Councillor Don Palmer Providing Local Leadership & Working for You

Local government elections often stimulate the community to raise issues of concern. The recent election is no different. I have heard the issues raised during the election by you.


While I came to you initially with 5 commitments, this grew once I became aware of who were the candidates for Clarence Park. Those 5 commitments (as links to previous blogs on those commitments) were to

To be financially responsible.

To find pragmatic environment solutions, including advancing our tree canopy strategy.

Pursue floodproofing of Clarence Park.

To bring economic prosperity to our community.

To ensure sensible development.

This was followed by my commitment to mentor whoever became my co-colleague.

What I heard you calling for.

Conversations I subsequently had with those of you I was able to connect with confirmed that these were indeed all commitments you appreciated. I found during those conversations that they weren’t however the only issues concerning you. And I commit here and now to address the Issues raised during the election by you in the chamber.

The single biggest issue by far, one I have often canvassed, was eliminating trip hazards on our footpaths.

trip hazardI have raised trip hazards in the chamber many times over my 12 years. This included promoting (from memory some 6 or so years ago) a review of the level of service in respect of footpath repairs. We agreed to drop the criteria for correcting trip hazards from a 20mm projection to a 10mm projection.

The election conversations have prompted me to again pursue what I suggest is a fundamental need of our community. That is to have safe walking opportunities around the City, particularly for those of us who are mobility restricted. That fits in too with the goals of an age-friendly city.

This I commit, on your behalf to do. To seek to reduce that qualifying projection even further.

The other issue raised concerns Council’s commitment to a zero-carbon impact from our own activities.

Creation CareEveryone I spoke to about this subject agreed that Council should show the lead in adopting carbon-neutral activities. So many however were not enamoured with the prospect of us having to purchase carbon credits to achieve this. Particularly given we aim to achieve this by December 2023.

The message I received loud and clear is that we should be prioritizing our spending on local environmental initiatives before we commit to purchasing carbon credits. This will be a challenge for the new Council as achieving the documented goal will impact significantly on the next budget. A budget that will take our focus as early as February next year.

It will therefore be an issue dealt with very early in this new term of Council. I will certainly commit to ensuring your concerns are understood and responded to during the budget process.

Finally, I will be sitting down with my new co-councillor, Rebekah Rogers, shortly to share what she has heard you say. That way we can form a united approach to Council.