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Local Government Excellence Awards

Local Government Professionals NSW revealed the winners of its Oscars for local councils earlier this month. Full list below.

 President LG Professionals, NSW Barry Smith said the awards recognised and showcased the pinnacle of excellence in the local government sector in NSW and significant achievements by NSW councils over the past year as well as the outstanding professional development achievements of our members.

“Local government works hard for the communities in New South Wales, and we were thrilled that the Deputy Premier and Local Government Minister joined us in acknowledging the sector’s professionalism and dedication," Mr Smith said. 

 

Excellence in Innovative Leadership and Management

Recognising the use of superior management and leadership skills to achieve outstanding benefits for the organisation and/or for the community.   Winner: Tweed Shire Council Highly Commended: Lachlan Shire Council, City of Ryde Council Community Partnerships and Collaboration Recognising genuine and effective partnerships and collaborations that have resulted in better outcomes for council, as well as initiatives that demonstrate a commitment to working with and/or in the community to achieve positive outcomes.   Population over 15,000 Winner: Port Stephens Council Highly Commended: Blacktown City Council, Lake Macquarie City Council   Population under 15,000 Winner: Warrumbungle Shire Council Excellence in Local Economic Contribution Recognising innovation in leadership and management for a project/initiative that has enhanced the economic wellbeing of their local government area and increased the value proposition to ratepayers and residents, in parts or all, of their city, town, district or region.   Winner: Liverpool City Council Highly Commended: Lake Macquarie City Council Excellence in Environmental Leadership and Sustainability Recognising dedication to sustainability as evidenced by the implementation of corporate process improvements, projects or initiatives that demonstrate significant real or potential benefit to the environment.   Population over 100,000 Winner: Campbelltown City Council Highly Commended: Canterbury-Bankstown Council, Central Coast Council   Population under 100,000 Winner: City of Canada Bay Council Highly Commended: Byron Shire Council  

Special Project Initiative

Recognising leadership where an individual, team or council has developed a concept or practice that significantly improves the business in which they work, development of processes or practices that has had a major impact on the organisation or its customers. Population over 15,000 Winner: Lake Macquarie City Council Highly Commended: Central Coast Council, North Sydney Council   Population under 15,000 Winner: Hunter’s Hill Council  

Excellence in Community Development and Services

Recognising leadership in community services as evidenced by way of corporate process improvements, a particular project initiative, innovation in management and leadership practices or demonstrated practicality and resourcefulness. Winner: Canterbury-Bankstown Council Highly Commended: Cumberland Council

Excellence in Asset Management and Infrastructure Initiatives

Recognising excellence in Asset Management as evidenced by the implementation of corporate process improvements, projects or initiatives that demonstrate significant real or potential benefit in asset management. Winner: Campbelltown City Council Highly Commended: Port Macquarie-Hastings Council, Wentworth Shire council

Excellence in Risk Management

Recognising the community and/or Council benefits (strategic, operational or financial) delivered through the identification, control and mitigation of risks within a council’s unique risk profile. Winner: Wollongong City Council Highly Commended: City of Canada Bay Council

Excellence in Creative Communities

Recognising excellence in bring together communities through art and cultural creative projects. Population over 15,000 Winner: Campbelltown City Council Highly Commended: Bega Valley Shire Council, Port Macquarie-Hastings Council   Population under 15,000 Winner: Narrabri Shire Council  

Excellence in Operational and Management Effectiveness

The Excellence in Operational and Management Effectiveness Award is open to all NSW councils who have participated in the Australasian LG Performance Excellence Program. Winner: Willoughby City Council Dux of the Governance Intensive Course The Governance in Local Government Intensive Course has been developed to enhance the governance knowledge and skills of professionals working in the local government sector. Dux: Christine Priest, Wagga Wagga City Council Dux of the Finance Intensive Course Covering all aspects of local government finance this one week intensive residential course will benefit new finance managers, senior accounting and accounting officers or anyone with a financial background wishing to expand their knowledge of local government finance. Dux: Tracy Wilde, Sutherland Shire Council     NSW Environmental Excellence Awards Nominations are open for the NSW Environmental Excellence Awards, which celebrate councils and council staff who have done outstanding environmental work in the state. Local Government NSW President Keith Rhoades said local government was the closest level of government to communities and had the most direct influence on local environments. "But what is often forgotten is that local government is one of the biggest sectors in the NSW economy,” Mr Rhoades said. "Councils are responsible for maintaining and upgrading $142 billion in infrastructure and land assets, including parks, reserves, roads, community facilities and water and sewerage systems. He said the sector employed more than 50,000 people and injected $11 billion into the state's economy every year. "Combine that economic power with a commitment to environmental sustainability and best practice, and you have a sector making a very real contribution to the environment in NSW." There are 15 award categories, including the prestigious Local Sustainability Award for overall council performance and the Louise Petchell Memorial Award for Individual Sustainability awarded to an individual. They will be announced on October 11 at the University of Technology Sydney and they cover projects and programs from January 2016 to May 2017. The prize for overall winner of the Local Sustainability Award is an overseas study tour or a professional development program for staff, valued at $10,000.  Individual councils, county councils and regional council groupings are all eligible to enter, and compete against similarly sized councils in one of three levels: populations of less than 30,000; between 30,000 and 70,000; and more than 70,000.  Nomination applications close on 31 May, with further details available on LGNSW's website National Reconciliation Week funding Councils have until the end of this week to apply for federal government funding to support celebrations for National Reconciliation Week, which runs from May 27 to June 3. Celebrations are particularly poignant this year with the upcoming 50th anniversary of the 1967 Referendum and the 25th anniversary of the 1992 Mabo High Court decision. The funding round closes on Friday 21 April 2017. President of the Australian Local Government Association, David O’Loughlin said councils can use the funding to partner with a local Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander community organisation to mark these two historic events through activities that honour and respect their significance to all Australians. “It is a great compliment to the sector that the Turnbull Government has chosen local councils as partners in celebrating this national milestone,” Mr O’Loughlin said. “I would hate to see any council miss out so I urge all councils to submit applications for this funding via the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet website.” Bill Shorten to address local councils Labor leader Bill Shorten will address this year’s National General Assembly of Local Government (NGA) on Tuesday 20 June in Canberra. This week, the Opposition came out in support of ALGA’s call to end the freeze on Financial Assistance Grants (FAGs) indexation agreeing that local government funding has been under pressure following the 2014-15 freeze. The party called on the Government to rule out any extension of the FAGs indexation freeze beyond 30 June 2017.   The NGA is the peak annual event for local government, attracting in excess of 800 Mayors and Councillors each year. Themed Building Tomorrow’s Communities, this year’s NGA will be held from 18 - 21 June. [post_title] => Around the councils [post_excerpt] => Full list of NSW Local Government Excellence Award winners. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => around-the-councils [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-04-18 14:07:16 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-04-18 04:07:16 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=26910 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [1] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 26720 [post_author] => 667 [post_date] => 2017-03-31 11:36:41 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-03-31 00:36:41 [post_content] => Accurate tree canopy maps enable targeted management strategies in Canberra.   In the leafy streets of a city like Canberra, a strong understanding of natural resources will prove invaluable for overcoming the challenges of climate change, sustainability and community expectations. Transport Canberra and City Services (TCCS) recently engaged 1Spatial to analyse and extract aerial laser scanning data to accelerate the process of establishing baseline data for Canberra’s urban tree canopy coverage. The resulting case study features TCCS and Safe Software’s FME custom workflow for canopy mapping. Using the method established, informative and current data sets can now be used to inform management strategies by overlaying age, density and condition data and proposing future canopy density targets. The establishment of current baseline data for Canberra’s urban tree canopy coverage was essential to the program. In this respect, two data sets were available: a 2010 ground-based audit of trees in streets, verge areas, open spaces and parks; and new aerial laser scanning LiDAR (Light Detection And Ranging) data for the majority of urban areas across Canberra. Read more here.   This story first appeared in Spatial Source.  [post_title] => Canberra tree survey cultivates a greener outlook [post_excerpt] => Establishing baseline data for Canberra’s urban tree canopy. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => 26720 [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-03-31 11:38:25 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-03-31 00:38:25 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=26720 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [2] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 26287 [post_author] => 659 [post_date] => 2017-02-20 12:44:03 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-02-20 01:44:03 [post_content] => Cooler streets: Concord West Sustainable Village. Pic: Canada Bay Council.     Cooler high tech streets in Canada Bay Canada Bay Council, in Sydney’s inner west, has breathed new life into one of its local shopping strips by cooling down its roads by eight degrees. The council realised that businesses were suffering because they were in full sun all day so it turned down the heat using four innovative products: Ascrete (white asphalt); TonerPave, which uses the toner from recycled printer cartridges, reclaimed asphalt pavement and warm mix, which has lower construction temperatures, takes less energy to make and has lower emissions. The results were excellent. The strip [Victoria Street], which was renamed Concord West Sustainable Village, became busier and peak visiting time was extended from 1pm to 2pm. The council’s project had social as well as economic aims: to get locals leaving their cars at home and to make the shopping strip a more communal place to be for residents. A key part of the early planning process was community engagement. The usual complaints prompted by a new road did not occur. It was so successful that residents were on board and happy with the results.   Learner drivers get free graded route maps to help them pass driving test Ku-ring-gai Council will offer learner drivers free ready-made route maps to help them build up experience and confidence before they sit their driving test. The council has developed nine separate driving routes graded according to the degree of difficulty and the required level of experience needed to pass the provisional driving test. Routes include the approximate journey time, skills to practice such as merging and advice on changing lanes and sharing the road with larger vehicles. The maps also include features for novice drivers to be aware of, such as school zones, pedestrian crossings and roads with high traffic volumes. All the nine routes are downloadable via the Council’s website at www.kmc.nsw.gov.au or a free printed booklet of the maps can be requested by phoning 9424 0000. Ku-ring-gai Mayor Jennifer Anderson said the maps had been developed by the council’s road safety officer in cooperation with the Roads and Maritime Service. “Teaching someone to drive is a responsible and occasionally stressful experience, given the number of hours that learner drivers have to log before they can attempt a driving test,” Ms Anderson said. “Not so long ago learner drivers could use shopping centre car parks and quiet back roads to gain valuable experience. But with Sydney’s roads becoming so much busier it’s far more important to be well prepared before you go out on the road. “These prepared maps take much of the stress out of working out where to go with your learner driver.”   Council’s beach cleaning pays off Central Coast Council has improved its water quality ratings and made its beaches cleaner using a raft of measures. The council put gross pollutant traps at key locations, more bins at popular dog walking spots and asked crews to clean Macmasters Beach and Pearl Beach Rockpool four times a year. The council also invested $30 million on improving major sewerage transfer systems that service Forresters Beach, Terrigal, Avoca, North Avoca and Kincumber. Central Coast Council plans to invest a further $36 million on improving the sewerage system, sewage pumping stations and sewage treatment plants throughout the former Gosford Local Government Area. The council manages and tests 44 swimming sites across the region, including beaches, lagoons, lakes and baths, in collaboration with the Office of Environment and Heritage. Of all the sites, 28 returned very good or good water quality ratings in the Office of Environment and Heritage’s annual BeachWatch reports. The results of a recent report for five beach swimming areas – Terrigal Lagoon, Copacabana Beach, Pearl Beach Bath, Ocean Beach and Lighthouse Beach - have improved as a result of Central Coast Council’s management. [post_title] => Around the councils: Cooling streets, cleaning up beaches [post_excerpt] => Roads eight degrees cooler using white asphalt. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => around-councils-cooling-streets-cleaning-beaches [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-02-21 12:41:04 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-02-21 01:41:04 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=26287 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [3] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 26273 [post_author] => 659 [post_date] => 2017-02-17 11:09:19 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-02-17 00:09:19 [post_content] =>       The NSW Container Deposit scheme (CDS) will be delayed by five months to give local councils and industry and environment groups longer to prepare. NSW Environment and Local Government Minister Gabrielle Upton said the CDS would be rolled out from December 1, 2017 rather than from July, as originally planned. It also means the cash for cans program will have broader coverage across the state and take in more rural and regional areas. Ms Upton said groups such as Clean Up Australia and the Boomerang Alliance, as well as drinks industry stakeholders had asked for an extension. “This will be the biggest initiative to tackle litter in the state’s history – stakeholder feedback is vital to get the scheme right,” Ms Upton said. Under the scheme, NSW residents can return most empty drink containers between 150 ml and three litres to collection points in return for a 10-cent refund. The aim is to significantly reduce the estimated 160 million drink containers littered every year and ease the burden on local councils.   Local Government NSW President Keith Rhoades called it ‘an eminently sensible decision’. "Councils spend hundreds of thousands of dollars each year picking up litter, and would much prefer to be investing this money in other community services,” Mr Rhoades said.  "The scheme has the potential to cut litter in NSW by up to 43 per cent, but the complexity of the collection and refund processes required have become increasingly clear.” He said the five-month extension would make it easier to ensure the supporting infrastructure and resources were in place before the scheme began, as well as rolling it out to other local government areas. Boomerang Alliance Director Jeff Angel said the Alliance fought hard for the container deposit scheme and wanted to ensure it would work efficiently for the community and business to maximise the environmental benefits. “The Alliance understood that getting the container deposit scheme up and running was a very complicated process. It’s better to delay the implementation by a few months, so the scheme is ready from day one,” Mr Angel said. Industry groups were also pleased about the delay. Tanya Barden, Director of Economics and Sustainability Australian Food and Grocery Council, said the drinks industry supported an efficient and effective container deposit scheme in NSW. “We’re pleased that the NSW Government has listened to industry and environmental groups’ views about the complexity of introducing such as scheme. This extension allows the time to put the fundamentals in place so that the scheme can operate smoothly for both consumers and industry,” Ms Barden said. The 2015-2016 National Litter Index found that 49 per cent of litter by volume was made up of beverage containers – and 43 per cent of the total volume was containers that will be caught by the NSW container deposit scheme. Ms Upton said container deposit schemes operate in more than 40 jurisdictions around the world and are a proven and efficient way to recover litter and increase recycling of beverage containers. [post_title] => NSW container deposit scheme delayed until December [post_excerpt] => Move welcomed by councils. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => 26273 [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-04-19 10:46:22 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-04-19 00:46:22 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=26273 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [4] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 26213 [post_author] => 658 [post_date] => 2017-02-09 16:51:28 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-02-09 05:51:28 [post_content] =>   by Ben Hagemann  With a new Container Deposit Scheme (CDS) looming in New South Wales, the Australasian Association of Convenience Stores (AACS) has made a last ditch plea to the state government to reconsider the timeframe of the scheme rollout. Earlier this year AACS CEO Jeff Rogut highlighted a lack of detail about the specifics of the scheme as a reason for delaying the rollout, and now says that despite repeated efforts to speak to politicians about the issue, none have “even had the decency to respond”.   Read more here. This story first appeared in C&I Week.  [post_title] => Delay NSW cash for cans scheme, say convenience stores [post_excerpt] => Contracts too rushed. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => nsw-container-deposit-scheme-soon-say-convenience-stores [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-04-19 10:52:09 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-04-19 00:52:09 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=26213 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [5] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 25518 [post_author] => 659 [post_date] => 2016-11-08 15:18:42 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-11-08 04:18:42 [post_content] => light-years-ahead2_opt Western Sydney Regional Organisation of Council's Light Years Ahead program     NSW local government environment stars have been busy over the past year, with projects encompassing a broad range of areas, including sustainable procurement; climate change action; asbestos management; communication, education and empowerment; roadside management and water conservation. The best of the best will be honoured in the annual Local Government Excellence in the Environment Awards later this month. The top two awards are for overall council performance and another celebrating the achievements of an individual council officer or councillor who has been a beacon to sustainability. Please see below for a full list of finalists. Winners will be announced at a ceremony on Tuesday 29 November 2016 at Doltone House, Darling Island Wharf, Sydney.   2016 Finalists Asbestos Management Western Sydney Regional Organisation of Councils - Western Sydney Asbestos Answers Facebook campaign Climate Change Action Blacktown, Blue Mountains, Holroyd, Fairfield, Hawkesbury, The Hills, Liverpool, Parramatta, Penrith Councils - Light years ahead Blacktown City Council - Cool streets Hunter & Central Coast Regional Environmental Management Strategy- Regional heatwave resilience project Penrith City Council - Cooling the city   Communication, Education and Empowerment   Leichhardt Municipal Council (Inner West Council) - On tour: sustainable food, fashion and fun! MIDWASTE - Frugal forest Rockdale City Council (Bayside Council) - Engaging the community: landing lights wetland restoration Waverley Council - Second Nature 'I'm in' community engagement campaign   frugal-forest_opt MIDWASTE'S Frugal Forest  Community Sharps Management City of Ryde Council – Sharps Disposal Invasive Species Management    Bankstown City Council (City of Canterbury-Bankstown) - Feral rabbit management in urban Bankstown Camden Council - Management of Australian white ibis at Lake Annan, Mount Annan Clarence Valley Council - Use community based social marketing for effective tropical soda apple management Palerang Council (Queanbeyan–Palerang Regional Council) - Weed identification and mapping from high resolution aerial photography   [caption id="attachment_25522" align="alignnone" width="500"]"Young Mountain Cottontail rabbit Sylvilagus nuttallii resting in grass. Boulder, Colorado, 2009." Former Bankstown Council has won praise for its management of feral rabbits.[/caption]   Natural Environment Policies, Planning and Decision Making     Palerang Council (Queanbeyan–Palerang Regional Council) - Remote pilot aircraft aerial imaging trial Sydney Peri Urban Network of Councils - Sydney food futures project   Natural Environment Protection & Enhancement: On-Ground Works Bankstown City Council (City of Canterbury-Bankstown) - Habitat box program Bathurst Regional Council - Restoring regent honeyeater habitat in the Bathurst region Blue Mountains City Council - Leura Falls catchment improvement project Orange City Council - Gosling Creek Reserve precinct floating island and hollows habitat Parkes Shire Council - PAC Park urban wetland construction Wagga Wagga City Council - Marrambidya Wetland Roadside Environmental Management    Ballina Shire Council - Chickiba Roadside Wetlands restoration project Lachlan Shire Council - Roadside corridor assessment and management guidelines Moree Plains Shire Council - Roadside environmental management plan Sustainable Procurement   Marrickville Council (Inner West Council) - Embedding sustainability into 'value for money'   marrickville-council-procurement_opt Former Marrickville Council's sustainable procurement campaign won plaudits   Resource Recovery    Broken Hill City Council - Increasing resource recovery for Broken Hill Campbelltown City Council - Annual free recyclables drop-off day     Waste Avoidance and Reuse    Lismore City Council - Lismore revolve shop and recycled market Parramatta City Council – The R3 program: resource, rescue and reuse Waste Education and Communication    Lachlan Shire Council - Lachlan Shire waste services rationalisation Warringah Council (Northern Beaches Council) - The Sort it Out campaign     Water Conservation Ballina Shire Council - Pressure and leakage management plan [caption id="attachment_25524" align="alignnone" width="460"]High pressure pipe leaking Finalist: Ballina Shire Council's Pressure and Leak Management Plan[/caption]     Local Sustainability Ballina Shire Council – Sustainability: serving the community of today whilst preparing for the challenges of tomorrow Camden Council - Sustainable Camden Louise Petchell Memorial Award for Individual Sustainability Winner to be announced at the Awards on Tuesday 29 November     [post_title] => Full list of finalists: NSW local government environment stars [post_excerpt] => Sharing good ideas. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => full-list-finalists-nsw-local-government-environment-stars [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-11-11 10:15:13 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-11-10 23:15:13 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=25518 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [6] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 25380 [post_author] => 658 [post_date] => 2016-10-25 11:33:42 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-10-25 00:33:42 [post_content] => panama High rises and hotel buildings in Punta Pacifica, Panama City, Panama. Photo: Gerardo Pesantez/World Bank   By Anthony Wallace

An urban environment expert at The Australian National University (ANU) is among leading scientists calling for a greater say on a new international plan for cities of the future, ahead of a major United Nations conference currently being held. Professor Xuemei Bai from ANU is one of the scientific leaders of the Urban Knowledge Action Network to be launched at the UN Habitat III conference in Ecuador. Cities already account for about 75 per cent of global energy use and contribute an equivalent share of greenhouse gas emissions.” Delegates from the world over are currently in Quito to adopt a new global framework that will guide sustainable urban development for the next 20 years – the New Urban Agenda (NUA). “Unfortunately science didn’t play a major role in the drafting of the NUA,” said Professor Bai from the ANU Fenner School of Environment and Society.   Read more here. This story first appeared in Spatial Source magazine. [post_title] => Urban experts call for smarter approach to cities [post_excerpt] => New urban agenda. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => urban-experts-call-smarter-approach-cities [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-10-28 11:35:45 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-10-28 00:35:45 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=25380 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [7] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 24861 [post_author] => 659 [post_date] => 2016-09-01 05:00:45 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-08-31 19:00:45 [post_content] =>  Okegawa-centrale-Alexis_opt  ©Ciel&Terre International picture     Australia’s first council-operated, community-funded solar farm will be operating beside a sewage treatment plant in Northern NSW by Christmas. Lismore City Council is collaborating with Farming the Sun, a community solar energy initiative, and borrowing the money from around 40 - mostly local - community investors to build two 100kw solar plants on council land. One will float on a settling pond at East Lismore Sewage Treatment Plant, the other will be on the rooftop of Goonellabah Sports and Aquatic Centre. The pontoon at the East Lismore plant will be only the second floating solar system in Australia, the other being at a wastewater treatment facility owned by Northern Areas Council in Jamestown, South Australia. The council awarded tenders for the Lismore Community Solar project on August 3. Suntrix Commercial will design and construct the floating system, which is expected to produce around 178MWh of electricity a year and slash the council’s annual electricity bill by $24,000 and the Rainbow Power Company will build the other, which is forecast to produce around 138MWh of electricity and save $18,000 a year in bills. Environmental Strategies Officer at Lismore City Council, Sharyn Hunnisett explains that the idea for a floating solar plant was borne out of necessity, because the council had run out of space on the land. The location also works brilliantly because the plant is the council’s heaviest electricity consumer. “We couldn’t fit a solar system on any of the plant space,” Hunnisett says. “There’s a big expanse of water out the back and we went “ha! Let’s use that”. It means that the electricity will be used on site and you can extend the system in the future because the system is only a very small portion of the space.” Appealing to investors to come on board has generated much enthusiasm for the project, she says. “There has been so much interest, a really good response. When the investment launched last year it had well over 100 people registering their interest and we only needed 40. People really want it to happen.” Hunnisett said the loan would be paid back to shareholders in seven years at 5.5 per cent interest. The council will start to make its money back in ten years. “What’s great about the project is that the council has recognised it’s more than just a solar system. It’s a community energy project. It’s a small price to pay for leadership in sustainability.” The council eventually hopes to generate most of the power used by the sewage treatment plant. No mean feat when you consider that the plant’s electricity bill weighs in at a massive $230,000 a year. Lismore City Council, which has committed to being self-sufficient in renewable energy by 2023, is keen to share its experiences and expertise of community renewable energy projects with other councils and businesses who may wish to replicate the project. Farming the Sun is intending to hold workshops for other councils and businesses to show them how to drive the business model used. [post_title] => Community funds floating solar panels at sewage plant [post_excerpt] => Lismore leads the way. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => community-funds-floating-solar-panels-sewage-plant [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-09-01 11:55:43 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-09-01 01:55:43 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=24861 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [8] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 24794 [post_author] => 659 [post_date] => 2016-08-26 11:19:47 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-08-26 01:19:47 [post_content] =>  Forte_opt  Lendlease's Forte, Melbourne Docklands.    From homes that can be unfolded and assembled without machinery to carbon positive modular houses and contemporary beach shacks, the prefab market in Australia is looking exciting, sustainable and beautiful. While multi-storey buildings have usually grabbed less attention in the prefab space, attention to larger housing solutions is gathering momentum. Now the University of Sydney and construction heavyweight Lendlease have been awarded a $3 million Commonwealth government grant to research pre-fabricated multi-storey housing. The five-year industry-led project, bankrolled by the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science’s Cooperative Research Centre Projects (CRC-P) program, will design and build prototype housing using high-tech renewable materials and use cutting edge manufacturing methods. Prefab buildings are not a new idea. The Roman’s used some prefabricated elements to build parts of their forts from around AD43 when they conquered Britain and prefab housing was transported to the British colonies from the first quarter of the 17th century, including Australia. Prefab housing is probably most famously linked to providing homes and employment for soldiers returning after World Wars and keeping up with the baby boom. It is not a new area for Lendlease either. The company already has experience in the prefabricating high-rise buildings and has a Western Sydney factory where it manufactures the Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) used in prefabs as part of its DesignMake business. The company designed and built the world’s tallest prefabricated timber building, Forte, in 2013. The 32.17m tall building (10 storeys) in Melbourne Docklands is made from CLT. It has a five green star as built rating and includes sustainability features, including rainwater tanks, car sharing and energy efficient lighting and appliances. It also sold well and was occupied quickly, a result which Lendlease will no doubt be eager to replicate in its new project. Prefabrication is also essential to Lendlease’s gateway project at Barangaroo, where it will design and build a six-storey commercial building totally from timber - called International House Sydney. The new research project with Sydney University deepens its commitment to prefab buildings and sustainability. Chief Executive Officer, Lendlease Property, Kylie Rampa, said the demand for affordable and innovative housing meant the building industry had to come up with imaginative, new housing solutions. “We aim to bring to market an innovative housing system that is design-led, which will help address affordability issues, while developing advanced manufacturing technologies and techniques for future housing construction,” Rampa said. Associate Professor Mathew Aitchison at Sydney University’s Faculty of Architecture, Design and Planning said the project was a great opportunity to spearhead innovation in  the residential construction market, which had remained largely static in the last 100 years. “We will focus on developing multi-storey prototype houses that can be adapted for manufacture and customised project to project,” Prof Aitchison said. “At the same time, we are looking at ways to reduce risk and waste, while increasing the efficiency, safety, quality, sustainability and diversity of market-ready housing. “Despite major advances in other manufacturing sectors, innovation in residential construction is lagging,” Prof Aitchison said. “This project seeks to drive efficiency and safety benefits and boost Australia’s competitiveness internationally, where we have seen a notable increase in advanced manufacturing in building over the past decade.” The aim is to develop a range of solutions for the multi-storey housing market that answer the twin calls of increasing urban density and the demands of the residential market. Rampa said the new jobs, skills and technologies would be created through the project, which would also open up export opportunities “for prefabricated housing to meet the sophisticated needs of homebuyers and builders.” The research project brings together industry leaders in Australian housing and construction including Lendlease and the University of Sydney’s Innovation in Applied Design Lab, located in the Faculty of Architecture, Design and Planning. [post_title] => Federal government millions for prefabricated multi-storey housing [post_excerpt] => Sydney Uni and Lendlease team up. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => federal-government-millions-prefabricated-multi-storey-housing [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-08-26 11:58:01 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-08-26 01:58:01 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=24794 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [9] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 24226 [post_author] => 659 [post_date] => 2016-06-22 16:47:02 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-06-22 06:47:02 [post_content] => Sydney Park water reuse 1_opt A local council project using millions of litres of treated stormwater runoff to keep its parks green and wetlands thriving has scooped a 2016 Good Design Award. City of Sydney Council’s water re-use project harvests and treats up to 850 million litres of stormwater from Newtown’s Munni Street catchment and uses it to irrigate Sydney Park, a 44-hectare area from The stormwater is captured, stored and then treated to deliver a new sustainable water supply to the wetlands and Sydney Park. There is also potential for other water users across the local area to access the clean water, including industry. The council has even managed to turn the project into a waterscape feature. Visitors are wowed by the elevated terracotta pipes that funnel the cleansed water into Sydney Park’s main pond. The project won the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences category in the Good Design Awards – a prize given to products that have the potential to make a significant improvement to the quality of health, wellbeing or the environment. Sydney Mayor Clover Moore said it was the City’s biggest environmental project to date and that it “brought together design, science and sustainability to create a significant new piece of green infrastructure.” “It not only improves overall water quality and habitat, it also educates residents and visitors on the importance of water management by allowing park visitors to connect to the concept of water capture and cleansing in a beautiful setting,” Ms Moore said. Director of Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences, Dolla Merrillees, called the Sydney Park water re-use development a ground breaking project. “We have selected a project which highlights important contemporary issues such as sustainability and social innovation, and addresses the increasingly critical issue of our natural resources,” Ms Merrillees said. “This community-focused project illustrates how Australian designers are successfully responding to ‘real world’ problems, by planning our future cities and urban environment with a sense of social responsibility and purpose.” The project was a collaboration between Sydney firms Turf Design Studio, Environmental Partnership, Alluvium, Dragonfly and Turpin+Crawford Studio, who completed the two year project in October 2015. The project plans will be displayed in the Success and Innovation gallery at the Museum of Applied Arts and Science at Ultimo. [post_title] => Water recycling project wins Good Design Award [post_excerpt] => Stormwater reused for parks and wetlands. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => water-recycling-project-wins-good-design-award [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-06-28 10:28:32 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-06-28 00:28:32 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=24226 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [10] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 24199 [post_author] => 671 [post_date] => 2016-06-20 19:09:43 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-06-20 09:09:43 [post_content] => [caption id="attachment_24200" align="alignnone" width="300"]a380_opt Badgerys Creek: fly-in, train out.[/caption]   The outer suburban areas of Australia’s major cities will become economically buoyant and easily commutable within just half-an-hour under a new City Deal model deal between Canberra the states and local councils which the Turnbull government says it wants to become the new model of suburbia. Roping in New South Wales Premier Mike Baird, the Prime Minister on Monday revealed what’s he claims will be “the single largest planning, investment and delivery partnership in the history of this nation” in the form of the “City Deal for Western Sydney” centred on the building of Sydney’s second airport at Badgerys Creek. It’s a project and policy that despite having mighty claims weighs in at an extra $100 million a year for sustainability projects from the Clean Energy Finance Corporation along with a pot of $50 million for councils to become “Smart Cities”. Despite the modest funding, it’s the Mr Turnbull and Mr Baird are selling the collaborative intent of the agreement between government’s different arms, along with business, as the real powerhouse to stimulate economic activity – rather than big ticket, shovel ready ‘Utopia’ style projects. “The Cities Deal will be centred around Western Sydney Airport – the most significant piece of infrastructure that will ever be built in the region - and passenger rail that will link people to the jobs created around the airport,” Mr Turnbull said. “The new airport alone will create 39,000 new jobs over the next 20 years, but we aim to do much better.” The vision is a conspicuous reversal of Tony Abbot’s resolute determination to keep Canberra out of public transport investments for the states, especially passenger and light rail, in favour of big new freeway builds like the controversial Westconnex project in Sydney. A major sticking point between the Baird Government and Canberra had been that the massive project had been given the green light by the Feds under Mr Abbott but initially did not include plans for a rail link, leaving it to the state government to pay for a mass transit connection to a federally administered facility. Those kinds of demarcation disputes now appear to have been buried with all three layers of government roped into maximising the flow on effects of the airport and rail investment to generate new growth in housing and jobs. “We aim to catalyse the additional 178,000 new homes and almost 200,000 new jobs that will be required to support the population directly around the airport – which is projected to reach over 1.4 million over this period,” Mr Turnbull and Mr Baird said in a joint statement. The elevation of major urban and city planning into the federal policy mix is a marked departure from traditional administrative and funding models in Australia that have usually used a ‘top down’ rather than ‘networked’ approach that often skewed towards the regions. “Australia’s cities are home to the majority of our population and responsible for more than 80 per cent of national economic output,” Mr Turnbull said, adding the Coalition “knows that smart policy, smart investment and smart technology are critical to secure the prosperity of our cities and a high standard of living for all Australians.” A persistent frustration of federal infrastructure funding policy has been that projects are often skewed towards state government interests and political demands because of the subordinate ranking of local governments and communities intended to be the ultimate beneficiaries. The ‘City Deal’ both Turnbull and Baird are advocating for a far more coordinated approach pledging that “the Federal and State governments will work with local councils to develop a vision for Western Sydney and agree on the goals, actions and investments required to deliver it.” “We will form a joint-Ministerial Council with ultimate accountability for the City Deal supported by officials from all three levels of government including direct representatives of the Prime Minister and Premier,” Mr Turnbull said. Stakeholders are so far applauding the move. “The recent report from Western Sydney University titled ‘Addressing Western Sydney’s Jobs Slide’ demonstrated that despite much rhetoric over recent years the number of jobs relative to population in Western Sydney is reducing. It will be important that specific job targets are set to give a focus to the decision-making process in the City Deal,” said Chris Johnson, chief executive of developer group Urban Taskforce. However he cautioned serious infrastructure money still needed to flow to make it a success. “It is essential that the City Deal comes with Federal Government funding to help establish essential infrastructure for the region. The most important infrastructure will be a fast rail connection between the Western Sydney Airport and the Sydney CBD via Liverpool and possibly Parramatta. It will also be important to have improved rail connections running north-south connecting Campbelltown, the Airport and Penrith,” Mr Johnson said. The Western Sydney Regional Organisation of Councils (WSROC) also welcomed creation of targeted and comprehensive plan to tackle housing, employment and transport in Sydney’s West by the state and federal governments. “After strong campaigning, we are finally seeing a holistic approach to building Western Sydney, one that is supported by both state and federal governments, and works in partnership with local councils,” said Councillor Tony Hadchiti, president of WSROC. “Our region is growing so rapidly that we simply must have a plan for its development,” he said. “It seems like a simple thing, but a coordinated plan for the region, one that looks at where housing, employment and transport links are placed, and how they work together as a system is something that has been neglected in the past.” The Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) said the commitment to fund smart, sustainable cities was a “step in the right direction.” “The Coalition has announced three new cities policies that have the potential to reshape our nation,” the GBCA’s chief executive, Romilly Madew, said. “We applaud the promise of $100 million for a Sustainable Cities Investment Fund, which would be delivered through the Clean Energy Finance Corporation. “We are particularly pleased to see that funds would be invested in a range of projects, including green building, retrofit projects and precinct-scale energy generation systems. We have long called for extra investment and incentives to encourage building upgrades and retrofits – this is a good start,” Ms Madew said. [post_title] => Suburban Utopia? New ‘City Deal’ gets strong stakeholder support [post_excerpt] => More than the sum of its parts. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => is-a-city-deal-the-road-to-suburban-utopia [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-06-21 10:09:27 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-06-21 00:09:27 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=24199 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [11] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 24176 [post_author] => 671 [post_date] => 2016-06-16 21:50:35 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-06-16 11:50:35 [post_content] => clean energy pic_opt   A desire by councils and local government leaders to look financially conservative and debt free is holding back investment infrastructure renewal and sacrificing big savings that can be made from clean energy upgrades and projects, says the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC). The federally backed green financier says an apparent reluctance to take-on specifically earmarked low cost debt aimed directly at local governments is resulting in higher than necessary infrastructure running costs at a time when investments in solar, energy efficiency and so called micro-grids ought to be driving costs down. According to a newly released Market Report by the CEFC, Clean energy opportunities for local government, Mayors and General Managers need to “urgently consider tailored debt finance to improve their energy performance and reduce emissions from old and poorly maintained assets.” “By restricting investment to what can be paid for from current-year or retained income, councils face an accumulation of inefficient, out-of-date or sub-optimal infrastructure on their balance sheets,” CEFC Local Government sector lead Melanie Madders said. “Much of this aging infrastructure is energy inefficient, meaning councils have higher operating costs and a higher carbon footprint than necessary. Some councils also have zero-debt policies, which are putting the cost burden of inefficient long-life assets onto current ratepayers, rather than sharing these costs with future ratepayers who will also share in the benefits.” The environmental lender, which sources capital from private markets, wants local governments and their state government masters to shake the traditional aversion to debt, particularly zero-debt policies, to put infrastructure balance sheets to work to drive down costs. In particular the CEFC wants cities and municipalities to start using accredited energy efficiency consultants to start auditing council building and facilities to investigate what kind of real savings – that typically quickly outweigh capital costs – can be made to drive down expenses… as opposed to trying to make political and public relations capital out giving themselves a debt free rubber stamp. “Depending on a council’s energy consumption patterns and energy upgrade opportunities, the savings from clean energy investments can offset the loan repayments, improving council operating budgets while meeting environmental goals,” Ms Madders said. “This kind of sustainable borrowing is integral to prudent long-term asset management, which is especially important given the significant infrastructure challenge that councils face. Importantly, the cost savings and emissions reductions from clean energy projects continue after the debt is repaid.” A major advantage many councils have, especially in remote or regional areas, is the potential to run what are known as microgrids which allow power to be distributed between council owned buildings and facilities, bypassing the traditional power network. Because regulations about bypassing traditional electricity utility poles and wires are usually behind new technology (this Radio National panel talk sets out the issues nicely) councils are ahead of the curve compared to everyday consumers because they can distribute power they generate between their own facilities and buildings ‘off-grid’. “Local grids or ‘microgrids’ allow local renewable generation and energy storage systems to be shared across buildings to maximise the efficient use of resources. For example, power from rooftop PV installed on a building with spare roof space could be shared with a neighbouring building with less roof space; or batteries could be installed in a nearby building with free basement space so that locally-generated electricity could be stored to better match demand,” the CEFC report says. “Microgrids can improve energy efficiency, reduce total energy consumption, reduce the environmental impact of electricity generation and improve the reliability of supply.” There are also simpler measures at hand to reduce lights-on costs at councils according to the CEFC. While LED lights are now a mainstream technology, the report argues there’s still some way to go. “There are an estimated 2.3 million streetlights in Australia, and the annual cost of supplying and maintaining public lighting exceeds $250 million,” the CEFC report says. “While several councils have adopted LED streetlights, there are barriers to making the change and a significant switchover task remains – by one estimate, only 11 per cent of streetlights have been converted to LEDs.” Those savings should be illuminating, to say the least.   [post_title] => Zero-debt fetish flushes away infrastructure efficiency savings: Clean Energy Finance Corporation [post_excerpt] => Operating costs a drag on balance sheets. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => debt-isnt-a-dirty-word-for-clean-power-efficiency-savings [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-06-20 10:39:35 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-06-20 00:39:35 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=24176 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [12] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 24090 [post_author] => 659 [post_date] => 2016-06-07 16:46:14 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-06-07 06:46:14 [post_content] => [caption id="attachment_24093" align="alignnone" width="600"]DSC03544 Sydney's Vivid festival.[/caption]   The ongoing success of Sydney’s Vivid festival shows how governments can transform the job of lighting public spaces from the functional to the spectacular; drawing people into a city, moving them around the space and giving the economy a shot in the arm. Urban design expert Susanne Seitinger, from Philips Lighting, specialises in lighting parks and open spaces and is in Sydney speaking at the Media Architecture Biennale, as part of Vivid 2016. Seitinger says LED lighting has not only cut energy bills and reduced greenhouse gases for governments, it has also opened up new ways of bringing public spaces to life and changed how lighting can be integrated with other elements, such as urban furniture and architecture. “It’s really transformative how you can integrate lighting with these kinds of things and have the ability to work with light in many more diverse ways,” Seitinger says. A prime example of how responsive lighting has become was when the London Eye was lit up to reflect the mood of British people on Twitter during the 2012 London Olympics and Paralympics. Social media company SosoLimited used an algorithm to track the sentiment of Brits around the Olympics in the world’s first social media driven light show: yellow for excited, green for neutral and purple for negative feelings towards the Games. “It was a giant mood ring for the city and used Twitter to gauge the state of the nation, reflecting it back to the city every evening,” she says. Lighting was also used to express solidarity for the victims of the November 2015 Paris attacks as buildings and monuments all around the world lit up in the colours of the French flag. “It was a very interesting expression of solidarity and it occurs because we have this ability to respond to what’s going on in the world. It’s such a flexible medium,” she says. Local government One of the biggest benefits of LED lighting for local councils is that it has given them a great deal more control over now public spaces are lit. Smart lighting can dim when there is nobody around and kick in when a pedestrian enters a space. Another significant benefit is that street lighting can be managed instantly and remotely as real-time information is conveyed to target maintenance crews more effectively and reduce outages. Buenos Aires, in Argentina, is connecting its street lighting to a smart city dashboard to track key performance indicators around energy savings and operational effectiveness. The system was introduced because the government was concerned about outages and storm water damage. “It really changes how you think about the way you want to organise your city operations around monitoring that device,” Seitinger says. Traditionally, people have generally expected light to come from above but lighting can also be embedded at different angles and positioned to create enveloping spaces. Part of the feeling behind this approach is to light external spaces as though they were interiors to make them more inviting. “How you place light in an environment has become really a question of urban design; interesting ways of creating comfortable spaces through layers of light. It’s a different approach to place making,” says Seitinger. Using lighting originally can create a massive buzz around a city and also deliver financially for councils. Some councils have lit up areas at night to promote extended hours trading on their shopping strips, Seitinger says: “They’re using creative lighting to set the stage for these kinds of activities.” When the Spanish city of Toledo relit its iconic monument there was a jump in hotel bookings by 17 per cent. “That’s really important for a council because more people are spending more time and money in their city.” She singles out Sydney’s Vivid, for the way it captivates and showcases the city – not to mention bringing industry and business out in force for the giant, artistically-lit schmoozefest. “”Vivid is a special event. It makes a huge contribution to the city. “We’re seeing places that think about it [lighting] as part of their every-day infrastructure.” “It is about providing the right kind of light at the right time. In the past it was very difficult to adjust lighting strengths according to different needs,” she says. Scenarios might include adjusting lighting up as schools close or illuminating areas where pedestrians feel unsafe, such as underpasses, or paths across parks or playing fields. Trends Seitinger says cities with waterfront areas are becoming more aware of the need to light them and to show-off their features. The focus is on reclaiming waterfront areas and making them attractive public spaces. For example, Little Rock in Arkansas invested heavily in its downtown area, creating a vibrant waterfront, lighting up bridges and building new concert venues. “I think cities in general are becoming more aware of the need to choreograph their night-time and lighting plays a key role in that. Whether it’s a 12 or 24-hour city a lot more attention is going to be placed on lighting [and] really focussing on creating unique spaces, as well.” [post_title] => Flicking the switch on regeneration: Lighting public spaces [post_excerpt] => From the functional to the spectacular. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => flick-switch-urban-regeneration-lighting-public-spaces [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-06-14 10:54:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-06-14 00:54:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=24090 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [13] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 24075 [post_author] => 659 [post_date] => 2016-06-06 15:37:39 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-06-06 05:37:39 [post_content] => Garbage in the Beach and beautiful seascape in background, Egypt, Red Sea   There will be a container deposit scheme (CDS) in Queensland by the 2018 state election, whichever party seizes power. Liberal Opposition Leader Tim Nicholls announced his support for a container deposit scheme late last week and promised to introduce one to the state if elected in two years. Based on South Australia’s CDS, introduced in 1975, the Queensland scheme will involve a 10 cent deposit charged on drink containers between 150ml and three litres - like plastic bottles and aluminium cans – which will be refunded when the container is returned to a depot or via reverse vending machines. The Liberals have said the scheme would cost about $25 million and be bankrolled by the 20 per cent of containers which are expected not to be returned. In addition, up to 200 jobs would be created. Meanwhile Queensland Environment Minister Stephen Miles said: “I hope this is the LNP turning over a new leaf, supporting sensible ideas to clean up our environment. I’ve got a bunch of other plans they can support too. “It’s a far cry from their position last year when Stephen Bennett said Queensland’s “dispersed population does not lend itself to consolidated container collection and recycling”. He said Labor was committed to investigating a cash for cans type of scheme for Queensland and it had been allowed for in the state budget, due this month. The Queensland government has established an advisory group to design the scheme, including representatives from the drinks industry, local government, waste and recycling firms and environment and community groups. Dr Miles said the CDS would be consistent with the main elements of the NSW scheme, which Premier Mike Baird is aiming to introduce by July 2017. “We’re working closely with New South Wales – who’ve committed to introduce their scheme by 2017 - to ensure any scheme we advance for Queensland is consistent on the key elements with what is rolled out south of the border,” Dr Miles said. “But more than that, achieving consistency between NSW and Queensland will avoid creating major new problems affecting South East Queensland and, especially, the Gold Coast. “An example of what we need to avoid can be seen from what happened when the Newman-Nicholls Government scrapped Queensland’s waste levy. The consequence of that rash decision is that over 300,000 tonnes of garbage from Sydney is now being dumped in the Gold Coast every year." While container deposit schemes have been successful and have popular support, drinks industry giants have been staunch opponents, believing they hit drinks sales hard. [post_title] => Container deposit scheme will happen for Queensland [post_excerpt] => Both parties back cash for cans. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => container-deposit-scheme-will-happen-queensland [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-06-07 09:29:47 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-06-06 23:29:47 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=24075 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 3 [filter] => raw ) ) [post_count] => 14 [current_post] => -1 [in_the_loop] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 26910 [post_author] => 659 [post_date] => 2017-04-18 11:03:25 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-04-18 01:03:25 [post_content] =>   Local Government Excellence Awards Local Government Professionals NSW revealed the winners of its Oscars for local councils earlier this month. Full list below.  President LG Professionals, NSW Barry Smith said the awards recognised and showcased the pinnacle of excellence in the local government sector in NSW and significant achievements by NSW councils over the past year as well as the outstanding professional development achievements of our members. “Local government works hard for the communities in New South Wales, and we were thrilled that the Deputy Premier and Local Government Minister joined us in acknowledging the sector’s professionalism and dedication," Mr Smith said.   

Excellence in Innovative Leadership and Management

Recognising the use of superior management and leadership skills to achieve outstanding benefits for the organisation and/or for the community.   Winner: Tweed Shire Council Highly Commended: Lachlan Shire Council, City of Ryde Council Community Partnerships and Collaboration Recognising genuine and effective partnerships and collaborations that have resulted in better outcomes for council, as well as initiatives that demonstrate a commitment to working with and/or in the community to achieve positive outcomes.   Population over 15,000 Winner: Port Stephens Council Highly Commended: Blacktown City Council, Lake Macquarie City Council   Population under 15,000 Winner: Warrumbungle Shire Council Excellence in Local Economic Contribution Recognising innovation in leadership and management for a project/initiative that has enhanced the economic wellbeing of their local government area and increased the value proposition to ratepayers and residents, in parts or all, of their city, town, district or region.   Winner: Liverpool City Council Highly Commended: Lake Macquarie City Council Excellence in Environmental Leadership and Sustainability Recognising dedication to sustainability as evidenced by the implementation of corporate process improvements, projects or initiatives that demonstrate significant real or potential benefit to the environment.   Population over 100,000 Winner: Campbelltown City Council Highly Commended: Canterbury-Bankstown Council, Central Coast Council   Population under 100,000 Winner: City of Canada Bay Council Highly Commended: Byron Shire Council  

Special Project Initiative

Recognising leadership where an individual, team or council has developed a concept or practice that significantly improves the business in which they work, development of processes or practices that has had a major impact on the organisation or its customers. Population over 15,000 Winner: Lake Macquarie City Council Highly Commended: Central Coast Council, North Sydney Council   Population under 15,000 Winner: Hunter’s Hill Council  

Excellence in Community Development and Services

Recognising leadership in community services as evidenced by way of corporate process improvements, a particular project initiative, innovation in management and leadership practices or demonstrated practicality and resourcefulness. Winner: Canterbury-Bankstown Council Highly Commended: Cumberland Council

Excellence in Asset Management and Infrastructure Initiatives

Recognising excellence in Asset Management as evidenced by the implementation of corporate process improvements, projects or initiatives that demonstrate significant real or potential benefit in asset management. Winner: Campbelltown City Council Highly Commended: Port Macquarie-Hastings Council, Wentworth Shire council

Excellence in Risk Management

Recognising the community and/or Council benefits (strategic, operational or financial) delivered through the identification, control and mitigation of risks within a council’s unique risk profile. Winner: Wollongong City Council Highly Commended: City of Canada Bay Council

Excellence in Creative Communities

Recognising excellence in bring together communities through art and cultural creative projects. Population over 15,000 Winner: Campbelltown City Council Highly Commended: Bega Valley Shire Council, Port Macquarie-Hastings Council   Population under 15,000 Winner: Narrabri Shire Council  

Excellence in Operational and Management Effectiveness

The Excellence in Operational and Management Effectiveness Award is open to all NSW councils who have participated in the Australasian LG Performance Excellence Program. Winner: Willoughby City Council Dux of the Governance Intensive Course The Governance in Local Government Intensive Course has been developed to enhance the governance knowledge and skills of professionals working in the local government sector. Dux: Christine Priest, Wagga Wagga City Council Dux of the Finance Intensive Course Covering all aspects of local government finance this one week intensive residential course will benefit new finance managers, senior accounting and accounting officers or anyone with a financial background wishing to expand their knowledge of local government finance. Dux: Tracy Wilde, Sutherland Shire Council     NSW Environmental Excellence Awards Nominations are open for the NSW Environmental Excellence Awards, which celebrate councils and council staff who have done outstanding environmental work in the state. Local Government NSW President Keith Rhoades said local government was the closest level of government to communities and had the most direct influence on local environments. "But what is often forgotten is that local government is one of the biggest sectors in the NSW economy,” Mr Rhoades said. "Councils are responsible for maintaining and upgrading $142 billion in infrastructure and land assets, including parks, reserves, roads, community facilities and water and sewerage systems. He said the sector employed more than 50,000 people and injected $11 billion into the state's economy every year. "Combine that economic power with a commitment to environmental sustainability and best practice, and you have a sector making a very real contribution to the environment in NSW." There are 15 award categories, including the prestigious Local Sustainability Award for overall council performance and the Louise Petchell Memorial Award for Individual Sustainability awarded to an individual. They will be announced on October 11 at the University of Technology Sydney and they cover projects and programs from January 2016 to May 2017. The prize for overall winner of the Local Sustainability Award is an overseas study tour or a professional development program for staff, valued at $10,000.  Individual councils, county councils and regional council groupings are all eligible to enter, and compete against similarly sized councils in one of three levels: populations of less than 30,000; between 30,000 and 70,000; and more than 70,000.  Nomination applications close on 31 May, with further details available on LGNSW's website National Reconciliation Week funding Councils have until the end of this week to apply for federal government funding to support celebrations for National Reconciliation Week, which runs from May 27 to June 3. Celebrations are particularly poignant this year with the upcoming 50th anniversary of the 1967 Referendum and the 25th anniversary of the 1992 Mabo High Court decision. The funding round closes on Friday 21 April 2017. President of the Australian Local Government Association, David O’Loughlin said councils can use the funding to partner with a local Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander community organisation to mark these two historic events through activities that honour and respect their significance to all Australians. “It is a great compliment to the sector that the Turnbull Government has chosen local councils as partners in celebrating this national milestone,” Mr O’Loughlin said. “I would hate to see any council miss out so I urge all councils to submit applications for this funding via the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet website.” Bill Shorten to address local councils Labor leader Bill Shorten will address this year’s National General Assembly of Local Government (NGA) on Tuesday 20 June in Canberra. This week, the Opposition came out in support of ALGA’s call to end the freeze on Financial Assistance Grants (FAGs) indexation agreeing that local government funding has been under pressure following the 2014-15 freeze. The party called on the Government to rule out any extension of the FAGs indexation freeze beyond 30 June 2017.   The NGA is the peak annual event for local government, attracting in excess of 800 Mayors and Councillors each year. Themed Building Tomorrow’s Communities, this year’s NGA will be held from 18 - 21 June. [post_title] => Around the councils [post_excerpt] => Full list of NSW Local Government Excellence Award winners. 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Sustainability