Regional housing taskforce head to work with councils

 In other news:

  • New role for Maribyrnong City Council’s director
  • Resource recovery leader joins environmental consultancy
  • Clean energy appointments

Town planner Garry Fielding will head the NSW government’s Regional Housing Task Force, which has been established to work with councils to address housing shortages in the regions.

The taskforce will help the state government partner with councils to solve the regional housing crisis, planning minister Rob Stokes says.

It will engage with local government, industry and the community and Mr Fielding will deliver a report to the government in September.

Mr Fielding, the former head planner with Newcastle, Woollahra and Maitland councils, has more than 40 years experience as a town planner at both state and local level and has held senior executive roles in city and regional councils.

 Mr Fielding is also a Life Fellow and former NSW President of the Planning Institute of Australia and is the state appointed Chair of the Western Regional Planning Panel.

New director of strategy at Bendigo

Maribyrnong City Council’s director of infrastructure services Steve Hamilton will join City of Greater Bendigo as Director Strategy and Growth.

Steve Hamilton

Mr Hamilton starts his new role on Monday August 16.

He has previously worked at Darebin City Council, where he was acting CEO and Director City Futures, and with the state-owned rail and track enterprise VicTrack.

Mr Hamilton says he is looking forward to taking on a leadership role in a regional council and supporting Bendigo to implement its new council plan.

“My previous roles have involved strategic and statutory planning and managing complex customer-facing services, so I look forward to this experience supporting staff across portfolios like Bendigo Art Gallery, The Capital and Ulumbarra theatres, and Bendigo Airport,” he said.

City Chief Executive Officer Craig Niemann said Mr Hamilton has been involved in significant advocacy to state government and is well connected with various departments Council regularly does business with.

“We look forward to Steve joining us next month and welcome his contribution to shaping the future of our city and region,” he said.

Resource recovery leader joins MRA

Australian Council of Recycling CEO Peter Shmigel has been appointed as executive consultant at MRA, where he’ll be responsible for council waste advisory services.

Peter Schmigel

During his time at the helm of ACR Mr Schmigel helped shape the National Waste Policy and attract government funding for the resource recovery sector.

He has also been CEO of Lifeline Australia, Beverage Industry Environment Council, and Buy Recycled Business Alliance, as well as a senior advisor to eight premiers and ministers.

Mr Shmigel says he is looking forward to working with the environmental consultancy firm to help clients with strategic planning, public policy analysis, social impact assessment, product stewardship  and community engagement.

“Now is a hugely exciting time for resource recovery in Australia as we realise its environmental and economic potential,” he said.

MRA managing director Mike Ritchie said Mr Schmigel would work to help government achieve its target of 80 per cent diversion from landfill by 2030.

Cross-sector digital identity council set up

The NSW Government has established a Digital Identity Ministerial Advisory Council (DIMAC) to advise on a roadmap for digital identity in the State.

Digital Services Minister Victor Dominello, who will chair DIMAC, says it will support the priorities laid out in the Government’s NSW Identity Strategy and ensure personal privacy and security are enshrined in policy.

The 17-member council will bring together experts from a range of sectors from government, business, the IT industry and academia.

Former AFP Commissioner joins Deloitte

Andrew Colvin

Former AFP Commissioner and National Bushfire Recovery Agency leader Andrew Colvin has joined professional services firm Deloitte as a financial advisory partner in the forensic practice.

Mr Colvin retired as AFP Commissioner in October 2019 after five years in the role, before being asked to lead the National Bushfire Recovery Agency in January 2020.

Deloitte national leader public sector and public policy Ursula Brennan says Mr Colvin brings with him experience in

national and global law enforcement and is highly skilled in public policy, international relations and stakeholder engagement.

“Having spent his career to date in public service, we are delighted that Andrew will continue to make a significant impact in Australia, helping our clients, including those across the public sector, address some of their biggest challenges,” she said.

Clean energy appointments

Darren Miller has been reappointed as CEO of the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) for three more years.

Energy minister Angus Taylor says Mr Miller will ensure ARENA delivers on priorities under the Morrison government’s Technology Investment Roadmap.

Mr Miller’s reappointment begins on August 27.

Former Rio Tinto Group Executive Stephen McIntosh has been appointed to the ARENA Board for a two-year term.

“I look forward to continuing to work with Mr Miller and the entire ARENA Board to progress the development of new and emerging energy technologies,” Mr Taylor said.

Global Head of Energy Principal at Macquarie Capital Katherine Vidgen has been appointed to the Board of the Clean Energy Regulator for a period of three years.

Katherine Vidgen

Ms Vidgen is a lawyer, investment banking executive and non-executive director with extensive experience in the energy sector. 

She oversees conventional and new energy investments Macquarie Capital and is focused on helping traditional industries decarbonise their operations.

Ms Vidgen was the founding Chair of Quadrant Energy from 2015 until 2018 and is also a non-executive director of rail freight operator Aurizon. 

Professor of soil science Alexander McBratney has been appointed to the Emissions Reduction Assurance Committee (ERAC) for three years. 

Professor McBratney is the Director of the Sydney Institute of Agriculture and has helped develop digital soil mapping and precision agriculture.

He has extensive expertise in soil carbon, which has been idenitified as a priority under the Technology Investment Roadmap.

First female deputy police commissioner appointed in Tasmania

Donna Adams

Donna Adams has taken up the role of Tasmania’s first female Deputy Commissioner of Police, 104 years after women were first allowed to join the state’s force.

 Ms Adams has three decades of leadership experience across all levels of policing including most recently deputy secretary of the Department of Police, Fire & Emergency Management and Assistant Commissioner of Police. 

Ms Adams has been acting in the role for the last three months following the retirement of Deputy Commissioner Scott Tilyard.

Canadian health chief to lead Ambulance Tasmania

The director of clinical and professional practice for the British Columbia Emergency Health Services Canada has been appointed as chief executive of Ambulance Tasmania.

Joe Acker

Joe Acker was appointed as interim chief in February and takes on the role following an extensive recruitment process.
Mr Acker has more than 30 years’ experience in paramedic systems, health services and academia in Australia and Canada.

He was chief executive of the City of Edmonton Emergency Medical Services, executive director of Ambulance for the Alberta Health Services, and general manager of Canadian non-profit helicopter medical retrieval service Shock Trauma Air Rescue Society.
Health minister Jeremy Rockliff says Mr Acker will help deliver better ambulance services for Tasmania.

SA local government peak seeks new CEO

South Australia’s local government peak is searching for a new CEO to replace Matt Pinnegar who has taken up a role as ALGA’s new CEO.

LGA says successful applicant will be an outstanding negotiator and advocate for local government.

Applications close on August 9.

Apply here.

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