Councillor Don Palmer Providing Local Leadership & Working for You

I observed during the recent election campaign what the other elected members are promising. While there are and must be differences and there is evidence of this, I was warmed by the similarities.


Most (but not all) promoted a need for financial responsibility. This must of course be a given. It means that we can expect we will be responsible when considering our budgets and our long-term financial plan. That we will therefore prioritise projects that we all agree are in the best interest of our community. That said, we have a good track record when it comes to financial responsibility.

The next most promised action concerns are tree canopy. Ten in total as I count. Half focused on trees in public spaces. The other half is on trees on private property. Interestingly, Council is already committed to planting in every available space along our streets.

Indeed, more of us commented specifically on tree canopy than on the environment and climate change more generally.

The other elected members are promising also some additional undertakings. Some of which are already being pursued or implemented.

This is maybe simply a case of allowing them to be updated on our strategies.

A couple were keen to introduce more transparent communication with ratepayers. Interesting because I felt similarly when I 1st joined the council 12 years ago. What I have found since is that communication is a two-way street. Whatever method we use to engage we have found someone believing we have not done it well enough. I will therefore be keen to find out what these members have to offer.

Two or three of us highlighted the need for stormwater management (including myself). Likewise, waste (noting weekly green waste kerbside collection) again including myself), traffic flow and parking. Interestingly, we are 85% of the way through a (city-wide) series of local area traffic management surveys. Something we have been working on for 6 or more years. Similarly, we are halfway through a city-wide parking strategy investigation.

Finally, 4 of us have identified a focus on ensuring responsible development going forward. As readers of this blog site are well aware, we have achieved much in this space. You also know I have committed to continuing the fight to ensure this is maintained. Of course, we are currently submitting our thoughts, individually and collectively, to the first review of the Planning & Design Code.