1st council meeting for 2017

January 31, 2017

2016 Signe OutdoorsTomorrow night is the first council meeting for 2017. Don’t forget they begin at 6pm sharp and are generally more interesting if you know what is on the agenda.

http://liverpool.infocouncil.biz/Open/2017/02/CO_20170201_AGN_320_AT.PDF

So far the agenda isn’t too taxing and there are a couple of items of particular interest, one being NOM01 being put forward by Cllr Balloot… “That as Liverpool is growing and demand is increasing for affordable housing Council should investigate ways to cut red tape and reduce the time to earmark and prioritise lands for new housing developments in an effort to counter the crisis of housing affordability hitting Sydney currently.”

So where is the question about affordability…? He’s most certainly wanting more houses approved and faster but in reading his question and that of the reply nowhere is mentioned the actual percentage of actual affordable housing needed, nor the manner in which to achieve or even cost factors involved in providing AFFORDABLE HOUSING. It sadly screams to me of calling for one thing in the name of another for the benefit of the developer and nothing for the residents in need of affordable housing. Liverpool and surrounds has a real need for housing that is affordable but nothing in this request for expedience is there a provision to provide anything other than more houses – faster, which in fact does not raise or technically provide affordable housing. What we should be calling for is a provision of a set amount of housing being provided that is actually affordable, but developers won’t jump on board and providing more housing may raise the availability of housing but nothing in here suggests how to make it more affordable. (rent capping or even a hint of it isn’t to be found anywhere)

The other is the New Precinct meetings being proposed quarterly or as needed… this will pretty much mean the abolishment of the community forums of which you know I regularly attend and find a particularly engaging manner of getting residents together. It will be interesting to see if there are any changes made to the proposed format. I note that a Cllr Chairperson is to be nominated which is a bit of a laugh when you consider only Cllrs Harle, Shelton and recently Haggarty ever attend. Well that’s not quite true a couple of other councillors managed an appearance prior to an election here and there but they are not what one would call high on the agenda for the majority of councillors. I imagine there will be some toing and froing for chairing some in the ‘more desireable’ locations but only time will tell. Sadly every-time the council chooses to ‘play’ around with the format of the forums it has a huge cost in the way of attendance and the sceptic in me sees this as more of the same. I”m not sure how the Rural forum attendees are going to feel about their meetings being reduced to quarterly as they have in recent times had good attendance monthly.

Please come up and say hi if you are at the meeting tomorrow night – I try to sit where I can watch the majority of the councillors, how they vote etc

Remember these are your rates being discussed, distributed and dissected it’s in your best interest to know where they are being spent. I also tweet during the meetings, if you aren’t connected to twitter you can still read them as they appear to the right of this post throughout the meeting. Again, I would like to congratulate Kiersten Fishburn on her appointment as CEO. I have always found Kiersten fair, engaging and willing to listen to the community so to me that is a real win for the community especially compared to the formers.

See you tomorrow… council chambers, to the right of the Liverpool Main Library doors at 6pm.

Sign off

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Comments and moving on.

April 28, 2011

There have been a few comments on this site over the last couple of days, welcomed I can assure you, even though in most cases neither nice nor supportive, I encourage people to comment, disagree and voice their own opinions.  I do post them all contrary to a comment made recently as I believe it gives you an insight into those who comment as well. It had me wonder, if I didn’t make comment about the goings on I see in Liverpool, would those same people then attack me for not keeping true to my word back when I ran for council in 2008, ‘that regardless of the outcome I would continue to watch, comment and make public the things I see happening all around us’. This morning I ran into another local who encouraged me keep posting, interestingly we don’t always agree but he too acknowledged that all interaction and comment was valuable. He shares many of my concerns and interests in Liverpool albeit from different perspectives and believes raising awareness of issues surrounding us was important.  I believe the average person is often too busy to engage and to provide a website where all and sundry can read, review, disagree and comment was worthwhile. Having been in the same situation previously in that raising my family and working was consuming enough without the need to scour the papers, read all the council docs I can get my hands on etc so I do that, in the hope that a more informed, more readily available source of information will encourage participation by more people. I attend all council meetings and committee meetings with very, very few exceptions and where I can relay your views and opinions as your community representative.

So onto other important matters: I’ve been advised that at each of the community forums over the coming weeks there will be a presentation made by Council Staff about the Operational and Delivery Plans for Liverpool. I’ve not finished reading them but so far am finding them well written and informative and I encourage you to come along and get your hands on a copy and make comment. I particularly like the 9 core directions, all of which I believe will resonate with Liverpudlians as desirable outcomes, most of which were covered in commitments from all the candidates who ran for council in 2008.

Also as mentioned previously, the Collingwood precinct POM (Plan of Management) is open to discussion and comment and I encourage you to look into that as well…and to comment if you have an idea, suggestion or view not covered.

For now, keep those comments coming; keep watch, as I attempt to keep you abreast of changes and happenings in our city. And above all your opinion is valued even if we don’t agree.


Freedom of the City Army March

July 5, 2010

I got up nice and early on Saturday to make sure I got a prime position in the Freedom of the City March on Saturday, how delighted I was to do exactly that,  front and centre as the Men and women of our local barracks paraded past me and the dress unformed police officer who called them to halt.

Albeit ceremonial, what a pleasure to watch these well drilled and professional men and women exercise a past right, 10 hours (a young lady partner informed me)  they practiced the day prior. 10 hours minimum to ensure they did it well.

I took some photos on my “phone camera” not all the best quality but certainly enough that you’ll see the precision and the dedication.

Sadly all too few of our citizens thought this worthwhile and the small crowd consisted mostly of partners, children and family members of the military and police personnel. The President of the Friends of Collingwood House and the Regional Museum was there and heartily disappointed at the small community turnout… for me however the saddest thing was the lack of support of our duly elected councillors… you see, Mayor Waller was there with her family, but that’s it…none of the others from either side of the political fence appeared.  (Several others brought this to my attention as well) You see, it’s part of our Bicentennial celebrations, they’ve known about it for many months and not one of them could spare the two or so hours to participate, rub shoulders with the residents, no wonder the community doesn’t support these things when even our own councillors can’t be bothered.

To the Men and women who participated in the March, thank you. To the small band of residents who stood in the brisk morning air, thank you and to those councillors who didn’t show, thanks for nothing. What a disappointment and yet not surprising… it’s what I’m coming to expect. I guess you didn’t consider it vote worthy…