Ordinary Council Meeting Tuesday 27 June 2023

27 Jun 2023

Following is a summary of resolutions from the Ordinary Council meeting of Tuesday 27 June 2023. NB: it is not a full record of resolutions.

Ordinary business

Acceptance of offer – Newcastle Art Gallery expansion – Telstra asset relocation works

Council unanimously voted to not invite tenders for the Newcastle Art Gallery expansion Telstra asset relocation works. A satisfactory result would not have been achieved through the calling of tenders as the network assets are owned by Telstra Corporation Limited (Telstra) who have exclusive rights to carry out any modifications to their network.

Supplementary report – proposed sale of operational land – 55 Cowper Street, Wallsend

Council voted to adopt an alternative motion to lay this item on the table until reports are received on existing road reserves across the city and the road reserves lost in Newcastle by RMS/TfNSW in the last decade, as well as a plan for road reserves including strategic acquisitions, temporary and permanent uses.

Stage 1 of Hunter Estuary Coastal Management Program (CMP) completed

Council unanimously adopted an amended motion that endorsed the Hunter Estuary CMP Scoping Study, noted that the Hunter River Estuary is the most polluted in NSW and called for reinstatement by the NSW Government of the dedicated Hunter Catchment Management Authority or equivalent government agency, tasked with improving the health of the estuary. City of Newcastle will write to the Minister for the Hunter and Minister for the Environment requesting their assistance to urgently rectify this situation.

Making of the rate and charges for 2023/24

Council unanimously voted to make the Rates and Charges for the period 1 July 2023 to 30 June 2024 in accordance with sections 532 – 535 of the Local Government Act 1993.

Interest on overdue rates and charges for 2023/24

Council voted to adopt the rate of 9.0% per annum on interest on overdue rates and charges for the period 1 July 2023 to 30 June 2024 (inclusive). Interest is waived for ratepayers who on the basis of financial hardship, enter into an agreement to pay outstanding rates over a period of time.

Executive monthly performance report

Council received the Executive Monthly Performance Report for May 2023.

Tender report - biennial hire of plant trucks and equipment

Council voted to accept tenders for the casual hire of plant, trucks, and small plant and equipment for a two-year period.

Tender report - construction of operational area for recycled materials transfer at Summerhill Waste Management Centre

Council unanimously voted to accept a tender for the construction of an operational area for recycled materials transfer at Summerhill Waste Management Centre, enabling the existing operations to continue until the Materials Recovery Facility project is completed.

Notices of Motion

Pedestrian crossings

Council unanimously voted for an amended notice of motion calling for City of Newcastle to develop a Newcastle Local Pedestrian Crossing Policy and explore the delivery of new crossings in a variety of areas across the city including locations in Hamilton South, Merewether, Hamilton North, Cooks Hill, Mayfield, New Lambton, Minmi, Elermore Vale and Tighes Hill.

Newcastle Inner City Bypass – further advocacy

Council unanimously supported an amended notice of motion calling on City of Newcastle to write to the Member for Wallsend, appropriate Ministers and Shadow Ministers calling on the newly elected NSW Government to urgently review aspects of the Inner City Bypass project, to ensure the opportunity to deliver a meaningful active and public transport connection between two of the City’s main catalyst sites (John Hunter Hospital and University of Newcastle) and opportunities for refinements to minimise biodiversity and habitat losses, are not lost.

National Parks Estate advocacy - 505 Minmi Road

Council supported a notice of motion that City of Newcastle writes to the Member for Wallsend and Deputy Speaker of the Legislative Assembly, calling for the urgent implementation of the Government’s election commitment to investigate the protection of 505 Minmi Road for conservation in the National Park Estate, reiterating the elected Council’s strong support for this option to permanently protect the Green Corridor.

Endometriosis and pelvic pain clinics

Council unanimously supported a notice of motion that notes and applauds the announcement that the Albanese Labor Government will be delivering Australia’s first Endometriosis and Pelvic Pain Clinics across all states and territories as part of the Labor Government's $58.3 million commitment to theses clinics.

City of Newcastle will write to Federal Member for Newcastle and Deputy Speaker, the Minister for Health and Aged Care, and the Assistant Minister for Health and Aged Care advocating for Newcastle to be included in any subsequent funding for further clinics.

Supercars 500 and climate change

Council supported an amended notice of motion that that notes that the NSW Government and Supercars Australia are yet to commit to any extension of the Newcastle 500, with the final decision subject to Council endorsement. It also noted Council’s previous resolved support for the electrification of Supercars, and opportunity to utilise Supercars to promote the use of public transport and electric vehicles in the city.

Invitation to the NSW Local Government Minister

Council unanimously supported an amended notice of motion that notes Council unanimously supported a motion for the NSW Minister for Local Government Ron Hoenig to hold a Local Government Summit.

Late item

Social and affordable housing advocacy

Council unanimously supported a notice of motion that City of Newcastle offers the city's support as a partner with the State and Commonwealth Governments to deliver on $2 billion in national commitments to deliver thousands of additional social dwellings, to support additional social and affordable housing in the city in response to the housing crisis.