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Policy Statement

 

We've had 5 long years of incompetent council administration. Now we have a chance for change. So cheer up and vote GROUP F on 4th December :-)

Hawkesbury Council up to $1 billion dollar Land Bank

Council to immediately release details of the 400 plus 'surplus to need' properties it owns and that produce no income. We propose to publish the list and the value of each property so residents and ratepayers can decide what to keep and what to sell to fund new services to our community. 
 

Our Rates, Roads, Rubbish
 

Rate Reduction: Hawkesbury Council residents deserve a RATE REDUCTION. We have put up with bushfires, floods, COVID and a shockingly dysfunctional Council administration.

Road Recovery: Use Local Contractors with local pride to improve our local roads. Improvements to our roads need to be done by local contractors who take pride in their work and are held to account by locals for their workmanship.

Free Tip & Right to Scavenge for Reuse: Rubbish dumping in our bush is on the increase. We propose a free tip for residents and the right to scavenge for reuse. This gives people an incentive to go to the tip.

Three Roadside Rubbish Pickup A Year: For people who can’t get to the tip we need 3 roadside rubbish pick up’s a year.

Weekly Garbage Collection for ALL Colo District Residents: All Colo residents will receive a weekly roadside rubbish removal service.

North Richmond River crossing decided by local community referendum: The North Richmond District needs to decide on the location of the next river crossing as they are the community most affected by it. 

Drought, Fire & Floods

Bushfire Water Storage at Local Halls & RFS Sheds: Hawkesbury is prone to bushfires, and we need better water storage so fire tankers can refill quickly in their local areas. We propose to install 120,000 litres of water storage at all RFS sheds and Community Halls not connected to town water.

Flood High Ground Property Storage Facilities: Hawkesbury is prone to flood, and we need better high ground property storage facilities so residents can evacuate and store possessions during the flood and clean up periods.

Water Relief for Households During Drought: During times of drought many residents must buy water which costs much more than town water supplied by Council. We need to acknowledge this and compensate these residents so they can afford water.

Preparing for more bushfires and floods:

  • Levee banks need to be built around the Lowlands, Londonderry and other areas impacted
    by flood waters.

  • Roadside water hydrants for quick refill of bushfire tankers need to be installed on
    Bells Line of Road and Putty Road.

 

Better Council Administration for our Community Development

 

Appointing Senior Managers Who Live in the Hawkesbury: None of the senior managers of Council live in the Hawkesbury, most live in densely packed city suburbs. This is a recent happening. We had a better Council when senior managers lived in our local community. We want senior managers who live in the Hawkesbury. 

Appoint a Planning Administrator to Drain the Swamp of City Planners: Currently Hawkesbury has one of the longest and more expensive DA processes in NSW. This is because the senior Council administrators don’t have rural experience. We need to drain the swamp of city planners and appoint people who live locally. A Planning Administrator can do this.

Amnesty on Council Fines: Hawkesbury City Council has been so badly run many people have had to do work not approved by Council, to keep their business or households going. We want an amnesty on Council fines while the Planning Administrator sorts out what to do with this mess.

Small Business Made Easy in our Towns & Villages

Small business is 50% of our local economy. It drives innovation and community development. To operate effectively we need efficient Council administration with experience working in semi-rural and country communities. Only then will our community be able to develop and grow. To help small business we propose:

  • Free Outdoor Signage for businesses using removable A Frame promo stands out the front of business. Currently Council charges for this.

  • Free Alfresco Dining currently Council charges business for this.

  • Free DA for small businesses with up to 3 full time employees

  • Free Parking for businesses in our townships and villages 
     

Council owned shopping Centre upgrades:  Council owned shopping centres are to be upgraded with no rent increase for tenants.

Our Community, Culture & Tourism

Hawkesbury - Never Was and Never Will Be a City: We love our rural countryside, National Parks, local villages and two towns Richmond and Windsor. The name of our Local Government Area should be HAWKESBURY COUNCIL not Hawkesbury City Council.

Regional Museum - We can do Better than a Pub Carpark: Hawkesbury is the only Council to put their museum entrance in a pub carpark. While the Rum Corp is part of our history, we have much more than grog to promote and be proud of. We can do better than this. Our museum can be redesigned to face the river and give visitors a truly breath-taking experience.

Celebrate Regional Art: Hawkesbury is the only Council to put their Art Gallery on the second floor of a building next to other government offices instead of in the community. We can do better than this. We need to reach out to our villages and towns with pop up galleries celebrating our local arts and culture.

Function Centres for the Hawkesbury: Hawkesbury is the only Council to disallow function centres. This is vital infrastructure to tourism. We need a Planning Administrator to investigate their removal and hold those responsible to account. More importantly we need this Administrator to put function centres back in the Local Environment Plan so we can gather in places and celebrate our beautiful Hawkesbury.

Tourism Plan for Hawkesbury Bilpin & Colo Residents: Hawkesbury needs a tourism plan for these popular tourism destinations that includes:

  • traffic management plan 

  • public rubbish bins

  • public toilets 

  • public car parks 

  • Council Tourist Information sign showing the area and the places tourist like to visit 

Better Care for our Animals

Hawkesbury Pound Needs to be More Humane: Hawkesbury Council Pound relies on volunteers to hose the kennels in summer to stop our animals from dying of heat exhaustion. We need to redesign our animal shelters to make them more humane.

Native Animals & Backburning: Millions of native animals died in a back burn bushfire that ravaged our local National Parks and Bilpin District. We need to design our back burns to save animals as well as human lives and homes.

Better Care for our Environment

Go Local for Everything to get to Net Zero Emissions by 2030: We need to decrease our carbon footprint and maintain a vibrant economy. One way to do this is to go local for everything. Employing local senior managers, using local resources decreases transport costs, our carbon footprint and increase our income levels. With a Planning Administrator an efficient and effective Council management could take the first steps toward making this happen.

Go Green with EV Charging Stations in Townships: We propose to install EV charging stations in Council owned carparks in Windsor and Richmond. In this we prepare our townships for the future and help get to zero emissions by 2030.

Poison Free Parks & Gardens: We propose Council go poison free and use no herbicides in our local parks, gardens, and roadside maintenance. There are a wide range of options for managing weeds other than the use of poisons. Council officers can watch ABC Gardening Australia to brush up on how to do this.

Replacing septic pump-outs with enviro cycles or composting toilets

Council to establish a No Interest Loans system for residents to install envirocycle septics and or composting toilets to replace pump out sewage systems.

WHERE IS THE MONEY COMING FROM to pay for these policies?

  • Hawkesbury Council income 2020 income was $104 million.

  • Hawkesbury Council income 2020 surplus was $17 million.

  • Hawkesbury Council has investment properties worth $50 million.

  • Hawkesbury Council owns over 300 properties surplus to current need.

  • Hawkesbury Council has net assets of $1.5 billion.

 

Hawkesbury Council has a lot of money and makes a profit each year. This profit will be used to fund policies that helps the community.

**Information Source: Hawkesbury City Council Financial Statement June 30, 2020