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Ordinary Council Meeting - 26 May 2021

Watch the May 26 Ordinary Council Meeting here:

Wrap-up of the May 26 Ordinary Council Meeting

8.4 Constitutional referendum question
The constitutional referendum question that will be added to the September 4 Local Government election is:
“Do you support a reduction in the number of councillors for Armidale Regional Council from eleven to nine?”
The outcome of this constitutional referendum will take effect at the September 2024 Local Government elections.

8.8 Public exhibition of integrated planning and reporting – Draft Operational Plan and Budget for 2021 – 2022
The 21/22 Draft Operational Plan and Budget will go on public exhibition from Friday 28 May until Thursday 24 June 2021. The documents on public exhibition are:

  • Draft Operational Plan and Budget 2021-2022 (including the operational and capital budget)
  • Draft Revenue Policy 2021-2022
  • Draft Fees and Charges 2021-2022

These will be available to view on Your Say from Friday 28 May 2021 until Thursday 24 June 2021.
The draft Operational Plan and Budget will include the 10.5% permanent Special Rate Variation determined by IPART and the four year rates harmonisation implementation framework.

9.1 Update on alterations to parking time limits within the Armidale CBD
An update on the implementation of resolution No.198/19 to alter the parking time limits within the Armidale CBD was provided. The implementation of the new time limits is dependent on updated signage being ordered and delivered and the availability of the contractors to alter the time limits of the parking sensors.
Council will review the efficacy of the parking strategy and its implementation twelve months from the commencement of the new time limits in the CBD. The review will include public consultation.

9.2 Armidale Airside Business Park Stage Two - cul-de-sac street naming
The names of twelve significant contributors to local aviation and the Armidale Airport Precinct will be considered for recognition in the street naming of the Armidale Airside Business Park cul-de-sacs in the Stage Two development, subject to approval of the Geographical Names Board (GNB).
The names that will be considered are:

1. John Ford
2.Clarence Athol Rice
3. Dick Peter
4. Jan Newby
5. Richard McLean
6. David Patterson
7. Dick McCarthur-Onslow
8. Bruce McSpedden
9. Patrick Creagan
10. Brian Creagan
11. Noel Brown
12. Merve Hyatt

Councillors identified their preferences were names 1, 2 and 3.

9.3 Armidale Airside Business Park – adoption of agreed vision, purpose, objectives and target business profiles
The clear vision, objectives and target market for future developments at the Armidale Airside Business Park were adopted. This will help to provide a way forward to achieve increased economic and social prosperity in the region through the sale of light industrial land in the airport precinct. Councillors agreed to include the fact that the business park will be a destination as well as a thoroughfare in the Vision section. To read the vision, objectives and target market of the development, see page 44 of the agenda.
Council also agreed that all net sale proceeds from Armidale Airside Stage One Lots be reserved and accounted for separately in order to fund the next stages of development.

9.4 Update on Moore Street decked carpark
Council supported Armidale Plaza Shopping Centre’s application to renew its existing lease of the Moore Street decked carpark. Council will formally advise Crown Lands that while the carpark is an integral element of the overall CBD car parking strategy, Council does not have the capacity to take on the lease or purchase the property at this time.

9.6 Third quarter budget review 2020/21
The 2020/21 Q3 Budget Review for the period 1 January to 31 March 2021 tabled in the meeting attachments was endorsed by council. The review shows that while there is still a long way to go, there have been improvements this quarter.

9.7 Mayor and councillor remuneration 2021/22
The Tribunal has determined an increase of 2% to mayoral and councillor fees for the 2021/22 financial year, with effect from 1 July 2021. This will mean the fee payable to councillors will be $24,810 and the fee payable to the Mayor will be $61,280. The Mayor’s fixed payable annual fee is in addition to the annual fee paid to councillors.

9.8 NSW Country Gymnastics Championship 2021 – 2023
Council will support the NSW Country Gymnastics Championships to the total of $5150.

9.9 Armidale City Gymnastics Club - Request for Loan Guarantee
Council will enter into a Deed of Guarantee with Regional Australia Bank on behalf of Armidale City Gymnastics Club for a $150,000 loan to renew equipment for planned events. Acting as a guarantor will not cost Council any money.

10.1 Approval of Development Application DA-125-2020 at 156-160 and 162 Bradley Street, Guyra, for a Centre-Based Child Care Facility and associated works
The Development Application was approved for the proposed Guyra Centre-Based Child Care Facility and associated works subject to conditions. The adoption of the DA does not commit Council to undertaking the project, however, it gives Council the option to carry out the project if funding becomes available in the future.

10.2 DA-116-2018/D - Motel Development - (Modification Requesting Deletion of Condition 25A)
Council will not waive the Developer Services Plan charges for the hotel development at 141 Dumaresq Street, Armidale.

10.4 Interim actions on air quality
A number of actions that are being undertaken to improve air quality in Armidale were presented to council. To read these, view page 164 of the agenda.

10.5 Malpas Dam upgrade assessment report
Council approved the raising of the Malpas Dam spillway by 6.49 metres and will proceed to commission further design work and a business case.
Council will seek funding for a preliminary concept design and investigation works from the DPIE Safe and Secure Funding Program or other appropriate NSW Government funding sources.
It was also noted quotations will be sought in June to develop an Armidale Regional Council Catchment Water Quality Strategic Plan. This will encompass a ten year plan to elevate water quality in Council’s storages and will improve catchment health to enable higher water quality entering and being stored in Council’s storages.
To read the full report, see page 169 of the agenda.

10.6 Local Roads and Community Infrastructure (LRCI) phase one – reallocation of proposed projects
Council will apply to the Federal Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications to reallocate $985,000 of LRCI phase one funds originally intended to go towards the Guyra Community Precinct project to the 2021/22 renewal program for Council assets.  This is due to the fact that the Guyra Early Childhood Learning Centre has not been fully scoped, which presents a risk of losing the funding as it must be spent by 30 June 2021.
Council will seek an extension to complete the alternative projects by 31 December 2021.
The renewal program for Council assets will include kerb and guttering, footpaths, urban road reseals, rural road reseals, gravel road re-sheeting, stormwater drainage improvements and building renewals.

10.7 Policy for food vans
Following the Notice of Motion at last month’s council meeting to develop a food vans policy, council adopted the following recommendations:
a) Note the current legislative framework relating to Food Vans (Mobile Food and Drink Outlets), which permit them opening and operating either without approval in certain circumstances or with approval, subject to owners consent;
b) Include a fee for the operation of Food Vans (Mobile Food and Drink Outlets) on Council land in the 2021/22 fees and charges;
c) Undertake community consultation on the introduction of a new fee in the 2021/22 fees and charges; and
d) Allow its consent as the property owner for the operation of Food Vans (Mobile Food and Drink Outlets) on land that Council owns.

10.11 Public exhibition of road closure of Mills Road
As the first stage of the industrial subdivision near the airport is nearing completion, the Mills Road connection with the New England Highway will need to be closed. Mills Road will subsequently need to be redirected to connect with the airport roundabout.
This road closure will be placed on public exhibition for 28 days.

11.1 Community Connectivity Grants
Council approved the successful applicants for the Community Connectivity Grants program. These grants are designed to assist community groups in their recovery from the isolation and devastation of drought, bushfires and COVID-19. A total of $24,283 has been distributed.
For a full list of successful applicants see page 210 of the agenda.

11.2 Arts and Culture Small Grants 2020/21
Council approved seven nominated projects for the $20,000 Arts and Culture Small Grants program. Each nominated project has been allocated a maximum of $3000 and are all aligned to the Arts and Culture Strategic Plan objectives.
To view the list of successful applicants see page 213 of the agenda.

11.3 Anaiwan language revival program office accommodation – lease of Kent House office.
Council will enter into a twelve month lease agreement with the Nēwara Aboriginal Corporation for office space at Armidale’s Kent House. The group will lease the facility for $557.70 per annum, based on the amounts set by Crown Lands.

11.4 Reimbursement of petrol costs for carting hay to flood affected Mid-North Coast communities
Council will reimburse a local carrier for the petrol costs involved in carting hay to flood affected Mid-North Coast communities via the mayoral allowance.

12.1 Community Wellbeing Committee – minutes of meeting held 29 April 2021
Council recognised and endorsed the demands in the March for Justice Petition and will write a letter to State and Federal members.
Council will also provide an update to the Committee as to the status of the Crime Prevention Plan and Working Group.

12.2 Traffic Advisory Committee – minutes of meeting held 4 May 2021
Council endorsed:

  • The installation of one half an hour parking space on Barney Street at the intersection with Markham Street to provide a safe place for elderly residents attending the U3AA facility who require to time to unload and make drop offs.
  • The 15 tonne load limit on the Kempsey Armidale Rd will be maintained.

12.3 Economic Development Committee – minutes of meeting held 21 April 2021
Council endorsed:

  • The draft Tourism Strategy, the Economic Development Strategy and Council’s water policy will be circularised for consideration by the Committee and will be put on the agenda for the next meeting.
  • In recognition of concerns raised regarding the adequacy of electricity supply and distribution networks within the Armidale LGA, council will identify emerging supply-demand deficits in the region, with a view to informing stakeholder groups and effectively advocating for improvements where council deems this necessary.

12.4 Sports Council – minutes of meeting held 5 May
A number of changes were made to priority lists and the order of priority projects. These changes can be viewed on page 232 of the agenda.
Council also noted the following Sports Council grant application preferences to be considered for the Stronger Country Communities Fund:

Armidale District Cricket Association to apply for:

  • $110,000 for stage 4 of the Armidale Cricket Indoor Training Facility project.

Armidale Regional Council to apply for: 

  • Newling Oval field lighting installation - $400,000
  • Jack Vallance Oval upgrade including field lighting installation and field surface renovation - $400,000
  • Lynches Road Netball Courts lighting installation - $380,000

For public exhibition:
A number of draft policies will be placed on public exhibition. These are:

  • 8.3 Feedback and complaints management policy and unreasonable customer conduct policy
  • 8.5 Private works policy
  • 8.6 Management of road reserves policy
  • 9.10 Procurement policy
  • 9.11 Debt recovery and hardship policies
  • 10.8 Events on public roads policy
  • 10.9 Mall market operations policy
  • 10.10 Grazing permits on road reserves policy
  • 10.12 Planning proposal (LEP amendments) policy
  • 10.13 Water supply policy
  • 10.14 Reduction of water consumption charges due to undetectable leakage policy
  • 10.15 Urban watercourse revegetation policy
  • 10.16 Aquatic centres patron code of conduct policy
  • 11.5 Community engagement policy

These draft policies will be available to view on  Your Say.

A number of policies were adopted following a public exhibition period. These are:

  • 8.7 Property addressing and naming our roads policy
  • 9.12 Investment policy
  • 10.17 Gates and stock grids on Council roads policy
  • 11.6 Library collection development policy
  • 11.7 Library community information display policy
  • 11.8 Library use and user code of conduct policy

Rescinded policies:
13 policies that have been identified as being no longer relevant have been rescinded from the policy register. To view the full list of rescinded policies, visit page 19 of the agenda.
Minor policy updates:
12 policies that required small, administrative amendments have been updated. To see the full list, visit page 22 of the agenda or view the attachments.

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