VC: GR

 

28 April 2011

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dear Councillors

 

You are invited to attend an Ashfield Council

              MANAGEMENT PLAN & BUDGET 2011/15 - WORKSHOP

              Haberfield Library, 78 Dalhousie Street, Haberfield

              TUESDAY  3 MAY 2011 at 6:30 PM.

 

We look forward to your invaluable input and feedback on the various discussion papers and the preliminary draft Management Plan

 

Yours faithfully

 

 

 

VANESSA CHAN

General Manager

 

 

SEE ATTACHED AGENDA

 

 

Workshop - 3 May 2011

 

AGENDA

 

1.                      Opening

 

2.                      Acknowledgement of Local Indigenous Community

 

3.                      Apologies/Request for Leave of Absence

                   

4.                      Disclosures Of Interest

 

Disclosures to be made by any Councillors who have a pecuniary / non-pecuniary interest in respect of matters that are before Council at this meeting.

(03/05/2011)

 

5.                      Staff Reports

 

WS8.1           PRELIMINARY DRAFT MANAGEMENT PLAN AND BUDGET 2011-2015

 

WS8.2           DOMESTIC WASTE LEVY 2011/12

 

WS8.3           CAPITAL WORKS PROGRAMMED FOR 2011/12

 

WS8.4           SUSTAINABILITY TEAM BUDGET PROJECTIONS 2011-2012

 

 

6.                      General Business

 

 

 

7.                      Close

 

 

 


document5

Ashfield Council

 

Workshop - 3 May 2011

 

 

5         Summary of  Staff Reports

 

5.1         PRELIMINARY DRAFT MANAGEMENT PLAN AND BUDGET 2011-2015. Gabrielle Rennard - Manager Governance. Report submitted with attachment 1.

(27/04/11)                                                             Governance>Management Plan 2011

                            H:\REPORTS.BP\COMMITTEES\REPORTS\WS030511SR_4.doc

                                                                                                                 WS 5.1 Attached

 

RECOMMENDATION

 

That Council determine any significant amendments required to the preliminary draft Management Plan and Budget 2011- 2015, noting that the final draft will be presented to Council on 10 May 2011 for adoption to public exhibition.

 

 

 

5.2         DOMESTIC WASTE LEVY 2011/12. Michael Harrington - Manager Waste & Recycling Contracts. Report submitted.

(27/04/11)                                                                              Waste Management>Waste

                            H:\REPORTS.BP\COMMITTEES\REPORTS\WS030511SR_5.doc

                                                                                                                 WS 5.2 Attached

 

RECOMMENDATION

 

1/4         That Council approve an increase in the Domestic Waste Charge for          2011/2012 to account for the statutory increase in the Waste Levy.

 

2/4         That Council approve an increase in the Domestic Waste Charge to                facilitate provision of a permanent mattress removal service on an at                cost basis only.

 

3/4         That Council approve an increase in the Domestic Waste Charge to                enable provision of a twice yearly e-waste drop-off collection service             on an at cost basis only.

 

4/4         That Council approve the application of the cost allocation methodology, used in the calculation of the 11/12 Domestic Waste Levy, for recovering any cross subsidisation which has occurred in the 10/11 financial year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

5.3         CAPITAL WORKS PROGRAMMED FOR 2011/12. Tony Giunta - Senior Engineer - Infrastructure Management. Report submitted.

(27/04/11)                                                             Governance>Management Plan 2011

                            H:\REPORTS.BP\COMMITTEES\REPORTS\WS030511SR_6.doc

                                                                                                                 WS 5.3 Attached

 

RECOMMENDATION

 

That the information in this report be received and noted.

 

 

 

 

 

5.4         SUSTAINABILITY TEAM BUDGET PROJECTIONS 2011-2012. Melanie Winthorpe - Waste & Environment Project Officer. Report submitted with attachments 1 and 2.

(27/04/11)                                                             Governance>Management Plan 2011

                            H:\REPORTS.BP\COMMITTEES\REPORTS\WS030511SR_8.doc

                                                                                                                 WS 5.4 Attached

 

RECOMMENDATION

 

That Council notes the proposed activities and projects planned for the Environment Levy and Waste and Sustainability Improvement Payment funding sources for 2011-2012 and if necessary provides feedback or recommendations on the planned activities.

  

 

.

 

 

 


Ashfield Council – Report to Workshop held on Tuesday 03 May 2011

WS5.1

Subject                            PRELIMINARY DRAFT MANAGEMENT PLAN AND BUDGET 2011-2015

 

File Ref                            Governance>Management Plan 2011

 

Prepared by                   Gabrielle Rennard - Manager Governance       

 

 

 

The preliminary draft Management Plan and Budget 2011- 2015 is being presented to Councillors for the purposes of further discussion and to seek feedback on any necessary amendments or adjustment prior to presentation of the draft document at the ordinary Council meeting to seek adoption for the purposes of public exhibition.

 

Councillors may recall having received presentations in workshop format in November 2010 and April 2011 to consider the Management Plan and Budget 2011-2015. The presentations highlighted the key aspects of the delivery program over the next four years, key budget parameters for the 2011/12 financial year, the financial and economic context prevailing and the impact that this will have on the Council’s capacity to deliver and fund on-going services to the community.

 

This draft Management Plan highlights Councils current strategic priorities, a rolling action program of works over the ensuing year, includes a detailed budget, significant achievements for the past year and informs the community of our key performance indicators and what tools we are currently measuring against

 

On 5 April 2011 Councillors attended a workshop to consider the Management Plan and Budget 2011-2015, including the key budget parameters for the 2011/12 financial year and to hear the financial and economic context prevailing and the impact that this will have on the Council’s capacity to deliver and fund on-going services to the community.

 

This current workshop is being held in order to have more detailed discussions with Councillors with respect to specific elements of the draft budget for 2011/12.

 

The Executive Management Team and Program Managers have been integrally involved in the development of the draft Management Plan and Budget 2011 - 2015. The Draft Management Plan and Budget is scheduled to be placed on Public Exhibition for a minimum of 28 days commencing 12 May 2011, in accordance with the requirements of the Local Government Act 1993. It is intended that the document be well publicised including features in the next Community Newsletter, Council’s website and local newspapers.

 

Council staff are pleased to present Council with the draft Management Plan and Budget 2011 – 2015, integrated with the delivery of the findings of the draft community strategic plan.  It is pleasing to note that the Council’s commitment to maintain a surplus budget and the significant work undertaken by the Executive Management and Program Managers has resulted in a small cash surplus of $42,000.

 

 

ATTACHMENTS

Attachment 1View

Draft Management Plan 2011-2015

52 Pages

 

 

 

RECOMMENDATION

 

That Council determine any significant amendments required to the preliminary draft Management Plan and Budget 2011- 2015, noting that the final draft will be presented to Council on 10 May 2011 for adoption to public exhibition.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nellette Kettle

Director Corporate & Community Services

 

 

 

 


Attachment 1

 

Draft Management Plan 2011-2015

 





















































Ashfield Council – Report to Workshop held on Tuesday 03 May 2011

WS5.2

Subject                            DOMESTIC WASTE LEVY 2011/12

 

File Ref                            Waste Management>Waste

 

Prepared by                   Michael Harrington - Manager Waste & Recycling Contracts       

 

 

This discussion paper presents the bases for the proposed increase to the Domestic Waste Charge component of rating for the 2011/2012 financial year.

 

Councils in NSW are required to pay a Levy under the Protection of the Environment Operations (Waste) regulation 2005.  Clause 5 sets out how the waste and environment levy is determined.  The increase in the levy from $70.30/tonne for the 2010/2011 financial year to $ 80.30/tonne for the 2011/2012 financial year is $10.00/tonne.  This equates to a 14.23% increase for the 2011/2012 financial year.  The increase from the 2009/2010 financial year to the 2010/2011 financial year was 19.56%,  i.e. from $58.80/tonne to $70.30/tonne.

 

Given that the waste levy is enshrined in legislation its addition to the Domestic Waste Charge (DWC) for 2011/2012 is fundamental to cost recovery of waste charges incurred as a consequence of provision of services by Council.  Non inclusion of this factor would mean subsidisation from the general rate.

 

Provision of the service for mattress collection and thus diversion from landfill is projected to cost $4.40 per rated property for the 2011/2012 financial year simply in terms of cost recovery.  This service was commenced on a trial basis and costs have been absorbed in the general rate for the last couple of years.  Given the increasing demand for mattress removal as an ongoing and regular service of Council its continuation, on a cost recovery basis only, is considered warranted.

 

Council conducted an e-waste ‘drop-off’ collection in October 2010 which proved very popular and was eminently successful in terms of community response and the volume presented.  Given the continued demand from the community for the responsible diversion of such products from landfill it is proposed that two such collections be conducted in future on a half yearly basis to meet that demand.  The cost per rated property for provision of this service, on a cost recovery basis only for the 2011/2012 financial year, is calculated to be $3.40.

 

Other considerations

 

Whilst the levels and nature of services Council is currently providing have not completely inhibited the behaviour of dumping.  It is my view that these services go a long way to mitigating that behaviour.  Notwithstanding currently provided levels of service, their essence and frequency, it is impossible to stop the behaviour of dumping.  Past experience indicates that goods dumped often come from outside the municipality (drive throughs).  A greater proportion of dumped materials most often seem to come from transient populations e.g. back-packers; short term renters; disadvantaged members of our community; etc.

 

If current services were to be discontinued as a means of cost saving, related to identified costs, the impost on Council in fiscal and other ways would predictably increase.  That fiscal increase would come in the form of additional requirements for activity by way of regulatory services; dump removal; cleansing; customer service (complaints / requests); etc.

 

Programmed and controlled (as much as we are able) removal of waste or other materials which are no longer required is the recommended course of action.  Recommended because it requires the community to take ownership and be more pro-active in terms of disposal of such items (not that they are not currently).  The simpler it is for our community to facilitate disposal of their unwanted waste the more compliant the majority are and the greater the positive impact on the aesthetic ambience of our built environment.

 

Yes there are items of waste which Council does not currently facilitate the disposal of e.g. paints; chemicals; etc., however, Council on its website provides information to its community relative to the disposal of these.

 

Continued provision of services as currently provided will continue to mitigate the behaviour of ‘dumping’.

 

Waste Levy Rate Calculation

 

Period

Sydney Metropolitan Area

$ increase

% increase

2005-2006

22.70

 

 

2006-2007

30.40

7.70

33.92

2007-2008

38.60

8.20

26.97

2008-2009

46.70

8.10

20.98

2009-2010

58.80

12.10

25.91

2010-2011

70.30

11.50

19.56

2011-2012

80.30

10.00

14.23

2012-2013

90.30

10.00

12.45

2013-2014

100.30

10.00

11.07

2014-2015

110.30

10.00

9.97

2015-2016

120.30

10.00

9.06

 

Anecdotally it is understood that some neighbouring Councils softened the impact of the waste levy on their DWC’s since its introduction in 2005, by looking at the whole of the increase over the life (as projected at the time), by evenly applying it in each of the ensuing years to minimise the ‘shock’ of the larger increases projected for life of the waste levy.  When you look at the table above such a practice is understandable in terms of ameliorating the pain over time.

 

When the table hereunder is scrutinised it will be seen that comparatively speaking Council is travelling very well in terms of ‘bang for buck’ by way of service provision to its constituency and that irrespective of the projected increase Councils DWC will still be the lowest of its nearest neighbours even though three are yet to establish their DWC for 2011/2012.

 

Financial Implications

 

The table hereunder provides an objective comparison of Ashfield’s services with those of other Councils in close proximity in terms of their respective DWC’s for 2010/2011 and 2011/2012:-

 

 

Council

DWC 10/11

$

DWC 11/12

$

120L W

140L W

120L R

240L R

240L G

Clean up pa

Clean up other

e-waste

Mattress

Ashfield

222.50

272.50

1 pw

 

 

1 pf

1 pf elect & pay

2

4 booked

2 pa

On call booked

Auburn

383.60

ytbf

1 pw

 

 

1 pf

1 pf

 

6 booked (NO White/G or e-waste)

 

 

Burwood

341.00

347.00

1 pw

 

 

1 pf

1 pf

1

1 second hand Sat. Giant Garage Sale

 

 

Canada Bay

316.00

325.00

1 pw

 

 

1 pf

1 pf

2

 

 

 

Canterbury

291.00

307.00

 

1 pw

 

1 pf

1 pf

 

2 booked

 

 

Leichhardt

412.00

450-460 ytbf

1 pw

 

1 pw

 

1 pf

2

1 booked White/G pm

 

 

Marrickville

375.85

400.00

 

1 pw

 

1 pf e

1 pf e

 

Booked (with a $58.06 charge for volume over the allowable limit)

 

 

Strathfield

356.00

Ytbf

1 pw

 

 

1 pf

1 pf

 

6 booked (NO White/G or e-waste to be presented)

 

 

waste

W

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

recycling

R

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

green waste

G

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Comparison on a like for like basis has been endeavoured above, it should be noted that, none of the neighbouring Councils appear to provide the fulsome levels of service to their communities as are afforded to ours.  Indeed some of their services are conditional in the sense that they won’t accept white goods or e-waste or both as part of their regular clean-up’s.

 

By and large residents of the other communities as indicated above, need to make private arrangements to legally dispose of items for which their Council do not make provision, and at a real cost to themselves in terms of inconvenience; time and dollars.

 

It can be reasonably stated that the levels and range of services provided by this Council from a convenience and cost comparative viewpoint strongly stand against any comparison with neighbouring Councils.

 

Funding by way of an increase in the Domestic Waste Charge for the 2011/2012 financial year has been calculated to be 22.47% as an overall percentage increase on the Domestic Waste Charge applied for the 2010/2011 financial year.

 

This to provide for the following:-

·    Ensure continuity of service provision

·    Comply with the statutory impost of the waste levy increase

·    Meet the community’s requirement for e-waste and mattress diversion

·    Account for the contribution of personnel in other departments to the overall provision of waste related services

 

Janene Harris – Sustainability Team Leader

 

Council's Sustainability Team supports the increases to the waste charge as proposed in this report.  These increases will truly reflect the cost to Council for providing waste collection services.  It is important that Council recovers its costs incurred from the Government's Waste Levy, which on the current trends is increasing well above CPI.  We support the inclusion of a charge for mattress recycling per property.  The mattress recycling service has been and is currently highly utilised by our residents and providing this service enables Council to divert waste from landfill in a cost effective manner.  Electronic waste disposal is an ongoing need of our community, the provision of e-waste drop off days enables Council to meet the expectation of our residents and also results in less waste to landfill a good proportion of which is toxic.  Council will need to recover the costs of providing e-waste collections as proposed in this report until such time as the Federal Government extends or mandates product stewardship schemes to provide these services.

 

Glenn McMahon – Chief Financial Officer

 

Whilst the increase in the waste levy is a significant component of the increase in the cost of the provision of the DWC services, the rectification of cross-subsidisation would be another.  I fully support the approach which ensures that there is full cost recovery of the DWC services.  Further I support the rectification of the cross-subsidisation which has occurred in the 2010/11 financial year.

 

Therefore, I recommend that Council approve the application of the cost allocation methodology, used in the calculation of the 11/12 Domestic Waste Levy, for recovering any cross subsidisation which has occurred in the 10/11 financial year.

 

 

It is imperative that from a purely fiscal perspective, and to ensure the continuity of service provision without prejudice, that the statutory waste levy be applied to the Domestic Waste Charge for the 2011/2012 financial year.

 

Relative to Councils environmental and sustainability initiatives in terms of increasing diversion from landfill, of waste categories that can be problematic as regards their disposability by members of the community, the meeting of community expectations with regard to the disposal of mattresses and e-waste on a continued and permanent basis is recommended.

 

Whilst provision of these services on a permanent basis will not entirely inhibit the behaviour of dumping it will certainly have a positive impact thereon allied with Councils ongoing education programs.

 

 

 

 

ATTACHMENTS

There are no supporting documents for this report.

 

RECOMMENDATION

 

1/4    That Council approve an increase in the Domestic Waste Charge for                        2011/2012 to account for the statutory increase in the Waste Levy.

 

2/4    That Council approve an increase in the Domestic Waste Charge to                         facilitate provision of a permanent mattress removal service on an at                              cost basis only.

 

3/4    That Council approve an increase in the Domestic Waste Charge to                         enable provision of a twice yearly e-waste drop-off collection service                              on an at cost basis only.

 

4/4    That Council approve the application of the cost allocation methodology,           used in the calculation of the 11/12 Domestic Waste Levy, for recovering           any cross subsidisation which has occurred in the 10/11 financial year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stephen Joannidis

Director Works and Infrastructure

 

 

 

 


Ashfield Council – Report to Workshop held on Tuesday 03 May 2011

WS5.3

Subject                            CAPITAL WORKS PROGRAMMED FOR 2011/12

 

File Ref                            Governance>Management Plan 2011

 

Prepared by                   Tony Giunta - Senior Engineer - Infrastructure Management       

 

 

This discussion paper will provide a proposed capital works program for 2011/12. The program will list the proposed major works planned for 2011/12 and include cost estimates, as well as identifying the source of funding that has been allocated to fund the works.

 

As part of the budget planning process for 2011/12, a capital works program has been prepared, and these major works are summarised in this report. The list of works is presented according to their asset group, and included are initial cost estimates.

 

Also for each asset group, the available source of funding is shown with the respective amount allocated in order to fund the works.

 

Capital Works Program for 2011/12

The proposed capital works program for 2011/12 will include the projects listed in the following tables:

 

Road Pavements

Works Description

Estimate

Resheeting/reconstruction and major patching at:

 

Norton St (no. 203 to Milton)

$ 21,540

Bland St (Elizabeth to Charlotte)

$  71,100

Armstrong St (Holden To Queen)

$  66,000

John St (Frederick to Croydon)

$  44,200

Loudon Ave (Boomerang to Dobroyd)

$  76,250

Deakin Ave (O'Connor To Dalhousie)

$  59,100

Seaview St (Queen to Prospect)

$  82,300

Laneway - Carlisle (Norton to Arthur)

$  16,000

Laneway –  Hugh (Norton to Arthur)

$  28,000

Mackay St (Fredrick to Cul De Sac)

$  26,000

Palace St (no 27 to Holden)

$109,150

Henson St (Smith to Junction )

$  72,700

Julia St (Alt to Bland)

$  21,300

Dalhousie St (Martin to Waratah)

     $  56,000

Hunt St (Croydon to Etonville)

$  14,000

TOTAL:

$763,640

Source of funding:

 

General Funds

$215,672

FAG-Roads program

$250,000

Roads to Recovery

$147,968

SRV 2009/10

$150,000

TOTAL:

$763,640

 

 

Roadside

Works Description

Estimate

North Croydon Business Precinct stage 3; Streetscape works at Hennessy St to link in with the completed works in Edwin St North

$  60,000

Relay paving and extending kerb ramps on Liverpool Rd Ashfield CBD

$  50,000

Upgrade of bus stops to comply with DSAPT

$  80,000

Replacement of condition 4 footpaths at:

 

Dalhousie St Haberfield     

$  25,000

Heighway Ave Croydon

$  40,000

Hardy St Ashbury

$  30,000

Bland St Ashfield & Haberfield             

$  40,000

Installation of new bus shelters (from new bus shelter contract)

cost neutral

TOTAL:

$325,000

Source of funding:

 

General Funds

$125,000

SRV 2009/10

$200,000

TOTAL:

$325,000

 

Traffic Control Facilities

Works Description

Estimate

Reconstruct roundabout at Queen St & Norton St

$100,000

Local Area Traffic Management Scheme at Northcote & Wolseley St-Stage 2

$  35,000

TOTAL:

$135,000

Source of funding:

 

SRV 2009/10

$135,000

TOTAL:

$135,000

 

Community Buildings

Works Description

Estimate

Civic Centre external sun shade structure to western wall

$350,000

TOTAL:

$350,000

Source of funding:

 

Section 94A Contributions

$350,000

TOTAL:

$350,000

 

Playspaces & Sporting fields

Works Description

Estimate

Centenary Sports Field – New rubber flooring under play equipment

$  35,000

Centenary Sports Field – Cricket net replacement/repairs

$  10,000

Irrigation and light central controller system for all sports fields

$  30,000

TOTAL:

$  75,000

Source of funding:

 

General Funds

$  75,000

TOTAL:

$  75,000

 

 

 

 

Stormwater

Works Description

Estimate

Installing leaf collection basins at 2 selected sag points (locations TBA)

$  60,000

Continued program of CCTV survey of the underground pipe network to identify, repair and replace pipe work and upgrade inlets 

$110,000

North Croydon Business Precinct stage 3 stormwater upgrade works

$  20,000

Upgrade drainage at roundabout at Queen St & Norton St

$  30,000

TOTAL:

$220,000

Source of funding:

 

Stormwater Levy

$220,000

TOTAL:

$220,000

 

Bike Plan

Works Description

Estimate

Integrated footpath and bike works including way finding signage (locations TBA)

$  50,000

TOTAL:

$  50,000

Source of funding:

 

SRV 2009/10

$  50,000

TOTAL:

$  50,000

 

The total value of the capital works program in 2011/12 is budgeted at approximately $2.13M, and this report provides a break-down of the major projects which totals approximately $1.92M. The difference in the two figures is made up of wages, plant and other minor works. The total of $1.92M is based on initial cost estimates for each project, and the asset group totals have been balanced against the available funding and the source of funding has been identified. Any major variations to the costing of these projects, which may occur during the procurement process, may necessitate the program to be amended so that it remains in line with available funds.

 

 

ATTACHMENTS

There are no supporting documents for this report.

 

RECOMMENDATION

 

That the information in this report be received and noted.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stephen Joannidis

Director Works and Infrastructure

 

 

 


Ashfield Council – Report to Workshop held on Tuesday 03 May 2011

WS5.4

Subject                            SUSTAINABILITY TEAM BUDGET PROJECTIONS 2011-2012

 

File Ref                            Governance>Management Plan 2011

 

Prepared by                   Melanie Winthorpe - Waste & Environment Project Officer       

 

 

The proposed sustainability projects and activities 2011-2012 are being presented to Councillors for the purposes of further discussion and to seek feedback on any necessary amendments or adjustment prior to presentation of the draft document at the ordinary Council meeting to seek adoption for the purposes of public exhibition.

 

In 2011/2012 there will be two main funding streams for major projects and activities undertaken by the Sustainability Team. These include Council’s Environment Levy and the Waste and Sustainability Improvement Payment (WaSIP) scheme. The following outlines proposed activities for these funding sources.

 

The Environment Levy

The Environmental Levy was established in the 2006/07 financial year as part of a special rates variation. Each year the levy funds approximately $140,000 - $150,000 worth of environmental programs. 

 

To date the Environmental Levy has supported a number of successful initiatives including the well received Treading Lightly sustainable living workshop series; water savings initiatives in a number of Council’s facilities and parks; schools and early childhood education programs; and  sustainability training for Council staff.

 

Table 1 below summarises proposed budget allocations for the 2011/12 Environment Levy and the section following discusses each project area in brief.

 

Table 1. Environment Levy Proposed Projects for 2011/12

Project

Status

Budget Allocation

Environmental Workshops

Ongoing

$11,000

Early Childhood Environmental Education

Ongoing

$22,000

Water Efficiency Programs

Ongoing

$26,500

Energy Efficiency & Climate Change Initiatives

Ongoing

$37,000

Community Gardening

Ongoing

$3,000

Street Trees

Ongoing

$30,000

Community Environmental Grants Program

New

$5,000

New Waste and Sustainability Project Officer

New

$11,000

 

 

 

Total Environment Levy 2011/2012

 

$145,500

 

Community Environmental Workshops

Ashfield Council has been successfully running the Treading Lightly sustainable living workshop        series as a partnership with Leichhardt Council for 5 years. At the start of 2010 the collaboration was expanded to include three other inner west Councils including Burwood, Strathfield and City of Canada Bay. By working together the five Councils are now providing a more comprehensive and coordinated calendar of sustainable living events to the Inner West community.

 

Early Childhood Environmental Education Resources & Programs

The school environmental education program is another successful ongoing program of the Environmental Levy. An allocation of funds is put aside each year from the Levy to support Ashfield schools, child care centres and playgroups in their endeavours to provide environmental education to children. Schools and childcare centres are visited on request, and Council’s Sustainability Team often partners with Library Services and Community Services staff to present sustainability themed library storytime and school holiday activities.

 

Council engages Keep Australia Beautiful through its Waste Watchers Program to run environmental education modules in local Primary Schools. This year we expect the program to reach over 700 students, educating them in the areas of the Wide World of Waste, Water Welfare, Mechanics of Organics and Catchment Chronicles. The Sustainability Team is also investigating the potential to engage the education arm of Transpacific Cleanaway, Council’s current waste collection contractors, to provide curriculum based sustainability education to local high schools.

 

In the 2011-2012 financial year the Sustainability Team is also proposing to host a second annual Kids Eco Festival event during the January school holidays. In January 2011 Ashfield Council partnered with Ashfield Mall to present the Ashfield Kids Eco Festival. The festival was a free event aimed at providing school holiday entertainment with a focus on sustainability. Over 1500 children and parents attended the Festival, making it one of the most broad reaching early childhood events staged by the Sustainability Team in recent years. The success of the Festival has lead to the view that the Festival should become an annual event and a portion of this budget allocation has therefore been earmarked to coordinate this event next year.

 

Water Saving Initiatives

Water conservation projects have been a key focus of the Environmental Levy for several years with funds being allocated to installing rainwater tanks and upgrading Parks Amenities with water efficient fixtures. A portion of the 2011/12 Environment Levy will go towards further water saving installations and fixtures within Council facilities and parks, as identified in the 2009/10 review of Council’s Water Savings Action Plan (WSAP). The Sustainability Team is also planning to utilise Environment Levy funding to access subsidised audits and water efficient retrofits through Sydney Water’s BizFix program.

 

Energy efficiency and climate change programs

Council has committed to reducing its corporate greenhouse gas emissions by 20% and has engaged Planet Footprint Pty Ltd to assist us in quantifying our Greenhouse gas emissions on a corporate level.

 

Climate change is an increasing concern for Council and through allocating funding from the Environmental Levy we hope to progress towards our 20% reduction goal via the implementation of a variety of actions that were developed as part of Council’s Local Action Plan to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions (adopted by Council in 2007). The 2010-2011 Environment Levy funds contributed towards the installation of solar panels on Haberfield Library and further energy efficiency projects for Council facilities are planned for the coming fiscal year.

 

Community Gardening

2009 saw the successful pilot of a small community garden at Summer Hill. The establishment of the garden showcases effective collaboration between Council and the community. A small allocation of the 2011-2012 Environment Levy is proposed in order to continue supporting this fledgling garden and gardening group, and will be used to assist with the provision of gardening materials, volunteer retention and garden development. 

 

Street Trees

Each year there is an ongoing contribution from the Environment Levy towards the management and protection of the municipality’s street trees.

 

Community Environmental Grants Program

Council’s Community Grants Program has seen an increasing number of requests for assistance for community activities and projects that have strong links to sustainability and the environment. It was therefore proposed and endorsed at a recent Council meeting to use the Environment Levy to fund an Environmental component of the community grants program.

 

New Waste and Sustainability Project Officer

The Sustainability Team has always been a small but effective section of Council, however, its ability to capitalise on new funding sources is increasingly being limited by the small size of the Team (currently only two and a half staff to cover all of sustainability and waste education). It is was therefore recently proposed to Council’s Executive that a new contract position be created in the Sustainability Team, primarily to work on new projects associated with the WaSIP program, as well as to assist the Team deliver Environment Levy programs. The new position will be a 3 year contract position, and its creation not only reflects Council’s recognition of the growing imperative of environmental responsibility, but it will also enable the Sustainability Team to help make Ashfield a truly sustainable organisation. Both the Executive Management Group and the Office of the Environment have given approval for this position to be created and funded through both the WaSIP (83%) and the Environment Levy (17%).

 

 

Waste & Sustainability Performance Improvement Payment

In 2006-07 the then Department of Energy Water and Climate Change (DECC), now known as the Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH), introduced the Waste Service Performance Improvement Payment (WSPIP) program as an incentive to encourage councils to strive to reach a target of 66% reduction in waste to landfill and as a means of encouraging uniformity in data collection and waste service provision across all councils. All municipal waste sent to landfill was levied to provide a pool of funds, which was then redistributed to councils, provided they meet a set of ‘standards’ set by the DECC/OEH each year.

 

In 2009-10 DECC/DECCW/OEH announced that the WSPIP program would be extended beyond waste to cover broader sustainability objectives. Entitled the Waste and Sustainability Performance Improvement Payment (WaSIP), the new program allows levied funds to be spent on a wider range of projects, provided they have positive environmental outcomes. At the same time DECC/OEH also introduced new ‘Standards’ that participating councils are required to comply with in order to be eligible for the annual payments. Each year of the program new standards are introduced and councils are required to meet all Standards in order to be eligible for the next round of WaSIP funding.

 

All proposed expenditure of WaSIP funding is required to be submitted to the OEH prior to commencement of any projects and is scrutinised to a high degree in order that resource recovery and sustainability objectives of the WaSIP program are met.

 

For further information on the WaSIP program DECCW briefing documents on the WaSIP program and standards for 2009/2010 and 2010/2011 are included in Attachments 1 and 2 of this report.

 

Table 2 below summarises proposed WaSIP Initiatives for the 2011/2012 Financial Year. Please note that the 2011-12 WaSIP Standards have not yet been released by the OEH, and therefore an amount of $42,000 has been set aside in order to cover the cost of any projects or activities required to meet the new Standards, and ensure Council’s eligibility for the 2012-2013 round of payments.

 

Table 2. Proposed Waste and Sustainability (WaSIP) Projects for 2011-2012

Project

Budget Allocation

Sustainable Fleet Policy & Implementation

$15,000

Sustainable Events Policy & Implementation

$8,000

Sustainable Procurement Policy & Implementation

$8,000

Aquatic Centre Water Use Monitoring

$10,000

Cooks River Alliance

$7,000

Strategic Waste Action Plan Implementation

$30,000

New Waste and Sustainability Project Officer

$65,000

Climate Change Adaptation Strategy

$50,000

Sustainability Action Table Program Implementation

$15,000

New 2011-2012 WaSIP Standard Activities (tba)

$42,000

Total

$250,000

 

Sustainable Fleet Implementation

The Sustainable Fleet Program WaSIP standard for councils requires the development and implementation a program to reduce Council’s fleet emissions to be developed and put in place. Discussions with key staff and the Executive have already commenced regarding the form and nature that Ashfield Council’s Sustainable Fleet Policy will take and project funding has been allocated towards the implementation of the finalised policy.

 

Sustainable Events Implementation

The Sustainable Event Management WaSIP Standard requires a policy to be adopted by Council. The Sustainability Team is planning to form a small working party with staff from other sections of Council who are involved in event management in order to develop this new policy and work towards its use in the planning and delivery of events, from small workshops and meetings to large scale community events, such as the Carnival of Cultures.

 

Sustainable Procurement Implementation

A Premier’s directive in 1997 required larger Government Agencies to develop waste reduction and purchasing policies. The Sustainable Procurement WaSIP Standard for councils requires the development and adoption of a sustainable procurement policy. The Sustainability Team is planning work with the Local Government and Shires Association’s Sustainable Choice Program to develop and implement a Sustainable Procurement Policy and to integrate this with Council’s existing procurement policy and procedures. This project will also likely involve providing training to key staff involved in purchasing within the organisation.

 

Ashfield Aquatic Centre Water Use Monitoring

The Ashfield Aquatic Centre consumes more water than any other Council asset or property. Council is seeking to proactively manage water use at the Centre through installing a comprehensive water use monitoring system. The system will comprise seven water monitoring points located at strategic points around the Centre. This will allow Council staff to monitor the water use of different pools and amenities, and quickly identify any increases in water use, including leaks as well as changes in behaviour of patrons. This system has the potential to save many kilolitres of water as well as thousands of dollars through enabling timely responses to increases in water use throughout the Centre.

 

Cooks River Alliance Contribution

A Cooks River Alliance of councils is a new regional collaboration of Councils that has been formed to address the complex problems of the Cooks River and to maximise the efficient use of councils’ limited resources. The Alliance will be a coordinating body and provide technical resources to the partner Councils, contributing to improving water quality in the Cooks River and achieving more sustainable management of the catchment as a whole.

 

Ashfield Council’s participation in and contribution towards the Cooks River Alliance was endorsed by Council at the 23 November 2010 Environment Committee Meeting and the Memorandum of Understanding for Alliance will be signed by the General Managers of all alliance Councils on Tuesday 3 May 2011.

 

Strategic Waste Plan Implementation

As one of the 2009-2010 WaSIP Standards Council was required to develop a Strategic Waste Plan that outlines how Ashfield will work towards meeting a target of 66% diversion of waste from landfill by 2014. This budget allocation will go towards implementation of key actions outlined in the Strategic Waste Plan and ensure that Council continues to make improvements in the arena of resource recovery. 

 

New Waste and Sustainability Project Officer

The Sustainability Team has always been a small but effective section of Council, however, its ability to capitalise on new funding sources is increasingly being limited by the small size of the Team (currently only two and a half staff to cover all of sustainability and waste education). It is was therefore recently proposed to Council’s Executive that a new contract position be created in the Sustainability Team, primarily to work on new projects associated with the WaSIP program, as well as to assist the Team deliver Environment Levy programs. The new position will be a 3 year contract position, and its creation not only reflects Council’s recognition of the growing imperative of environmental responsibility, but it will also enable the Sustainability Team to help make Ashfield a truly sustainable organisation. Both the Executive Management Group and the Office of the Environment have given approval for this position to be created and funded through both the WaSIP (83%) and the Environment Levy (17%).

 

Climate Change Adaptation Strategy

Climate change has the potential to cause a range of serious and long lasting impacts on both Council operations and services, and on our community’s wellbeing. In 2010 key Council staff from across the organisation participated in a Climate Risk Assessment Process designed to ‘begin the conversation’ on the potential impacts of climate change on this organisation and on the community we serve.

 

The next important step in preparing for the potential impacts of climate change is to use the information collated through the risk assessment process to develop a Climate Change Adaptation Strategy for Council to ensure the impacts of climate change are mitigated against and that the greatest health, public safety and fiscal impacts of climate change are avoided or reduced.

 

Sustainability Action Table Program Implementation

As one of the 2009-2010 WaSIP Standards Council was required to develop a Sustainability Action Table and submit it to the then DECCW (now OEH) for approval. The Action Table summarises the numerous undertakings and activities Council has committed to in various plans and policies (e.g. the Water Savings Action Plan, the Cities for Climate Protection Local Action Plan, the Strategic Waste Plan) to ensure the organisation is working to become more sustainable. It is proposed to use a portion of the 2011-2012 WaSIP funding on key activities outlined in the Sustainability Action Table.

 

 

ATTACHMENTS

Attachment 1View

WaSIP Guidelines for Councils 2009/10

8 Pages

 

Attachment 2View

WaSIP Guidelines for Councils 2010/11

12 Pages

 

 

 

RECOMMENDATION

 

That Council notes the proposed activities and projects planned for the Environment Levy and Waste and Sustainability Improvement Payment funding sources for 2011-2012 and if necessary provides feedback or recommendations

on the planned activities.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Phil Sarin

Director Planning and Environment

 


Attachment 1

 

WaSIP Guidelines for Councils 2009/10

 









Attachment 2

 

WaSIP Guidelines for Councils 2010/11