Now that the dust has settled on the State election it is now time to turn our attention to Local Government

Congratulations to Jayne Stinson on being elected as the member for Badcoe and to David Pisoni on being returned in the seat of Unley. I look forward to working with you both to better our local community.

Councillor, Clarence Park Ward. City of Unley.

Now that the dust has settled on the State election it is now time to turn our attention to Local Government. Yes! Council elections are scheduled for November this year.

It is my intention to put my hand up again. I will be looking to continue as one of your two Clarence Park Ward Councillors.

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Why Councillor? Why not Mayor?

Many people have asked me in recent times to run for Mayor, which is certainly flattering. I believe however my true value to council and to its ratepayers is to focus on being a Ward Councillor.

The elections will see a significant turnover of elected members. Two members, one being the Mayor, have already resigned. Two other councillors have announced that they will not be renominating. A fifth is considering his future.

Five of 13 positions on Council will therefore see a change of member.

Two, maybe three, of our current membership are considering running for Mayor. Given anyone losing the Mayoral race will not be on Council this means a turnover of 7 out of the 13 positions. If I were to run for mayor too the change will lift to 8, 9 if an outsider won the Mayoral race.

Change is usually healthy. It is good to see change after each council election. New ideas, new perspective, new energy etc. If the extent of change is excessive however this can be unsettling.

This is because the learning curve when stepping into the elected member role is extreme. New members therefore need time to settle in.

Running for Mayor, with so many others considering it, would increase this risk.

Seeking Your Feedback on Goodwood Oval Grandstand

Council is seeking your feedback on draft designs we have recently developed for the new Goodwood Oval Grandstand. After consultation with the footy and cricket clubs to ensure we have captured their needs, we now seek your input.

As everyone knows, we received Government funding late last year. Their contribution added to our own commitment and the contribution of the clubs and the SANFL.

This therefore means the project will proceed. That is a non-negotiable.

What we need now is to develop and refine the concept designs. To ensure the new facility fits in with the local environment we look forward to the contribution from the wider community. Seeking your feedback will assist the final design.

Discussions I have had neighbours have identified a couple of suggestions that I believe will improve the design. Both aesthetically and functionally. A question has also been raised as to the availability of function area to the community. Another whether the change rooms might be available to others who may hire the oval. I like that too.

Please contribute. Your input may prove to be just as helpful. You can help by going to our have your say website.

At the same time, we are seeking further input from the SANFL and the AFL. They have made observations that will positively impact on the size and cost of the project. Such observations as the number of toilets can be reduced and physio space likewise reduced.

Extended Use of Lighting

Hopefully a development application before council for extended use of lighting by the Goodwood Saints Football Club will not detract from helping us achieve the best design.

The lighting use has nothing to do with this consultation. Council, must under the Development Regulations, process this application. Our Council Assessment Panel will assess the application.

Please do not mix the two. We need your feedback to the grandstand design. If you have an interest in the lighting please refer to my separate bog.

 

Kate Bickford is representing SA Best in the fight for Badcoe.

Representing SA Best, Kate Bickford is the last candidate to be named in the Fight for Badcoe. This just before the Government goes into caretaker mode and the core flutes get erected.

Kate Bickford, SA Best candidate for Badcoe

As I have done with the other three candidates I sat down with Kate Bickford for a coffee and a chat. This I did on behalf of the ratepayers of Council’s Clarence Park Ward, and the neighbouring Goodwood Ward.

I found her to be quite a genuine person with strong links to the local community. She has lived around 20 years in Forestville.

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Kate is a lawyer and has worked on behalf of our indigenous Australians and for small and big business. This has seen her interact at all levels with Government.

What kate Bickford stands for.

I gleaned from her a concern many of you know I share about the future of South Road. What will be the redesigned South Road through Black Forest when the Government finally gets around to our section of the non-stop carriage way.

She is also keen to ensure balanced improvement to planning laws. Again, something that readers of this website know I share.

Kate indicated also that she is keen to see more work done in the ageing arena, including providing ways of bringing the aged and the young together. Sounds like she would really like the City of Unley Active Ageing project.

Another passion she has, which a number of you have indicated to me is a concern. That is to bring back safety gates to the pedestrian accesses and to improved DDA compliant ramps at the many rail stations we have in the City of Unley. Something my wife and I put to the liberals some time back.

This completes my initial interactions with all the candidates. If you wish to remember my initial observations of the other three you can check at here for Jayne Stinson (Labor), Lachlan Clyne (Liberal) and John Woodward (Independent).

You can contact Kate Bickford via email at [email protected] or call her on 0434 673 794 and arrange to meet with her to discuss any issue that concerns you in Badcoe. To view Kate’s electorate page, click here.

Lachlan Clyne finally resigning as Mayor of the City of Unley

It’s Official. Lachlan Clyne is finally resigning as Mayor of the City of Unley, effective at the end of this month.

 

As most of us are aware, he is the Liberal Candidate for the seat of Badcoe in the upcoming State Election. In resigning as Mayor he can now focus all his energies on getting elected.

This has been the worst kept secret in Unley for some time now. Many amongst us believed he had already resigned. This is not the case. He was only on leave between September and November. During this time, I deputised (as Deputy Mayor) for him at Council meetings. We shared civic duties.

He returned to his Mayoral duties in December chairing the December meeting. He will chair the upcoming January meeting. Again, we shared the civic duties.

I would like, on behalf of our Community, to thank Lachlan for his service to The City of Unley. We wish you well, in whatever the future holds for you.

This Council can be proud of what it has achieved during Lachlan’s time as Mayor.

Following on from the establishment of the previous Council’s 2033 Community Plan we painstakingly master planned the various components of the plan. We have, and certainly in the more recent of times, implemented many of the plan’s initiatives.

He will be missed by many in the community of Unley.

As regular readers of this blog would know, I announced in my blog on November 27 that I have put my hand up to become our Acting Mayor in his absence.

I do so to avoid confusion for the many in our community who believed that Lachlan had already resigned as Mayor and I had taken over. I believe it is in everyone’s best interest that we present a picture of continuity and stability of community leadership.

It’s all go with the Goodwood Oval Grandstand with Council signing off.

It’s all go with the Goodwood Oval Grandstand with Council signing off on the State Government’s grant.

Council unanimously accepted the following motion on Monday night. It’s all go with the Goodwood Oval Grandstand as a result.

In my opinion this is great news for the western Unley community.

The Goodwood Oval Precinct is utilised well by the community. The Goodwood Saints Football Club and the Goodwood Roos Cricket Club are a big part of this. Both are leaders in their respective fields.

With the activity that exists, the facility deserves better than the current accommodation .

As acting presiding member in the absence of our Mayor, I was unable to move or contribute to the debate. It turned out that this was not needed. Your elected members were strong in their belief on the way forward.

For the Grandstand

The decision means that we can now move from the concept drawings we have now to detailed drawings. Council will work with the Department of Sport & Recreation and continue to work with the clubs to make to that end. Our community will be engaged as part of this process to.

The motion recommended by our administration was amended on the night to accept a 2-storey solution. Members were of a similar view to the clubs as to which model best suited, not only the clubs needs, but the community at large.

For Tennis Lighting and Millswood Croquet

While it’s all go with the Goodwood Oval Grandstand, the motion also endorses both of these projects.

The focus is to secure additional outside funding for both. This is needed as we have redirected the funding we allocated for these projects to the Grandstand to secure the State Government Grant.

To secure outside funding more work will be needed on the concept designs to ensure it is fit for purpose and affordable.

More than just a new Grandstand

The recent announcement in the fight for the seat of Badcoe of a $ 2.5 million State Government grant to Council is about more than just a new Grandstand. It is much more.

Locals are aware of the push by the candidates of both the major parties’ candidates for a new Grandstand at Goodwood Oval. From a Council perspective it is about much more than just a new Grandstand.

Tennis World (Goodwood Oval) Millswood

As evidenced by many posts on this blog site, Council has been working on a master plan for the Goodwood/Millswood Precinct for some time. Since that initial public consultation, we have had extensive consultations with the clubs.

Balancing the needs of clubs on both sides of the Seaford Rail Line has been a challenge. We recently determined the priorities from the many opportunities identified for the precinct.

Millswood Croquet Club

Before talking Goodwood Oval, we have identified a priority need to provide a new club room for the Millswood Croquet Club. Readers of this blog may remember me publically expressing previously the opinion that the current club room is a death trap. So, a new club room (some 245 m2 compared to the current 145 m2) is proposed.

Funding for the projects will now have to be re-sourced. We allocated $ 1.2 m for all works in the precinct. Allocating $ 1.0 m of this to the grandstand will leave a hole in the funding bucket.

Even for Goodwood Oval it is more than just a new Grandstand. Three projects have been identified for Goodwood Oval. Outside the Grandstand we also have identified the need to:

  • Upgrade the Tennis SA court lighting. This project is designed to prevent light spillage from the tennis courts to surrounding houses and the streets.
  • Provide a community area complete with access pathways in the north-western corner of the Oval surrounds. This should encourage more people to use this part of the precinct.

All the options, more than just a new grandstand, will be considered at our next Council meeting, tomorrow night.

 

Battle for Badcoe focuses on the Goodwood Oval Grandstand

Recent media headlines have identified that the Battle for Badcoe focuses on the Goodwood Oval Grandstand.

Goodwood Oval Grandstand

I am pleased that both the Labor (Jayne Stinson) and the Liberal (Lachlan Clyne) candidates are focused on the Goodwood Oval Grandstand. For someone acutely aware of the state of the current grandstand facility this is heartwarming.

Some of the credit/blame for Jayne’s focus is probably due to me. I canvassed among other things redevelopment of the Goodwood Oval Grandstand when I first met her. This was a week or so after her candidature was announced earlier this year. I then followed up by introducing her to the Presidents of the resident football and cricket clubs. She has taken this prompting seriously, conducting her own survey.

Lachlan Clyne, as Mayor of Unley, is of course only too aware of the state of the Grandstand. He is also aware, up until recently, of what work Council has put into determining a way forward.

Trouble is the candidates have been so keen they have been replicating what council has already done.

They have both been conducting their own public surveys. Surveys designed to see how the locals feel about replacing the current grandstand with new club rooms. Surveys on one option only.

Millswood Croquet Club rooms

Council did this as the first stage of our master planning for the Goodwood Oval and Millswood Reserve some 4 years ago. This has allowed us to identify the priority projects and consider options. Something the candidates are not doing.

There have also been reports that they are publically asking Council how much we would be prepared to contribute to the redevelopment. Hang On Guys! This and Millswood is a Council owned facility.

As the Battle for Badcoe focuses on the Goodwood Oval Grandstand we ask the candidates how much their parties are prepared to contribute to this and the other three projects.

We will shortly, hopefully at the November Council meeting, have options available to consider. Options that have been costed for all three projects to come out of the Master Plan. That includes the Grandstand, the tennis lighting and the Croquet club rooms.

From memory we have committed around  $1.0 m in our long term financial plan. We await on how much the future State Government is prepared to contribute to our project.

 

I have Joined the Unley Actors Guild

Our Mayor has gone on leave. In his absence I have joined what I have affectionately called the Unley Actors Guild. In other words, as Deputy Mayor, I have now become Acting Mayor.

In my 7 years at Council I have oft observed the following procedure.

  • A member of our Administration sends me an email;
  • I respond immediately to this email;
  • My email attracts a prepared response to say that member of Administration is on leave and if my matter is urgent contact “x”;
  • In contacting “x” I find he or she is wearing the “Acting Manager of this or that tag”.

This I was unfamiliar with until joining Council. In private enterprise and more appropriately in an SME I simply never experienced anyone wearing an “acting title”.

Little did I realise that one day I would join this club, courtesy of the Mayor’s decision to run for the Seat of Badcoe.

Mayor Lachlan Clyne, not that he has to unless and until elected to the seat of Badcoe, has decided he will resign as Mayor in January. The timing of his decisions, both to go on leave and to resign, is to avoid Unley having to fund a bi-election for Mayor in the lead up to our own election. If he were to resign in 2017 now we would be forced to have a bi-election.

In his absence I (as Deputy Mayor this year) will join the Unley Actors Guild and take his place. I will have this role until sometime in January.

Once he has resigned, Council will hold an internal election. We will elect from within our number both an Acting Mayor and a Deputy Mayor to see out the tenure of the current Council. Our elections are due also next year, in November.

Signing Off: Deputy (Acting) Mayor.

Member of the Unley Actors Guild

 

 

Jayne Stinson engages with our local community in the Battle for Badcoe.

Hot on the heels of my blog recently on a 3rd candidate in the battle for Badcoe, endorsed Labor candidate Jayne Stinson engages with our local community in the Battle for Badcoe.

She held two public meetings yesterday. The first was held at Dora Guild Playground; the second at Page Park. I attended both.

Of interest was the presence of the President’s or immediate past presidents of three of our local premier sporting organisations.

Jayne was entertained by President Craig at the Goody Saints v University match

Goodwood Saints Football Club and Goodwood Cricket Club promoted their joint pursuit of female participation in their respective sports. Both clubs are leaders in their competitions and are active in female participation. Later Jayne spent the afternoon as guest of the Footy Club watching the “A” grade beat and pass University in the top five.

They are both keen to see renovations to the Grandstand. Renovations that are long overdue. Renovations that have become urgent given female participation in both Football and Cricket. They lobbied for grant funding for Council’s proposed upgrades.

Millswood Bowling Club and, by way of a phone call to me to promote their needs, Millswood Croquet Club promoted their respective grant funding needs. The Bowling Club is in urgent need for upgraded female toilet facilities and likewise a need for disabled facilities. The Croquet Club in need of new premises.

All four have embraced the principles of Council’s Active Unley strategy. This has resulted in the needs promoted.

Their lobbying backs up my lobbying with Jayne earlier this year.

Other issues included looking at safety of the pedestrian rail crossings at the Clarence Park Rail Station. The introduction of quieter and faster trains while removing gates has created a more dangerous environment than ever before noting this is a Station that has previously seen a death of a young child.

In the meantime, I am looking to catch up with the 3rd candidate later this week, Cr John Woodward.

A Third Player Has Emerged in the Fight for Badcoe

A third Player has emerged in the fight for Badcoe. A week ago now, Cr John Woodward announced his intention to stand.

A Councillor for the City of West Torrens Keswick Ward, John announced his intention to run via Facebook and Twitter a week ago.

His candidature should add some spice to the campaign. He will be running as an independent against the endorsed candidates for the two major parties. As you will know from two of my previous posts in the Fight for Badcoe they are as follows. Jayne Stinson for Labor and City of Unley’s own Mayor Lachlan Clyne for the Liberals.

John adds another dimension to a seat I have previously identified as a possible litmus test for the formation of the next Government.

Like the two other candidates he will come as no stranger  to a portion of the Badcoe electorate. That said I am unaware of ever having met him. Having had a number of conversations with both Lachlan and Jayne I will make a point of catching up John.

 What I have ascertained about John comes from his Facebook Page and Website. He is seeking a more collaborative approach to solving problems, NOT the adversarial, bickering, nasty personal attacks that we see from our two major parties.

For more information about John check out John’s election website.

There is yet no announcement from the Greens or from NXT regarding endorsing any candidate. With John’s announcement the other two candidates are out and about.

Lachlan has been pounding the streets in those sections of the Seat of Badcoe where is is not as well know. Jayne, on the other hand is holding two community meetings in little ol’ Clarence Park tomorrow morning.

They will be as follows:

9 am thru’ 9.45 at Dora Guild Playground

10 am thru’ 10.45 at Page Park.