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Council meeting summary - October 4, 2021

News Article Date: 
Friday, 8 October 2021

For more information and appendices for each item, view the Council Meeting Agenda and Attachments.

The below summary is unconfirmed until the Minutes of the October 4 Meeting are accepted by Council.

1. Opening Prayer & Original Custodians Statement

2. Apologies

Cr Paspaliaris is on leave.

3. Confirmation of Minutes

Council confirmed the Minutes of the Scheduled Meeting of Council held on 6 September 2021 (6-0)

4. Declaration by Councillors and Officers of any Conflict of Interest in any Item on the Agenda

Crs Taylor and Arnott declared a conflict in Item 7.7. Director Community Development Richard Stone declared a conflict in Item 7.14.

5. Mayoral Presentation

6. Public Question Time

7.1. S5 INSTRUMENT OF DELEGATION - COUNCIL TO CEO

The s5 Instrument of Delegation has been review as part of the Procurement Policy development under section 108 of the Local Government Act 2020.

A proposed increase in the CEO’s financial delegation from $300,000 to $400,000 is put forward in the draft s5 Instrument of Delegation. Benchmarking has been completed against similar sized Councils and this increase is more consistent with those CEO delegations.

The s5 Instrument of Delegation is as amended and found in Attachment 1 is recommended by officers for adoption.

Council supported the following recommendations (6-0):

That Council, in the exercise of the power conferred by section 11(1)(b) of the Local Government Act 2020:

1. Delegates the person holding the position, or acting in or performing the duties, of Chief Executive Officer the powers, duties and functions set out in the attached s5 Instrument of Delegation – Council to the Chief Executive Officer, subject to the conditions and limitations specified in that Instrument; and in doing so:

1.1. Approves the s5 Instrument of Delegation to come into force immediately upon execution; and

1.2. Approves that on the coming into force of the s5 instrument of delegation, the previous s5 Instrument of Delegation is revoked.

7.2. PROCUREMENT POLICY

The Act requires an updated Procurement Policy (Policy) be adopted by Council prior to 1 January 2022. A thorough review of the existing policy has been conducted with key stakeholders at Council. The Policy and draft Procurement Manual (Manual) was considered by EMT on 17 August and approved by Audit and Risk on 31 August 2021.

The proposed Policy complies with the updated requirements of the Act while allowing Council to tailor the Policy to reflect its individual circumstances and needs. The substantive elements of value for money, collaboration and best practice principals are retained.

It is noted that the Manual is included to allow Council to consider the proposed financial delegations. If approved, the CEO’s delegated authority will need to be updated. This is captured in a separate report.

Council supported the following recommendation (6-0):

That the Procurement Policy be adopted in accordance with the Local Government Act 2020.

7.3. WOODFORD HEIGHTS DEVELOPMENT PLAN

Council has received a Development Plan (DP) prepared by Myers planning consultants for land at 119 Bridge Road, Bushfield (LOT 1 PS829725T);

The development plan relates to 9.64ha of land within the Low Density Residential Zone (LDRZ);

The Development Plan as submitted comprises:-

- Minimum lot areas of no less than 4000m², subject to a site by site wastewater treatment systems for each lot;

- A new single access from Bridge Road leading to a loop road that services the proposed lots and land to the south;

The Development Plan was placed on exhibition from 19 June 2021 for a non-statutory period of two (2) weeks and nine (9) submissions have been received;

Referrals to Wannon Water; Transport for Victoria; Vicroads; DELWP; CFA; EPA; Southern Rural Water; Department of Education; Downer (Gas); and Powercor have been undertaken;

Further information and clarification about wastewater treatment of the site was requested and a response provided;

The development plan document has been amended to indicate:-

- Removal of reference to timber paling fences;

- Providing for lot sizes to be determined by sufficient area to treat effluent (wastewater

management areas);

On balance, the Development Plan is considered to meet the Development Plan Overlay requirements and relevant provisions of the Warrnambool Planning Scheme and is therefore appropriate to endorse.

Council supported the following recommendations (5-1):

That Council:-

Having regard to the changes incorporated relating to fencing and wastewater treatment measures, endorse the Woodford Heights Development Plan as submitted September 2021.

7.4. MIDDLE ISLAND PROJECT SEASON REPORT 2020-2021

The Middle Island Project is a wildlife conservation project to help protect the colony of Little Penguins on Middle Island.

In September 2020 Council resolved to endorse the Conservation Management Model for future direction and implement with revised operating arrangements including the appointment of an Advisory Group/Committee, clarification of the operating model and roles and responsibilities for dog handling.

This report provides an annual update on the implementation of the project and outlines the outcomes of the Middle Island Project Season Report 2020-2021 and seeks endorsement of the draft Terms of Reference for the Middle Island Project Committee.

Council supported the following recommendations (6-0):

That Council

1. Receive the Middle Island Project Season Report 2020-2021.

2. Establish the Middle Island Project Committee;

3. Appoint the following members to the Middle Island Project Committee for a period of two (2) years:

a. 1 representative – Deakin University

b. 1 representative – Warrnambool Field Naturalists Club

c. 1 representative – Warrnambool Coastcare Landcare Network

d. 1 representative – The Department of Environment, Land, Water & Planning

e. 1 representative – Parks Victoria

f. 1 representative – Warrnambool City Council - Coordinator Natural Environment

g. 1 representative - Warrnambool City Council – Councillor Richard Ziegeler

4. Seek expressions of interest for a member of the community to be appointed a member of the Middle Island Project Committee.

5. Adopt the Terms of Reference for the Middle Island Project Committee.

7.5. BUSINESS INITIATIVES GRANTS ROUND 2 - UPDATE

In response to the adverse impacts of COVID-19 restrictions on Warrnambool businesses, a Warrnambool City Council COVID-19 Business Support Plan (BSP) has been developed.

A key plank of the BSP is the delivery of the Business Initiatives Grant (BIG) program which allows Warrnambool businesses to apply for grants with $1: $1 matched funding up to $3,000 per business to implement new ideas, projects or programs that will help them to build resilience, diversify and grow.

Round 1 of the BIG program was undertaken in 2020/21 where Council awarded 40 businesses grants totaling $99,000 towards projects costing $221,639.

Due to the success of BIG Round 1, Round 2 was launched 9th July 2021 with applications closing mid-August 2021. Businesses who received BIG funding in Round 1 were not eligible for Round 2.

Round 2 attracted 14 applications of which 12 were assessed as eligible under the guidelines and worthy of support. Of the two applications not successful, one was a recipient of Round 1 funding and the other withdrew its application shortly after submission.

Round 2 BIG will award 12 businesses a total of $29,963 grant funding which will go towards projects which total $82,078. All successful recipients of the BIG Round 2 program are listed in the report below.

Grant applications were required to achieve one or more of the desired outcomes

- Growth: Project demonstrates the business will experience an increase in business levels

- Businesses Collaboration: Collaboration/joint activity with another local business.

- Entrepreneurship: A strategy or initiative which has mutual benefits for both the business and the community.

- New Business Strategies: Enabling a strategic change to a business model that allows a business to pivot in response to opportunities arising as a result of COVID-19.

The BIG funding and assessment criteria was weighted towards existing businesses and industry sectors which have been the most adversely impacted by COVID-19. All applications required an explanation of how their business was adversely impacted by COVID19. A further important consideration was a requirement for all applicants to demonstrate the project costs will be spent locally wherever possible.

The BIG program over Rounds 1 and 2 combined have now awarded a total of $128,963 in grant funding to 52 businesses leveraging a total project spend of $303,717.

Council supported the following recommendation (6-0):

That Council note the recipients of the Business Initiatives Grant Round 2 of funding.

7.6. LOCAL COUNCIL’S OUTDOOR EATING AND ENTERTAINMENT PACKAGE GRANT

In October 2020 Warrnambool City Council entered into a $500,000 funding agreement with the State Government to implement the objectives of the Local Councils Outdoor Eating and Entertainment Package (LCOEEP).

The objectives of the LCOEEP funding are two-fold:

- to assist Council to implement streamlined permit, enforcement and monitoring processes to support expanded outdoor dining and entertainment; and

- establish infrastructure to support outdoor dining and entertainment.

The funding agreement (‘the Agreement’) guidelines stipulate what can and cannot be funded from the LCOEEP grant (refer to Background section below). The provision of direct grant funding to businesses / traders is not an eligible expenditure item as part of the Agreement.

As per the terms of the Agreement, the grant is to be acquitted by December 2021. To date, a total of $332,521 of the $500,000 grant has been expended or committed across:

- planning permit and fee waivers benefitting 357 Warrnambool businesses;

- delivery of complimentary infrastructure in the public domain to encourage outdoor activation; and

- marketing and promotions of outdoor dining and entertainment.

It is proposed the remaining LCOEEP funds ($167,479) be expended via a further years waiver of application and approval process for permits associated with the activation of outdoor dining and entertainment activities at an estimated cost of $130,000 to benefit 357+ businesses.

It is proposed any remaining budget (estimated to be $30,000) be allocated to further complimentary infrastructure to encourage outdoor activation and additional marketing initiatives to promote the City’s outdoor eating offering.

Council supported the following recommendations (6-0):

That Council:

1. Note the status of the rollout of the Local Councils Outdoor Eating and Entertainment Package Grant (LCOEEP);

2. Support the remaining LCOEEP funding being allocated to a further years fee waiver (2021/22) of application and approval process for permits associated with the activation of outdoor dining and entertainment activities;

3. Waive Outdoor dining permit fees for the 2021/22 financial year and refund those small number of businesses who have already paid the 2021/22 fee;

4. Commit any remaining funding of the LCOEEP towards complimentary infrastructure and/or marketing and promotion of outdoor dining; and

5. Initiate a further round of engagement with businesses to receive feedback on the outdoor activations to date, including what future outdoor activation support and offerings might assist businesses through 2021/22 and beyond.

7.7. FOOTPATH TRADING FEES

Footpath trading permits are required to be renewed annually from the 1st August. Renewal notices were sent this year for existing permit holders with a request that the fees be paid by 13th September 2021.

At the time of writing, the status of permits for footpath trading for each category were as follows:

Outdoor dining – 44 renewals (average number of tables 4) - 13 have been paid.

A Frame signs – 158 renewals - 84 have been paid.

Display of goods – 28 renewals (most have only 1 display) – 14 have been paid.

If all fees are waived/refunded the total amount would be approximately $62,000 in waived fees.

The amount if the A Frame sign fees only are waived, would be around $23,700.

Should a direction be given to waive fees for A-Frame Signs, those who have paid would receive refunds.

In 2020 some fees were waived due to the financial impacts of the pandemic. The budgetary impacts to Council were offset by using the grant received under the Local Councils Outdoor Eating and Entertainment Package.

Although this would not apply to around half of the A Frame sign fees as they are not associated with outdoor dining or entertainment.

There is currently $167,479 remaining in the fund which could offset waived fees for Footpath Trading should Council determine to do so.

Council supported the following recommendations (4-0):

1. That Council waive permit fees for outdoor dining, A-Frame signs and the display of goods permit fees for the 2021/2022 financial year and refund the businesses who have paid the fee.

2. That Council staff communicate the decision to all permit holders and to ensure that consent is provided.

7.8. DESIGN APPROACH - MCGENNANS PLACEMAKING PROJECT

Council was a beneficiary of the Federal Government’s Building Better Regions Grant to help realise the Lake Pertobe Masterplan. Works yet to be completed include the replacement of the existing McGennans Place Public Amenity.

Following previous directions from Councilors, Officers have progressed the design of the preferred location, which is situated within the close vicinity of the existing amenity block and exercise play equipment.

The budget for the project is currently set at $500,000.00 ex GST, funded in the current budget.

In producing the preliminary design, Officers have been guided by adopted Council policies, legislation and external stakeholder guidelines, including but not limited to:

- The Community Vision – Warrnambool 2040

- 2021 - 2025 Warrnambool City Council Plan

- Disability Access and Inclusion Policy 2020

- Warrnambool – a Healthy City 2017-21

- Gender Equality Act 2020

- Inclusion and Diversity Policy 2020

- DELWP Coastal Management Plan 2013

- Warrnambool City Council Open Space Policy 2020

- Lake Pertobe Masterplan 2018

- The Warrnambool Public Toilet Strategy 2013

- Asset Management Policy 2020

- Risk Management Policy 2020

The Preliminary design includes five unisex stalls, two DDA complaint stalls, outdoor showers, minor landscaping, upgraded services and a new shared path from the Promenade to Pertobe Road, via the new amenities block to provide access to both DDA users and visitors to the beach.

By following the above factors, that have set the level of service Officers have designed to, the projected cost of the replacement amenities is currently $797,000.00, approximately $300,000 above the current budget.

Due to Council receiving a grant to fund the replacement of facilities at Jubilee Park, Council is in the position to fund the $300,000.00 shortfall through allocating the Public Amenity Program to the McGennans Place Public Amenity project.

Councilors are able to direct Officers to reduce the level of service, at McGennans Car Park, to either minimise the budget shortfall or build to the existing budget.

Council supported the following recommendation (5-1):

That Council:

1. Acknowledges and provides the design approach required to progress Council's application for DELWP MaCA Consent Application and Building Permit with the holistic design for McGennans Place Making Project including building and associated place making features through adoption of the proposed design put forward by Officers;

2. Approve the reallocation of additional funding up to $300,000 from the 2021/22 Public Amenity Program for the building works and civil works towards ensuring the maximum community benefit can be achieved through this project.

7.9. TREE ASSET MANAGEMENT PLAN - POST COMMUNITY CONSULTATION

It is a requirement of the Local Government Act 2020 that councils have in place Asset Management Plans (AMP) to strategically manage their assets.

Council does not currently have a Tree Asset Management Plan.

The plan outlines what it costs to deliver the current level of service, if this is being met and what the risks are of not meeting these requirements.

The w2040 Plan has aspirational targets of tree canopy cover which requires a large increase in investment to meet.

All financial values are in today’s dollars, and not indexed for CPI. Increase in future years is typically due to an increase in asset base.

Community consultation opened 19 July and closed 16 August, it was advertised via Facebook, Council’s Noticeboard, and Yoursay.

Most feedback justified the ‘customer values’ section of the Plan, however there was little commentary regarding the level of investment and willingness to pay.

Council supported the following recommendations (6-0):

That Council:

1. Acknowledges there is a gap between expected community level of service and investment required to meet this.

2. Seeks to manage this gap over the next four (4) years through service level adjustments and or increases in investment.

3. Adopts the Tree Asset Management Plan as contained in Attachment 1.

7.10 ROAD ASSET MANAGEMENT PLAN - POST CONSULTATION REPORT

It is a requirement of the Local Government Act 2020 that councils have in place Asset Management Plans (AMP) to strategically manage their assets.

Council does not currently have an adopted Roads Asset Management Plan.

The plan outlines what it costs to deliver the current level of service, if this is being met and what the risks are of not meeting these requirements.

All financial values are in today’s dollars, and not indexed for CPI. Increase in future years is typically due to an increase in asset base.

Community consultation opened on 23 July 2021 and closed on 23 August 2021, it was advertised via the “Your Say” webpage on Council’s website, Facebook, The Standard, and Council’s Noticeboard. Two submissions were received.

The feedback justified the ‘customer values’ section of the Plan, with the responses indicating that the community have high expectations on the levels of service for roads, and do not wish to see a decrease in the current levels of investment on road infrastructure.

Council supported the following recommendations (6-0):

That Council:

1. Acknowledges there is a gap between expected community level of service and investment required to meet this.

2. Seeks to manage this gap over the next four (4) years through service level adjustments and or increases in investment.

3. Adopts this Asset Management Plan as contained in Attachment 1.

7.11 DOMESTIC ANIMAL PLAN UPDATE

Council is required to update its Domestic Animal Management Plan (The Plan) annually as prescribed under the domestic Animals Act 1994 legislation (The Act). In accordance with Council’s usual practice of updating policies, community consultation is undertaken for public comment prior to the policy or plan being adopted by Council.

There is no statutory requirement under the Domestic Animals Act 1994 legislation to undertake community consultation in updating the Plan.

The draft Plan was advertised for 28 days from August 3 until 31 August 2021 on Council’s Your Say Warrnambool website. It was also included as part of the summary of the August 3 Council meeting, posted on the Warrnambool City Council Facebook page, where submissions were sought for Council to consider prior to endorsing the plan.

One submission was received from the consultation process - refer Attachment 1. For assessment of the submission, refer to the “consultation” section of this report.

The Plan notes the efforts local laws officers have made to reduce the animal numbers taken to the pound by returning animal's home. Returning pets assists reducing the euthanasia rates.

The Plan highlights the other work that local laws staff undertake around education and compliance and animal registration notification and compliance.

All dogs and cats must be registered with Council by April 10 every year. Council officers go to considerable lengths to remind pet owners of their legal obligation to register or renew their animal's registration by this date.

Renewal notices are posted to the registered address, reminders are sent along with newspaper adverts undertaken, social media adverts and text messages sent to registered phone numbers.

Random checks will be undertaken, if the animal is unregistered and found at large, infringements will be issued.

Council supported the following recommendations (6-0):

1. That Council notes the submission received through the consultation process.

2. That Council adopts the Domestic Animal Management Plan 2021-2025 as contained in Attachment 2.

7.12 COMMUNITY HOUSING TRANSFER FINALISATION

Council entered into a joint venture with Housing Victoria (Department of Housing and Human Services) to run an expression of interest process to seek submissions from registered Housing Agencies to accept the transfer of the 13 residential properties and to maintain the same number of properties in Warrnambool and where possible increase the housing stock by redeveloping appropriate sites.

The expression of interest process yielded submissions from 6 housing agencies.

All submissions offered an increase in the housing stock available to low-income earners in Warrnambool, subject to the eligibility criteria. By redeveloping some large lot existing sites, multiple dwellings may be constructed. This also provides opportunities for local builders and contractors to benefit from increased development opportunities.

An assessment panel was established with two members of Council staff and two members from Housing Victoria. From the submissions received, two agencies were shortlisted for interview.

Following the interview process the Salvation Army Housing Victoria was selected as the most appropriate provider on the basis of having a strong and established presence in Warrnambool for tenant support, the commitment to fund an increased housing stock in Warrnambool for low income tenants and the realistic development proposals to gain funding and planning approval.

The properties have been declared surplus to requirement and public submissions were sought for 28 days from the 3rd August until the 31st August 2021 as required under the Local Government Act 2020 regarding the proposed disposal of the properties.

No submissions were received.

Council supported the following recommendations (6-0):

1. That Council resolves to transfer thirteen residential properties to Salvation Army Housing Victoria.

2. That Council authorises the Chief Executive Officer to finalise the transfer.

7.13 TENDER AWARD 2021032 - CLEANING SERVICES MAIN COUNCIL BUILDINGS

A public tender was advertised on Saturday 7 August 2021 inviting tender submissions from suitably qualified and experienced contractors for the provision of Cleaning Services at Main Council Buildings

Close of tenders was advertised for 2:00pm Friday 3 September 2021, but due to Covid lockdown requirements was extended through to 2:00pm Tuesday 14 September 2021 and submissions have been assessed by the tender assessment panel.

The recommendation is to proceed with the tender offer provided by KC Facility Solutions for the tendered amount of $399,711.02 Ex. GST p.a. (not including provisional rates for ad hoc cleaning events) and $480,000.00 Ex. GST, with provisional items included.

The Contract Term is for three (3) years with two (2) one-year options. Fully exercised, the maximum value of the contract will be $2,400,000.00 Ex GST or $2,640,000.00 Inc. GST, made up of the tendered Lump Sum and provisional items.

Council supported the following recommendation (6-0):

That Council

1. Award Contract 2021032 - Cleaning Services Main Council Buildings to KC Facility Solutions Pty Ltd for the tendered lump sum amount of $399,711.02 Ex. GST p.a, for an initial term of three (3) years with two (2) one-year options.

2. That the schedule of rates offered is accepted for the life of the contract.

3. That the maximum provisional items be set at 20.00% of the tendered lump sum amount with a total delegated award value of $2,400,000.00 Ex GST or $2,640,000.00 Inc. GST, over the life of the contract.

4. Authorise the CEO to sign, seal and vary the contract as required.

7.14 COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT FUND 2021/22

Under the Community Development Fund 2021/22 round, Council received 68 applications.

Of the 68 applications, 12 were ineligible based on the criteria, 2 eligible were not supported, 48 are fully funded and 6 are partially funded.

Of the funded applicants, 32 were funded with conditions attached to their funding.

The report recommends $218,131 to be allocated to 54 eligible local clubs and organisations under the Community Development Fund 2021/22.

Council supported the following recommendations (6-0):

1. That Council approve $218,131 to fund 54 community clubs and organisations under the Community Development Fund 2021/22.

2. That all applicant organisations be advised of the outcome of the assessment process.

7.15 ADVISORY COMMITTEE/REFERENCE GROUP REPORTS

Economic Development & Tourism Advisory Committee – 10 September 2021 – refer Attachment 1.

Community & International Relations Advisory Committee – 21 September 2021 – refer Attachment 2.

Council supported the following recommendation (6-0):

That the Minutes of the Economic Development & Tourism Advisory Committee meeting held on 10 September 2021 and the Community & International Relations Advisory Committee meeting held on 21 September 2021, be received.

7.16 INFORMAL MEETINGS OF COUNCIL REPORTS

Section 80A(2) of the Local Government Act 1989 required the record of an Assembly of Councillors to be reported at an ordinary Council meeting.

Assembly of Councillor Records are no longer a requirement in the Local Government Act 2020 as of 24 October 2020. However, under Council’s Governance Rules, a summary of the matters discussed at the meeting are required to be tabled at the next convenient Council meeting and recorded in the minutes of that Council meeting.

The record of the following Informal Meetings of Council are enclosed:-

Monday 13 September 2021 – refer Attachment 1.

Monday 20 September 2021 – refer Attachment 2.

Monday 27 September 2021 – refer Attachment 3.

Council received the report, with the additional note that Richard Stone declared a conflict and left the room for part of the Monday September 20 meeting (6-0).

7.17 MAYORAL & ACTING CHIEF EXECUTIVE COUNCIL ACTIVITIES – SUMMARY REPORT

Council received the report (6-0).

8. Notice of Motion

9. General Business

10. Urgent Business

11. Close of Meeting

 

 

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