LGNSW win on asbestos laws – Following our strong advocacy on the need to better regulate illegal asbestos dumping, the Protection of the Environment Operations Amendment (Asbestos Waste) Bill was passed in Parliament on Tuesday night to increase penalties for illegal dumping of asbestos.
On your behalf, LGNSW successfully sought an amendment to allow councils and other waste facility operators 12 months to implement changes to asbestos screening, given the new penalties which may also apply to council staff.
We are very grateful to Paul Green MLC and the Christian Democratic Party for moving the amendment, which was fully supported by Labor, Greens and the Shooters and Fishers – and ultimately, by the NSW Government. Congratulations to our staff on this work. Contact Daniel Adler, LGNSW Asbestos Policy Project Manager, for more information.
Federal election: strengthening our collective voice – Congratulations to Mayor David O'Loughlin who was unanimously re-elected as ALGA president at this week’s Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) Board’s annual general meeting. I was honoured to represent NSW and be elected as ALGA Vice-President, and together the Board pledged to focus on joint advocacy to secure a better deal on federal funding for local government, particularly for financial assistance grants to be restored to at least one per cent of total Commonwealth taxation revenue.
I urge you to seek meetings with the federal members and candidates in your local area, and ask them to support ALGA’s federal election document. Together, we can make a difference to local government and our communities.
National ALGA Roads Conference and Drought Summit – Councils from across Australia gathered for the ALGA National Local Roads and Transport Congress and Drought Summit. We will continue to join ALGA’s call for ongoing investment in the federal Bridges Renewal Program to help fix local timber bridges, around one in five of which are in poor condition.
Many of the nation’s 81 drought-affected councils and their state-based associations also met to discuss concerns about accessing the Australian Government’s drought assistance funding, and to work on solutions to propose to the federal government. Thank you to the many NSW mayors and councillors who have worked with LGNSW to add their voice and good ideas on drought relief funding this week, including Mayor Col Murray from Tamworth, Mayor Phyllis Miller from Forbes, Mayor Mark Liebich from Weddin and Councillor Charlie Sheahan from Cootamundra Gundagai.
Deadline 1 December: important reminder on Return and Earn – Councils that want a share of container deposit scheme proceeds must enter into agreements with material recovery facilities by 1 December. Read more. If you are not close to securing an agreement with your Return and Earn provider, please urgently contact Susy Cenedese, LGNSW Environment Strategy Manager for advice.
Finally, I’m looking forward to welcoming participants to our LGNSW Mayor’s Weekend in Sydney this weekend to discuss the special roles and responsibilities that mayors undertake. We’ll be holding another mayor’s weekend next year – stay tuned for details.