Ashfield Council


Ordinary Meeting - 24 May 2011





9         Summary of  Notices Of Motion


9.1         OUR HARBOUR AGREEMENT. Monica Wangmann - Councillor. Report submitted.

(24/05/11)                                                                                                  Notice of Motion


                                                                                                            NM7/2011 Attached



There are no supporting documents for this report.


Ashfield Council – Report to Ordinary Meeting held on Tuesday 24 May 2011


Notice of Motion



COUNCILLOR Monica Wangmann





To move Notice of Motion No. NM7/2011


Nineteen Councils plus Ryde, Burwood (yet to join) and Hornsby have been asked to ratify the words below.   There have been very few changes to the words since 2001.  The Sydney Harbour Councils are hoping we will re-ratify the updated 2001 agreement and re-confirm our membership.

Member Councils as per Our Harbour Agreement



Ashfield Council


Auburn Council


Canada Bay Council


Hunter’s Hill Council


Ku-ring-gai Council


Lane Cove Council


Leichhardt Council


Manly Council


Marrickville Council


Mosman Council


North Sydney Council


Parramatta Council


Pittwater Council


Ryde Council


Strathfield Council


Sydney City (South Sydney)


Warringah Council


Willoughby Council


Woollahra Council



Officers Comments


Melanie Winthorpe - Waste and Environment Project Officer

The Sustainability Team has reviewed the updated Our Harbour Agreement and believes the 8 core issues listed in Part 1 to be of an accord with Ashfield Council's sustainable development principles and aspirations. We therefore support Council's re-ratification of this Agreement.




There are no supporting documents for this report.




Accordingly, I move:-


1/2    That Ashfield Council supports the updated Our Harbour Agreement, actions and concerns listed below in parts 1, 2 and 3 and

2/2    That Council promptly responds to the General Manager Hunters Hill, confirming our ratification.


The Sydney Harbour Councils agree ‘in-principle’ to support the ‘Our Harbour’ Agreement and its eight core issues.

1       The harbour is the focus of SydneySydney Harbour is of fundamental importance to the residents, and workers of the harbour catchment, to the people of the Sydney region and its visitors, to all of New South Wales and to all the people of Australia.  All spheres of government need to work as one to protect and manage all aspects of the harbour without favouring single sectors or special interests at the expense of the harbour’s integrity and sustainability.

2       The quality of the physical and natural environments is under pressure.  The urgent and continuing attention of all levels of government is needed for the protection and restoration of the terrestrial and aquatic environments and for the rehabilitation and maintenance of infrastructure, both through new programs and the concerted implementation of existing action and management plans.

3       The harbour is a key cultural and recreational resource.  Projects in the Sharing Sydney Harbour Regional Action Plan – particularly the cultural audit and the Sydney Harbour Dreaming project Tuhbowgule Nangamay – provide enhanced opportunities for community involvement and for links to the full range of cultural, educational, and recreational resources.

4       Our maritime industries are in danger of disappearing from the Harbour.  All spheres of government, acting together, need to act to ensure that Sydney Harbour remains a working harbour with (a) suitable zones and policies administered by councils on land which is appropriate for a wide range of water related activities and (b) a stock of well located government-owned land available for water related activities under secure tenure and affordable terms.

5       There is concern over the privatisation of the harbour foreshore.  All spheres of government need to enhance the ecological and urban qualities of the shoreline, to seize every opportunity to increase the public ownership of foreshore land, and to progressively remove impediments to access to and from the water, for instance through the foreshore and access improvement program of the Sharing Sydney Harbour Regional Action Plan.

6       Foreshore developments should display the highest possible quality of design.  All spheres of government must adopt consistent standards for the design of all elements added to the harbour environment, must share a commitment to quality, must maintain and enhance views to and from the water, and must actively and consistently re-establish the native plant communities of the harbour catchment.

7       A complex arrangement of administrative responsibilities has developed around the harbour.  In Sydney Harbour there are necessarily a very large number of distinct roles and responsibilities, technical, administrative, regulatory, financial, local and central.  Inter-agency and inter-government coordination mechanisms must continue to be developed as the only way to enable the planning and place management outcomes to be achieved with efficiency and effectiveness.  Of highest priority are the mechanisms established under this agreement.

8       Proactive consultation is essential.  Forums are needed for the resolution of issues between all harbour councils and agencies, based on the principles of this agreement.  The sustainable management of Sydney Harbour is not achieved through unilateral action but through meaningful prior consultation between agencies and the Sydney Harbour Councils.


The agreement is amended to remove those matters that are no longer relevant and the revised document is forwarded to all Sydney Harbour Council members requesting endorsement by Ashfield Council.


Following receipt of endorsement (parts 1 and 2 above) from members the Sydney Harbour Councils, Ashfield Council supports

(a)     Sydney Harbour Councils expressing its concern at the apparent lack of commitment from the government to the eight core issues and request The Minister for Planning and the Minister for Ports and Waterways to renew the ‘Our Harbour Agreement’ (as amended); and

(b)     That the Leader of the Opposition is requested to consider accepting the revised ‘Our Harbour’ Agreement as part of their party's planning policy.

Monica Wangmann