SUPPLEMENTARY ITEM

 

 

Ashfield Council

 

Workshop - 3 May 2011

 

 

 

              ASHFIELD CLEAN TEAM UPDATE. Adam  Hughes - Assistant Parks &Trees Supervisor. Report submitted.

(03/05/11)                                                                      Governance - Management Plan

                            H:\REPORTS.BP\COMMITTEES\REPORTS\WS030511SR_9.doc

                                                                                                                 WS 8.4 Attached

 

RECOMMENDATION

 

 

1/3    That Council maintain the ACT and its commitment to operational removal of incidences of graffiti on a permanent basis.

 

2/3    That Council purchase a utility vehicle with a spray unit to maintain current levels of service to residents for the purposes of Weed Growth Control for the 2011/12 Budget

3/3    That Council maintain one fully equipped truck (for three (3) person operation) to service and maintain current Graffiti Control requirements.

  


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

WS8.4

Subject                            ASHFIELD CLEAN TEAM UPDATE

 

File Ref                            Governance - Management Plan

 

Prepared by                   Adam  Hughes - Assistant Parks &Trees Supervisor       

 

 

This discussion paper provides an update on the operations of the ACT.  It also includes information on the impact of changes to the operations of the Ashfield Clean Team (ACT) which have been trialled for efficiencies in terms of maintaining service levels and the proposal to deliver financial savings.

 

As part of the 2010/11 Budget Review process it was recommended that the Ashfield Clean Team (ACT) be reduced from a 5 people - two truck team to a 3 people - one truck team to assist with delivering financial savings to Council while maintaining the existing service levels.

 

Level of Service - Customer Request Management

 

Rapid response has been proven to be the most effective way of substantially reducing the graffiti in the highly visible areas throughout our LGA.  The more rapidly graffiti is removed the less notoriety graffiti vandals achieve in terms of the malicious damage they cause.  A fact not just germane to our municipality.

 

Anecdotal responses from members of our business community and indeed the community generally are very positive.  Our team are often thanked while ‘on the job’ for their efforts.

 

Statistics hereunder indicate that graffiti vandalism is seasonal in terms of the amount of graffiti in areas committed by juveniles.  Incidences of graffiti can appear to be higher on a comparative seasonal basis.  As juveniles’ age; enter the work force; and others ‘move on’, they are replaced with a new crop of younger offenders who believe that tagging is the cool thing to do.

 

Graffiti – Customer Request Management (CRMs)

Month

2010-11

2009-10

2008-09

2007-08

July

6

19

11

13

August

10

18

9

14

September

8

14

6

5

October

8

8

7

8

November

14

7

4

9

December

6

9

4

6

January

9

5

3

7

February

12

12

7

11

Subtotal

73

92

51

73

March

 

16

10

11

April

 

8

8

4

May

 

4

10

21

June

 

8

11

9

TOTAL

73

128

90

118

 

Incidences of graffiti removal in square metres for the last four years are shown in the statistics below.  During the warmer months from November through to April, a greater focus on growth control was required to maintain the aesthetic appeal of the municipality on balance.


Graffiti – square metres removed

Month

2010 - 11

2009 - 10

2008 – 09

2007 – 08

July

2556

3004.00

2435.00

4899

August

2214

2202

1440

1362

September

1676

1498

1814

1042

October

890

2469

821

526

November

1325

729

863

311

December

740

1324

1245

525

January

1386

100

1476

846

February

1466

811

1153

516

Subtotal

12,253

12,137

11,247

10,027

March

 

2099

1187

423

April

 

359

954

1036

May

 

1026

3605

2117

June

 

1324

3305

1441

Total

12,253

16,945

20,298

15,044

 

These statistics demonstrate that the level of customer requests has stabilised not increased during the period of the trial. For the same period CRMs have not increased ie 92 reduced to 73 comparing 2010-11 and 2009-10.

 

By better focusing on the program the team focus have been able to maintain the previous level of service.

 

Growth Control of weeds

 

Prior to the second Ashfield Clean Team truck being leased to Marrickville Council work carried out by this team included both graffiti removal and the weed control within the municipality.  Since leasing of the second vehicle to Marrickville, growth control has had to be shared between weed contractors and parks staff to remediate areas of weed growth.

 

Impact of Climate

The climatic effects of El Niño and La Niña constitute a significant challenge in the control of weeds in our LGA.  El Niño relates to the extensive warming of the central and eastern Pacific that leads to a major shift in weather patterns across the Pacific.  In Australia (particularly eastern Australia), El Niño events are associated with an increased probability of drier conditions.  The drying out of surfaces produces extensive cracking providing greater opportunity for the seeds of weeds to germinate in deeper areas of cracking.

 

La Niña relates to the extensive cooling of the central and eastern Pacific Ocean.  In Australia (particularly eastern Australia), La Niña events are associated with increased probability of wetter conditions.  These wetter conditions allow for quicker germination of weeds which lay dormant in cracks, consequentially producing a higher growth rate in weeds, necessitating more frequent attention.

 

Comparative CRM requests for Growth Control

 

Month

2010-11

2009-10

2008-09

2007-08

July

4

4

0

2

August

0

4

2

1

September

6

9

5

0

October

14

8

7

1

November

16

11

8

1

December

6

5

4

2

January

1

11

6

5

February

5

7

8

5

Subtotal

52

59

40

17

March

 

5

5

8

April

 

7

2

2

May

 

2

6

2

June

 

0

5

1

TOTAL

52

73

58

30

 

As shown above CRMs for growth control are on the increase, and will only incease due to climatic effects as noted above

 

Financial Implications:

The current members of the ACT are fully funded through the Operations Department’s annual budget.  Disposal of the larger truck requires the acquisition of a smaller utility vehicle to manage weed growth control.  This is necessary to ensure timely response to customer requests, and for ongoing management of incidences of growth throughout the Municipality, from an aesthetic and propagation perspective.

 

Projected requirements & related cost:

 

Projected Costs

Ford Tray Top Ute –gas powered

$30,600

Ute Mounted Spray Unit – 600L Tank with 30m hose

$ 4,360

Toolbox

$500

TOTAL

$35,460

 

The 2011/12 Budget has been structured to maintain current service levels with respect to graffiti removal and now to include a greater focus on growth control including the purchase of a ute as described above.

 

Other Staff Comments

 

Nil

 

Public Consultation

 

The establishment of the ACT was in response to negative public sentiment related to incidences of graffiti, their impact on the aesthetics of the Municipality generally, and the perceptions of residents and visitors alike.  Since the establishment of the team, Council has seen a reduction in graffiti related malicious damage of 10.3% ranking Ashfield Council 131 out of the 141 Councils for Malicious Damage in 2009/10.

 

There was no requirement for public consultation prior to this report going to Council.

 

Conclusion

 

The view is taken that introduction of the ACT on a trial basis has been successful.  Successful on the basis customer expectations are being met and to a greater degree perceptions related to the aesthetics of our Municipality are being mitigated.


 

Council’s aims are:

a)   Continual improvement of graffiti removal efforts within the Ashfield CBD and the Municipality generally.

 

b)   Continual review of related work processes, and practices, to increase effectiveness and efficiencies in the removal of graffiti.

 

c)   To strengthen liaison with utility providers with the view to achieving more mutually beneficial arrangements related to graffiti removal from utility providers’ properties.

 

ATTACHMENTS

There are no supporting documents for this report.

 

RECOMMENDATION

 

 

1/3    That Council maintain the ACT and its commitment to operational removal of incidences of graffiti on a permanent basis.

 

2/3    That Council purchase a utility vehicle with a spray unit to maintain current levels of service to residents for the purposes of Weed Growth Control for the 2011/12 Budget

3/3    That Council maintain one fully equipped truck (for three (3) person operation) to service and maintain current Graffiti Control requirements.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stephen Joannidis

Director Works and Infrastructure