meeting of 18 February 2020.

Since the adoption of the Master Plan, a number of facility improvements have been completed including:

·        The installation of outdoor exercise equipment with a looping pathway; and

·        The removal of overgrown vegetation in accordance with the Master Plan.

Council has been working on the detailed designs for the proposed accessible pathways throughout the site, providing connectivity to Station Street, St James Avenue and Riversford Close.

In developing the designs for the pathways, it was noted that the specified ‘2.5 metre’ width of the pathways in the adopted Master Plan is likely to impact the visual amenity of the space.  Recognising that this location is within the Menangle Landscape Conservation Area, it is proposed that a more sensitive approach be undertaken by reducing the width of the proposed pathways to 1.8 metres.  This width also complies with universal access specifications.

Consultation

Given that the proposed amendments are not a significant change, nor do they change the use of the site, it is recommended that Council proceed with adopting the amendment without the need to undertake a further community engagement process.  However, the notification should occur of the works progressing through the installation of onsite signage prior to construction.

 

 

 

Financial Implications

There is currently $825,000 allocated for the construction of the pathways under the 2020/21 Capital Budget, including the linkage between St James Ave, Riversford Close and the Old School Building and Station Street.

Pending further weather impacts, works to the capacity of the budget will be completed by the end of the Financial Year.

Attachments

1.       Proposed Amendments to Old Menangle School Master Plan - Council Report Attachment 1    


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

13.2       Building Better Regions Fund (Infrastructure) and NSW Public Spaces Legacy Program Project Applications

File Number:           12275#181

 

Executive Summary

Program application requirements and project nomination dates for the Building Better Regions Fund (Infrastructure) and the NSW Public Spaces Legacy Programs were confirmed in early 2021.

The requirements for the detailed project nominations under both programs unfortunately did not align with the Council Meeting schedule and nominations have been prepared and submitted in accordance with the program requirements based on Council’s current priorities.

This report seeks Council’s endorsement for the applications made under these programs.

Recommendation

That the project nominations, as detailed below, be endorsed as Council’s nominated projects:

1.       NSW Public Spaces Legacy Programs:

(a)     Birahlee Park, Yanderra – playground upgrade, exercise stations, pathway.

(b)     The Oaks and Oakdale – open space improvement program.

(c)     Bingara/Condell Park Homestead, Wilton – embellish the grounds around homestead.

(d)     Picton Botanic Gardens – first stage of embellishment works under the Master Plan.

(e)     Old Menangle School site, Menangle – continuation of staged delivery of the adopted Master Plan.

2.       Building Better Regions Fund (Infrastructure):

(a)     Razorback Lookout.

(b)     Argyle St Picton – catenary lighting.

(c)     Botanic Garden/Hume Oval – upgrade to eastern car park including a shade structure.

 

Report

NSW Public Spaces Legacy Program – closed 10 March 2021

The NSW Public Spaces Legacy Program is a NSW Government initiative that “will support the Planning Reform Action Plan by providing incentives and guidance to councils seeking to match the objectives of the Faster Assessments Program through their own local assessment acceleration program.

The objectives of the NSW Public Spaces Legacy Program are to:

·        Improve development assessment speeds and planning proposals (rezoning).

·        Bring forward construction and the opportunity for jobs and economic activity in the short to medium term.

·        Support investment in the creation of high-quality public and open spaces to create a lasting community benefit.

·        Address critical open space shortfalls and improve the quality of existing public and open spaces.”

Wollondilly Shire Council’s nominal funding allocation is $4,000,000.

Councillors were briefed on the intents and opportunities under the program and indicated support for the six projects being:

(a)     Birahlee Park, Yanderra – playground upgrade, exercise stations, pathway.

(b)     The Oaks and Oakdale – open space improvement program.

(c)     Bingara/Condell Park Homestead, Wilton – embellish the grounds around homestead upon acceptance of the site under a proposed planning agreement.

(d)     Picton Botanic Gardens – first stage of embellishment works under the Master Plan.

(e)     Old Menangle School site, Menangle – continuation of staged delivery of the adopted Master Plan.

(f)      Razorback Lookout – Upgrade and embellish the lookout mound on the Razorback Range – Applied for under the Building Better Regions Fund (Infrastructure).

The original initial projects list submitted to the State Government was oversubscribed by approximately $750,000.

Following receipt of the request to submit proposals and attending the webinar on the assessment process, that emphasised the need for projects to provide legacy quality open space improvements, it was noted that the Razorback lookout was more aligned to a visitor engagement and potentially economic support function than open space for the community.

In addition, financial co-contributions were also encouraged to ensure the program was truly a collaborative program.

Accordingly, an application was submitted under the Building Better Regions Fund (Infrastructure) program to increase the chances of success.

The funding distribution was re-levelled across the five remaining projects and $500,000 of potential co‑funding identified for Council’s consideration under a future report, should the project nominations be approved.

Building Better Regions Fund (Infrastructure) – closed 5 March 2021

The program guidelines summarise the program opportunities and intentions as:

“The $1.04 billion Building Better Regions Fund (BBRF) supports the Australian Government’s commitment to:

·           Drive economic growth.

·           Build stronger regional communities into the future.

For Round Five, there is a total of $200 million available, with $100 million dedicated to tourism-related infrastructure projects.

The Infrastructure Projects Stream supports projects that provide economic and social benefits to regional and remote areas.  The projects can be either construction of new infrastructure or the upgrade or extension of existing infrastructure.  The Infrastructure Projects Stream only supports investment ready projects.

For most projects grant funding will be up to either 50% or 75% of your eligible project costs.  Your location will determine the percentage of grant funding you can receive.”

Based on Council’s current priorities of supporting economic recovery, especially in the areas of local business, the agribusiness sector and visitor economy sector; infrastructure projects that provide for opportunities for local agricultural product sales, community support, visitor facilities and resulting legacy community amenity improvements, three projects were applied for are:

(a)     Razorback Lookout – Upgrade and embellish the lookout mound on the Razorback Range.

(b)     Argyle St Picton – catenary lighting to create a vibrant location for the night time economy and enable celebrations for community events.

(c)     Botanic Garden/Hume Oval – upgrade to eastern car park including a potential shade structure for the further implementation of the master plan working towards the Stage 1 works applied for under the NSW Public Spaces Legacy Program.

The Fund guidelines require a financial contribution based on an isolation calculation.  Should all applications be successful, the total required funding contribution is approximately $787,000.  Appropriate funding sources from a combination of existing asset renewal budgets, developer contributions and strategic reserves have been identified as having sufficient capacity if required, subject to a further report to Council.

Consultation

Previous Councillor Briefings only.

Financial Implications

The NSW Public Spaces Legacy Program provides an allocation of $4 million in funding to Council for approved projects, subject to achieving the agreed planning acceleration improvements.

This report has no immediate impact on Council’s finances; however, should the applications be successful a further report to Council will be required to introduce the funding into the budget, including any required co‑contribution.

Co‑contribution amounts have been identified as being within Council’s financial capacity from either existing budget allocations or the introduction of additional funding from Reserves such as the Developer Contributions Reserve.

Attachments

Nil


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

13.3       Traffic Management Upgrades - March 2021

File Number:           12275#189

 

Executive Summary

The Local Traffic Committee Agenda and Notice of Meeting was issued on 23 February 2021 to consider a number of reports for traffic management in Wollondilly at its meeting of 2 March 2021.  The agenda papers were also distributed to all Councillors.

This report seeks approval for the 2021/22 Cycling Races on Moreton Park Road, Menangle,

The Picton ANZAC Day March and the Warragamba Country Markets & Events.

Recommendation

That Council adopt, notwithstanding other factors at play that may prohibit the event happening, the traffic management proposal as considered and unanimously supported by the Local Traffic Committee Meeting of 2 March 2021 as follows:

          LTC Recommendation 1.1

1.       That Council grant consent to Camden Cycling Club Inc. to use Moreton Park Road, Menangle to conduct cycling races for a period up to 30 April 2022 subject to the requirements for the issue of a permit for “Road Event – Road Closure” prior to each individual race event.

3      2.       That Council write to the applicant and request that they seek their own advice from relevant health authorities for current preventative measures or as to whether the events should proceed due to public safety concerns related to the potential spread of coronavirus.

4      3.       That in the event that these events are postponed, and the future event dates are relevant and appropriate, then the approval is applied to the new date within a 12 month period.

          LTC Recommendation 1.2

1.       That Council approve the following road closures between the hours of 6.30am and 7.00am on Sunday 25 April 2021 for the staging of “The Picton ANZAC Day March” subject to the requirements for the issue of a permit for “Road Event – Road Closure”:

·        Menangle Street (West) between Argyle Street and Walton Street.

·        Argyle Street between Menangle Street and Memorial Park (south of Downing Street).

2.       That Council write to the applicant and request that they seek their own advice from relevant health authorities for current preventative measures or as to whether the events should proceed due to public safety concerns related to the potential spread of coronavirus.

          LTC Recommendation 1.3

1.       That Council approve the road closure of the Civic Centre Circle between the hours of 9.00am to 10.00pm on every last Saturday of the month subject to the Development Application approval and the requirements for the issue of a permit for “Road Event – Road Closure”.

2.       That Council write to the applicant and request that they seek their own advice from relevant health authorities for current preventative measures or as to whether the events should proceed due to public safety concerns related to the potential spread of coronavirus.

 

Report

The Local Traffic Committee is a Technical Committee of Transport for New South Wales (TfNSW).  The Committee operates under the authority conferred to Council by TfNSW under the Transport Administration Act 1988.

Council has been delegated certain powers by TfNSW with regard to traffic matters upon its local roads.  A condition of this delegation is that Council must take into account the advice of the Local Traffic Committee.

There are four permanent members of the Local Traffic Committee each of whom has a single vote only.  The members are representatives of the NSW Police Force, TfNSW, the Local State Member of Parliament (for the location of the issue to be voted upon) and a representative of Council.

The Minutes of the Local Traffic Committee Meeting of 2 March 2021 have been distributed and are available on Council’s website.

Only matters requiring a resolution of Council are included in this report.  Other endorsed upgrades have been approved under delegated authority.

Consultation

Refer to the Local Traffic Committee Agenda and Minutes, available on Council’s website.

Financial Implications

There are no direct financial implications for these items as the applicants are responsible for the implementation of the Traffic Management Plans.

Attachments

Nil   


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

14          Caring for the Environment

14.1       Draft Waste Management Strategy and Action Plan

File Number:           12275#156

 

Executive Summary

The purpose of this report is to seek Council’s adoption of the revised Draft Waste Management & Resource Recovery Strategy and Action Plan 2020‑2025 to replace the Waste Minimisation and Resource Recovery Strategy 2013-2018.

The draft Wollondilly Waste Management Strategy & Action Plan 2020‑2025 has been the subject of a community engagement process and revised based on community and internal feedback.

Recommendation

That:

1.       The Draft Waste Management and Resource Recovery Strategy & Action Plan 2020-2025 be adopted.

2.       That all parties that contributed to the engagement process be thanked for their contributions.

 

Report

Background

The future of waste is an important topical issue for Wollondilly, especially as urban growth increases within the Shire.  The Waste Strategy is part of a regular cycle of strategies that informs the community of Council’s direction and intent in working through the aspects of waste management, both locally and domestically but also on a regional level.

A number of National and State challenges arising in the recycling sector have resulted in changes to markets for waste commodities.  This locally presents challenges and opportunities for Council and its partners in how we deal with waste and provide for the community into the future.

The document was placed on public exhibition with submissions received.  The Draft Strategy and Action Plan have been finalised and are ready for adoption (Attachment 1).

At its meeting on 15 September 2020, Council resolved:

RESOLUTION 181/2020

1.       That the draft Wollondilly Waste Management Strategy and Action Plan 2020-2025 be placed on public exhibition for at least 28 days.

2.       That subsequent to the exhibition period, a further report be provided on any submissions and to seek adoption of the draft Wollondilly Waste Management Strategy and Action Plan 2020‑2025.

3.       That during the exhibition period, Council hold an online Special Community Forum to seek community input.

Consultation

The following community consultation was undertaken:

·        The Draft Waste Management Strategy & Action Plan was placed on public exhibition from Monday 26 October 2020 to Monday 23 November 2020 (28 days).  Submissions were accepted until 5.00pm on Monday 23 November 2020.  The public exhibition methods included the following:

o   Dedicated project page on “Your Say Wollondilly” webpage.

o   Council website and social media posts.

o   Local newspaper advertisements; posters in Dilly Wanderer, Wollondilly Shire Library; Council’s Customer Service foyer; and flyers at Bargo Waste Management Centre and Wollondilly Community Nursery.

o   Letter to all Minerals Energy Resources Environment & Waste (MEREW) Advisory Committee members.

Highlights from the dedicated project page on the “Your Say Wollondilly” webpage include 249 site visits and 81 downloads.  Full details of engagement statistics from the “Your Say Wollondilly” project page can be viewed in Attachment Two.

A Special Waste Community Online Forum was held on Monday 9 November 2020.  A total of seven registered participants attended the Forum.

A total of 11 submissions were received during the public exhibition period.  The draft Strategy & Action Plan has been amended in response to the submissions.  A summary of the amendments can be viewed in the following table.  Some submissions also raised waste operational matters which were outside the scope of the draft Strategy & Action Plan.  All respondents have received acknowledgement of their submissions and, where applicable, operational matters will be the subject of further contact with the respondents.

Submission Table

Item

Matters Raised in Submissions

Amendments Proposed to Draft Strategy

1.

Various minor typographical and grammatical errors.

Errors corrected.

2.

Suggest change title to ‘Waste Management & Resource Recovery Strategy and Action Plan’ to give community strong lead on the direction Council is taking.

Agreed - Title page and other references throughout document amended accordingly to  Draft Waste Management & Resource Recovery Strategy and Action Plan 2020-2025

3.

Need for more intervention at State and National Government level in reducing packaging waste.

New Action (Action 25) added under Section 8.2 – Packaging Waste:  ‘Lobby and advocate on behalf of residents to NSW and Federal Governments to 1) Take more action on packaging waste reduction; and 2) Encouraging industry to use more sustainable packaging materials’.

 

4.

Need for waste reduction in business sector, especially food waste.

New subsection added (Section 7.13.3) providing information on Council’s investigation and promotion of initiatives such as ‘Plate to Paddock’, ‘OzHarvest’ and ‘Bin Trim’ programs.

 

5.

Conflicting statements in report regarding recycling of scrap metal collected in kerbside clean-ups.

Amendment to sentence in Section 7.1: ‘All kerbside clean-up waste is landfilled, with the exception of separately sorted scrap metal which is recycled’.

6.

Objectives 1 and 2 say the same thing and could be combined.

Objectives 1 and 2 combined throughout document.

7.

Suggest that mention be made that the Federal Government has adopted APCO targets for packaging recycling.

Section 8.2 amended:  ‘It is most encouraging that in 2018 the Federal Government adopted the APCO’s 2025 packaging waste reduction and recycling targets.  While the setting of targets is a significant and commendable step towards the reduction of packaging waste, Council will advocate for the introduction of specific initiatives at Federal and State Government level to achieve these targets’.

8.

Suggest inclusion of a diagram showing the destination/fate of each waste stream.

Diagram added in Section 7.4.

9.

Section 7.17.1:  remove reference to Liverpool City Council as they have recently withdrawn from Project 24.

Reference to Liverpool City Council removed.

10.

Section 7.17.1:  change 15 years to 20 years.

Changed accordingly.

11.

With a CDS reverse vending machine now located in Picton, most of the Shire’s residents now have reasonable access to this service.

Last paragraph of Section 5.4 removed.  Action 4 amended to ‘Lobby for a Container Deposit Scheme reverse vending machine to be located in The Oaks, Appin and Wilton areas’.

12.

Suggest specific mention and focus on education through schools.

Paragraph added in Section 7.12.1 regarding Council’s facilitation of schools education initiatives.

13.

Suggest the Strategy recognise the importance of waste management in disasters.

New sub-section added:  ‘7.8 - Waste Management’s Role in Emergency Response’.  New Action added:  now Action 6.

14.

Regarding the expected release date of NSW Government’s 20-Year Waste Strategy, there are conflicting dates in different parts of the document.

References to expected release dates amended to ‘by mid 2021’.

15.

Did the revocation of MWOO affect WSC?

Additional sentence added in Section 5.2:  ‘The MWOO revocation did not directly impact Council due to current contractual conditions.  However, the revocation will significantly impact waste processing options for future contracts’.

16.

Has Council applied for any grants from the WLRM program?

Additional information added in Section 5.3: ‘The WLRM program provides guaranteed annual grant funding for all councils across NSW.  The amount of funding to each council is pre-determined according to various criteria.  Additional WLRM grant funding is available based on the merits of applications from councils.  In recent years Council has been successful with a number of applications to support initiatives in respect of illegal dumping and food waste reduction’.

17.

The Strategy states that there is a serious shortage of waste infrastructure in the Sydney metropolitan area, but Wollondilly Shire is not in the SMA.

Amendment made in Section 7.1:
‘There is a serious shortage of waste infrastructure in the greater Sydney region’.

18.

How do the Shire’s landfill diversion rates referred to in Section compare with other councils?

Amendment made in Section 7.1:

‘Landfill diversion rates provided by Council’s processing contractor for yellow-lid recyclables…….’

Additional information provided in Section 7.1:  ‘It should be noted that these diversion figures are provided by the operator of the processing facilities and are calculated on the total combined diversion rate for all councils that use the facilities.  As some councils that use the facilities experience significantly higher contamination rates in their yellow-lid and green-lid bins than Wollondilly Shire, it is likely that the Shire’s actual landfill diversion rates are higher than those reported in the facility-based data’.

19.

Has Council applied for funding to investigate markets for processed compost generated by FOGO?

Additional information provided in Section 7.1:  ‘In late 2020 the councils of Campbelltown, Camden and Wollondilly secured joint grant funding to commission a feasibility study into the implementation of FOGO across the Macarthur region.  The study will focus on the four critical elements outlined above’.

20.

The number of councils in NSW that have adopted FOGO is misrepresented.

Amendment made in Section 7.1:

‘FOGO systems are currently in place in approximately 40 council across NSW, with the large majority in rural areas’.

Financial Implications

Adoption of the Strategy and Action Plan priorities will be delivered using the domestic waste operational budget and reserve.  Grant funding submissions will also be prepared for NSW Government grant opportunities where applicable.

Attachments

1.       Draft Waste Management & Resource Recovery Strategy and Action Plan 2020-2025  

2.       Draft Waste Management Strategy & Action Plan Your Say Engagement Statistics    


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

14.2       Minerals, Energy, Resources, Environment & Waste Advisory Committee - February 2021 Meeting Minutes

File Number:           12275#168

 

Executive Summary

To ensure that the work of the Minerals Energy Resources Environment & Waste Advisory Committee is brought to the attention of Council and the broader Wollondilly community, the Minutes of the Meeting and the recommendations made by the Committee are reported to Council.

The purpose of this report is to present to Council the Minutes of the Advisory Committee Meeting held on 3 February 2021.

Recommendation

That Council note the Minutes for the Minerals Energy Resources Environment & Waste Advisory Committee meeting held on 3 February 2021.

 

Report

The Minerals, Energy, Resources, Environment & Waste Advisory Committee is a liaison Committee established by Council consisting of members of the community with an interest and experience in the three focus areas of:

·        Waste management

·        Environmental protection

·        Minerals and petroleum extraction stream (focus areas of specific relevance to minerals and petroleum extraction).

The Committee has been meeting for more than five years and meets every two months.  The Committee’s purpose is to:

·        Provide feedback on Planning Proposals, Development Applications, proposed or amendments to existing Council Policies and Strategies which are likely to impact (positively or negatively) on Council’s natural and built assets.

·        Facilitate communication between residents, Council and industry.

·        Create and support opportunities and initiatives that will enhance sustainable environmental and waste outcomes across various sectors.

The purpose of this report is to present the Minutes of the Minerals Energy Resources Environment and Waste Advisory Committee meeting held on 3 February 2021.

Consultation

Financial Implications

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

Attachments

1.       Minerals, Energy, Resources, Environment & Waste Advisory Committee Meeting Minutes - February 2021     


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

15          Looking after the Community

15.1       Re-establishing the Shire's Alcohol Free Zones

File Number:           12275#163

 

Executive Summary

The purpose of this report is to provide Council with information on the proposed re- establishment of the Alcohol Free Zones across the Shire.

Council’s current Alcohol Free Zones (on streets) and Alcohol Prohibited Areas (in parks) are due to expire in September 2021.

Alcohol Free Zones and Alcohol Prohibited Areas are established under Section 644, 644A, and 644B, and Section 632 and 632A, respectively, of the Local Government Act 1993.

As required by the relevant provisions of the Local Government Act 1993 and Ministerial Guidelines, Council is required to review the Alcohol Free Zones.  AFZs cannot be declared for more than 4 years and on establishment or renewal must be accompanied by public consultation, including with the local Police Area Command and Licensees in the areas affected to confirm, reduce or extend the restrictions.

 

Recommendation

That Council place the proposal for re-establishment of the Shire’s Alcohol Free Zones on Public Exhibition for 28 days to allow for community input prior to being brought back to Council for adoption.

 

Report

Alcohol Free Zones (AFZs):

The principal object of an Alcohol Free Zone (AFZ) is to improve public safety by preventing disorderly behaviour caused by the consumption of alcohol in public areas. Public areas including public roads, footpaths or public car parks may be included in a zone.

 

An AFZ may be established for a maximum period of four years. Once established they apply twenty four hours per day. Council must erect a sign at the outer limits of the zone and at suitable intervals within the zone.

 

Alcohol Free Zones are established under the relevant provisions of the Local Government Act 1993 and associated Ministerial Guidelines.

 

On 21 August 2017 Wollondilly Shire Council resolved (Motion 171/2017) to implement AFZs for a period of four years from September 2017 to September 2021 in the areas marked on the attached maps.

 

A process now needs to be implemented to re-establish the Alcohol Free Zones across the Shire from September 2021 to September 2025.

Consultation

Under the Local Government Act 1993 and the Ministerial Guidelines, Council must undertake a consultation process to decide if the re-establishment of the AFZs is appropriate. This consultation includes:

 

 

 

Public exhibition for 28 days to invite community feedback

The proposal will be placed on public exhibition via Council’s website, social media pages, yoursaywollondilly and with hard copies viewable in the main Council Office and the library. A media campaign will also be launched to encourage feedback from the community and to inform the community about the locations of exhibition.

 

Consultation with Police NSW

Discussions will take place with the Licensing Officers at the three Local Area Commands - Campbelltown, Camden and Nepean. 

 

Consultation with the Local Liquor Accord

The expiration and proposed re-establishment of the AFZs will be raised at the next Liquor Accord meeting.

 

Consultation with other key stakeholders

Local licenced premises, local clubs, local community groups and Tharawal Local Aboriginal Land Council will be consulted.

 

When considering the reinstatement of an alcohol-free zone Council needs to consider

 

·        What were the factors which originally supported the establishment of the zone in that area?

·        How successful was the previous alcohol-free zone in achieving a reduction in unacceptable street drinking?

·        What do Police statistics indicate about the value of re-instating an alcohol free zone in that area?

·        What other measures may need to be considered (e.g. a community education program) if unacceptable street drinking is still of concern in that area?

·        Has the community's perceptions of safety improved?

 

Financial Implications

This matter has no significant financial impact on Council’s adopted budget or forward estimates. The consultation process will be undertaken within existing operational budget capacity. There will however be a minor implementation cost (signage alterations to revise the expiration date) if Council chooses to reinstate the AFZs for a further four years.

Attachments

1.       Map listing Alcohol Free Zones 2021  

2.       Alcohol Free Zones Maps - ALL 2021   

 


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

15.2       Preschool Service Commencement Update

File Number:           12275#166

 

Executive Summary

As part of Council’s redevelopment proposals for the Community, Cultural and Civic Precinct in Picton, Council’s current Children’s Services Cottage is proposed for demolition and the delivery of child care services is being relocated to a new building within the precinct.

The operation of a Council operated preschool was considered at a Council meeting in October 2020 and a high level business analysis was prepared as part of this report. The analysis demonstrated that there is a compelling case for Council to operate a preschool given the significant benefits to our community and the financial feasibility of the proposal.

This report provides an update on the progress of the proposal and the steps needed for the preschool service to be set up and ready for commencement mid-2022.

 

Recommendation

That Council

1.       Notes the contents of this report regarding preparation for the Council’s new preschool service to be ready for commencement mid-2022.

2.       Notes the pre-opening funding requirements for 2021/22 which will need to be considered as part of the 2021/22 Operational Plan preparation process.

 

Report

At Council’s Ordinary Meeting of October 2020, a report on the proposed commencement of a Council-run preschool service was considered. Council resolved the following:

That Council

1.       Supports the concept of commencing operation of a new preschool service as part of the relocation of childcare services, preferably within the Community, Cultural and Civic Precinct development in Picton, if the outdoor playground can be thought of as a multi-use space, such as community-accessed school play space and not for exclusive use.

2.       Proceeds to undertake further project planning and preparation work with a view towards the new service commencing in 2022.

3.       Be provided with a report prior to May 2021 providing a progress update on project planning and outlining financial implications, with the findings and recommendations of this report to be considered in the preparation of Council’s Delivery Plan and Operational Plans for 2021/22 onwards.

The resolution above is being addressed as follows:

1.       The outdoor playground at ground level will be used as a multi-use space to give the community access to play space when not being utilised by Council’s Year Round Care Service. (Note that the ground floor of the proposed building does not form part of the preschool which is proposed for the upper floor only). This matter is discussed in more detail below.

2.       A consultant has been working with Council staff to undertake further project planning and preparation work with a view towards the new service commencing in 2022.

3.       This report serves as the progress update on the project planning and outlines the financial implications for future budgeting purposes.

 

Councils current Child Care Services

 

Wollondilly Year Round Care

Out of School Hours care service for school aged children operating out of the Children’s Services Cottage on Menangle Street, Picton. Operates before school from 6:30am - 9am and after school from 3pm - 7pm (school days) and during school holidays 7:00am to 7:00pm.

Wollondilly Neighbourhood Occasional Care Centre

Flexible care for children from birth to school age. Operating out of the Children’s Services Cottage on Menangle Street, Picton 10:00am - 2:30pm, Monday, Thursday and Friday, school terms only

Wollondilly Family Day Care

Providing care for small groups of children up to 13 years of age in homes of approved Family Day Care Educators.

 

Need to Relocate and Apply for New Licences

 

Council is in the process of developing the Wollondilly Community, Cultural and Civic Precinct, and this precinct provides a new location for a Council operated children's service building. The building will be constructed as part of Stage 1 of the precinct development with an anticipated completion in early 2022. A development application has been submitted for the building and approval is pending.

 

Any relocation of children’s services operations from their current operating location to the new building requires Council to apply for new operating licences for those services. Council’s current Year Round Care service will be relocated to the ground floor of the new building, with no anticipated change to the model of delivering the service.

 

The proposed new preschool service will operate out of the upper floor of the new building.

 

Family Day Care is not related to the building move as it is delivered from the homes of approved Family Day Care Educators and is administered by Council staff currently occupying leased offices in Argyle Street.

 

Case for a Preschool

 

The construction of a new building for the delivery of child care created an opportunity for Council to consider its future child care services model. The operation of a Council operated preschool was reported to the October 2020 Council meeting. The report demonstrated a compelling case for the service given:

 

·    Anticipated community demand and need

·    Significant benefits to our community

Providing quality early childhood education and care

Supporting families

Enabling greater workforce participation by women

Building social connections between families and the community.

·    Role in contributing to the vibrancy and economic activity of the new Civic Precinct

·    Financial feasibility

 

Council Operated Preschools

 

Preschools provide early education and care for children aged between 3 and 6, and some may be licensed for children as young as 2 years of age. Preschools employ professional teachers and generally operate in line with public school terms and school hours.

 

Council operated preschools are not-for-profit services, where the profit (or surplus) is re-invested in the service. They, as well as those run by not-for-profit organisations, are referred to as “sponsored” community based preschools. The licensee (in this case Council) is the sponsor body which makes all major legal, financial, employment, planning and policy making decisions.

 

(Note that some preschools in NSW are operated and managed directly by the Department of Education and Training – this is not being proposed).

 

Preschool Funding

 

Preschool programs are funded by the NSW State Government through the “Start Strong” funding program. The funding is used towards fee subsidies and operating costs. So preschool programs offer children 15 subsidised hours per week (or 600 hours per year). Children that are booked in for days over and above their subsidised 15 hours attract a full fee.

 

Start Strong subsidies are greater for “equity” enrolments (targeted high need community groups e.g. aboriginal, vulnerable, or disadvantaged children).

 

Preschools are able to determine:

 

·    The relative split between the number of subsided days and full pay enrolment days through the enrolment set up of the preschool, as the setting of a limit on number of days per child means less full pay days. (For example if there was a 2 day limit for all children, there would be no full pay enrolment days).

·    The amount of the Start Strong funding that will be passed on to families as a fee subsidy. The amount not passed on as a fee subsidy can be used to fund the operational costs. Generally this split would be 70%/30%.

·    The cost of a full pay enrolment day (full fee applied to children who attend above the 15 hours per week).

·    The proportion of Start Strong funding allocated to “equity” enrolments - generally this would be up to 25% of enrolments.

 

Funding under Start Strong is paid quarterly in advance and is based on information provided by services through an annual preschool “census” process. KU have advised in their report that there is however a waiting period to receive funding after a new preschool has opened, but funding is back dated when paid. Once a new service is operating, it may need to wait until the next August census to submit information about all children, which would capture children who started since the first data collection.

 

Proposed Service Model

 

The proposed preschool would be anticipated to generally operate as follows:

 

Hours of operation

8:00am – 4:00pm

Days of operation

Monday to Friday

Number of operational days

School terms only (40 weeks total)

Plus 2 x child free days (one day before preschool year commences, one day after preschool year concludes)

Licensed places

30

Age of children

3 to 5

Anticipated % utilisation / children per day

90% / 27

Number of Children across week

54

Daily full fee (unfunded)

$55

Start Strong annual funding estimate

$360,000  (based on 2020 funding rates calculator)

Staff to Child Ratio

1:10

Staff requirements (all new positions)

Full-time Director (Degree qualified Early Childhood Teacher)

1 full-time Early Childhood Educators (Diploma qualified / or 2 part time shared position)

1 part-time Childcare Assistant (Certificate qualified

1 part-time Administration Assistant

  

 

Timing of the Service Commencement

 

The proposed new childcare services building is scheduled for completion in early 2022 (subject to DA approval) so it is anticipated that a preschool service could commence approximately mid-2022.

 

This would mean that throughout 2021 and early 2022 Council would need to be undertaking preparatory activities such as:

 

·    Applying for the service to be licenced by the Department of Education and Training

·    Applying for Start Strong funding payment arrangement details

·    Determining fee structures and enrolment configurations

·    Detailed budget planning

·    Staff recruitment and training

·    Service branding and promotion including preschool name agreed and registered

·    Advertising and promotion of new service and enrolments

·    Physical fit-out and set-up of the operation including equipment

·    Development of all required operating policies, procedures and other legislative documents

For a more detailed timeline, refer to the attached document – Pre-Operational Project Plan prepared by KU Children’s Services (February 2021).

Ground floor outdoor play space / future Village Green

 

Council’s Year Round Care (YRC) Service is proposed to be located on the ground floor (note this service is separate to the proposed preschool on the upper floor). YRC comprises before and after school care and vacation care (holiday programs).

 

In accordance with the October 2020 resolution of Council, the ground floor outdoor play space area will be accessible to the general community when it is not required to be used by YRC. These times would be:

 

·    School term week days 9:00am to 3:00pm

·    School term week days after 7:00pm

·    Weekends and public holidays all day, including during school holidays

·    Week days all day during school holidays. (This requires YRC to use the upstairs preschool space during school holidays. The arrangement has being investigated via discussions with officers of the Department of Education and Training and is considered operationally feasible).

 

.

 

The relationship of this outdoor play space to the future village green has been previously considered by Williams Ross Architects. The following are some key points extracted from a report they prepared on this issue in October 2020. (Copy attached).

 

·    Successful public places foster social cohesion through inter-generational, culturally diverse interactions and social connections.

·    The precinct will have a vibrant mix of public, community, arts, learning and workspaces which will “activate” the Village Green – drawing people in and inviting them to stay.

·    The location of the Children’s Service in Building A will create a busy node alongside the Village Green, opposite the Government Services Centre. These two buildings will be the busiest during the week in the mornings, and throughout the workday to early evening. The Library will attract people from late morning through the day and into the early evening, and the Multi-function Theatre, Shire Hall and Flexible Community Arts building will attract people in the evenings, and throughout the day for special events and activities.

·    The Children’s Services Building will play an important role in maintaining a consistent level of activity at quieter times, and encouraging increased local community use of the Village Green and other spaces.

·    After morning drop-off, parents and families may linger, enjoy the Village Green, café, or visit the Library before heading off about their day. The staggered pick up of pre-school in the afternoon and the YRC program in the early evening will encourage constant activity and visitors to the site – all able to make other use of the activities the Precinct has to offer.

·    The YRC program will be busy before 8.30am and again in the late afternoon. During other times the fence of the outdoor space can be opened to create a strong connection to the Village Green.

Consultation

Preliminary consultation regarding the concept of commencing a preschool service has been undertaken with Councillors, Children’s Services staff and Council’s Steering Committee for the Community, Cultural and Civic Precinct development in Picton.

Council has engaged KU Children’s Services to assist with the preparation of this proposal.

Financial Implications

Building costs

The construction of the new childcare building is being funded as part of the civic precinct redevelopment (predominantly from the City Deal Liveability Fund and developer contributions).

The ongoing costs of the building will comprise:

 

·    Operational (utilities) and maintenance costs

·    Asset depreciation

 

Although its scale is larger than the current children’s services cottage, the new building will be more efficient to operate and maintain is it will have lesser maintenance requirements and is being designed to best practice contemporary sustainability standards regarding energy consumption, thermal efficiency and water usage.

 

The asset’s depreciation has been modelled at $115,500 per annum (based on an estimated finished value of $4.5 million).

 

Note however that these operational and depreciation costs are essentially determined by the building itself, and are irrespective of the proposed use. In other words these costs would still be incurred by Council if the building was not used for children’s services.

 

2021/22 Financial Year

Note that although the construction and essential fit out of the building is separately budgeted for as part of the civic precinct redevelopment, there would be an estimated initial set up cost of up to $70,000 likely to occur in the 2021/22 FY. The detail of the set up tasks required are outlined in the Pre-Operational Project Plan and are summarised earlier in this report. They include staff costs, specialist equipment, furniture, educational resources, licensing costs, teaching aids, technology etc. 

These pre-opening funding requirements for 2021/22 will need to be considered as part of the 2021/22 Operational Plan preparation process.

2022/23 Financial Year

The commencement of the preschool is expected to align with the start of the 2022/23 FY. A preliminary annual financial operating model has been prepared based on the following assumptions:

·    A 30 place preschool for 3 to 5 year olds

·    Start Strong annual funding income of $360,000

·    Unfunded (full fee enrolment) annual income of $48,000

·    70% of the Start Strong funding being used towards enrolment subsidies (reduced parent fees) for eligible children up to 15 hours each per week

·    Full daily fees of approximately $55 per day (for enrolment days over and above the 15 hours)

·    30% of Start Strong funding being used towards preschool operations

·    Staffing set up generally as outlined above

·    General operating costs (excluding staff costs) have been based on the operating costs of Council’s current Year Round Care Service (roughly comparable given also licenced for 30).

·     

2022/23 Financial Year estimates

Item

Amount

Annual State Government Start Strong Funding*

$360,000*

Annual unfunded enrolment fees (full fees not subsidised)

$48,000

Annual operational costs (excluding staff costs)

($30,000)

Annual staff costs

($320,000)

Annual operating surplus

$58,000

 

* Notes: Because the 2022/2023 FY will be the first year of operation, we anticipate that there will be a delay in receiving Start Strong Funding. This is because the funding is based on an annual mid-year census capturing data on established enrolment patterns and numbers. While Start Strong Funding would be granted and paid to Council retrospectively, Council may need to forward-fund all (or part) of the anticipated $360,000 Start Strong Funding with an expectation of recoupment.  This need for forward funding will need to be factored into the budget preparation process for the 2022/2023 FY.

We are also assuming full enrolment when the preschool commences, but there is a possibility that full enrolments are not achieved at commencement and that they ramp up over time. If this occurs it will have an impact on the financial projections for the first year.

 

 

2023/2024 onwards

The Preschool will be fully operational and receive the Start Strong Funding for the 2022/2023 financial year as well as the Funding for the 2023/2024 financial year.  Every year thereafter funding will be based on the annual Census and paid accordingly.  Part of the Start Strong Funding will go towards the operational costs of the Preschool as mentioned previously in this report.  Funding will increase annually in line with CPI.

Wollondilly Shire Council area is fortunate to have a stable population forecast. Data generally indicates that the Wollondilly Shire is home to many families with young children, and this is unlikely to change in the next 20 years. In fact, birth-4 year old children are predicted to increase by 7% by 2031, and a further 7% by 2041. This indicates solid demand for preschool for decades to come.

The Government’s commitment to Universal Access to Early Childhood Education in the year before school has brought security of funding for preschool programs across Australia, and this funding has been continuously supported and extended by the Government.

 

Attachments

1.       Wollondilly Shire Council Pre-operatonal Project Plan Feb 2021 - Confidential  

2.       Children's Services relationship to Village Green - Report by Williams Ross Architects     


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

16          Efficient and Effective Council

16.1       Annual Financial Statements for the Year ended 30 June 2020

File Number:           12275#161

 

Executive Summary

The Annual Financial Statements for the year ended 30 June 2020 have now been prepared.

The statements have been reviewed by Prosperity Audit Services Pty Ltd and the NSW Audit Office and will be reviewed by Council’s Audit Risk and Improvement Committee prior to this meeting of Council. It is noted that the Statements have been delayed this year due to the need for additional review and adjustments because of the identification of a prior period asset valuation issue. The Office of Local Government granted Council an extension to prepare the Statements.

The statements are now presented to Council for endorsement and the signing of the "Statement by Councillors and Management".

The Statements will be circulated under a separate cover prior to the Council meeting.

Recommendation

1.       That Council endorse the 2019/20 Annual Financial Statements and form an opinion in the prescribed format on the General Purpose Financial Reports

2.       That the audited financial reports, together with the Auditor’s reports, be presented to the public at the Council Meeting to be held on 20 April 2021.

 

Report

The Local Government Act 1993 requires Council to prepare financial reports for each year and refer them for audit as soon as practicable after the end of that year.

A Council’s financial report must include:

·        A general purpose financial report;

·        Any other matter prescribed by the regulations; and

·        A statement in the approved form by the Council as to its opinion on the general purpose financial report.

The Annual Financial Statements are required to be prepared in accordance with the Local Government Act 1993, the Local Government Code of Accounting Practice and Financial Reporting, and the Australian Accounting Standards, including the Australian equivalents to International Financial Reporting Standards (AIFRS).

The legislative requirements under the Local Government Act 1993, relevant to the approval and audit process of annual financial statements are as follows:

Section 413(1) - A council must prepare financial reports for each year, and must refer them for audit as soon as practicable.

Section 413(2) - A council’s financial reports must include:

(a)     a general purpose financial report, and

(b)     any other matter prescribed by the regulations, and

(c)     a statement in the approved form by the council as to its opinion on the general purpose financial report.

Section 415(1) - Council’s auditor must audit financial reports as soon as practicable after receipt.

Section 416(1) - Council’s financial reports must be completed and audited within 4 months after year end.

Section 417(1) - A council’s auditor must prepare 2 reports:

·        a report on the general purpose financial report,

·        a report on the conduct of the audit.

Section 417(2) - The report on the council’s financial reports must include the following:

(a)     a statement as to whether, in the opinion of the auditor, the council’s accounting records have been kept in accordance with the requirements of this Division,

(b)     a statement as to whether, in the opinion of the auditor, the council’s financial reports:

(i)      have been prepared in accordance with the requirements of this Division, and

(ii)      are consistent with the council’s accounting records, and

(iii)     present fairly the council’s financial position and the results of its operations,

(c)     a statement as to whether, in the opinion of the auditor, any information relevant to the conduct of the audit has been unobtainable by the auditor,

(d)     a statement setting out particulars of any material deficiency in the accounting records or financial reports that has come to light in the course of the audit.

Section 417(3) - The report on the conduct of the audit may contain such statements, comments and recommendations as to the conduct of the audit of the council’s financial reports as the auditor considers appropriate to include in the report.

Section 417(4) - As soon as practicable after completing the audit, the auditor must send a copy of the auditor’s reports to the Director-General and to the council.

Section 417(5) - As soon as practicable after receiving the auditor’s reports, the council must send a copy of the auditor’s report on the council’s financial reports, together with a copy of the council’s audited financial reports, to the Director-General and to the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Council’s Auditors have completed their audit of the financial reports and those financial reports are now formally presented. Council’s Auditor will attend the Council meeting to present the Financial Statements.  The statements will also have been reviewed by Council’s Audit Risk and Improvement Committee prior to this meeting of Council.

It is noted that the Statements have been delayed this year due to the need for additional review and adjustments because of the identification of a prior period asset valuation issue. The Office of Local Government granted Council an extension to the Statements.

Section 413 of the Local Government Act 1993 requires the Council to form an opinion as to whether Council’s annual financial reports have been drawn up in accordance with the Local Government Act and associated Codes and Australian Accounting Standards as prescribed by the Regulations.  Statements to this effect have been prepared and are presented to Council for signature.  Subsequent to these opinions being signed, Council’s Auditors will present their audit reports to Council.

Section 418 of the Local Government Act 1993 (as amended) requires that Council, as soon as practical after receiving a copy of the Auditor’s reports, fix a date for a meeting at which it proposes to present its audited financial reports, together with the Auditor’s reports to the public. The Council must also give public notice of the date so fixed.

It is proposed that the 20 April 2021 Council meeting be set as the date to present the audited financial statements to the public.

Section 420 of the Local Government Act 1993 provides that any person may make submissions to the Council with respect to the financial reports or the Auditor’s reports and those submissions must be made in writing and lodged with the Council within seven days of the public meeting.

Consultation

All members of the Executive and Senior Management have had input into the production of the General Purpose Financial Report, in conjunction with Council’s Auditors.

The Audit Manager and staff of Prosperity Audit Services and the NSW Audit Office have been consulted throughout the preparation of the annual financial reports.

Financial Implications

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

Attachments

1.       Draft 2019/20 Annual Financial Statements (under separate cover)    


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

16.2       Investment of Funds as at 31 January 2021

File Number:           12275#179

 

Executive Summary

The purpose of this report is to provide details of Council’s invested funds as at 31 January 2021.

Council’s portfolio yield exceeds the benchmark AusBond three month Bank Bill Index due to the prudent investment of Council’s portfolio.  Interest received for January 2021 is above the budgeted income forecast.

Recommendation

That the information and certification in relation to the investment of Council funds as at 31 January 2021 be noted.

 

Report

At its last meeting, the Reserve Bank decided to maintain the cash rate target at 0.1% and the yield on 3-year Australian government bonds to 10 basis points, as well as the parameters of the Term Funding Facility. Full commentary on the relief package can be noted in their comments below.

The Board commented that:

The outlook for the global economy has improved over recent months due to the development of vaccines. While the path ahead is likely to remain bumpy and uneven, there are better prospects for a sustained recovery than there were a few months ago. That recovery, however, remains dependent on the health situation and on significant fiscal and monetary support. Inflation remains low and below central bank targets.

In Australia, the economic recovery is well under way and has been stronger than was earlier expected. There has been strong growth in employment and a welcome decline in the unemployment rate to 6.6 per cent. Retail spending has been strong and many of the households and businesses that had deferred loan repayments have now recommenced repayments. These outcomes have been underpinned by Australia's success on the health front and the very significant fiscal and monetary support.

The recovery is expected to continue, with the central scenario being for GDP to grow by 3½ per cent over both 2021 and 2022. GDP is now expected to return to its end-2019 level by the middle of this year. Even so, the economy is expected to operate with considerable spare capacity for some time to come. The unemployment rate remains higher than it has been for the past 2 decades and while it is expected to decline, the central scenario is for unemployment to be around 6 per cent at the end of this year and 5½ per cent at the end of 2022.

Wage and price pressures remain subdued. The CPI increased by just 0.9 per cent over the year to the December quarter and wages (as measured by the Wage Price Index) are increasing at the slowest rate on record. Both inflation and wages growth are expected to pick up, but to do so only gradually, with both remaining below 2 per cent over the next couple of years. In underlying terms, inflation is expected to be 1¼ per cent over 2021 and 1½ per cent over 2022.

 

 

In addition to the central scenario, the Board considered upside and downside scenarios related to the virus and the rollout of vaccines. Disappointing news on the health front would delay the recovery and the expected progress on reducing unemployment. On the other hand, it is possible that further positive health outcomes would boost consumer spending and investment, leading to stronger growth than is currently expected. An important near-term issue is how households and businesses adjust to the tapering of some of the COVID support measures and to what extent they will use their stronger balance sheets to support spending.

Financial conditions remain highly accommodative, with lending rates for most borrowers at record lows and asset prices, including housing prices, mostly increasing. Housing credit growth to owner-occupiers has picked up recently, but investor and business credit growth remain weak. The exchange rate has appreciated and is in the upper end of the range of recent years.

The Board remains committed to maintaining highly supportive monetary conditions until its goals are achieved. Given the current outlook for inflation and jobs, this is still some way off. The current monetary policy settings are continuing to help the economy by lowering financing costs for borrowers, contributing to a lower exchange rate than otherwise, supporting the supply of credit needed for the recovery and supporting household and business balance sheets. The decision to extend the bond purchase program will ensure a continuation of this monetary support.

To date, authorised deposit-taking institutions have drawn $86 billion under the Term Funding Facility and have access to a further $99 billion. The Bank has bought a cumulative $52 billion of government bonds issued by the Australian Government and the states and territories under the bond purchase program. It has not purchased bonds in support of the 3-year yield target since early December. Since the start of 2020, the RBA's balance sheet has increased by around $160 billion.

The Board will not increase the cash rate until actual inflation is sustainably within the 2 to 3 per cent target range. For this to occur, wages growth will have to be materially higher than it is currently. This will require significant gains in employment and a return to a tight labour market. The Board does not expect these conditions to be met until 2024 at the earliest.

 

The majority of Council’s investment portfolio (83%) is invested in deposits / securities with Australian Authorised Deposit taking Institutions (ADI’s).  This percentage is slightly lower than normal due to Council holding 16% in cash at the end of January, which is held with the NAB, but is not included in our deposit/securities calculation.  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 2019/20 and 2020/21.

As shown in the chart above, Council’s portfolio yield greatly exceeds 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 31 January 2021 is summarised below:

Details of Council’s investment portfolio as at 31 January 2021 are provided in attachment 1.

Consultation

Independent advice regarding the investment of Council funds was provided by Prudential Investment Services Corp and a portfolio review has been undertaken to ensure that the portfolio remains appropriate in the current environment.

The advice of Prudential Investment Services is that “Council has a well diversified portfolio of term deposits and bank issued bonds from the highest quality institutions in Australia.  No change in Council’s investment strategy is recommended in response to the current market conditions.”

Financial Implications

Council continues to invest those funds which, having regard to Council’s Resourcing Strategy 2017/18 – 2020/21 and adopted Operational Plan 2020/21, 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 31 January was $277,897.

The chart below compares actual interest received to date with budgeted interest for the year.

Interest for the month of January represented an increase of 0.63% pa vs the bank bill benchmark of 0.01% pa for the month.

The Reserve Bank of Australia has continued to keep interest rates low.

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.

Rob Seidel

Chief Financial Officer

WOLLONDILLY SHIRE COUNCIL

Attachments

1.       January 2021 Investment Summary Report    


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

16.3       Half Yearly Progress Report on Delivery and Operation Plan 2020/21

File Number:           12275#180

 

Executive Summary

The purpose of this report is to provide Council with a half yearly progress update on the current Delivery and Operational Plan 2020/21.

 

Recommendation

That the attached Delivery and Operational Plan Progress Report be received and noted.

 

Report

The Half Yearly Monthly Progress Report on the Delivery Program provides an account of Council’s performance in the July 2020 to December 2020 reporting period. The report assesses our progress over the past six months against the commitments set out in our Delivery Program.

The last six months have seen Wollondilly Shire achieve amazing outcomes as a community. The attached report demonstrates these achievements and the high level of service Council has continued to deliver under the Operational Plan 2020/21.

Here is a brief list of highlights from July 2020 – December 2020 period:

·        Wollondilly Council and the NSW RFS Southern Highlands Team welcomed the Prime Minister Scott Morrison, Premier Gladys Berejiklian, RFS Commissioner Rob Rogers and Resilience NSW Commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons to the official opening of the new Fire Truck Memorial Playground at Telopea Park, Buxton. The memorial playground was built to honour Mr Geoffrey Keaton and Mr Andrew O’Dwyer of Horsley Park Brigade, who lost their lives in the Green Wattle Creek bushfire at Buxton.

 

·        Australian swimming champion Ian Thorpe visited Wollondilly Leisure Centre to welcome the installation of a new pool hoist which will provide greater accessibility to the pool.

 

·        Council maintained strong focus on our Transport Capital Works Program with added resources including a full-time Pavement Repair Crew. Demonstrating to our community that we are on the road to better roads.

 

·        Customer service improvements were achieved as our teams implemented process and system improvements which has seen a reduction in open CRM’s from 1,500 (avg/6months) to 400 (avg/6months).

 

·        Wollondilly Shire Council partnered with Wollondilly North Rotary to deliver the “Youth Voices” project for children and young people in the Wollondilly area who were affected by the Green Wattle Creek bushfire event.

 

·        The Wollondilly Youth Advisory Committee (YAC) and Council ran successful “Adulting 101” projects, which included offer free training in Responsible Service of Alcohol and Responsible Conduct of Gambling (ages 18+) and customer service and barista training courses (ages16+) for Wollondilly residents.

 

·        Council proudly opened new multi-purpose facilities at the Wilton Recreation Reserve, which will help provide for our growing population.

 

 

·        The Wollondilly Cultural and Civic Precinct has been progressed and Stage 1 is on track to be completed as per the committed timeline.

 

·        Council appointed a dedicated Swimming Pool Safety Officer in November 2020. Safety has been a big focus with over 40 investigations of swimming pool barriers completed and a community wide awareness campaign to educate residents about the importance of pool safety.

 

·        Successful implementation of “Love the Dilly” campaign, which saw

 

o   Over 887,000 people reached on social media;

o   Over 12,782 visits to LoveTheDilly.com.au

o   Over 1000 new social followers

o   Over 8 Million impressions through print and digital media

o   Positive feedback from business owners and local residents

o   Heightened sense of community pride.

 

·        Strong staff engagement with “My Plan” training conducted and ready to implement for the 2nd half of the year.

 

For an in-depth look at these highlights as well as the other achievements, please refer to the attached Half Yearly Progress Report on the Delivery and Operational Plan 2020/21.

The half yearly financial statements will be provided under separate cover.

Consultation

Nil

Financial Implications

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

Attachments

1.       Operational Plan Half Yearly Progress Report 2020.21 PDF     


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

17          Notice of Motion/Rescissions

17.1       Notice of Motion - Water Symposium

File Number:           12275#183

 

I, Councillor Judith Hannan intend to move the following motion:

Motion

That Council hold a water symposium to inform the community of the water plans by Sydney Water.

 

 

CEO’s Comment

This motion if adopted can be actioned using current resources, noting Sydney Water has now agreed to host such a symposium.

 

By way of background, at its meeting of 19 May 2020, Council considered a report following a resolution from 18 February 2020 proposing a water symposium.  The report noted Sydney Water advice as follows:

•        At this time it is not proposed to hold a water symposium; 

•        Sydney Water is progressing a Regional Planning project for the Macarthur area and community consultation will be undertaken as part of the project; and

•        Sydney Water will continue to work with Wollondilly Shire Council as a key stakeholder in planning for future water security for the growth areas:

 

In response to the report, Council resolved as follows:

1.       That we note the advice given by Sydney Water.

2.       That after the Covid-19 issues reducing the number of people attending is resolved then Wollondilly holds its own symposium inviting all MPs, stakeholder groups named in the report that Sydney Water has consulted with and Sydney Water to share opinions, likely outcomes and further actions that Council should take to ensure our community, the present population, new developments and our farmers are drought resistant and water secure.

 

Contact has now been made with Sydney Water to again discuss the proposed water symposium.  Sydney Water has now agreed to work with Council to organise a water symposium in the most appropriate format to meet Council’s preferences and given current Covid-19 restrictions.

 

Attachments

Nil


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

17.2       Notice of Motion - Road Repairs and Renewal

File Number:           12275#184

 

I, Councillor Judith Hannan intend to move the following motion:

Motion

1.       That Council review and update the road renewal and repair program based on the current condition of the roads in line with the adopted asset strategy.

2.       That road repair is the number one priority when seeking external funding from grants and other sources and that this is not to include any rate rise.

 

CEO’s Comment

This motion if adopted can be actioned using current resources as Council budgeted for and is well on track to update its Road Renewal Program including a full road condition data capture of the Shire’s entire road network before the end of the 2020/21 financial year.

 

This road condition assessment will then be used to update the Road Renewal Program, which will be reported to Council before June 2021. When prioritising road projects Council takes into account many factors including road condition, traffic safety, the most suitable time to intervene, the best methods to use, future development and traffic levels on the road. This year we’re updating our road program.

 

Fixing our roads continues to be the top priority for Wollondilly. Unfortunately, historically there was an under-investment and as a result Council is working hard to address this and bring our road network condition up to the standards expected by the community. Council is now investing more money than ever to address the backlog, with a record $17.9 million invested in road upgrades and renewal this year. There is absolutely more work to be done and it will take some time to fully address the backlog, however this budget is making a difference.

 

Council assigns the largest section of our budget for the repair of roads and continues to invest in new machinery to make our teams more efficient on the ground. Meanwhile, our additional road repair crew this year has significantly increased capacity for asphalt and pothole repairs across the Shire.

 

Council will prioritise and pursue every available external funding source to increase its road maintenance and renewal programs should they become available, noting that most grant opportunities relate to the expansion or enhancement of assets.

 

In order to achieve other Council priorities and commitments to improve community facilities including roads, Council will still have to apply for other grant opportunities for improvement or enhancement of assets such as the Australian Government’s Black Spot Programme; NSW Government’s Safer Roads Program; Resources for Regions; Western Sydney Infrastructure Plan – Local Roads Package.

 

 

Attachments

Nil


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

 

17.3       Notice of Motion - Conditions Imposing on the Approval of Changes to the Wollondilly LEP

File Number:           12275#185

 

I, Councillor Judith Hannan intend to move the following motion:

 

Motion

That Council write to the Local Member asking why the Wollondilly Community have conditions imposed to allow the approval of the changes to the LEP that were passed in 6 weeks in our neighbouring Council areas.

 

CEO’s Comment

This motion if adopted can be actioned using current resources.

 

By way of background, it is noted that Wingecarribee comes under the Southern Region DPIE office based in Wollongong, while Wollondilly comes under the Sydney West Region Office. Nevertheless, it is reasonable for Wollondilly Council to expect the same accelerated decision timeframes for the pending Stage 1a and Stage 2 planning proposals when they are submitted to DPIE. The CEO and the Mayor met with the Minister for Planning and Public Spaces in December 2020 seeking support for the proposed amendments and requesting accelerated DPIE turnaround times. It is understood commitments have been given by the Deputy Secretary to fast track the Department decision process as much as possible. Further approaches will be made to the Department when the proposals are submitted.

 

it is understood the timeframe for Wingecarribee’s Rural Tourism Proposal was comparable to Wollondilly’s Stage 1 proposal.

 

However from the date the Gateway determination was issued (May 2020), Wollondilly and Wingecarribee were subject to different planning pathways:

·    Wollondilly’s Gateway determination required consultation with the RFS prior to public exhibition and to address any comments raised. Wollondilly was required to resubmit the revised planning proposal to the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE) for review and approval prior to public exhibition.

·    Wingecarribee was also required to consult with the RFS however, without the direction that this was to happen prior to exhibition, or to require further approval from DPIE.

·    Wollondilly was required to prepare a Strategic Bush Fire Study to comply with the RFS Planning for Bushfire Protection requirements. This ultimately led to the removal of a number of amendments so that the other amendments within the LEP could be progressed within the timeframe required for the Accelerated LP Review Program.

·    Wingecarribee does not appear to have been required to prepare a Strategic Bush Fire Study. It appears that NSW RFS provided considered comments including recommended amendments, which were incorporated into the final planning proposal.

 

Attachments

Nil


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

17.4       Notice of Motion - Animal Breeding

File Number:           12275#186

 

I, Councillor Judith Hannan intend to move the following motion:

 

Motion

That Council

1.       Take a common sense approach to the management and control of animal breeding, based upon fairness and an understanding that this is a recreational hobby enjoyed by many residents.

2.       Advocate the NSW Government clearly define Animal Breeding and Boarding Establishments, including specifically relating to a hobby vs commercial operation to reduce uncertainty for our residents.

3.       Work with Dogs NSW and other key stakeholders to collaboratively develop strategies to manage this issue into the future.

 

 

CEO’s Comment

This motion if adopted can be actioned using current resources.

 

By way of background, there appears to be a perception that Council is considering a change o its policy or approach to dog breeding across the Shire. This is not the case and Council is continuing with the same approach that has been in place for some time.

 

Ultimately the NSW Government sets the rules on what’s allowable in this case and Counicl has a legislative requirement to investigate any complaints we receive from the community. The Wollondilly LEP defines animal boarding or training establishments as:

a building or place used for the breeding, boarding, training, keeping or caring of animals for commercial purposes (other than for the agistment of horses), and includes any associated riding school or ancillary veterinary hospital.

 

There is currently no definition of ‘commercial premises’ in the LEP Dictionary set by the NSW Government.

 

Council resolved in March 2020 to the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment requesting a practice note in respect of animal boarding kennels, however no response has been received at the time of writing but officers have followed up seeking that advice.

 

While there is no clear planning definition of ‘commercial’, the ATO provides criteria for what would define a ‘business’ as against a hobby as follows:

·        Registered business name, or ABN;

·        Profit intention or potential;

·        Repeating same activities;

·        The size or scale of the activity is consistent with other businesses in the industry;

·        The activity is planned, organised and carried out in a businesslike manner. This may include: keeping business records and account books, having separate business bank account, operating from business premises or having licences or qualifications.

 

 

Notwithstanding the definitional question, another important consideration in this matter is the size of any structures used for kennels. Under the Exempt & Complying Code SEPP animal shelters must not have a floor area of more than 10m2. Council is required to ensure residents submit a development application and gain approval for the structure if the requirement of the SEPP cannot be satisfied.

 

Attachments

Nil


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

17.5       Notice of Motion - Business Break-Ins

File Number:           12275#190

 

I, Councillor Michael Banasik intend to move the following motion:

 

Motion

1.       That Council write to the Local Area Police Commander expressing our concerns in regard to recent business break-ins over the last few weeks.

2.       That Council write to the NSW Police Minister calling for extra resources in our towns, in particular the reopening of the Picton Police Station to 24 hours.

 

 

CEO’s Comment

 

This motion if adopted can be actioned using current resources.

 

 

 

Attachments

Nil


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

17.6       Notice of Motion - Mining Subsidence

File Number:           12275#191

 

I, Councillor Michael Banasik, intend to move the following motion:

Motion

1.       That Council write to the NSW Mining Minister calling for urgent review of the Mine Subsidence Act to better protect and assist landowners who are affected by mining.

2.       That particularly the current review process should be accessed by an independent body.

3.       That further, Council also send this motion to LGNSW and the Mining and Energy Councils.

 

CEO’s Comment

This motion, if adopted can be undertaken within existing resource allocations.

 

 

Attachments

Nil    


Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda

16 March 2021

 

18          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:

18.1       Wollondilly Neighbourhood Occasional Care Service

This matter is considered to be confidential under Section 10A(2)(a) 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 personnel matters concerning particular individuals (other than councillors)

Sensitive information that will affect staff and the community.

18.2       Quarterly Legal Status

This matter is considered to be confidential under Section 10A(2)(g) 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 advice concerning litigation, or advice as comprises a discussion of this matter, that would otherwise be privileged from production in legal proceedings on the ground of legal professional privilege

This report covers outcomes of litigation matters and associated legal expenditure

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

16 March 2021

 

19          Questions for Next Meeting

No reports this meeting