Connecting with members – We’ve been in the South East this week for the latest council summit, hosted by Bega Shire Council. While in the region we visited Shoalhaven, Eurobodalla and Bega Valley Shire councils. From water to roads, to childcare to superannuation, I am so grateful to those who made the time to attend and assist us to best understand how we can add value to councils. The next summit will be hosted in the Hunter by Maitland City Council, on Thursday 28 June, 10am - 2pm. Register online for upcoming summits.
A welcome boost for cross-border communities – We welcome the launch of a new $20 million NSW Cross-Border Commissioner’s Infrastructure Fund by the NSW Government, designed to level the playing field for communities forced to navigate a range of state-based regulations. We have consistently campaigned in support of border councils and their communities on this issue and this move is long overdue.
The NSW’s Cross-Border Commissioner James McTavish, whom we met with just last week, will work with communities in NSW and neighbouring states to identify priority projects and secure investment. Projects may include improving electricity supply, developing telecommunications, accessing water supply or providing social and sporting infrastructure. We look forward to our next meeting with the commissioner. Read more.
Calling for sports funding to be shared fairly – Councils across NSW have been disappointed to discover the business case behind the NSW Government’s controversial plans to rebuild Allianz Stadium relies on stealing football fixtures away from locally-owned sportsgrounds.
The business case, prepared by KPMG and released to the public this week, suggests at least two council sportsgrounds (Lottoland, Brookvale and Leichhardt Oval) would be allowed to deteriorate sufficiently to force NRL games to be played at a rebuilt Allianz Stadium.
We have heard loud and clear from councils across NSW that you don’t believe it is in the best interests of the state to have funding directed to elite stadiums when that money could be spent in a fairer way across the state on tennis courts, basketball courts or pools. Read more.
Local heroes recognised – Congratulations to all those who were recognised for service to local government in the 2018 Queen’s Birthday Honours, announced on Monday. NSW recipients of the Order of Australia for service to local government included LGNSW Board member, Cr Karen McKeown, for her service to the community of Penrith and to women.
Also recognised for their service to local government in NSW were:
- Mrs Christine Ferguson
- Mr Cecil Burgess
- Mrs Jennifer Clarke
- Mrs Sandra McCarthy
- Dr Johannes Nell
- Mr Peter Schick
- Ms Leigh Vaughan.
Recipients of the Public Service Medal:
- Mr Kent Boyd
- Mr Kenneth Gainger.
Also, remember to get your Public Service Medal nominations in for staff who are showing outstanding leadership.
Preparing for the state budget – LGNSW has prepared a submission ahead of the state budget for 2018/19 announcement by NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet on Tuesday (19 June). The submission summarises 30 recommendations across 11 Government agencies, developed following extensive consultation with NSW councils. The top six priorities are: waste and recycling; open space; access to Restart NSW and other grants; grant programs for disadvantaged areas; public libraries and road safety. We urge you to reflect these calls in your local media about the NSW State Budget. LGNSW will join the budget lock-up on Tuesday to bring you the latest updates as quickly as possible. These will be posted on our website via a live blog, which will start when NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet rises to make his budget address at noon. To access the information, visit the LGNSW’s website, which will be updated regularly throughout the afternoon. Refresh the page periodically to receive the latest news.
Nominations are now open for the 2018 NSW Volunteer of the Year Awards. Consider nominating people you think have made a valuable contribution, particularly if it’s work being done in collaboration with your council. Find out more.