Draft and Proposed NSW Government Policies for Media, Social Media and Councillor/Staff Interaction
Council considered a report outlining draft Model Policies for Social Media and Councillor and Staff Interaction developed by the NSW Government for use by local councils in NSW. The NSW Government is also proposing a Model Media Policy for use by councils. The report presented to Council identified key elements of the draft Model Policies, noting that the NSW Government has advised that neither will be mandatory and that councils can choose whether to use them or adapt them for their own purposes. Submissions will be made to the NSW Government on the draft Model Policies, with feedback on each policy to include the assertion that they should not be mandated requirements. Council will also provide a copy of its existing Media Policy to the State Government.
NSW Government Review of General Manager and Senior Staff Remuneration
A report was presented to Council advising of a Consultation Paper recently released by the NSW Government regarding a review of remuneration payable to general managers and senior staff employed by NSW councils. The Consultation Paper looks at the current practice whereby individual councils in NSW determine remuneration levels, as well as options to regulate remuneration, and seeks feedback on whether more regulation is needed, what such regulation might look like, and who should decide how much general managers are paid. It was resolved by Council that a submission be made to the NSW Government, with preparation to be delegated to Council’s Performance Review Committee for circulation to Councillors following consultation with various parties and also canvassing a potential NSROC submission on the matter.
SSROC Electricity Procurement
Mosman Council has, for the past nine years, purchased electricity for its small and large sites through the Southern Sydney Regional Organisation of Councils (SSROC), providing certainty on pricing in a complex electricity market as well as lower electricity prices for Council. In 2021 SSROC has conducted a tender process for electricity supply for a period of up to 10 years from 1 July 2022. In considering a report on this matter, Council noted its zero carbon emission target for electricity by 2030 and resolved to grant delegated authority to the General Manager to enter into a contract with the preferred contractor from SSROC’s tender process.
Climate Action Plan – Resilience and Adaptation Strategy
Following the adoption of Council’s Climate Action Plan – Mitigation Strategy in April this year, a Draft Climate Action Plan – Resilience and Adaptation Strategy has been prepared and submitted to Council for consideration. After reviewing and discussing this document Council resolved to refer the matter to a Councillor workshop, with a draft document again being submitted to the next possible Council meeting.
Spit Road and Awaba Street – Local Traffic Study Report
In recent months a traffic study has been undertaken in relation to traffic movements in around Spit Road, Awaba Street, Moruben Road and Stanton Road. The results of this study were considered by Council, with it being noted that the study had found no practical option to increase the capacity of the Spit Road/Awaba Street intersection or to increase the green time allocated to the Awaba Street east approach to address reported traffic issues in the area. Having regard to the study findings, Council resolved to support the installation of traffic signals at the Spit Road/Stanton Road intersection as this would help reduce congestion on Awaba Street and surrounding intersections in the Balmoral area during peak periods. A meeting will be held with Transport for NSW to discuss this proposal.
Development Applications – NSW Government Standard Conditions of Consent
Council considered a report advising of recent notification from the NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment regarding new standard conditions of consent, the core component of which the NSW Government proposes to make mandatory for all local councils in NSW from 1 September 2021. It was resolved by Council that this matter be referred to a Councillor workshop in the first instance.
NSW Waste and Sustainable Material Strategy 2041
Following consideration of a report outlining the NSW Government’s recently released Waste and Sustainable Materials Strategy 2041, Council resolved to receive the report, noting that NSROC will be working with the State Government to refine practicalities of the Strategy.
Developer Contributions – Proposed Changes by NSW Government
A report was presented to Council advising of NSW Government reforms to the existing arrangements for levying and expenditure of developer contributions in NSW, as captured in the Environmental Planning and Assessment Amendment (Infrastructure Contributions) Bill 2021 currently before the NSW Upper House. By changing the way councils levy contributions, the reforms proposed by the NSW government will potentially have an extremely deleterious impact on Mosman and other local government authorities. For Mosman, the potential financial loss has been projected to be in the vicinity of $20-30 million in the first 20 years of implementation. Council resolved that it seek urgent meetings through NSROC to discuss this proposal with the Local State Member and relevant Ministers of Parliament, and to make a strong submission to the Upper House Inquiry through NSROC, objecting to the proposal on the basis of its severe financial impact on Mosman and the resulting service impacts on residents. This submission is to include detailed amendments to the proposal so there is no adverse impact on Mosman residents.