The Pulse e-newsletter - LGAT


Issue no. 16 24 August 2016

In this Issue...

 President's Message
 News Items

              Resignation of Mayor Deirdre Flint OAM

              Tasmanians to Have More Say on Planning Reforms

              Local Government Regional Cooperation on Regional Transport Plans

              Smart Cities and Suburbs Program

              Climate Change to Worsen Disadvantage in Rural and Regional Communities

              Land Use Planning Guidelines for Disaster Resilient Communities 

              Conference Fundraising Efforts Help all Creatures Great and Small

              Disability Knowledge Clearing House Launched

              Tasmanian Library Advisory Board Appointment Confirmed

              Register for National Stroke Week 

 Awards & Scholarships                                   
 Conferences, Seminars & Workshops
 Local Government Events

LGAT Annual Conference Sponsor


In the Spotlight


From the Twittersphere... twitter icon

Councils to shoulder the burden of water and sewerage reform.  Read more 
Well done Stanley@CircularHead - Keep Australia Beautiful Tasmanian Tidy Town winner for 2016

 President's Message

Let me say at the outset that Tasmanian councils are fully supportive of the speedier resolution of boil water and health alerts across Tasmania.  It has been clear to all in Local Government that an escalation of TasWater's capital improvement program would deliver significant economic and health benefits to the State, but it was disappointing that TasWater did not consult with owner councils in the same manner as was undertaken preceding the Federal Election, when councils agreed to extend the freeze on dividend payments. 

While Tasmanian councils own TasWater, they do not make the decisions about the capital program, the investment, the charges (such as the projected 30% increase over the next six years), or the dividends.  In that way, council owners are no different from a shareholder with any other public company.  Those matters rest with the TasWater Board. 

There is no doubt that the decision of the TasWater Board will put further pressure on councils, who are already tasked with doing more with less.  This is why councils would have appreciated the opportunity to consider the impacts on the services and infrastructure they provide for their communities.   

Local Government’s role has expanded from building roads (more than 14,000km worth), bridges and public buildings, to providing a wide range of community services such as sport and recreational facilities, community care, health and welfare services.  Increasingly, State and Federal Government look to councils to deliver place-based services, and to take on more and more statutory functions. 

Tasmanian councils are constantly focused on increasing their efficiency in servicing their ratepayers.  Collectively, the sector is identifying ways to share resources and deliver savings through more effective purchasing, by reducing duplication in relation to operational policies and procedures, and delivering innovation which enhances capacity or reduces costs.

It has been clear through our budget and election advocacy over the last 12 months, that while Local Government was anticipating some hard decisions, we did not expect that there would be no support at all from the Federal and State Government in addressing the reform of water and sewerage as a key enabler of economic prosperity in Tasmania.

Mayor Doug Chipman
LGAT President

News Items 

Resignation of Mayor Deirdre Flint OAM

The Local Government Association of Tasmania notes with regret the resignation of Mayor Deirdre Flint OAM from Central Highlands Council.  Mayor Flint, who was awarded the Order of Australia Medal in 2010,  has been a long serving member of the LGAT General Management Committee and also served as Vice President from 2010-2012.  At the 2016 LGAT Annual Conference, Mayor Flint was presented an Outstanding Commitment and Service to Local Government Award in recognition of her significant contribution to LGAT, the Central Highlands Council and her community over the last twenty years.  An election to replace Deirdre Flint as Mayor and Councillor will be held within the next two months.  Clr Lana Benson will serve as Acting Mayor in the interim.  “Mayor Deirdre Flint has been a champion for the Central Highlands community and Local Government in general,” said LGAT President, Mayor Doug Chipman.  “Her input to LGAT and her Council will be very much missed, as will her presence at Local Government meetings and events."

Tasmanians to Have More Say on Planning Reforms

The development of the single planning scheme is well underway and the Statewide Planning Provisions are now being reviewed by the Tasmanian Planning Commission (TPC) through the public statutory process.  Following advice from the Commission, Minister Peter Gutwein has decided to extend the timeframe for the TPC to provide its report until 9 December.  This will extend the time provided as the minimum under the Act but will still allow the Statewide Planning Provisions to be finalised and provided to councils around the end of the year.  The extension will enable the Tasmanian Government to ensure the involvement of the broader community and the fair consideration of their concerns before the Statewide Planning Provisions come into effect.  The extension of time will enable the TPC Hearings to continue into September and October. 

Local Government Regional Cooperation on Regional Transport Plans

Meeting the current and future demand from Australia's transport industry is one of the most important challenges facing the nation's economy and transport infrastructure providers.  Freight is expected to double by 2030 and triple by 2050.  The challenge for road managers is to ensure that the nation's road networks are fit-for-purpose and are sustainable.  In the lead-up to the 2016 National Local Roads and Transport Congress, to be held from 9-11 November in Toowoomba, The Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) is calling for high quality examples of regional transport planning that has been undertaken by regional groups of councils.  These case studies will be used by ALGA in advocacy for additional support for councils seeking to unlock the increased productivity of their regional freight routes.  It is expected that these case studies will be published as a clear demonstration of the capacity of councils to collaborate, and to play an essential role in regional economic development and national productivity.  ALGA is asking for councils and regional groups of councils to send their plans that seek funding to improve local roads and identify regional investment priorities.  To have your plan included in ALGA's advocacy resources, contact ALGA on (02) 6122 9400.

Smart Cities and Suburbs Program

The Australian Government is establishing a competitive Smart Cities and Suburbs program worth $50 million.  The program will support local governments to fast-track innovative technology solutions that improve long-standing urban problems.  The program seeks to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of urban service delivery, infrastructure and planning to improve the liveability of cities and their suburbs.  The Government expects a wide variety of cutting-edge projects will be supported under the program, such as collaborative design of solutions to complex urban problems, pilots of emerging technologies, the implementation of technologies at scale and business case development.  The most valuable projects will be transformative collaborations between multiple councils and technology industry partners that link closely with future plans for the area.  During September, the Government will be working with representatives from state, territory and local governments, technology companies and research organisations to develop the detailed design of the program.  Roundtables around Australia will introduce the Smart Cities and Suburbs Program and encourage input on how the program can be designed to best meet Local Government and community needs.  To find out more, or to register your interest in attending a roundtable, visit the Smart Cities Plan website.

Climate Change to Worsen Disadvantage in Rural and Regional Communities

The Climate Council has released a new report which reveals that climate change is likely to worsen the systemic disadvantages suffered by rural and regional communities, and further widen the gap between rural and urban areas.  The report, On the Frontline: Climate Change and Rural Communities, finds the increase in extreme weather events is disproportionately affecting those in rural areas, with serious social, health and economic impacts.  The report says that strong climate action is required to protect rural and regional communities from the worsening impacts.  While rural and regional communities are on the frontline of climate change impacts, the report observes that tackling climate change also provides these communities with many opportunities.  Renewable energy projects bring jobs and investment into rural and regional communities.  Farmers can build the climate resilience of their farms by adding additional revenue streams, such as by hosting wind turbines and other renewable energy projects.  Community funds and additional rate revenue for rural and regional areas from renewable energy can also be used to improve public services such as schools and local infrastructure.

Land Use Planning Guidelines for Disaster Resilient Communities

A new e-handbook has been released by the Planning Institute of Australia, highlighting some of the best-practice thinking in the area of disaster planning, recovery and betterment, including the Rockefeller Foundation’s Framework for Resilient Cities and the outcomes of the Productivity Commission Inquiry into Natural Disaster Funding Arrangements.  The National Land Use Planning Guidelines for Disaster Resilient Communities demonstrates the role of land use planning in creating resilience, and provides comprehensive guidance for planners dealing with the issues of natural hazard resilience, pre-disaster planning and post-disaster recovery.  Accompanying the guidelines is a Disaster Resilience Education Implementation Plan, as well as an upcoming seven-module training program.  Further information is available from the Planning Institute Australia website.  

Conference Fundraising Efforts Help all Creatures Great and Small

RSPCA Cheque PresentationEach year, the LGAT Annual Conference raises funds for a local charity via coffee sales at the MAV Insurance Coffee Corner, a raffle and a donation made by LGAT in lieu of speaker gifts.  This year, funds were raised for RSPCA Tasmania to help fight cruelty to animals.  On 15 August, LGAT President, Mayor Doug Chipman presented a cheque for $1,850 to RSPCA Tasmania CEO, Peter West, who was delighted with the fundraising effort.  LGAT would like to thank Platinum Sponsor - MAV Insurance, Tyres 4U and the Tahune Airwalk for donating the raffle prizes, and conference delegates for their donations.

Disability Knowledge Clearing House Launched

The Centre for Applied Disability Research has launched a new Disability Knowledge Clearing House.  The Clearing House is a hub for those seeking to learn, collaborate and better connect research evidence to policy, practice and life experiences.  Key features of the site include: a repository of links to a wide range of disability research, evaluation and other resources to support evidence-based practice; innovative search engine technology to enable end users to browse and find material by nine key domains of inquiry (that align to UN's Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities), or material relating to specific disability groups, support types, locations and formats; a growing collection of Research to Action Guides, intended as accessible summaries of 'what works' across priority topic areas determined in consultation with key stakeholders; and users can subscribe to the Lines of Inquiry newsletter.

Tasmanian Library Advisory Board Appointment Confirmed

Following the resignation of Ald Suzy Cooper of the City of Hobart from the Tasmanian Library Advisory Board (TLAB) in March, a new Local Government representative has been appointed.  Amanda Davison, Information Management Coordinator for Waratah Wynyard Council, will now serve in the role until December 2018.  Amanda has a Graduate Diploma of Information Services (Archives and Records Management), a Certificate IV in Project Management Practice, and is a member of Records and Information Management Professionals Australasia.  Amanda joins Ald Sandra French (Burnie City), Clr Dick Adams (Northern Midlands) and Ald James Walker (Clarence City) as one of four Local Government representatives on the TLAB.

Register for National Stroke Week

Workplaces and community groups are invited to register an event for National Stroke Week (12-18 September), the Stroke Foundation's annual awareness campaign.  The aim of Stroke Week is to let all Australians know the signs of stroke and the importance of acting fast to get treatment.  A speedy reaction not only influences the treatment available to a person having a stroke but also their recovery.  There are lots of ways you can be involved in Stroke Week such as: organising an awareness activity; fundraising for the Stroke Foundation; or hosting a health check.  Registrants will receive a free Stroke Week kit including posters, a booklet and resources, as well as social media kits and PR support.  Act FAST and register today.

Awards & Scholarships 

Keep Australia Beautiful Award Winners Announced

StanleyThe picturesque township of Stanley on Tasmania’s north-west coast has been named the Keep Australia Beautiful (KAB) Tasmanian Tidy Town for 2016.  The Tidy Town award, presented on 19 August, acknowledged the town’s significant cultural and heritage legacy, including its beautifully preserved colonial buildings.  Glenorchy received the Tasmania Sustainable Cities Award for continuing to support a range of practical sustainability programs and projects in the city, and for its ongoing commitment to developing community spaces including Giblins Reserve and the KGV redevelopment.  Randalls Bay was awarded the Tasmania Clean Beach Award and the population category awards winners included: Buckland (under 500); Campania (501 - 1000); Geeveston (1001 - 2000); Smithton (2001 - 5000); and Wynyard (more than 5000).  Congratulations to Cynthia Maxwell-Smith from Glamorgan Spring Bay Council who was presented the KAB Community Citizen of the Year Award for her involvement in her community, both as an employee and resident of the local area, and her dedication as an advocate for KAB.  The Tasmanian Tidy Towns program is run by the KAB Tasmania Council, with support from the Tasmanian Government and the Australian Packaging Covenant. 

Tasmanian Government Board Diversity Scholarship Program

The Tasmanian Government is partnering with the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD) to offer three Company Director Course scholarships and sixteen Foundations of Directorship scholarships.  The program aims to drive a more rapid increase in the number of Tasmanian women who are board-ready and to foster emerging female talent.  Applications are invited via an on-line process.  Scholarship winners will be selected based on the quality of their application.  Applications close on 16 September.  For further information, go to the AIDC website, or call (03) 6242 2200.

Nominations Open for 2016 Human Rights Awards

Nominations are open for the Tasmanian Human Rights Week Committee's 2016 Human Rights Awards.  Nine categories will be awarded: Individual Award; Organisation Award; A Fairer World School Award; Lucy Henry Mental Health Award; Angus Downie Print Journalism Award; Multicultural Award; LGBTI Award; Youth Award; and a Robin Hood AM Sport Award.  Nominations close on 30 September.  More information is available here.


2017-2020 Enterprise Centres Tasmania Program

Small business is a key driver and contributor to the current and future economic success of Tasmania.  The Tasmanian Government supports Tasmania’s small business community through a range of initiatives under the Getting Behind and Backing Small Business Policy.  To further support this policy, the Tasmanian Government is allocating $2.6 million to the 2017-2020 Enterprise Centres Tasmania (ECT) Program, and applications are now open.  The grants will be available to deliver information and advisory services, plus networking opportunities for small businesses across the State.  The new ECT Program will give small businesses access to a network of highly skilled and experienced business advisors to work with and assist them to create jobs and expand their business.  Applications are welcome from organisations seeking to deliver business support within one or more of the identified regions statewide.  Applications close on 16 September.  More information and full guidelines are available online, or call Business Tasmania on 1800 440 026.

Minor Grants Program

The Minor Grants Program provides grants of between $500 and $10,000 to Local Government, clubs, associations and other not-for-profit providers of sport and active recreation, through the Tasmanian Government's Community Support Levy.  Eligible projects must benefit sport and/or recreation clubs, and applicants must contribute at least half of the project funding.  Grant Round One closes on 26 September.  Click here to access the Guidelines and Application Form.

Conferences, Seminars and Workshops

Audit Panel Workshops

LGAT in partnership with the Local Government Division, the Tasmanian Audit Office and Governance Institute of Australia are running a workshop over two days aimed at Local Government audit panel members and council officers that support the panels.  The workshop, to be held at Riverside (12 September) and in Hobart (13 September), will provide an opportunity for discussion and insightful presentations from a number of organisations, with a focus on how audit panels can work to ensure ‘Good Governance’ in undertaking their roles and function, and key upcoming developments.  An important aim of the workshop is to provide a forum where participants can share their thoughts and common challenges, and identify possible ways of assisting each other in carrying out their obligations in this important area of local governance in Tasmania.  Click here for full details and to register.

Understanding Dementia Understanding Dementia - Free Online Course

The University of Tasmania’s Wicking Dementia Research and Education Centre is offering a free, nine- week Massive Open Online Course, Understanding Dementia, opening on 30 August.  This course provides a unique opportunity for individuals and organisations to obtain high-quality education about a critical public health issue at no cost and will be of particular interest to council officers working in the areas of positive ageing and community development.  Since 2013, Understanding Dementia has attracted over 70,000 participants across 170 countries, and has been listed in the Top 50 online courses of all time.  Click here for further informationEnrol today!

What will it take for Tasmania to have Australia’s Healthiest Population by 2025?

Tasmanians currently experience some of the worst population health outcomes in the country, with high rates of chronic disease and health risk factors like smoking, obesity, poor nutrition, low physical activity levels and risky alcohol consumption.  Inspired by the Government’s Healthy Tasmania Plan and the goal to make Tasmania the healthiest population in Australia by 2025, a public panel will probe the question: what will it take?  Panellists include: Jerril Rechter - VicHealth, Graeme Lynch - Heart Foundation, Sue Costello - 26TEN, and Angela Martin - Tasmanian School of Business & Economics and the discussion will be facilitated by Dr Norman Swan, Producer and presenter of ABC Radio National's Health Report.  The panel discussion will take place from 3pm -5pm, on 31 August, at the Rory Spence VOS Construction Lecture Theatre, UTAS Architecture and Design, Inveresk campus.  Register here.  For enquiries, phone (03) 6324 3290.

National Forum on the Economic Empowerment of Women and Girls

The UNAA Forum: Economic Empowerment of Women and Girls will take place in Melbourne, from 5-6 September.  The outstanding line-up of speakers includes: Australia's first ever Minister for the Prevention of Family Violence - Fiona Richardson; Susan Ryan AO - former Age and Disability Discrimination Commissioner; Angela Priestley - Publisher, Women’s Agenda; Victorian University's Dr Mimmie Claudine Ngum Chi Watts; and Helen Kapalos - Chair, Victoria Multicultural Commission.  Delegates will have the opportunity to have their say in an action plan that will be taken to the 61st Commission on the Status of Women, in New York, in early 2017.  Click here to reserve your place.

2016 Hobart Australian Women's Leadership Symposium

The 2016 Australian Women’s Leadership Symposium, will come to Hobart, on 7 September.  Drawing together Australian women from aspiring leaders to the highest office holders, the Symposium supports leadership and life success through knowledge sharing, and the creation of alliances and friendships with ambitious, likeminded women.  Women from all sectors are invited to attend.  Find out more here.

New Supervisor

A two-day course for new supervisors, coordinated by The Training Consortium, provides the foundation skills to effectively make the transition from team mate to supervisor.  It focuses on effective communication, team performance and workplace relationship management.  The workshop will take place in Burnie, on 15-16 September.  Get the tools and techniques you need to overcome the common challenges faced by new supervisors.  Details can be found on the TTC website.

Understanding Financial Statements

The Cradle Coast Authority is hosting a workshop with Stephen Allen, Teaching Fellow at the Tasmanian School of Business and Economics, University of Tasmania, to assist the public sector to better understand financial statements.  The two-hour workshop will be held on 21 September in Burnie and attendance is free.  Participants will gain an understanding of the structure of financial statements in not-for-profit, government  and semi-government organisations; and provide skills and knowledge to interpret financial statements from a governance perspective.  Places are limited.  RSVP by 2 September to Claire Smith, or call (03) 6433 8443.

Register Now for the LG Professionals Tasmania 2016 Annual Conference

LG Professionals Tasmania will host their 2016 Annual Conference, themed Rocking the Cradle, from 12-14 October at Cradle Mountain.  This year's conference will kick off with a wine, cheese and whisky tasting session at the stunning Cradle Mountain Hotel Gallery.  The speakers will provide diversity in the area of innovation, from continuous improvement, tourism, marketing, social media and community services. Accommodation bookings are required by 31 August.  Click here for full details and to register.  For further enquiries, contact Alyce Jordan on (03) 6233 5963.

International WaterCentre Education Scholarships and Training

International WaterCentre (IWC) in Brisbane is currently offering a range of scholarships to participate in the Water Leadership Program and Master of Integrated Water Management in 2017.  They are also launching the IWC Learning Lab: a five-day training event offering 19 master classes and study tours in integrated water management from 17-21 October, following the World Water Congress in Brisbane.  More information can be found here.

Local Government Events

LG Professionals Tasmania S.I.G. Meeting - Legal & Property, Campbell Town 8 September
General Managers' Workshop, Hobart 8-9 September
Audit Panel Workshop, Riverside 12 September
Audit Panel Workshop, Hobart 13 September
LGAT Regional Breakfast, Hobart 18 October
LGAT Regional Breakfast, Launceston 25 October


Postal Address

GPO Box 1521
Hobart, TAS 7001

Street Address

326 Macquarie Street
Hobart, TAS 7000

Contact Us

Tel: 03 6233 5966
Email: reception@lgat.tas.gov.au

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