CCBR Business Review

12 CO U N C I L N E W S LSPS Urgency Motion by Deputy Mayor sidelines councillors DEPUTY MAYOR JANE Smith caught Councillors, or at least some councillors, by surprise at Council’s 29th June 2020 Extraordinary Meeting with an Urgency Motion amending the Local Strategic Planning Strategy, recommended by council staff following a period on public exhibition. Council has been dragging its feet getting the LSPS adopted by the 1st July with coun- cillors trying to put if off for 12 months. Trouble is the Planning Minister said “NO”. So it had to go out on Public Exhibition for 28 days until 8th June and that saw hundreds of comments which had to be considered and bought into the 286 page document. At Council’s 9th June Ordinary Meeting Councillor Smith and Councillor Vincent moved a Motion of Urgency“that Council con- sider the Local Strategic Planning Statement as a matter of urgency”, was agreed to. This Urgency Motion, which comprised some 27 amendments to the Draft LSPS comprised in the Meeting Agenda (which Councillors received 14 days before the meeting so that they had time to inform themselves of the matters to come before council) was not made available to council- lors until about one hour prior to this meet- ing. We are aware that Councillor Best voiced his concern that no Councillor could have had sufficient time to study and make an informed decision on the 27 amendments to the Draft LSPS which is 286 pages long. We point out that the Draft LSPS had been on Public Exhibition for 28 days and that council staff had recommend- ed adoption of this Strategy. Consolidated Local Environment Plan and Development Control Plan deferred Meanwhile the Consolidated LEP and DCP remains in limbo following a decision by Council to approve its deferral by Deputy Mayor Jane Smith in December who said that they needed time for legal advice on council’s ability to rezone privately owned land hold- ings. She also wanted an updated table that compared the proposed changes with the former Gosford and Wyong councils’ plans, which this process was consolidating, and a briefing on the environmental and urban edge review. Councillors were unanimous in voting for the deferral. The LEP and DCP were out on public exhibition from late 2018 until March 2019 and attracted 756 written submis- sions. The consolidation of the former Gosford and Wyong planning instru- ments is the first stage in writing a Central Coast Comprehensive LEP. Under rules set by the State Government when it amalgamated the two councils in 2016, the LEP had to be completed by July 26, 2020. That will not be happening any time soon. In response to Question with Notice at last Council Meeting here is the number of Briefings and CEO Updates that councillors have attended. Individual Councillor attendance at the 78 Briefings and 12 CEOWeekly Updates where attendance was recorded is detailed below: Plans for a Gosford Regional Library move forward At its 13th July meeting Council received a report detailing progress on the Gosford Regional Design Opportunity. Three options were provided: 1. Council voted to continue to develop designs and documentation for Gosford Regional Library as per Resolution 1274/19 and report back to Council in August 2020 prior to Development Application submis- sion. This will provide the community with a Library building that is a minimum of 4000m², including multiple meeting spaces, large function space, Council customer service centre, incubator spaces and maker/ creator spaces. This approach provides the least risk from a funding and delivery perspective. This option is recommended. 2. That Council halt works on design devel- opment of standalone Library (option 1) and proceed to develop designs for Gosford Regional Library that includes an additional level of administration/ com- mercial office space and carparking and report back to Council in September/ October 2020 with documentation and cost estimates. That Council approve additional budget of up to $550k to fund design development and documentation for Development Application. This option is not recommended. 3. That Council undertake designs of both options 1 and 2 and report back to Council in September 2020 for a decision on the preferred option for the Regional Library. That Council approve additional budget of up to $550k to fund design develop- ment and documentation for Development Application. This option is not recom- mended. In the end Council took note of the report and requested the CEO to continue to develop designs and full documentation for a standalone library consistent with the resolution of 9 December 2019. Those voting FOR: Mayor Matthews, Councillors Burke, Gale, Greenaway, Hogan, Mehrtens, Smith and Sundstrom Voting AGAINST: Councillors Best, MacGregor, McLachlan and Vincent ABSTAINING: Councillor Pilon Councillors attendance at briefings and CEO updates Councillor Party Briefings CEO Weekly Updates Of 78 Of 12 Best IND 17 1 Burke LIB 58 1 Gale LIB 42 5 Greenaway IND 64 9 Hogan ALP 64 12 Holstein IND 60 11 MacGregor ALP 61 9 Marquart LIB 20 0 Matthews ALP 48 9 McLachlan IND 58 3 Mehrtens ALP 59 3 Pilon LIB 43 6 Smith IND 72 12 Sundstrom ALP 70 12 Vincent ALP 38 9 The disastrous storm that struck the Central Coast on 16th July causing damage to homes on the beach at Wamberal and threatening many others resulted in an Extraordinary Meeting of Central Coast Council which turned out to be a game of how to pass the buck. At no point did anyone - councillors or staff do anything other than to try and work out how to avoid liability. When asked whether residents could carry out their own emergency work Planning Director Scott Cox pointed out that any remedial or emergency works would require a Development Application which would have to be referred to the Local Planning Panel. (Earlier this year the Minister for Planning had taken Councils planning powers away from them and replaced them with a Local Planning Panel) After spending most of the meeting time working out a suitable Resolution Mayor Lisa Matthews called on the State Government to declare a natural disaster so that Council would have access to funds to repair damaged infrastructure. Meanwhile 18 homes have been declared unsafe with residents given two hours to get out. Leadership Deficit Syndrome following storm CENTRAL COAST BUSINESS REVIEW AUGUST 2020