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Council Decided – 7 September 2021

Posted on Friday 10 September 2021

Kate Cooper, Past Principal, Mosman Public School

Mayor Carolyn Corrigan delivered a Mayoral Minute paying tribute to long-time Principal of Mosman Public School, Kate Cooper, who passed away in early August. Kate, who was Principal at Mosman Public from 1994 to 2013, dedicated her life to being an extraordinary teacher, leader and mentor in a career spanning 40 years. At Mosman, Kate worked tirelessly to improve the academic record of the school, as well as the cultural and social experience of its children. The school hall was named in Kate’s honour following her retirement in 2013, as a testament to her continuing legacy.

Robert Wendon, Former Councillor, Mosman Council

The Mayor also expressed the community’s condolences on the recent passing of former Mosman Councillor Robert ‘Rob’ Wendon. Rob served on Council from 1983 to 1987, serving as Deputy Mayor from 1985 to 1986. He is remembered for his involvement on many community projects, including the inaugural Mosman Square Project Committee and chairing the steering committee for Mosman’s first Heritage Study. Rob was also a long time member of the Mosman Middle Harbour District Cricket Club and Mosman Lions Club.

Policy Reviews

Council considered a number of reports outlining proposed amendments to various policies, including its Public Interest Disclosures Policy and its Debt Recovery Management Policy. A new Sundry Debt Hardship Policy was also proposed to support and supplement Council’s existing debt management framework. This new policy, together with the amendments recommended to the Public Interest Disclosures and Debt Recovery Management Policies, were subsequently adopted by Council. The new and revised policies will be available soon under ‘Policies’ on this website, and in the interim can be accessed on the 7 September Council Meeting Agenda. 

Local Government NSW Conference

A report was presented to Council in relation to the Annual Conference of Local Government NSW, including changes to conference arrangements arising from both COVID restrictions and the rescheduling of local government elections. Council confirmed the attendance of Mayor Corrigan as a voting delegate at the Annual Conference in November 2021 and for the LGNSW Board elections. Deputy Mayor, Councillor Moline and Councillor Sherlock were also nominated to attend the conference and serve as voting delegates for both the Annual Conference and the LGNSW Board elections. Further matters relating to the Special Conference proposed for February-March 2022 will be considered at the first Council meeting following the December 4 local government elections.

Draft 2020/21 Financial Statements

Council’s draft General Purpose Financial Statements for the year ending 30 June 2021 were considered and adopted by Council. The Statements, which will now be formally referred for audit, indicate a net operating deficit for the year (before capital grants and contributions) of $403,545. Based on performance measures established by the Office of Local Government, Council is in a sound financial position and continues to perform well against all current benchmarks for infrastructure maintenance and renewal .

Memory Park Amenities

In April 2021 Council resolved to proceed with the design and construction of a new amenities building at Memory Park and, following community consultation in July 2021, tenders were sought for the construction works. Council considered a report outlining the results of the tender process and resolved to approve the tender from RELD Group Pty Ltd. It is expected that works will commence on site in September/October, dependent on relevant COVID restrictions.

Mosman Square and Village Upgrade

As one of a number of projects benefitting from funding under the NSW Public Space Legacy Program, an upgrade of Mosman Square and the Village Green is due to be undertaken by December 2022. Mosman Square and Village Green was constructed in 1988 and, while there have been changes over the years, the area has not been subject to significant upgrade. Council noted that a concept design has been prepared for these works and approved the design being placed on public exhibition. The results of the consultation are scheduled to be reported to the November 2021 meeting of Council, with a workshop for Councillors also to be held.

Compliance Levy

Councils in NSW have been advised by the NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment that they will no longer be able to charge compliance levies from 31 December 2021. This requirement, introduced without consultation, has removed a funding source that assists councils in delivering the compliance functions necessary to manage development consents. While the funding source has been withdrawn from councils, they will also now be required to collect a new compliance levy for the Building Commissioner’s Office and remit the funds. After considering a report on this matter Council resolved to support the advocacy already undertaken by LGNSW on the issue, to write to the Minister for Planning and Public Spaces asking that the decision be reversed, and to also write to the Premier and Minister for Local Government expressing Council’s disappointment with the process and seeking a better engagement process in the future.

Community Engagement – Mosman Scenic Protection Area

The current exclusion of the Mosman Scenic Protection Area from the Codes SEPP is due to lapse on 30 May 2022. Following a resolution of Council in December 2020 to endorse a Planning Proposal that will help deliver ongoing protection for this area through a rezoning of land from R2 Low Density Residential to E4 Environmental Living, and a subsequent decision to endorse related amendments to the Mosman Residential DCP in March 2021, a Gateway determination was issued by the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment on 19 August 2021 to allow public exhibition of the Planning Proposal. Council considered the proposed program of community engagement for public exhibition, including documentation that will accompany the engagement process. It was resolved that the engagement strategy for public exhibition of the Scenic Protection Area Planning Proposal be endorsed, with consultation to commence on 30 September and conclude on 10 November 2021. Council further resolved that the consultation with residents be conducted in good faith and that it decries any attempt by any party to corrupt the consultation with misinformation.

Bike Tracks in Mosman

After hearing from numerous residents and following extensive debate on the issue of bike tracks in Mosman, Council resolved that it supports a meeting between Council, National Parks & Wildlife and the Sydney Harbour Federation Trust to discuss the potential for a bike track in the area. It was also resolved that the status quo be maintained at Reid Park and that formalising the bike track through the Plan of Management for the reserve be fast-tracked. A further resolution seeking a report on options to manage the bike track at the northern end of Reid Park, and the parameters and process for a bike track in this area, was the subject of a rescission motion lodged at the end of the meeting and this motion will be considered at Council’s next meeting in October.