Following is a summary of resolutions from the Ordinary Council meeting of Tuesday 27 April 2021. NB: it is not a full record of resolutions.
Lord Mayoral Minutes
Bob Palmer Oval – Tuxford Park, Shortland
A Lord Mayoral Minute to re-name Tuxford Oval Number 1 as the Bob Palmer Oval to recognise Mr Robert ‘Bob’ Palmer’s incredible contribution to Shortland, the Shortland Devils RLFC and to Rugby League, was unanimously supported. On 12 December 2020, Mr Palmer was tragically killed in his beloved suburb of Shortland leading to expressions of grief from the local community. The Lord Mayoral Minute notes that the Shortland Devils Rugby League Football Club Committtee, Club Members, the local Shortland community, and Bob’s family have requested that Tuxford Oval Number 1 at Tuxford Park be renamed to honor Bob’s lifelong commitment to the Shortland Community, and to the Shortland Devils RLFC. The City will work with the Shortland Devils RLFC, Mr Palmer’s family and the community to officially dedicate the Bob Palmer Oval, through the installation of a memorial to Mr Palmer and appropriate naming signage.
Housing Affordability crisis in Newcastle
A Lord Mayoral Minute about the housing affordability crisis was supported by Councillors. The Lord Mayoral Minute notes that City of Newcastle continues to advocate to the State and Federal Government to provide adequate funding to address housing affordability in Newcastle.
The Lord Mayoral Minute recognises that dedicated, long-term social and affordable housing and advocates have declared that Newcastle is on the brink of a humanitarian crisis, with the end of JobSeeker and JobKeeper, the rent-rise moratorium coming to an end and a sharp increase in the value of property creating a ‘perfect storm’ for the rise of homelessness. It also acknowledged the current housing crisis, and commits to continuing to do all possible from local government to address housing affordability across Newcastle, noting that the supply of new social and affordable housing stock is the responsibility of the State Government, with the support of the Federal Government.
Code of Meeting Practice - Procedures for Councillors attending Council and Committee of Council Meetings remotely
Councillors noted legislative temporary amendments which allow for Councillors to attend meetings remotely in certain circumstances until 31 December 2021 and to adopt procedures to manage the practical application of the amendments.
Domestic violence and violence against women and children
Councillors received an update of the actions undertaken by the City of Newcastle in response to Domestic Violence and Coercive Control against women and children.
Councillors voted to continue to support domestic violence support groups Got Your Back Sista and Nova for Women and Children as City of Newcastle’s nominated corporate charities for a further three years until 2024.
Public exhibition of draft Community Infrastructure Incentive Policy
Councillors resolved to publicly exhibit the draft Community Infrastructure Incentives Policy for 28 days, prior to final consideration by Council.
Adoption of the Community Grants and Sponsorship Policy
Councillors voted to adopt the Community Grants and Sponsorship Policies following public exhibition.
Proposed road closure - Crown Street laneway, Stockton
Councillors endorsed the closure of the section of Crown Street laneway road reserve, Stockton, adjacent to Lot 5 Section B DP 6865, and sell the land to the adjoining property owner.
In addition, Councillors voted to authorise the Chief Executive Officer or his delegate to execute all relevant documentation.
Executive Monthly Performance Report
Councillors received the Executive Monthly Performance Report for March 2021, which reports on City of Newcastle’s monthly performance.
Tender report - Stage 3A Wallsend Local Centre - Intersection of Kokera and Cowper streets - Contract 2021/362t
Councillors voted to accept City of Newcastle’s recommended tenderer for the construction of Stage 3A Wallsend Local Centre following a competitive tender process, consisting of the widening and realignment of Ironbark Creek and the installation of a culvert bypass at Cowper Street, in accordance with Contract No. 2021/362T.
Tender report - Summerhill Waste Management Centre - Provision of Environmental Services - Contract 2021/293t
Councillors voted to accept City of Newcastle’s recommended tenderer following a competitive tender process for the provision of environmental monitoring, reporting and other services related to environmental compliance at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre in accordance with Contract No. 2021/293T.
Due to the estimated total value of the contract exceeding $1 million, the Chief Executive Officer's delegation required a resolution of Council to accept the tender.
Notices of Motion
Waste Reduction and Green Caffeen Program
A Notice of Motion recognising the commitment of the City of Newcastle to ensuring that all Council managed enterprises, activities and events on Council land eliminate the use of disposable and single-use plastic items, was supported by Councillors.
Councillors also noted the City of Newcastle’s diverse portfolio of waste reduction programs and campaigns, including partnerships with a range of stakeholders to raise community awareness of this issue.
Councillors supported a Notice of Motion to join the Hunter Joint Organisation’s partnership with Green Caffeen to reduce the litter and waste stream associated with disposable coffee cups.
Modernising shark bite risk mitigation
Councillors supported a Notice of Motion in favour of the modernisation of shark bite risk mitigation including the removal of shark nets in favour of increased drone surveillance, SMART drumlines, and trials of additional non-lethal measures.
Councillors also endorsed the response to the NSW Shark Management Strategy.
City of Newcastle Vaccine Hubs
A Notice of Motion acknowledging Australia’s slow progress in vaccinating the population against COVID19 and noting calls from public health experts for vaccine hubs to be established to expedite vaccination and deliver herd immunity was supported.
Councillors also noted the negative public health and economic consequences of a prolonged vaccination rollout, and the long history of Council supporting community vaccination programs, including at City of Newcastle venues such as City Hall.
Councillors welcomed making City of Newcastle venues available to support the expedited delivery of community vaccination in Newcastle.