Coffs Harbour City Council

04 October 2017

 

Ordinary Council Meeting

 

The above meeting will be held in the Council Administration Building

Cnr Coff and Castle Streets, Coffs Harbour on:

 

Thursday, 12 October 2017

 

The meeting commences at 5.00pm and your attendance is requested.

 

 

AGENDA

 

1.         Opening of Ordinary Meeting

2.         Acknowledgment of Country

3.         Disclosure of Interest

4.         Apologies

5.         Public Addresses / Public Forum

6.         Mayoral Minute

7.         Mayoral Actions under Delegated Authority

8.         Confirmation of Minutes

9.         Rescission Motion

10.      Notices of Motion - General

11.      General Manager’s Reports

12.      Notices of Motion – Business Services

13.      Directorate Reports – Business Services

14.      Notices of Motion – Sustainable Communities

15.      Directorate Reports – Sustainable Communities

16.      Notices of Motion – Sustainable Infrastructure

17.      Directorate Reports – Sustainable Infrastructure

18.      Trust Reports

19.      Requests for Leave of Absence

20.      Questions On Notice

21.      Matters of an Urgent Nature

22.      Consideration of Confidential Items (if any)

23.      Close of Ordinary Meeting.

 

 

Steve  McGrath

General Manager

 

 


Order of Business

 

  

General Manager's Reports

GM17/23         Prosper Coffs Harbour Limited Fundraising Strategy...................... 3

GM17/24         2017 Disclosure of Interest by Councillors and Designated Persons    23

GM17/25         Coffs Coast Infrastructure Alliance Inc.............................................. 25

GM17/26         Delegations and Procurement Policies.................................................. 45

Directorate Reports - Business Services

BS17/40          Environmental Levy Projects Report to 30 June 2017....................... 45

Directorate Reports - Sustainable Communities

SC17/54          Planning Proposal PP_2016_Coffs_005_00 to Permit A Child Care Centre on Lot 3 DP 735083 Craft Close Toormina....................................................... 45

SC17/55          Planning Proposal to Permit Detached Dual Occupancy Development In the RU2 Rural Landscape Zone..................................................................... 45

SC17/56          Development Application 0825/17DA - Emergency Services Facility and Research Station (including additions) - Lot 1 DP 1207497 & Lot 7006 DP 1056773, Third Avenue, Arrawarra Headland........................................... 45

Directorate Reports - Sustainable Infrastructure

SI17/25            Acceleration of the 2018/2019 Infrastructure Design Program... 45  

Questions on Notice

QON17/01      Coffs Harbour Water Supply...................................................................... 45  


GM17/23      Prosper Coffs Harbour Limited Fundraising Strategy

Author:                         Group Leader Governance

Authoriser:                  General Manager

MyCoffs:                      C.2 A natural environment sustained for the future

Attachments:               ATT1   GM17/23  Prosper Coffs Harbour Fundraising Strategy  

 

Executive Summary

Prosper Coffs Harbour Limited (Prosper Coffs) recently engaged Howarth Consulting to complete a fundraising strategy for the implementation and ongoing requirements of specific fundraising activities.  The strategy provides a guide to the setting up and running effective fundraising for Prosper Coffs, from personal philanthropy to corporate partnerships.  This report seeks Council’s endorsement of that strategy and also seeks a loan to fully implement the strategy, to be repaid once Prosper Coffs becomes self-sufficient.

 

 

Recommendation:

That Council:

1.       Supports the Prosper Coffs Harbour Fundraising Strategy (attachment 1).

2.       Endorse an interest free loan funded from the Strategic Initiatives Reserve, of up to $200,000 for the year 1 implementation of the strategy, to be repaid once Prosper Coffs is self-sufficient.

3.       Endorse an interest free loan funded from the Strategic Initiatives Reserve, of up to $100,000 for each of years 2 and 3, to be repaid once Prosper Coffs is self-sufficient.

 

Report

Description of Item:

Prosper Coffs was established by Coffs Harbour City Council, as a not-for-profit company to administer three charitable trusts whose core objectives are to develop a secure source of funds for important infrastructure.  The funds from these Trusts will be used to finance cultural and environmental projects across the city that positively contribute to the Coffs Harbour community and its culture of diversity.

 

Prosper Coffs operates as a separate legal entity, with the members of the company limited by guarantee, subject to all the duties and obligations of a proprietary company as set out in the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth).  Although it operates as a separate legal entity many of its goals and initiatives will closely align with those of Council. Council’s intent for funds raised by Prosper Coffs is to enhance, not replace or supplement existing Council funding streams to cultural and environmental projects and programs.

 

Cultural Trust

 

The Coffs Harbour Cultural Trust has been established through Prosper Coffs to provide a source of funding for the promotion of literature, music, performing arts, visual arts, craft, design, film, video, television, radio, community arts, and arts of indigenous persons or moveable cultural heritage within the Local Government Area.

The Minister for the Arts has approved the Coffs Harbour Cultural Trust for entry to the Register of Cultural Organisations (RoCO).  Individuals donating to the public fund are eligible to receive a tax deductible donation.

 

Environmental Trust

 

The Coffs Harbour Protection of the Environment Trust Fund’s principal purpose is the protection and enhancement of the natural environment, the provision of information, education and research about the natural environment.

 

The Trust is governed by the following themes:

 

·      Targeted areas for rehabilitation and restoration

·      Acquisitions of high conservation lands

·      Biodiversity initiatives

·      Supporting community involvement and ownership

·      Improving knowledge and understanding of the environment

 

The Minister for the Environment has approved the Coffs Harbour Protection of the Environment Trust Fund for entry to the Register of Environmental Organisations (REO.) Individuals donating to the public fund are eligible to receive a tax deduction for their donation.

 

Futures Trust (not currently active)

 

The Coffs Harbour Futures Trust has been established to promote and facilitate benevolent acts by private individuals and to manage and acknowledge the donations received.  Such donations will then be used to fund works such as the enhancement of public places, the provision of sporting facilities, and the preservation of historic buildings

 

Operation of the Trusts

 

Both the Cultural and Environmental Trusts, while governed by Prosper Coffs, are assisted by advisory committees.  These committees are comprised of community members, representative of the wider arts/environmental sphere, which were selected from applicants who had considerable professional expertise and proven community involvement in both arts and culture and environmental fields.  A Prosper Coffs board member also sits on the committees to act as a conduit between the advisory committee and the Board.  All recommendations of the committees require endorsement from the Board of Prosper Coffs.

 

Fundraising Investment

 

The consultant’s fundraising strategy details both objectives and action items that should be undertaken for Prosper Coffs to reach a target fundraising amount of ‘break even in the first year then rise to a point over three years where the income is three to four times the cost.’

 

Item

First Year $

Ongoing $

Salaries (2 staff)

$60,000 to $150,000 plus on costs

$60,000 to $150,000 plus on costs

Interim Project Manager

$30,000

$0

Website Development

$20,000

$5,000

CRM System

$5,000 to $10,000

$5,000 to $10,000

Print Collateral

$5,000

$1,000

Launch Media Strategy

$5,000

$0

Fundraising Program Costs

$10,000

$12,000

Contingencies (legals, travel, training, consultancy support etc)

$20,000

$20,000

Total

$155,000 to $250,000

$103,000 to $198,000

Issues:

Budget figures for the first year have been defined in great detail and accurately reflect the costs of implementing the program activities within each function.  Future years’ budgets estimate expenses using across-the-board increases rather than specific program functional budgets.  The overall goal for fundraising is to raise sufficient money to cover the expense in each functional area of the budget in addition to funding the environmental/cultural projects as recommended by the advisory committees and endorsed by the Board.

Options:

1.   Adopt the recommendation as provided. This will support Prosper Coffs becoming fully operational.

 

2.   Amend the recommendation to a greater or lesser amount than proposed. It should be noted that if the ‘strategy investment’ is reduced substantially, there will be a point at which moving forward with the strategy will not be a viable investment.  It is estimated that this amount is $150,000 in the first year.

 

3.   Reject the recommendation in its entirety. Prosper Coffs will still exist, but will not actively fundraise.  Only a limited amount of fundraising will be able to occur to maintain deductible gift recipient status.

Sustainability Assessment:

•     Environment

There are no environmental impacts as a result of this actual report.  Should the fundraising strategy for Prosper Coffs be successful, the Prosper Environmental Advisory Committee will be in a position to make recommendations for related projects to be funded.

•     Social

There are no social impacts as a result of this actual report.  Should the fundraising strategy for Prosper Coffs be successful, the Prosper Coffs Cultural Advisory Committee will be in a position to make recommendations for related projects to be funded.  Arts and culture contribute to the liveability of our region including economic, social and cultural wellbeing.

•     Civic Leadership

Prosper Coffs is a separate entity to Council, however this subject of this report is aligned to the MyCoffs themes:

 

D1 Our leaders give us confidence in the future

C2 A natural environment sustained for the future

A1 A vibrant and inclusive place

•     Economic – Broader Economic Implications

There are no broader economic implications as a result of this report.

•     Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

As Prosper Coffs is a separate entity to Council, the budget for the implementation of the fundraising strategy has not been included in the Delivery Program or Operational Plan.  Based on the working capital funding requirements identified in the Prosper Coffs’ fundraising strategy the financial investment sought from Council as the sole shareholder is as follows:

·     Year 1          up to $200,000

·     Year 2          up to $100,000

·     Year 3          up to $100,000

It is recommended that the financial amounts sought be provided in the form of interest free loans and for repayments to commence once Prosper Coffs is at the ‘break even’ stage.  The funds will be loaned from Council’s Strategic Initiatives Reserve.

Risk Analysis:

The main risk as a result of this report is that the fundraising strategy does not achieve its goals and the loans from Council are unable to be repaid. Annual reports will be provided to Council as shareholder to allow monitoring of progress.

Consultation:

In the development of the fundraising strategy, there were facilitated workshops with the Prosper Coffs Board, and both the Environmental and Cultural Advisory Committees.  All stakeholders were given the opportunity to provide feedback on the draft strategy.

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

There is no related policy/precedent or statutory requirements associated with this report

Implementation Date / Priority:

Immediately upon Council’s resolution.

Conclusion:

The natural environment and cultural richness of the Coffs Harbour region faces a range of threats, but also presents great opportunities.  The role of Prosper Coffs Harbour Limited is to help the community combat those threats and harness those opportunities.

 

 


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GM17/24      2017 Disclosure of Interest by Councillors and Designated Persons

Author:                         Governance Coordinator

Authoriser:                  Group Leader Governance

MyCoffs:                      D.1 Our leaders give us confidence in the future

Attachments:               Nil

 

Executive Summary

Section 449(3) of the Local Government Act 1993 requires Councillors (and designated persons) who hold that position on 30 June in each year to lodge a “Disclosures by Councillors and Designated Persons Return”.  All Councillors who held office at 30 June and designated persons, should have lodged such a return with their General Managers by 30 September 2017.  Under the Act, these returns are to be tabled at the first Council meeting following the last day for lodgement.

 

 

Recommendation:

That Council note the Register of Disclosures by Councillors and designated persons for the period July 2016 – June 2017, as tabled.

 

 

Report

Description of Item:

The purpose of this report is to table the Register of Returns received in accordance with s450A Local Government Act (1993).

 

Designated persons identified by Council include the General Manager, all Directors, Group Leaders; staff authorised to order goods over $20,000, staff involved in strategic planning, staff involved in assessing/issuing consents to development applications, staff involved in compliance activities or the issuing of orders and staff involved in contractual functions.

Issues:

A register containing all disclosures will be tabled at this meeting for inspection by any Councillor.

Options:

Adopt the recommendation provided to Council.

Sustainability Assessment:

•     Environment

This is not applicable to this report.

•     Social

This is not applicable to this report.

              

•     Civic Leadership

The purpose of these provisions is to ensure transparency and accountability in local government decision making.  This is consistent with the Coffs Harbour 2030 Community Strategic Plan strategy LC3.1 Council supports the delivery of high quality, sustainable outcomes for Coffs Harbour.  The obligations upon Councillors, General Manager, Senior Staff and other designated persons are as much a protection for them as it is for the community in the review of Council’s decisions, and one of the important mechanisms in enhancing public confidence in local administration.

•     Economic – Broader Economic Implications

This is not applicable to this report.

•     Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

This is not applicable to this report.

Risk Analysis:

This is not applicable to this report.

Consultation:

This is not applicable to this report.

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

Sections 449 and 450A of the Local Government Act 1993 cover the compulsory lodgement of pecuniary interest annual returns. The Act details specific responsibilities of the General Manager in relation to the collection, reporting, tabling and public accessibility of the returns.

Implementation Date / Priority:

Implementation is immediate.

Conclusion:

That the tabling of the Disclosure of Interest returns for 2017 be noted.

 

 


GM17/25      Coffs Coast Infrastructure Alliance Inc.

Author:                         General Manager

Authoriser:                  General Manager

MyCoffs:                      B.1 A thriving and sustainable local economy

Attachments:               ATT1   GM17/25  CCIA Letter and Constitution  

 

Executive Summary

Council has received an invitation to join the Coffs Coast Infrastructure Alliance Inc. (CCIA) as an Associate Member.  It has been advised that the CCIA includes representatives from the local members of Parliament, local chambers of commerce, relevant community representatives and NSW Business Chamber.

 

This group was formed initially at a time when the detail of how the NSW Regional Growth Fund would be implemented and evaluated was not well understood. Since that time the evaluation process has become more evident and the main program, Growing Local Economies, is now supported by the State Government funded Regional Economic Development Strategy process which has significant and broad community engagement. Given how the NSW Regional Growth Fund process has developed, it is suggested that the State Government supported formal processes provide adequate opportunity for awareness, evaluation and engagement.

 

 

Recommendation:

That Council decline the invitation to join the Coffs Coast Infrastructure Alliance Inc. and encourage Coffs Coast Infrastructure Alliance Inc. to participate along with other stakeholders in the process established by the NSW Government to develop a Regional Economic Development Strategy.

 

 

Report

Description of Item:

By correspondence dated 31 August 2017 the President of Coffs Coast Infrastructure Alliance Inc. (CCIA) has sought Council’s support by becoming an Associate Member of CCIA and appointing a natural person as its representative to attend meetings of CCIA.

 

The CCIA has only very recently formed and adopted a constitution, following several meetings earlier this year of a group then known as the Restart NSW Committee (a gathering of representatives of various business groups and individuals).  A copy of the correspondence received and the current constitution is attached to this report for Councillors perusal.

 

The constitution, as drafted by current members of the CCIA, provides that the objects of the association are:

 

·     Identify projects that would stimulate growth throughout the region

·     Assess each project for suitability under the restart NSW criteria

·     Apply a decision-making framework to determine committee endorsement

·     Liaise with the relevant agency to assist with funding for submission preparation

·     Liaise directly with restart NSW government representatives

·     To undertake such other measures for the assistance and advancement of business in the Region as the Board may determine from time to time.

Issues:

As has been communicated to Council on several occasions now, the $1.3b NSW Regional Growth Fund with its associated programs provides an opportunity for regional NSW to access infrastructure funding to support growth.

 

Council has already made several expressions of interest to the programs within the NSW Regional Growth Fund, and there are further opportunities still to be explored. It is also acknowledged that other organisations are eligible to apply for funds within the various programs of the NSW Regional Growth Fund.  Whilst it is desirable for there to be a unified approach to seeking funds to be applied to projects within the region, the reality is that there will not be enough money within the funding pool to enable the delivery of all of the likely projects that will come forward for consideration.  This inevitably will result in an element of competitiveness for the available funds, both within our region and of course more broadly across the State.

 

As mentioned earlier in this report, the Objects within the constitution of the CCIA identify in part a role for the association to “assess each project for suitability under the restart NSW criteria”.  The Executive Director, Infrastructure & Networks Regional NSW, has visited Coffs Harbour on several occasions now to provide an overview of the NSW Regional Growth Fund for various community groups in a State Government arranged workshop and more recently at an information breakfast organised by the Coffs Harbour Chamber of Commerce.  Council representatives have had the opportunity to meet separately with the Executive Director on a couple of occasions now to explore and better understand various elements of the NSW Regional Growth Fund.

 

During a more recent meeting with the Executive Director, some clarity was sought as to whether the self-formed CCIA had any role in “assessing” projects for suitability under the restart NSW criteria and his response was that was not the case.

 

Given what appears to be the self-appointed role of CCIA contained within the objects of the constitution, and the fact that Council will be an applicant for project funding under the NSW Regional Growth Fund, it is quite likely that should membership of this association be pursued by Council, even at an Associate level, the Council representative at meetings of the Association would find themselves in positions of conflict when various projects are being considered.

 

Noting that the category of membership offered is that of Associate status, any potential Council representative attending meetings of the CCIA would not have voting rights.  Acknowledging that there would be an indirect opportunity to influence the considerations of CCIA, by not having a voting right there is no opportunity for direct influence per se.  It should also be noted once again that advice received to date from State Government representatives has indicated that there is no formal role for CCIA in any NSW Regional Growth Fund assessment process.

 

Following receipt of the invitation to join the CCIA it was considered that it would be appropriate for Council to be informed in more detail of who the current members (both full and associate) of the Association were and the various organisations that they may represent to enable Council to better assess the appropriateness of accepting the invitation to join.  Several requests were made and the best information that was able to be achieved was that “there are currently 19 members / associate members of Coffs Coast Infrastructure Alliance Inc.” and further “CCIA Members represent both business and the wider community”.  When pressed further for the information CCIA advised that divulging this information “would constitute a breach of Privacy Laws.”

 

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, CCIA was initially formed at a time when the detail of how the NSW Regional Growth Fund would be implemented and evaluated was not well understood. Since that time the evaluation process has become more evident and the main program, Growing Local Economies, is now supported by the State Government funded Regional Economic Development Strategy (REDS) process which has significant and broad community engagement at its core.

 

Councillors recently had an opportunity to attend a workshop with a representative of Corview, the consulting group appointed by the NSW Government to conduct the development of the REDS for our region. At this workshop Corview outlined the reasonably significant stakeholder engagement process that was to be undertaken during the development of the REDS. During earlier meetings that occurred between Council Officers and Corview, a broad range of stakeholder groups were identified, including the CCIA, and information was conveyed to Corview to enable engagement to occur with a broad stakeholder group in the development of the REDS.

Options:

It is considered that the following options are available to Council:

 

1.   Accept the invitation to take up Associate Membership of the Coffs Coast Infrastructure Alliance Inc. and therefore provide Council’s support and endorsement of the newly formed Coffs Coast Infrastructure Alliance Inc.  In adopting this option it is considered that Council should nominate a Councillor to be the natural person representing Council.

2.   Amend Option 1 in some form and adopt that position.

3.   Decline the invitation to join the Coffs Coast Infrastructure Alliance Inc. on the basis that Coffs Harbour City Council will be an applicant to the NSW Regional Growth Fund for infrastructure funding and further due to the State Government’s recently announced Regional Economic Development Strategy process designed to support the Growing Local Economies stream within the NSW Regional Growth Fund.

Sustainability Assessment:

•     Environment

There are no direct environmental impacts as a result of Council’s consideration of the invitation to join the CCIA as an Associate Member.  It is likely however that as various projects are being considered for potential funding through the NSW Regional Growth Fund, there will be potential environmental considerations.  These are appropriately considered at the time that the individual projects are being considered.

•     Social

There are no direct social impacts as a result of Council’s consideration of this report.  Similar to the observations in regard to environmental impacts, it is likely that social impacts will need to be assessed at the time of considering various projects.

•     Civic Leadership

It is important for Council to demonstrate even handed civic leadership in all matters, especially in considering suitable infrastructure projects that may enable economic and broader growth potential.  Without a firm understanding of the make-up of the membership of CCIA, it is suggested that Council’s ability to assess the request for support and endorsement through taking up Associate Membership in a fulsome manner is somewhat compromised.

•     Economic – Broader Economic Implications

There are no direct broader economic implications as a result of Council’s consideration of this report.  As Council considers various infrastructure projects for funding through the NSW Regional Growth Fund process, there may well be broader economic issues to be considered at those times.

•     Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

There are no direct delivery program or operational plan impacts as a result of Council’s consideration of this report.

Risk Analysis:

Given the need for Council to pursue the funding of critical infrastructure projects to enable economic and broader growth, it is important for Council to remain apolitical in any process associated with accessing funding opportunities from the NSW Regional Growth Fund.  It is suggested that Council is not in a position to assess whether accepting the invitation to accept Associate Membership of CCIA will enable this apolitical status to be maintained, given that no information is to hand with regard to the members of CCIA and the organisations those members represent.

 

Further, given the likelihood that projects from a variety of organisations, including Council, may come under the scrutiny (whether formally or informally) of CCIA, any representative of Council attending CCIA meetings would potentially be in a position of conflict, whether they had voting status or not.

Consultation:

The request for Council to consider joining the CCIA as an Associate Member has been the subject of consideration by the Executive Leadership Team (ELT) and this report represents a somewhat consensus view of ELT.

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

There is no related policy or precedent and there is no statutory requirement for Council to pursue membership of the CCIA.  The CCIA has no real standing in any assessment process related to the NSW Regional Growth Fund.

Implementation Date / Priority:

Upon Council indicating its position on this matter, appropriate advice/response will be provided to the Coffs Coast Infrastructure Alliance.

Conclusion:

Council now has information that no formal role has been established by the NSW Government for the Coffs Coast Infrastructure Alliance Inc. to participate in the assessment of projects for funding from the NSW Regional Growth Fund and there is also a potential position of conflict for any Council representative. Perhaps most importantly, the NSW Government has now established a Regional Economic Development Strategy process to support infrastructure analysis on a regional basis. It is suggested that Council should pursue Option 3, i.e. to decline the invitation to join CCIA.

 

 

 


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GM17/26      Delegations and Procurement Policies

Author:                         Group Leader Governance

Authoriser:                  General Manager

MyCoffs:                      D.1 Our leaders give us confidence in the future

Attachments:               ATT1   GM17/26  Delegations Policy

ATT2   GM17/26  Procurement Policy

ATT3   GM17/26  Local Preference Wording

ATT4   GM17/26  Tenders Acceptance Policy

ATT5   GM17/26  Development Applications - Consideration by Council Policy  

 

Executive Summary

The purpose of a policy is to document Council’s intent, commitment and/or a position on a particular topic as well as ensure transparency and accountability in local government. These four policies represent the core of Council’s business.  

 

 

Recommendation:

That Council adopts the following policies:

1.       Delegations Policy

2.       Procurement Policy

3.       Tender Acceptance Policy

4.       Development Applications Consideration by Council Policy

 

 Report

Description of Item:

Delegations Policy:

 

The purpose of the Delegations Policy is to establish a framework for delegating authority within Council in a manner that facilitates efficiency and increases the accountability of staff for their performance.

 

Delegations and authorisations are the mechanism by which the Council enables its officers to act on its behalf by devolving responsibility for decision making downwards through the organisationDelegations are a fundamental part of good governance and play an important role in ensuring that Council is acting in accordance with the legal and policy framework that applies to it.

 

Procurement Policy:

 

The purpose of this policy is to provide the principles under which Council makes its procurement decisions and conducts its procurement activities.  Local Preference is not included in the policy as presented, however this is addressed in the issues section below.

 

Tender Acceptance Policy:

 

The Local Government Act 1993 now allows for the General Manager to accept tenders over $150,000.  The only exception to this is ‘the acceptance of tenders to provide services currently provided by members of staff of the council.’  This policy is to provide parameters on limits and supporting processes to ensure Councillors maintain appropriate governance oversight and determine which tenders are escalated to Council for determination.

 

Development Applications Consideration by Council

 

The purpose of this policy is to establish criteria for identifying development applications that will be escalated to Council for determination.

Issues:

Mayoral Minute 17/1 requested that Council explore the application of local preference to the assessment of tenders.  Should Council resolve to do this, Attachment 3 provides the suggested wording to insert into the Procurement Policy.  This wording has been reviewed by a member of Council’s legal panel to ensure it is appropriate and meets requirements.

 

To provide some context to the current local spend, in the 2016/2017 financial year, Council was invoiced $101,130,243. (approx $101M was paid to business for goods and services)

 

·     Of this amount $52M was invoiced from postcode 2450, 2452, 2456 or 2441. 

·     Of this $52M, approximately $14M was invoiced from a local office of a company outside of the local government area. 

·     This amount does not include council staff wages, which are also paid into the local government area. This is an additional $48M that is paid into the local economy through staff wages.

Options:

It is considered that the following options are available to Council:

 

1.   Adopt the recommendation provided to Council.

2.   Amend the recommendation provided to Council and then adopt.  This could be in the format of inclusion of the local preference content provided or changes to the tender acceptance threshold amount.

3.   Reject the recommendation provided to Council. This would not be a recommended action.

Sustainability Assessment:

•     Environment

There are no environmental impacts as a result of this report.

•     Social

There are no social impacts as a result of this report.

•     Civic Leadership

The purpose of council policy is to ensure transparency and accountability in local government.  The implementation of policy enables Council to identify and respond to the community.  This is consistent with the Council’s MyCoffs Community Strategic Plan, D.1 Our leaders give us confidence in the future.

•     Economic – Broader Economic Implications

There are no broad economic impacts associated with the implementation of the recommendations.

•     Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

As presented, there are no Delivery Program/Operational Plan implications.  If Council determines to proceed with the inclusion of the local preference option in the procurement policy, there will be an impact on the budget.  This could be managed within budget allocations.

Risk Analysis:

The adoption of these policies ensure clear accountability for core business processes within Council. Councillors have been provided with a Local Preference Discussion Paper which outlines the risks involved in adopting a local preference policy.

Consultation:

Consultation has occurred with relevant stakeholders.  A facilitated Councillor briefing was also held in late August to discuss the four policies.

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

The legislative requirements for delegations and procurement is outlined within NSW legislation.  The adoption of these policies serves to enhance accountability and the decision making process within Council.

Implementation Date / Priority:

Immediate

Conclusion:

That Council adopt the attached policies.

 



 


 


 



 


 


 


 




 



 

 


BS17/40       Environmental Levy Projects Report to 30 June 2017

Author:                         Grants Administration Officer

Authoriser:                  Director Business Services

MyCoffs:                      C.2 A natural environment sustained for the future

Attachments:               Nil

 

Executive Summary

The Environmental Levy (EL) Program continues to be delivered and this report provides a status update 30 June 2017 on the projects funded under the program.  Some projects are required to continue in the current the report contains recommendations regarding revotes for each project if required.  The EL Program funds environmental projects that would not otherwise be undertaken within Council’s general budget funding.

 

There were 22 completed projects in 2016/17 year with two requesting remaining funds to be revoted to the current financial year for new projects.  There were five incomplete projects, three from previous years and two from the current year, that have also requested to be revoted to the current financial year.

 

 

Recommendation:

That Council:

1.       Notes the status of Environmental Levy projects as at 30 June 2017 as outlined in the report.

 

2.       Approves the recommendations identified within the report for Environmental Levy projects to be returned to the Environmental Levy Reserve as follows:

 

Project                                                                                                       Surplus Funds

 

Environmental Levy Coordination                                                         $          3,413.63

Conservation & Sustainable Management of Biodiversity                $        16,440.64

2017/18 Community Sustainable Living Program                                 $        41,432.92

Green School Sustainability Fund 2015/16                                           $                 1.07

Culturally Significant Landscapes of the CH LGA                               $             186.59

Water Quality Assessment of Bucca Bucca Creek                              $          2,042.38

Community Awareness, Education and Engagement

  about Kangaroos                                                                                    $             609.60

Bush Regeneration                                                                                 $        (4,821.03)

Environmental Weed Control                                                                 $        (2,416.26)

Koala/Wildlife Corridor Bakker Dr Bonville Stage 4                           $          1,198.85

 

Total Funds Returned to EL Reserve                                                   $        58,088.39

 

3.       Approves the recommendations identified within the report for Environmental Levy projects to be revoted and summarised as follows:

 

Project                                                                                         EL         Grants/Council                                                                                                 

Matching Grant Funding Pool                                           $ 24,101.00

Green School Sustainability Fund                                    $      750.00

Flying Fox Camps Management Plan                               $   7,126.97          $   7,126.98

Non-Lethal Mgt of CH Kangaroos by Fertility Control   $   7,216.00

Arrawarra Creek Coastal Zone Management Plan         $ 11,845.87          $ 35,537.60

Woolgoolga Beach Rehabilitation Project                      $   9,709.41          $   9,709.41

 

Total Revotes                                                                      $60,749.25           $ 52,373.99

 

4.   Approves the allocation of $38,000 to provide the remaining funding required for the 2017/18 Community Sustainable Living Program in accordance with Council’s resolution 2017/144 dated 13 July 2017.

 

 

Report

 

Description of Item:

 

A description of the status of the Environmental Levy Program projects as at 30 June 2017 is provided for the information of the Council and a recommendation has been made in relation to the allocation of remaining funds in the program.

 

Issues:

 

Status of Funding for EL Program as at 30 June 2017

 

Estimated funding position of the Environmental Levy as at 30 June 2017 is summarised as follows:

 

$

Reserve as at 1 July 2016                                            188,803

 

Income

Special Rate                                                               1,232,397

Pensioner Subsidy                                                                 47

Water Account                                                                50,000

Matching Funds                                                               24,401

Interest                                                                              4,804

Total Income                                                              1,311,649

 

Funds Available                                                          1,500,452

Less Expenditure                                                       1,272,867

Reserve Balance as at 30 June 2017                           227,585

 

The revotes recommended from 2016/17 to 2017/18 are $151,123 which is funded by:

 

Environmental Levy                                                         98,749

Restricted Grants and General Revenue                       52,374

 

The estimated Environmental Levy Reserve balance of $227,585 less the revotes to 2017/18 of $98,749 results in an estimated balance of $128,836.

 

Of the Environmental Levy funding of the revotes recommended, the funds were originally allocated in the following years:

 

2014/15                                  $   9,709       1 project, refer item 21

2015/16                                  $ 18,973       2 projects, refer items 7 and 13

2016/17                                  $ 70,067       3 projects, refer items 2, 4, and 9

Total                                       $ 98,749

 

Project Status Report

 

Relevant additional comments in relation to the projects are:

 

1.       Environmental Levy Coordination $64,340

 

Coordination of EL Program this year met all required time frames.

 

It is recommended the remaining funds of $3,413.63 be returned to the Environmental Levy Reserve.

 

2.       Matching Grant Funding Pool $24,101

 

There have been no requests from this allocation this quarter. Balance held for future matching grant applications is $24,101, and it is requested that this amount be revoted to the next financial year for this purpose.

 

It is recommended the remaining funds of $24,101 be revoted to 2017/18.

 

3.       Conservation & Sustainable Management of Biodiversity in LGA $218,500

 

The LGA strategic Flying Fox camp management plan was exhibited 14 June to 12 July. The Significant Tree Policy was exhibited 7 June to 5 July and the review of the actions in the Biodiversity Action Strategy continues.

 

Of the 19 Tree Permit applications received this year 16 (84%) have been approved, two have been withdrawn and one is pending.

 

There were 23 reported tree clearing incidents this year with six active tree investigations and legal processes this quarter.

 

It is recommended the remaining funds of $16,440.64 be returned to the Environmental Levy Reserve.

 

4.       Sustainable Living and Community Program $93,000

 

Six Ambassador Tours were run during this period with 100 people attending. The Coffs Ambassadors volunteer tour guides educated participants about our high biodiversity values and encouraged them to undertake everyday actions to help protect our biodiversity and live more sustainably.

 

All 12 schools and childcare centres in the Green Schools project have completed their projects on time with evaluation reports approved engaging an estimated 2,585 students in total from across the Coffs Harbour LGA.

 

The final invoice from one school was not received and therefore it is formally requested a revote for the amount of $750 to be able to make this payment. There is also one other issue around payments to schools which is in process of being rectified.

 

Term 2 Sustainable Schools Network meeting was held at Naranga School with 12 teachers & educators attending.  Theme: Reducing & Recycling Plastic Waste - guest speaker: Louise Hardman - Environmental Scientist, Zoologist & founder of the Pacific Collective.

 

In summary, as at 30 June 2017 there were surplus Ambassadors and Green School funds of $49,782.26 and an over-expenditure for Living Coast Event of $7,599.34, a net surplus of $42,182.92

 

It is recommended $750 be revoted to 2017/18 to cover the Green Schools’ invoice and the remaining funds of $41,432.92 be returned to the Environmental Levy Reserve.

 

It is further recommended $38,000 be allocated to provide the remaining funding required for the 2017/18 Community Sustainable Living Program, in accordance with Council’s resolution 2017/144 dated 13 July.

 

5.       Green School Sustainability Fund 2015/16 Revote $4,807

 

The final school project was rebuilding the fish pond and providing a safe and unique learning environment for all school teachers and enthusiastic students to use. The school also installed a solar water pumping mechanism that no longer costs money to run every day and have met the water safety guidelines of the Department of Education.

 

It is recommended the remaining funds of $1.07 be returned to the Environmental Levy Reserve.

 

6.       Culturally Significant Landscapes of the CH LGA $34,800

 

In June 2016 Council signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) and committed funds to complete this project. A consultant to facilitate consultation with the local Aboriginal community has been engaged by OEH and consultation has begun.  The consultant has reported that the project is progressing well.  Approximately two thirds of the Coffs Harbour LGA has been covered in the field surveys and as a result many unregistered cultural sites and places have been recorded. The consultant has stated that the field survey and oral history component of the project will be complete by the end of September 2017. Allowing for GIS mapping, formulation of planning controls and associated training the anticipated completion of the overall project is likely to be by November / December 2017.

 

It is recommended the remaining funds of $186.59 be returned to the Environmental Levy Reserve.

 

7.       Flying Foxes Camps Management Plan $30,000

 

The draft plan was on exhibition 14 June -12 July. The plan was put to Council for adoption in August. Accordingly it is requested that $7,126.97 EL and $7,126.98 grant funds be carried over to complete the project as at 31/08/17.

 

It is recommended the remaining funds of $14,253.95 be revoted to 2017/18.

 

8.       Orara River Restoration Project $200,000

 

Rehabilitation works were completed on 86 properties covering approximately 800 hectares during 2016/17. For weeds of national significance (WoNS) - 483 hectares was assessed and controlled if required. Regeneration works covered 182 hectares across 62 properties. 1,756 trees were planted across 19 properties totaling 15.5 hectares. Six land management agreements were negotiated. Three workshops were conducted and eight water troughs were installed this year on four properties. Fencing now excludes livestock from another 1.6km of waterway across three properties. Interpretive signage was designed for three locations, site tours were conducted with the Natural Resources Commission, NSW Environmental Trust, and NCLLS, and regular meetings held with CHCC Weeds, Coffs Harbour Regional Landcare, and NCLLS.

 

9.       Non-Lethal Management of CH Kangaroos by Fertility Control $35,000

 

Across the two study sites 62 female kangaroos have been treated with contraceptive implants. At Heritage Park treatment and control females comprise the majority of the adult females while Darlington Park comprises about 50%. The delay in implementing the fertility control treatment regime meant that the outcomes from the reproductive outcomes cannot be determined yet. At the time of treatment almost all females had a joey present in the pouch. Although the contraceptive treatment does not have an effect on the joey, we are not able to determine the effects until this young has vacated the pouch to test whether a new young will be conceived post treatment.

GPS collars have been fitted to nine males and six females at Darlington Park and eight females at Heritage Park. Current results show exceptionally high site fidelity for females at both sites, with males showing increased roaming behaviour at Darlington Park.

 

The project has progressed really well however work has not commenced at Look at Me Now Headland. It has been requested to carry-over the unspent funds so that these can be used to fund field work between September and December 2017.

 

It is recommended the remaining funds of $7,216.00 be revoted to 2017/18.

 

10.     Water Quality Assessment of Bucca Bucca Creek $55,000

 

A full baseline survey of 40 sites was completed by Southern Cross University and a report submitted to Council with initial results indicating highly elevated nutrient levels immediately adjacent to blueberry farms. The modified experimental design developed from the initial survey sampled 9 test sites and 10 control sites for many parameters. A time-series analysis was conducted for one site to look at changes over short intervals immediately below a blueberry farm. A total of 205 samples were collected. Macro-invertebrate sampling of the same sites was conducted with results indicating a significant difference in test and control sites, with test sites having very low SIGNAL scores showing very poor or no macro-invertebrate communities. The CHCC testing of 3 Bucca Bucca Creek and 3 Orara River sites indicates total nitrogen levels are consistently exceeding ANZECC limits at the two Bucca Bucca Creek test sites, but not at the control site. The Orara River only exceeded ANZECC limits once during flood conditions at one site.

 

It is recommended the remaining funds of $2,042.38 be returned to the Environmental Levy Reserve.

 

11.     Community Awareness, Education and Engagement about Kangaroos $15,000

 

Advice from OEH Science Division recommended using a generic free app called iNaturalist which is able to do standard wildlife observations as required for kangaroo population reporting thus saving the project $3,000. The project to develop communication materials is complete and ready for distribution to target communities in Coffs Harbour and through partner agency's websites. WIRES callout records show 140 calls for Eastern Grey Kangaroo (EGK) injuries in 2016-17 (32% in Moonee Beach, 21% in Woolgoolga and 20% in Emerald Beach). This is a 35% decrease on 2015-16. Six kangaroo awareness and safety sessions were delivered at two target schools covering 650 students.

 

It is recommended the remaining funds of $690.60 be returned to the Environmental Levy Reserve.

 

12.     Incentives & Training for Environmental Sustainability in Horticulture $25,000

 

Awareness of environmental impacts of growing practices was raised through holding a field day which covered a number of topics:  removable netting system, ground cover for soil erosion prevention, protection of riparian zones and riparian revegetation, dealing with snakes caught in netting. Blueberry farmers have engaged well with the project and agreed to significant riparian vegetation management and maintenance. The field day was attended by 40 people, including community members and growers. On-ground works have been carried out at seven sites.

 

13.     Arrawarra Creek Coastal Zone Management Plan $64,084

 

The outcomes of the consultants draft Coastal Zone Management Plan (CZMP) Study report were presented to the Coffs Harbour Coastal and Estuary Management Advisory Committee (CEMAC) on 17 May 2017. The report is being amended for distribution to CEMAC for formal comment. Consultants are progressing with development of the CZMP and will conduct a CZMP workshop with CEMAC in October 2017.

 

Funds have not been fully spent due to delays associated with production of the report and re-establishment of CEMAC. Completion of the project is anticipated after another CEMAC meeting in October 2017; presenting the draft CZMP report to Council; public exhibition; and finalisation and adoption of report by Council in early 2018. Accordingly it is requested that $11,845.87 EL, $11,845.86 Council funding and $23,691.74 grant funds be carried over to complete the project.

 

It is recommended the remaining funds of $47,383.47 be revoted to 2017/18.

 

14.     Bush Regeneration $210,732

 

In the fourth quarter the Bush Regeneration team worked at 14 sites over 16,480 m² controlling woody, vine and grass weeds. Landcare volunteers were assisted at 17 sites and 622 plants were planted. Overall the Bushland Regeneration team has met its objective of enhancing and enriching the natural areas across the Local Government Area through its own programs and supporting other community groups and programs.

 

It is recommended the over expenditure of $4,821.03 be covered by surplus funds from other projects that would have been returned to the Environmental Levy Reserve.

 

15.     Environmental Weed Control $107,681

 

In the fourth quarter a total of 8,550m² of vine weeds were controlled at four sites; 8,240m² of Camphor laurels were treated at 6 sites; 830m² of Privet were cut and poisoned at William Sharp Drive and 15,900m² of other weed control was carried out through the LGA and 200 plants were planted. Overall the project achieved its objective to continue the control of weeds in the LGA's natural area reserves.

 

It is recommended the over expenditure of $2,416.26 be covered by surplus funds from other projects that would have been returned to the Environmental Levy Reserve.

 

16.     Supporting Community Action in the Coffs Harbour LGA $160,000

 

Over 5,000 plants produced & distributed by Landcare’s volunteer nursery. On-ground volunteer and EL funded contractor activity was complemented by grants from Environmental Trust, Office of Environment and Heritage and Local Land Services with 1,664 hours of contractor support across 20 sites. A number of sites are now free of priority weeds and in maintenance regime. A Vegetation Management Plan was completed for Red Rock reserve. 865 Myna’s were trapped by volunteer trappers, Myna activity continues to be the number one issues raised by members of the public calling our office. Coffs Harbour Regional Landcare’s (CHRL) excellent safety record continues with no reported incidents / accidents. Training was facilitated in first aid, tools maintenance, bush regen techniques, Myna trapping, plant ID and planting techniques. 210 participants attended 14 training and awareness raising events throughout the year including CHRL members, the wider Natural Resource Management field, and the public. CHRL's YouTube channel now has six instructional videos published, with another two under production.

 

17.     Koala / Wildlife Corridor Bakker Dr Res Bonville Stage 4 $9,975

 

Bush regen team prepared new area for planting and spreading mulch, preparing some holes and watering the area. 170 plants were planted and staked by FOP members in the last quarter. All outcomes have now been achieved and the trees are thriving due to ideal growing conditions over the past few months.

 

It is recommended the remaining funds of $1,198.85 be returned to the Environmental Levy Reserve.

 

18.     Restore the Natural Environment of the Jetty Foreshores $20,000

 

Rhodes Grass and Siratro vine seedlings were weeded from Native vines. Newly emerged balloon vine infestations not seen in the far north western section of the project area before were removed and an abandoned camp was also pulled down. Follow up works were undertaken on a previously heavy infestation of Madeira surrounding mature cabbage palms. A sweep through of the entire section north of Jordon Esplanade was completed with the last remaining Turkey Rhubarb removed. South of Jordon Esplanade Jetty DuneCare assisted with translocation of plants from the Jetty4Shore construction zone. The group focused on managing three new areas of buffalo grass with spray and follow up hand weeding. While numbers have been down from previous years there has been a steady increase in volunteer numbers since the beginning of the year with 10 volunteers having undertaken approximately 735hrs of dunecare activities.

 

19.     Restore the Natural Environment of Boambee Beach $20,000

 

Corambirra Point was followed up for weed grasses and Mile a minute. The area east of the vehicle access which is recovering littoral rainforest has now had most of the remaining woody weeds and vines removed. This area was also sprayed for weed grasses. A line from the slide rail to the beach has been pushed south approximately 800m. This area was sprayed as a follow up treatment for weed grasses then hand weeded for re-emerging woody weeds and vines. Hand follow up was also undertaken on large areas unable to be sprayed due to proximity to natives. An edge of primary treatment continues to be worked toward the southern end of the project area. No new fox trappings or den fumigations were undertaken this quarter, however monitoring for vertebrate pests is ongoing. More kittens have been seen near Fergusons' Cottage which is yet to be dealt with. 12 regular volunteers and over 100 other community participants have worked on this site this year including school groups and Corrective Services participants, undertaking approximately 2,340 hours for the year.

 

20.     North Coast Regional Botanic Garden Education Officer $16,000

 

The Botanic Garden education officer delivered the early settlers walk during a Botanic Gardens Open Day with children’s activities including insect hotels, guided walks games and craft activities; school holiday programs with OOSH after school care and AUSBIOTA. All these activities were a great success with excellent participation numbers. School visitor numbers have increased with the Education Officer continuing to expand links with local high/primary schools along with pre-school and after school care groups. AUSBIOTA was attended by six schools from Maclean, Coffs Harbour, Nambucca and Port Macquarie over the three day program (190 Students) which is run in conjunction with Taronga Zoo and the Australian Museum. The Gondwanna bed has been revamped with new signage installed. The signage allows the guides to better explain the evolution of Australian plants and assist AUSBIOTA delivery.

 

21.     Woolgoolga Beach Rehabilitation Project $19,419

 

This 2014/15 project is co-funded by an Office of Environment & Heritage (OEH) grant, due to insufficient sand, Council has been unable to proceed with the project per the current Part V. Council met with OEH in February and they advised to scrape 200mm max off the beach from low tide to high tide mark; the best time to undertake the works is after winter (between September to March). The Part V needs to be amended and Council is required to commit to undertaking the works by October 2017 at the latest. Council will also liaise with Jetty Dune Care to discuss establishing a Woolgoolga Dune Care to assist with the revegetation of the created dune. OEH have been contacted to extend the grant until December 2017, Council has committed to sending the DRAFT Part V to OEH for approval, OEH officer are to meet with Council on site prior to the works commencing first or second week in October. Due to the matching grant funds it is requested Council also revote the matching EL funds.

 

It is recommended the remaining funds of $19,418.82 be revoted to 2017/18.

Options:

In considering this report Council has the following options:

1.     Adopt the recommendations provided to Council.

2.     Amend the recommendations provided to Council and then adopt. This may impact upon the projected budgeted position.

3.      Reject the recommendations provided to Council. This would revert the budget back to its original position prior to the recommendations being applied.

Sustainability Assessment:

•     Environment

The Environmental Levy program is designed to ensure that environmental strategies are addressed. All projects funded have resulted in beneficial outcomes for the environment of the Coffs Harbour Local Government Area (LGA).

•     Social

The Environmental Levy Policy includes the following criteria to be used in assessing EL submissions:

-     protect and / or rehabilitate the natural environment;

-     strategic integration;

-     generating a community benefit;

-     is community based;

-     the ability to attract other funding; and

-     improve aesthetic quality of natural environment and / or raise community awareness and education.

Many projects included in the program each year are undertaken by community groups.

 

•     Civic Leadership

Council’s Environmental Levy Program seeks to promote sound environmental practices and promotes leadership and involvement in key environmental issues.

•     Economic – Broader Economic Implications

The Environmental Levy Program funds environmental projects that would not otherwise be undertaken with general Council funding.

•     Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

The Environmental Levy Program is funded through a special rate and is accounted for separately.  This program has been included in the Council's Delivery Program and therefore will assist in achieving the Council’s strategic objectives.

The EL Program has a balance of $128,836 after taking into account the variations and revotes recommended in this report.  These funds will be available for allocation to future EL applications.

 

Risk Analysis:

 

Each individual project will have individual risk profiles which will be considered by the project owners.

Consultation:

Council staff and relevant community groups have contributed individual reports which have been collated and reviewed to prepare this report.

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

Council receives quarterly reports on the status of Environmental Levy projects throughout the year.

Implementation Date / Priority:

 

The recommendations of this report will be implemented immediately upon Council’s resolution.

 

Conclusion:

 

This report summarises the status of the Environmental Levy Program projects and the proposed budget actions as at 30 June 2017 for Council’s consideration.

  


SC17/54       Planning Proposal PP_2016_Coffs_005_00 to Permit A Child Care Centre on Lot 3 DP 735083 Craft Close Toormina

Author:                         Senior Planner / Urban Designer

Authoriser:                  Director Sustainable Communities

MyCoffs:                      B.1 A thriving and sustainable local economy

Attachments:               ATT1   SC17/54   Planning Proposal to Permit a Centre-based Child Care Facility on Lot 3 DP 735083 Craft Close Toormina  

 

Executive Summary

At its Ordinary Meeting of 8 December 2016, Council resolved to support a Planning Proposal to modify Coffs Harbour Local Environmental Plan (LEP) 2013 so that a development application can be lodged for the use of Lot 3 DP 735083 Craft Close Toormina for a centre-based child care facility. A centre-based child care facility has been operating without development consent on the subject land since 2010.

A Gateway Determination from the NSW Department of Planning and Environment (DPE) was issued on 23 December 2016 and later amended on the 14 September 2017. Public and stakeholder consultation of the Planning Proposal (PP_2016_Coffs_005_00) was undertaken between June and September 2017. No submissions were received.

The Planning Proposal is consistent with the North Coast Regional Plan; with all relevant SEPPs; and with applicable section 117 Directions, other than Direction 6.3 Site Specific Provisions. The inconsistency with Direction 6.3 is justifiable because it is a minor matter relating to a single use of a single site. The DPE, in its Gateway Determination of December 2016, agreed that any inconsistency with Direction 4.3 Flood Prone Lands is of minor significance. The Planning Proposal is also consistent with Council’s MyCoffs Community Strategic Plan.

There is sufficient information to enable Council to support the Planning Proposal and to finalise it under delegation. This will amend Schedule 1 of LEP 2013 to permit (with Council consent) a centre-based child care facility on the subject land.

 

Recommendation:

That Council:

1.       Endorses Planning Proposal PP_2016_Coffs_005_00 – to permit (with Council consent) a centre-based child care facility with consent on Lot 3 DP 735083, 5 Craft Close, Toormina (Attachment 1).

2.       Delegates to the General Manager the authority issued by the NSW Department of Planning and Environment to exercise the functions of the Minister under section 59 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 for the purpose of finalising this Planning Proposal.

3.       Continues to consult with the NSW Department of Planning and Environment on the terms of the amendment to Coffs Harbour Local Environmental Plan 2013, to ensure its consistency with the objectives, outcomes and provisions of the Planning Proposal.

4.       Informs the land owners and their consultant of Council’s decision.

 

Report

Description of Item:

At its Ordinary Meeting of 8 December 2016, Council resolved to:

1.   Endorse and forward a Planning Proposal (Attachment 1) to permit a child care centre with Council consent on Lot 3 DP 735083 Craft Close Toormina, to NSW Planning and Environment seeking a “Gateway determination”.

2.   Request that the Secretary of the NSW Department of Planning and Environment issue a written authorisation to Council to exercise delegation of the plan making functions under section 59 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 in respect of the Planning Proposal.

3.   Request the proponent provide a land contamination assessment (consistent with Council’s Contaminated Land Policy) post-Gateway determination and prior to public exhibition.

4.   Resolve to publicly exhibit the Planning Proposal and undertake government agency consultation based on the Gateway determination issued by NSW Planning and Environment.

5.   Note that a further report will be brought back to Council for consideration following the public exhibition of the Planning Proposal.

This report relates to item 5 of that resolution. The Planning Proposal involves the modification of Coffs Harbour Local Environmental Plan (LEP) 2013 so that a development application can be lodged for the use of Lot 3 DP 735083 Craft Close Toormina for a centre-based child care facility. A centre-based child care facility has been operating without development consent on the subject land since 2010.

Coffs Harbour City Council LEP 2013 prohibits centre-based child care facilities in the IN1 General Industrial zone. Under the previous instrument (LEP 2000), it was a use permitted with Council consent. A centre-based child care facility has been operating without development consent at 5 Craft Close, Toormina since 2010. The site is used as an out-of-school-hours care facility, known locally as the “Fun Factory”, which services six local schools and is licensed to care for up to 150 children per day. The operator of that centre has agreed to lodge a development application for a centre-based child care facility should the Planning Proposal be supported to permit the use.

A Gateway Determination from the NSW Department of Planning and Environment (DPE) was issued on 23 December 2016 and later amended on the 14 September 2017 to extend the timeframe for completing the LEP and to change the name of the land use from a ‘child care centre’ to a ‘centre-based child care facility’ to accord with the newly made State Environmental Planning Policy (SEPP) (Educational Establishments and Child Care Facilities) 2017. Additional information was required from the applicant to satisfy the Gateway Determination, and this was supplied to Council by the applicant in May 2017.

Public consultation was undertaken between June and September 2017. No submissions were received. A copy of the Planning Proposal was also sent to Early Childhood Education and Care Directorate [Service NSW] (ECECD) on 19 June 2017, requesting a response by 7 July 2017. No response has been received from ECECD at the time of finalising this report. The Rural Fire Service was consulted and has no objection to the Planning Proposal proceeding.

The Planning Proposal is consistent with the North Coast Regional Plan; with all relevant SEPPs; and with applicable section 117 Directions, other than Direction 6.3 Site Specific Provisions. The inconsistency with Direction 6.3 is justifiable because it is a minor matter relating to a single use of a single site. The DPE, in its Gateway Determination of December 2016, agreed that any inconsistency with Direction 4.3 Flood Prone Lands is of minor significance. The Planning Proposal is also consistent with Council’s MyCoffs Community Strategic Plan.

The intended outcome of the Planning Proposal will be achieved by:

·     Amending Coffs Harbour LEP 2013 by adding a new item to the Additional Permitted Uses Map (sheet APU_006B) that will identify Lot 3 DP 735083 as item “17A” in Schedule 1 of the LEP (Appendix A of the Planning Proposal).

·     Amending Coffs Harbour LEP 2013 instrument by adding a new item in Schedule 1 of the LEP as follows:

17A Use of Certain Land at Craft Close, Toormina

(1)  This clause applies to land at Craft Close, Toormina, being Lot 3 DP 735083, shown as “17A” on the Additional Permitted Uses Map.

(2)  Development for the purpose of a centre-based child care facility is permitted with development consent.”

The subject land is Lot 3 DP 735083, located at number 5 Craft Close, Toormina (Figure 1). It has an area of approximately 2110 m2 with 28 metres frontage to Craft Close. It backs onto a vegetated buffer strip used to prohibit access to Hogbin Drive on the eastern side of the land. The site contains a large industrial shed with a footprint of approximately 720m2 that is sufficiently tall to accommodate a mezzanine level. The balance of the site is used for open-air play equipment and on-site parking for cars and buses. The site is fully fenced and has a single driveway to access Craft Close. 

The current zoning under Coffs Harbour LEP 2013 is IN1 General Industrial, as shown in Figure 2. The IN1 General Industrial zoning of the subject land will remain unchanged and the related planning controls in the LEP will also remain unchanged.

 

        FIGURE 1 – Subject land                                           FIGURE 2 – Existing zones under

                                                                                            Coffs Harbour LEP 2013

Issues:

The key issue is the compatibility of a centre-based child care facility with neighbouring industrial land uses. The concrete batching plant immediately south of the subject land is not an ideal neighbouring use given it can involve noise, dust and regular heavy machinery movements. However, the two uses have been neighbours since 2010, with minimal complaints to Council. The concrete batching plant is also required to comply with the Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997 and the conditions of its approval, regardless of what use is being undertaken next door. The centre-based child care facility exists already and serves a valuable purpose to the local community. A land use conflict risk assessment was prepared and exhibited with the Planning Proposal. Other locations could cite this Planning Proposal as a precedent but they would need to be considered on merit in any case.

Other issues such as bushfire hazard, flooding and site contamination have all been investigated and addressed to a satisfactory level. Fire and safety compliance has been addressed other than for some Building Code of Australia (BCA) matters relating to access. These will have to be addressed in the DA that Council anticipates for this site shortly after this Planning Proposal has been finalised.

Options:

Council has two options in relation to this Planning Proposal, including:

1.   Resolve to adopt the recommendation to support the Planning Proposal and finalise it using its delegation from the NSW Department of Planning and Environment.

Comment:    This option provides a path for the current use of the site to obtain development consent as a centre-based child care facility.

2.   Resolve not to proceed with the Planning Proposal.

Comment:    This option would result in Council continuing with compliance action to establish whether the centre-based child care facility should be allowed to continue to operate on the site, given that it does not have development consent.

This report recommends that Council pursue Option 1 as outlined.

Sustainability Assessment:

•     Environment

Environmental sustainability issues such as waste, stormwater, energy consumption and vegetation retention, etc, can be addressed as part of a future development application, should this Planning Proposal be supported.

•     Social

Social sustainability issues addressed in supporting information indicate that closing the facility would have a significant impact on local families. It would also result in the loss of jobs unless a new site could be found in a zone that permits the use.

•     Civic Leadership

Civic leadership is demonstrated by addressing the relevant themes and objectives of MyCoffs Community Strategic Plan in the Planning Proposal.

•     Economic – Broader Economic Implications

Child care outside of school hours is important to encourage greater workforce participation while not neglecting the needs of children. Losing 150 child care places would be a major impact on the Coffs Harbour community. It may result in working parents reducing hours or giving up a job to care for children that would have used the facility. Amending Coffs Harbour LEP 2013 to permit a centre-based child care facility on the subject land would enable the lodgement of a subsequent development application by the proponent, seeking retention and use of the existing development on the land. This outcome would result in job retention associated with the centre-based child care facility and economic benefits.

Should the centre-based child care facility be abandoned at any time in the future, the site would still be zoned to permit a wide range of industrial and industry related business uses.

•     Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

Given that the request for an amendment to Coffs Harbour LEP 2013 is a proponent-led project, Council’s adopted Fees and Charges apply. There are no implications for Council’s Delivery Program or Operational Plan as this process has been funded by the applicant.

Risk Analysis:

There is a risk that permitting a centre-based child care facility on the subject land could inhibit the industrial use of other land in the vicinity. This risk is minimised by it being limited to only one site in this Planning Proposal.

There is a risk that the proponent may not proceed to lodge a development application. This would be counterproductive as they are paying for this Planning Proposal and have indicated that they will lodge an application. Failure to do so would result in Council expanding its compliance action.

Since this Planning Proposal commenced, Council has pursued fire and safety issues on the site as a separate process to ensure that risk to site users is minimised through compliance with Building Code of Australia (BCA) standards. The remaining BCA matters relating to access will have to be addressed in the development application that Council anticipates for this site shortly after this Planning Proposal has been finalised.

Other risk related issues such as bushfire hazard, flooding and site contamination have all been investigated and addressed to a satisfactory level.

Consultation:

Consultation was undertaken with the public and relevant Government agencies in accordance with the Gateway Determination of 23 December 2016. Public consultation was undertaken from Wednesday 7 June 2017 to Friday 7 July 2017 and from Wednesday 23 August 2017 to Friday 22 September 2017. No submissions were received. A copy of the Planning Proposal was also sent to Early Childhood Education and Care Directorate [Service NSW] (ECECD) on 19 June 2017, requesting a response by 7 July 2017. No response has been received from ECECD at the time of finalising this report. The Rural Fire Service was consulted and has no objection to the Planning Proposal proceeding.

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

The following policies and statutory documents are relevant to this report and have been addressed:

-     Coffs Harbour Local Environmental Plan 2013;

-     North Coast Regional Plan 2036;

-     State Environmental Planning Policies (SEPPs);

-     Section 117 Ministerial Directions;

-     Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 and Regulations; and

-     MyCoffs Community Strategic Plan

Implementation Date / Priority:

Should Council resolve to progress this Planning Proposal, it will be promptly forwarded to NSW Planning and Environment under delegation to finalise. This should take place in November 2017, with the amendment being made shortly after that.

Conclusion:

At its Ordinary Meeting of 8 December 2016, Council resolved to support a Planning Proposal to modify Coffs Harbour Local Environmental Plan (LEP) 2013 so that a development application can be lodged for the use of Lot 3 DP 735083 Craft Close Toormina for a centre-based child care facility. A Gateway Determination from NSW DPE was issued and later amended to change the name of the land use from a ‘child care centre’ to a ‘centre-based child care facility’ to accord with the newly made State Environmental Planning Policy (Educational Establishments and Child Care Facilities) 2017. Additional information was required from the applicant to satisfy the Gateway Determination and this was supplied to Council by the applicant in May 2017.

No submissions were received during public and government agency consultation. The Planning Proposal is consistent with the North Coast Regional Plan and with all relevant SEPPs. The Planning Proposal is consistent with applicable section 117 Directions, other than Direction 6.3 Site Specific Provisions. The inconsistency with Direction 6.3 is justifiable because it is a minor matter relating to a single use of a single site. The Department of Planning and Environment, in its Gateway Determination of December 2016, agreed that any inconsistency with Direction 4.3 Flood Prone Lands is of minor significance. The Planning Proposal is also consistent with Council’s MyCoffs Community Strategic Plan.

There is sufficient information to enable Council to support the Planning Proposal and finalise it under delegation. This will amend Schedule 1 of LEP 2013 to permit (with Council consent) a centre-based child care facility on the subject land.

 


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SC17/55       Planning Proposal to Permit Detached Dual Occupancy Development In the RU2 Rural Landscape Zone

Author:                         Planner / Urban Designer

Authoriser:                  Director Sustainable Communities

MyCoffs:                      B.1 A thriving and sustainable local economy

Attachments:               ATT1   SC17/55   Detached Rural Dual Occupancy - Draft Discussion Paper - September 2017

ATT2   SC17/55   Planning Proposal - to Permit Dual Occupancy (Detached) with Consent in the RU2 Rural Landscape Zone

ATT3   SC17/55   Draft Amendments Coffs Harbour Development Control Plan 2015 - Detached Dual Occupancy  

 

Executive Summary

The purpose of this report is to present a draft Discussion Paper (Attachment 1) that addresses various issues around detached rural dual occupancy and whether it should be permitted in the RU2 Rural Landscape (RU2) zone under Coffs Harbour Local Environmental Plan (LEP) 2013. The experience of other local government areas (LGAs) is also examined within the draft Discussion Paper. The draft Discussion Paper concludes that Council should amend LEP 2013 to permit dual occupancy (detached) dwellings in the RU2 zone (noting that this is in addition to attached dual occupancy which is already permitted in the zone).

If Council agrees with recommendations contained within the draft Discussion Paper, then it is recommended that it seek a Gateway Determination from NSW Planning and Environment (NSW P&E) to amend LEP 2013. A Planning Proposal (PP) to make this amendment is included as Attachment 2. 

If Council agrees to proceed with the PP it should also make consequential changes to Coffs Harbour Development Control Plan (DCP) 2015 to provide guidance about what needs to be addressed in future development applications. The DCP changes are included as Attachment 3.

 

Recommendation:

That Council:

1.       Adopt in principle the Detached Rural Dual Occupancy – Draft Discussion Paper – September 2017 (Attachment 1).

2.       Endorse a Planning Proposal (Attachment 2) to amend Coffs Harbour LEP 2013 to permit dual occupancy (detached) in the RU2 Rural Landscape zone, and forward it to NSW Planning and Environment seeking a “Gateway Determination”.

3.       Request that the Secretary of NSW Planning and Environment issue a written authorisation to Council to exercise delegation of the plan making functions under section 59 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act in respect of the Planning Proposal.

4.       Subject to the Gateway Determination from NSW Planning and Environment, place the Planning Proposal on public exhibition and undertake government agency consultation.

5.       Subject to the Gateway Determination from NSW Planning and Environment, place the draft Detached Rural Dual Occupancy Discussion Paper (Attachment 1) on public exhibition with the Planning Proposal.

6.       Subject to the Gateway Determination from NSW Planning and Environment, place a proposed amendment to Coffs Harbour Development Control Plan 2015 (Attachment 3) on public exhibition with the Planning Proposal, to include provisions that assist applicants in preparing applications for detached rural dual occupancy development.

7.       Note that a further report will be brought back to Council for consideration of any submissions following the public exhibition of all three documents.

 

Report

Description of Item:

At the Ordinary meeting of 23 March 2017, while considering the environmental studies for the West Sapphire Moonee Large Lot Residential Investigation Area, Council resolved to review both LEP 2013 and DCP 2015 with a view to potentially include provisions to allow “detached” dual occupancy as a land use that is permitted with consent in the RU2 Rural Landscape (RU2) zone.  The relevant resolution is highlighted as follows:

1.   Note the findings of the Korora West Sapphire Moonee Large Lot Residential Investigation Area: Environmental Studies March 2017 (Attachment 1), in respect to the Maccues Road, Wakelands Road/Fairview Road/Sugarmill Road, and Gaudrons Road/The Mountain Way precincts undertake a partial review of Coffs LEP 2013 and any relevant Development Control Plans as a matter of urgency with a view to possible inclusion of detached dual occupancies in the land use table in the RU2 Rural Landscape Zone under the list of uses that are permissible with consent.

This issue was also addressed at the Ordinary meeting of 27 April 2017, where Council resolved to allocate funds for a consultant to undertake the partial review referred to above.

A draft Discussion Paper (Attachment 1) has been prepared by a planning consultant to:

·     Evaluate the positives and negatives of permitting detached dual occupancy in the RU2 zone under Coffs Harbour LEP 2013;

·     Review the experience of other northern NSW councils that already permit detached rural dual occupancy;

·     Consider the history of this land use in the Coffs Harbour LGA; and

·     Make recommendations to Council as to how it should proceed on this matter.

The draft Discussion Paper concludes that Council should amend LEP 2013 to permit dual occupancy (detached) dwellings in the RU2 zone (noting that this is in addition to attached dual occupancy which is already permitted in the zone). If Council agrees with recommendations contained within the draft Discussion Paper, then it is recommended that it seek a Gateway Determination from NSW Planning and Environment (NSW P&E) to amend LEP 2013. A PP to make this amendment is included as Attachment 2. 

If Council agrees to proceed with the PP it should also make consequential changes to Coffs Harbour Development Control Plan (DCP) 2015 to provide guidance about what needs to be addressed in future development applications. The DCP changes are included as Attachment 3.

Issues:

·        Current Planning Controls in the RU2 zone

Coffs Harbour LEP 2013 currently permits (with consent) Dual occupancies (attached) in the RU2 Rural Landscape zone.  Rural workers dwellings, Dual occupancy (detached), and Secondary dwellings are prohibited in the RU2 zone.

Coffs Harbour DCP 2015 contains a range of general standards and design requirements that would apply to any application for Dual occupancies (attached) in a RU2 zone.  It does not refer to Dual occupancy (detached) as it is a prohibited use.

The North Coast Regional Plan (NCRP) includes actions on residential and rural residential housing but does not specifically address rural dual occupancy (detached or attached).

SEPP (Rural Lands) 2008 outlines principles that are relevant to any consideration of changes to rural planning controls but does not specifically address rural dual occupancy (detached or attached).

The draft Coffs Harbour Rural Lands Strategy (currently being prepared) lists the need to review the prohibition of detached rural dual occupancy as an issue, however this document has not yet been considered by Council. This desired amendment to Coffs Harbour LEP 2013 would normally arise from an adopted strategy that has been agreed to by NSW Planning and Environment.  If Council agrees to proceed with a PP, it will pre-empt the finalisation of this strategy.

·        Previous Planning Controls in the Rural Zone

Dual occupancy (detached) has been a prohibited use in Coffs Harbour LEPs in rural zones since 1988.  Prior to that, Interim Development Order (IDO) No 80 also prohibited the use but permitted rural workers’ dwellings (providing some opportunity for additional detached rural dwellings).  IDO No 80 also contained generous concessional lot provisions that allowed rural land to be subdivided into lots as small as 0.1 hectares for occupation by the owner, a relative of the owner or a farm worker.

With the Gazettal of the North Coast Regional Environmental Plan (REP) in 1988, it became clear that the State government opposed detached rural dual occupancy and would only permit councils to allow attached dual occupancy in rural areas.  This was part of a concerted effort to protect agriculture and rural land in the North Coast region from the pressure of rural residential development.  The REP also required councils to remove concessional lot provisions and to plan for small lot rural residential development through rural residential strategies and rural residential zoning.  The North Coast REP (as it applied to Coffs Harbour LGA) was repealed in 2013.

·        Other Local Government Areas

Armidale Dumaresq Council included detached dual occupancy dwellings as a permitted use in rural zones from the outset with its Standard LEP (2012), and so did Gloucester Shire Council (2010).  North Coast councils started out by prohibiting detached rural dual occupancy in rural zones, but at least seven of them have now introduced it into their Standard LEPs over the last seven years.  Ballina Shire Council is currently (as at the time of writing this report) amending its LEP to permit detached dual occupancy in rural zones in its LGA.  It will be the eighth North Coast Council to make this change.

Some northern NSW councils use only one rural zone and some have two.  Although the approach to this issue varies, the trend is towards permitting detached dual occupancy in at least one rural zone.  Some councils also permit secondary dwellings in the prevailing rural zone. 

Looking more closely at councils that have permitted detached rural dual occupancy, the draft Discussion Paper identifies that none are unhappy with the decision so far.  Byron Shire has received 40 applications in the first two years.  Lismore received 31 applications in the first three years, and MidCoast has received just three applications in the first year.  All three councils indicate that some applications have been for existing unauthorised rural dwellings and some of these have been the subject of compliance action in the past.  All have imposed section 94 contributions on approved applications.  These numbers are relatively low given that a proportion of them represent “pent-up” demand.  Lismore LGA has approximately 109,000 hectares zoned RU1, so ten applications per year is still a small proportion of the overall land area that is zoned rural.

·        Potential Impacts of Detached Rural Dual Occupancy

There are a number of potential short and long term impacts of detached dual occupancy development in rural zones that are important considerations. These include:

-     The pressure for subdivision of land once two dwellings have been approved. Methods to address this issue include locating the two dwellings close together and ensuring they use the same driveway to access a public road;

-     Ensuring the development does not impair the use of the subject land or nearby land for agriculture (such as grazing and horticulture) or rural industries (such as quarries). In order to address this issue, provisions have been recommended that ensure adequate buffers between proposed dwellings and horticultural land.  Provisions minimising potential impacts on the rural character or scenic amenity are also recommended;

-     Other site related issues include on-site wastewater disposal and the physical characteristics of the land (for example, steepness, flooding, bushfire, vegetation clearing and land contamination).

These potential impacts have been addressed in the proposed LEP and DCP clauses (contained in Attachments 2 & 3). Any eventual Development Applications would be assessed on their merit in relation to all of these impacts.

Options:

Some options available to Council in relation to this issue are:

1     Do not change Coffs Harbour LEP 2013 as it already provides for dual occupancy (attached) in the RU2 Rural Landscape zone and Council has yet to complete its Rural Lands Strategy.

Comment: This option will result in rural zoned lands remaining in their current development permissibility arrangement, thereby not allowing this type of development in these areas.

2     Amend Coffs Harbour LEP 2013 to permit dual occupancy (detached) in the RU2 Rural Landscape zone (in addition to attached dual occupancy, which is already permissible in the zone). This will permit additional detached rural dwellings that are not size limited.

Comment: This option provides a path to enable rural zoned landholders to obtain development consent for detached dual occupancy development.

This report recommends that Council pursue Option 2.  If it is supported, then commensurate changes to Coffs Harbour DCP 2015 are also recommended (see Attachment 3).  The draft Discussion Paper contains additional information about these and other options and why Option 2 is supported.

Sustainability Assessment:

•     Environment

Environmental sustainability issues are summarised in the PP (Attachment 2).  The supporting information to the PP provides enough surety in relation to addressing any potential environmental impacts in order for the proposal to proceed to a Gateway Determination. Council will still require an ecological assessment to accompany any eventual Development Application, consistent with the requirements of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.

•     Social

The PP will allow an additional dwelling option for rural land owners, which has the potential to provide increased social, financial and physical support for residents of rural areas.  It also allows an ageing farming population to support family members.  It may also permit farmers to keep farms productive by using an additional dwelling to attract and retain labour or provide an additional income stream to the farm.

•     Civic Leadership

If Council supports permitting detached dual occupancy in rural areas, the PP process will be undertaken in accordance with the provisions of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (EP&A Act), as well as the EP&A Regulation 2000. 

The PP also seeks to implement appropriate and relevant objectives and associated strategies of the MyCoffs Community Strategic Plan, including a thriving and sustainable local economy, and a natural environment sustained for the future.

•     Economic – Broader Economic Implications

In terms of capital investment, additional rural dwelling construction has a small potential to generate additional income to the local economy through employment of local tradespeople.  Post-construction, the dwellings will add in a small way to housing stock and this may assist the local economy generally.

•     Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

Given that this request for an amendment to Coffs Harbour LEP 2013 was Council initiated, costs have been accounted for in Council’s Delivery Program and Operational Plan.

Risk Analysis:

The attached draft Discussion Paper assesses the positives and negatives of any decision to permit detached dual occupancy in rural areas.  There is sufficient information to allow Council to support a PP and commensurate DCP controls.  The recommended LEP and DCP controls should ensure that any future application will be properly assessed and only approved where any constraints affecting the land can be managed effectively.

Consultation:

Should Council agree to prepare a Planning Proposal and DCP amendment then it will be sent for a Gateway Determination prior to public exhibition.  All documents (including the draft discussion paper) will be exhibited in accordance with the NSW P&E Gateway Determination and relevant provisions of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (EP&A Act).  Consultation will also be undertaken with all relevant Government agencies in accordance with the Gateway Determination

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

The following policies and statutory documents have been considered in the preparation of this report:

·      Coffs Harbour Local Environmental Plan 2013 and Coffs Harbour Development Control Plan 2015;

·      Coffs Harbour Local Growth Management Strategy component documents;

·      North Coast Regional Plan 2017;

·      State Environmental Planning Policies (SEPPs);

·      Section 117 Ministerial Directions;

·      Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 and Regulations; and

·      MyCoffs Community Strategic Plan.

Implementation Date / Priority:

Should Council resolve to support a PP and DCP changes, the timeframe for completion is governed by the EP&A Act 1979, and will be determined by the NSW Department of Planning and Environment in accordance with its Gateway Determination. The anticipated overall projected timeline is summarised in the PP (Attachment 2).

Conclusion:

This report presents a draft Discussion Paper (Attachment 1) that addresses the positives and negatives of detached rural dual occupancy and whether it should be permitted in the RU2 Rural Landscape zone under Coffs Harbour LEP 2013.  It examines current and past planning controls in Coffs Harbour LGA and how other Northern NSW councils have dealt with this issue.

The draft Discussion Paper (and this report) recommends that Council support a Planning Proposal (Attachment 2) and commensurate DCP changes (Attachment 3) to permit detached rural dual occupancy.  Following receipt of a Gateway Determination from NSW P&E and the satisfactory resolution of any requirements included with the Gateway Determination, the draft Discussion Paper, Planning Proposal and DCP changes will be publicly exhibited together.  The results of the public exhibition will then be reported back to Council.

 

 


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SC17/56       Development Application 0825/17DA - Emergency Services Facility and Research Station (including additions) - Lot 1 DP 1207497 & Lot 7006 DP 1056773, Third Avenue, Arrawarra Headland

Author:                         Development Assessment Officer - Senior

Authoriser:                  Director Sustainable Communities

MyCoffs:                      A.1 A vibrant and inclusive place

Attachments:               ATT1   SC17/56   Development Application 0825/17DA - Section 79C

ATT2   SC17/56   Development Application 0825/17 - Development Plans

ATT3   SC17/56   Development Application 0825/17DA - Draft Conditions 

ATT4   SC17/56   CONFIDENTIAL          Development Application 0825/17 - Submissions

Confidential in accordance with Section 10A(2)(e) of the Local Government Act as it contains information that would, if disclosed, prejudice the maintenance of law.  

 

Executive Summary

This report provides an assessment of Development Application 0825/17 for ‘Emergency Services Facility’ and ‘Research Station’ (including additions) at Lot 1 DP 1207497 and Lot 7006 DP 1056773, Arrawarra Headland.

A component of the development, being the telecommunications tower used in association with the marine rescue service, exceeds the maximum building height for the site which is 8.5 metres. The proposed height of the telecommunications tower at its highest point is 22 metres.

In November 2008, the then NSW Department of Planning issued a Planning Circular outlining requirements in relation to the determination and reporting of development applications involving variations to development standards. The Circular specifies that all applications which propose a variation of greater than 10% to a development standard must be determined by full Council rather than by staff under delegated authority.

Given that the development incorporates a variation to a development standard of more than 10%, the application is reported to Council for determination.

It is recommended that the application be approved subject to a number of conditions.

 

Recommendation:

That Council:

1.       Support the request to vary a development standard made pursuant to Clause 4.6 of Coffs Harbour Local Environmental Plan 2013 for the variation to the maximum building height under Clause 4.3(2) of Coffs Harbour Local Environmental Plan 2013 in this particular case.

2.       Approve Development Application No. 0825/17 for an ‘Emergency Services Facility’ and ‘Research Station’ (including additions) at Lot 1 DP 1207497 and Lot 7006 DP 1056773, Arrawarra Headland, subject to the conditions in Attachment 3.

3.       Advise persons who made a submission on Development Application No. 0825/17 of Council’s decision.

 

Report

Description of Item:

·   The Site

The site is Lot 1 DP 1207497 and Lot 7006 DP 1056773, Arrawarra Headland.  The site currently accommodates an existing research and learning facility used by the University of New England (UNE). The headland comprises Crown land, which is located partly within National Park, partly within the Coffs Coast Regional Park and partly within a reserve for the existing research facility.  Surrounding the headland is the Solitary Island Marine Park and existing residential development.

The subject land is zoned RE1 Public Recreation and E1 National Parks under the Coffs Harbour Local Environmental Plan 2013.

·   The Development

The proposed development involves:

§ Refurbishment of the existing research and learning facility used by UNE to include:

-     removal of some internal walls;

-     renovation of existing kitchen and bathroom facilities;

-     replacement of doors and windows;

-     addition of marine rescue office and radio room; and

-     associated paved areas, shade structures and flagpole.

§ Construction of new boat storage shed, including toilet facilities and mezzanine storage areas.

§ Installation of new telecommunications tower.

§ Upgrading of existing driveway and provision of parking and associated manoeuvring areas.

The development is proposed to be used as a shared facility between the Woolgoolga Marine Rescue Service and UNE.

Issues:

Variation to the Maximum Height Limit

A component of the development, being the telecommunications tower used in association with the marine rescue service, exceeds the maximum building height for the locality which is 8.5 metres for that part of the site zoned RE1 Public Recreation. The remainder of the site does not have a maximum building height.

The proposed height of the telecommunications tower, at its highest point is 22 metres. The remainder of the development is below 8.5 metres in height.

Given that a component of the development exceeds the maximum building height, the applicant is seeking to vary the development standard contained within Clause 4.3 of the Coffs Harbour Local Environmental Plan 2013.

In support of the proposed variation the applicant suggests that the proposed encroachment comprises a single telecommunications tower that is necessary for operational reasons to allow for effective radio communication to vessels in distress at sea. Further, that the single tower is unlikely to have an impact on the visual quality of the locality.

Given the nature of the encroachment, being a single pole, and where this encroachment occurs on the development site and that this additional height is not expected to result in any additional impacts in the locality such as view loss, privacy or overshadowing and that the development still achieves the objectives of the development standard and the zone the proposed variation is considered satisfactory in the circumstances.

Options:

1.   Adopt the recommendation thereby granting consent to the application, subject to conditions.

2.   Reject the recommendation and list reasons for refusal to the application.

It is recommended that Council pursue option one as outlined above.

Sustainability Assessment:

•     Environment

The proposed development is not expected to result in any unacceptable environmental impacts. A complete assessment of potential environmental impacts is provided in the S79C Assessment Report provided as Attachment 1 to this report.

•     Social

It is considered that the development is unlikely to result in any significant adverse social impacts to the locality. Conditions will be imposed to ensure that potential amenity impacts during construction are minimised.

•     Civic Leadership

The proposed development is considered consistent with the aims and objectives of the MyCoffs Community Strategic Plan.

•     Economic – Broader Economic Implications

The development is unlikely to result in significant adverse economic impacts.

•     Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

There are no implications for Council’s Delivery Program/adopted Operational Plan.

Risk Analysis:

A risk analysis has been undertaken and it is considered that approval of the development application as recommended, does not pose a significant risk to Council.

Consultation:

The application was advertised and notified in accordance the Council’s Development Control Plan 2015 for a period of 14 days and two (2) submissions were received.

An assessment of the submissions is contained with the section 79C evaluation (Attachment 1).

A copy of these submissions forms a confidential attachment (Attachment 4) to this report, as the submissions may contain personal or private information or other considerations against disclosure as prescribed under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009.

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

·     Section 79C Evaluation

Section 79C of the Environmental Planning and Assessment 1979, specifies the matters which a consent authority must consider when determining a development application.

A section 79C evaluation is provided as Attachment 1.

·     Relevant Statutory Instruments

The statutory instruments relevant to the development include the following:

-     Coffs Harbour Local Environmental Plan 2013

-     State Environmental Planning Policy No. 55 - Remediation of Land

-     State Environmental Planning Policy No. 71 - Coastal Protection

-     Draft State Environmental Planning Policy - Coastal Management

-     Coffs Harbour Local Environmental Plan 2013

-     Coffs Harbour Development Control Plan 2015

Each of these statutory instruments is considered in detail in the Section 79C assessment appended to this report.

Implementation Date / Priority:

In the event that Council adopts the recommendation, a formal notice of determination will be issued for the development application and persons who made a submission will be notified. A formal notice of determination is valid for five years and the applicant can act on the development consent at any time within that period, subject to complying with relevant conditions of the consent.

Conclusion:

This report provides an assessment of the application that has been undertaken in accordance with all statutory requirements and it is recommended that the application be approved subject to a number of conditions.

 


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SI17/25         Acceleration of the 2018/2019 Infrastructure Design Program

Author:                         Director Sustainable Infrastructure

Authoriser:                  Director Sustainable Infrastructure

MyCoffs:                      D.2 We have effective use of public resources.

Attachments:               Nil

 

Executive Summary

The quantity of on-the-shelf “shovel-ready” infrastructure designs is currently limited when assessed against Council’s overall annual program of infrastructure works. To this point in time, the annual design process has been incrementally addressing this issue but progress is not rapid. In the main, the detailed design work for many projects cannot proceed until the first day of the financial year in which the projects are due because the financial resources to complete the work is not available until that time.

 

This report proposes a methodology to improve that situation. The report recommends that 50% of next year’s infrastructure designs could be completed to a detailed level in time to properly inform the setting of the 2018/19 Infrastructure Budget if several amendments to the current 2017/18 Budget and Works Program are adopted. The methodology described does not require an injection of additional capital beyond that already committed in the existing 2017/18 Financial Budgets and therefore protects the target financial ratios which Council has already adopted.

 

This report further recommends that the same methodology also be employed for the 2018/2019 Financial Year to achieve a final and sustainable situation in which 100% of detailed project designs are available to inform the setting of the 2019/20 Budget, and all future annual budgets from that time on.

 

 

Recommendation:

That Council:

1.   Endorse the creation of the Design Acceleration Project; and,

2.   Allocate a total of $700,000 of existing 2017/18 project budget capital to the sole purpose of accelerating detailed designs for the proposed 2018/19 capital program by adopting the additional recommendations as follows:

2.1. Reallocate the amounts of $225,000 of the Bardens Bridge Budget; $50,000 of the existing Bridges Budget; $30,000 of the existing Drainage Budget; and $15,000 of the existing Flooding Budget to fund the Design Acceleration Project.

2.2. Endorse the reprogramming of the Antaries Avenue Drainage Project from a one year to a two year project.

2.3. Reallocate the amount of $70,000 from the existing Antaries Avenue Drainage Project to fund the Design Acceleration Project.

2.4. Endorse the reprogramming of the Sewer Pump Upgrade Program to reduce the allocated 2017/18 budget by an amount of $320,000.

2.5. Reallocate the amount of $320,000 of the existing Sewer Pump Upgrade Program to fund the Design Acceleration Project.

 

Report

Description of Item:

The Design, Engineering, and Project Management resources which are available to the Strategic Asset Management Group (SAM) to complete the design and construction of infrastructure projects are currently set at a point which is sufficient to ably execute two bodies of work each year, comprising:

 

A.   Completion of 95% of the detailed design and construction requirements of the current year infrastructure projects at or about the program’s current level of intensity; and

 

B.   Completion of the basic conceptual (but not detailed) designs for most of the more complex projects for the next year’s proposed program to assist with the basic costing assessments of the next year’s projects.

 

Under the existing process, and within the current resource budgets allocations, there are limited additional resources available to conduct meaningful project design output beyond the current level of production.

 

An inherent weakness in this position is that the project budgets for each new years’ infrastructure program tend to be calculated and recommended to Council based upon the assessed costs of ‘concept only’ designs. Due to the limited development of ‘concept only’ designs any assessed costs based on those designs can be expected to be accurate only to within +/- 25% of the actual project costs which will be ultimately incurred. This has detrimental effects on the accuracy of financial and project expenditure planning and results in an increased likelihood that changes to adopted budgets will be required during the project execution phase.

 

A second weakness which flows from the current position is that Council is not as prepared, as might otherwise be the case, to respond to grant opportunities which are directly related to the currently endorsed Operational Plan projects. This is likely to translate into a lower success rate in winning beneficial grant outcomes.

 

In direct contrast to that situation is a growing corporate view that significant benefits to Council and the Community could be derived if the organisation were able to generate additional project design output sufficient to create and have available a 12 month stock of “shovel-ready” projects supported by ‘detailed’ rather than ‘concept’ designs.

 

If this level of readiness was achieved there would be a concurrent benefit to the annual budget setting process because each year’s infrastructure project budgets would be calculated using the more accurate Quantity Survey Estimates derived from Detailed Designs rather than Concept Designs as is currently the case. This would allow the development of budget estimates of an accuracy of +/- 10% rather than the current level of +/- 25%. Additionally, having access to a stock of projects plans and designs developed to a detailed, rather than concept, level is likely markedly assist Council’s grant application success rate.

 

The Current Issues and Limitations

 

Historically Council’s annual budget setting processes for infrastructure projects (and ultimately the amount of dollars allocated to each project) have been informed by calculating the probable project costs using ‘concept’ designs rather than the assessed project costs derived from more complete ‘detailed’ designs.

 

Theoretically, any infrastructure project budget which is derived and established from the Quantity Survey estimates based on ‘concept’ designs can be expected to differ (+/-) from the actual cost which is ultimately incurred by at least 25%. Conversely, an infrastructure project budget which is set from the Quantity Survey analysis based on a complete detailed engineering design can be expected to differ from the actual cost which is ultimately incurred by less than 10%.

 

The potential discrepancy between the two outcomes (10% vs 25%) automatically results from the fact that concept designs by their nature have not yet been exposed to the rigour of analysis and information collection which results from the geotechnical, survey and detailed engineering design functions which are required to develop a concept design to the level of completeness inherent in a ‘ready-to-construct’ detailed engineering design.

 

To accelerate a move from its current reliance upon Quantity Survey assessments based on ‘concept-only’ designs to a more rigorous and accurate reliance upon Quantity Survey assessments based on ‘detailed’ designs Council would need to apply temporary additional resources above and beyond the current “business as usual” level to execute the additional detailed designs of future year infrastructure projects to the point where 100% of the projects for the next financial year are available to inform the budget setting processes of that next financial year.

 

The acceleration of that body of work should be completed in a way which detrimentally impacts on neither Council’s existing strategic asset management plan targets, nor Council’s adopted and sustainable financial performance targets and strategic direction.

 

Recommended Methodology to Create a Design Acceleration Project

The Aim of the Design Acceleration Project: To achieve a 50% completion of 2018/19 financial year detailed designs in time to inform the 2018/19 budget setting process which begins in February 2018.

 

The following activity and budget changes are recommended to create the Design Acceleration Project.

 

Re-dedicate $700,000 of existing 2017/18 project budget capital to the sole purpose of developing detailed designs for the 2018/19 capital program. This could be achieved with no impact on the current capital expenditure related ratios by executing the following changes:

 

A.   Reallocation of the existing 2017/18 “future projects” type funding - Bridges ($50,000); Drainage ($30,000); and Flooding ($15,000) - to pay for temporary additional design resources for the production of next year’s detailed design requirements regardless of their actual asset classes. (This would provide $95,000 to the Design Acceleration Project).

 

B.   Using the precautionary principle Council has allocated the full amount of $450,000 to rebuild Bardens Bridge this financial year. Council was informed this month that it has received $225,000 in grant funding for this project which, by its nature, frees up an equivalent $225,000 from our existing 2017/18 Bridge Budget. It is therefore recommended that Council reallocate the amount of $225,000 to fund the procurement of additional design resources this FY. (This would provide $225,000 to the Design Acceleration Project)

 

C.  The Antaries Avenue Drainage Project currently has a $100,000 Design and Construct budget for the 17/18 FY. It is recommended that the project be converted to a ‘design only project’ for the current FY and the “construct phase” would become a consideration for the 18/19 Works Program. Ie. convert this project from a 1 year project into a 2 year project. Under this plan $30,000 of the existing budget would be expended this FY for detailed design of the project and the remaining $70,000 would be reallocated to the Design Acceleration Project. (This would provide $70,000 for the Design Acceleration Project).

 

D.  The 17/18 Sewer Pump Upgrade Program has an existing budget of $1.7m. This is a rolling, continuous program and the works are not critically sensitive in terms of timing. It is proposed that $320,000 of that program be deferred and committed instead to Sewer related detailed design work this year. (This would provide $320,000 to the Design Acceleration Project).

 

Intended Result of the Design Acceleration Project

 

The finances which would become available to engage extra temporary design resources under this plan would total $700,000 for the current financial year.

 

The deferral of the Antaries Avenue Drainage Project construction phase and the deferral of the recommended Sewer Pump Station works would additionally release an amount of existing Project Management resource sufficient to manage the additional design workload which would be funded by the $700,000 referred to above.

 

The freeing up of the combined financial and project management resources described above would create a sufficient resource base to conduct an accelerated program of detailed design and quantity survey assessment of approximately 50% of the proposed project program for the 2018/19 financial year.

 

As a result, by 30 June 2018 one half of all infrastructure project budgets for the 2018/19 financial year will be developed from detailed design estimates accurate to +/- 10%; and the remaining half will be still be set from concept design estimates accurate to +/-25%.

 

It is intended that a similar allocation of resources will be proposed to Council during the budget adoption process in May/June 2018 in order to continue the Design Acceleration Project during the 2018/19 financial year. This will be done with the intent that the final half of future year designs are completed in addition to the business as usual design workload.

 

If successful, by 30 June 2019 Council will have created a 12 month stock of “shovel ready” infrastructure projects supported by detailed design cost estimates which are accurate to +/-10%.

At that stage a return to normal resource allocations and project output can be achieved whilst maintaining a rolling 12 month stock of shovel-ready projects designed to the detailed level in perpetuity.

Issues:

The proposed Design Acceleration Project does not impact on Council’s financial program or sustainability. Rather it transfers a moderate quantum of existing capital funding to a different purpose. There will be a minor, but controllable, 12 month timing impact for the delivery of the projects listed earlier. None of the projects recommended for deferral are time critical in terms of delivery and therefore there are essentially no detrimental community impacts from the decision to defer the recommended infrastructure.

Options:

Council’s current design delivery process and the results being achieved remain both workable and sustainable, but are not optimal. To its credit the current process does allow for a steady growth in the stock of “shovel ready” projects, however, at the current level of resource application it will be many years before the target of having a 12 month stock of such projects on the shelf is achieved.

 

Council therefore has two primary options:

 

1.   Decline the Recommendations and maintain the status quo which, as stated, will result in maintaining a workable but currently sub optimal process for the medium term. Beneficially under this scenario there will be no impact to the currently planned delivery timeframes of 2017/18 FY projects. Detrimentally, the development of a 12 month stock of shovel ready projects will be slow.

 

2.   Accept the Recommendation and create the Design Acceleration Project. Beneficially, the development of a 12 month stock of shovel ready projects will be rapid. Detrimentally, several identified project delivery timeframes will be affected, however the time criticality of the particular identified projects is not significant.

 

Option 2 is recommended to Council as the preferred option.

Sustainability Assessment:

•     Environment

The adjustments and changes which are the subject of this report are administrative in nature and therefore there is no environmental impact from their adoption.

•     Social

As discussed earlier in this report several identified projects are recommended for deferral from the 2017/18 FY capital works program. Adoption of the recommendation will see those projects constructed during the 2018/19 FY. The 12 month delay in delivery of those projects is not assessed as significant in terms of potential community impact.

•     Civic Leadership

The recommended actions, combined with the proposed Design Acceleration Project will enable the creation of a 12 month stock of shovel ready capital projects which are aligned to the Community Strategic Plan and to the forward-looking Asset Strategy directions. The outcomes of the Project will increase Council’s overall readiness to respond to grant funded opportunities and will increase Council’s capacity to effectively budget and control capital project costs into the future.

•     Economic – Broader Economic Implications

Council’s currently limited stock of shovel-ready projects is assessed as a potential economic risk in two areas. It is an implied weakness in Council’s capacity to rapidly respond to grant opportunities, especially when the grant envisages or requires a quick start to construction and a rapid delivery timeframe. Secondly, the creation of a maintainable 12 month stock of detailed design plans will facilitate an improved level of accuracy in the setting of annual capital budgets by generating Project Cost Assessments based on quantity survey estimates of detailed as opposed to concept designs.

•     Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

Under this Recommendation a total of $700,000 in capital infrastructure construction will be deferred for a 12 month period. This will result in a commensurate change of that same order to the 2017/18 Operational Plan.

Risk Analysis:

There is a very low level of risk identifiable in the recommended changes. Several capital infrastructure projects are recommended for deferral for a 12 month period however the particular projects have been selected based on their lack of any time-critical delivery requirement.

Consultation:

The creation of the Design Acceleration Project and the deferred project list it contains, as recommended here, has been subject to significant internal consultation.

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

There are no regulatory, or policy implications related to the recommendations.

Implementation Date / Priority:

Implementation will be immediate upon resolution by Council.

Conclusion:

It is recommended that significant ongoing financial and community benefit can be derived if Council accelerates its current progress towards the creation of a 12 month stock of shovel ready projects which are underpinned by designs of a detailed rather than concept level.

 

This report provides a preferred methodology by which Council may achieve such acceleration with the expected result that a 12 month stock of shovel ready and detailed designed projects is achieved within 24 months of this recommendation being adopted.

  


QON17/01    Coffs Harbour Water Supply

Author:                         Group Leader Strategic Asset Management

Authoriser:                   Director Sustainable Infrastructure

Attachments:               Nil

 

The following question on notice was received from Councillor Amos.

Question

"How does the quality of Coffs Harbour tap water, as supplied by Coffs Harbour City Council, benchmark against other Australian Local Government Areas.

 

What capacity has Coffs Harbour city council to maintain water quality and supply if our dry spell is ongoing?

 

How does Coffs Harbour's sewerage system benchmark against other local government area systems and is capacity there to service the anticipated increase in population."

 

Staff Response

 

1.   "How does the quality of Coffs Harbour tap water, as supplied by Coffs Harbour City Council, benchmark against other Australian Local Government Areas."

 

Council reports annually to the Department of Primary Industry – Water, on water and sewage services.  The data returned from the Department indicates a consistency between Water Authorities in NSW and Nationally. CHCC consistently gains 100% chemical and microbiological compliance which gains the highest ranking in the water quality evaluation.

 

Council’s management of drinking water quality is in accordance with the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines where critical control points are established and multiple barriers are provided to manage water quality from the catchment to the consumer. CHCC achieves this by catchment management, selective harvesting of raw water, buffer storage, water conditioning, filtration, dual disinfection, reticulation network controls and constant monitoring throughout the water supply chain.

 

An example or indication of the water quality is the physical characteristic of clarity (or turbitity). If the water is clear (less turbid), it is an indication that it is free from suspended solids and other contaminants, and the clearer the water the more effective disinfection becomes. The Australian Drinking Water Guidelines have a desired turbidity of less than 5 NTU (a measure of turbidity) for drinking water, with less than 1.0 NTU for effective disinfection.  Water from the Karangi Water Treatment Plant consistently achieves turbidity levels below 0.1 NTU which also indicates effective disinfection of cryptosporidium and giardia.

 

A turbidity level of 0.1 NTU indicates that drinking water in Coffs Harbour is 10 times better than the minimum standard required by the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines.

 

2.   "What capacity has Coffs Harbour city council to maintain water quality and supply if our dry spell is ongoing?"

 

Using a calculation of 20 Mega Litres per day (20ML/day) - current consumption averages approximately 19ML/day - and without any additional water efficiency measures or raw water addition to the storages, Coffs Harbour has usable storage at Karangi and Shannon Creek Dams for 1001 days (or 2 years and 9 months) as of 22 September 2017. This includes similar consumption figures from our Regional Water Supply partners, Clarence Valley Council.

 

Karangi Dam (5600ML) is currently 95% full and Shannon Creek Dam (30,000ML) is 98% full. If dam levels drop below 85%, additional water efficiency measures will be put in place that would extend the storage service time. Any reasonable rain event which occurs within the next 1001 days will allow top up of the dam levels from the Orara and Nymboida Rivers and also extend the storage service time.

 

The existing Coffs Harbour Water Quality Management Plan will ensure that water quality levels will be maintained at all times, no matter what the level of the storages.

 

3.   "How does Coffs Harbour's sewerage system benchmark against other local government area systems and is capacity there to service the anticipated increase in population."

 

The aforementioned reporting to the Department of Primary Industry–Water, records that CHCC has a 100% compliance ranking for effluent quality and tertiary treatment and is ranked at the highest level for biosolid reuse and for (lack of) odour and service complaints.  Council is also highly ranked for the percentage of population that is sewered.  However one area that is shown to need improvement is the frequency of sewer main blockages.  This is currently being addressed by an accelerated program of mains cleaning and relining.

 

The current sewerage system is capable of servicing both the existing population and additional areas that have been identified in the current Sewage Strategy, which has a planning horizon to 2021. The treatment component of the sewer system has capacity for development well beyond this timeframe, as has most of the sewer reticulation system.

 

However, the current Sewage Strategy was focused on ‘greenfield’ development’ (the development of properties in new geographic areas) with very little infill development (the creation of higher densities in existing areas). Current trends indicate that certain areas (such as the CBD) will become high density growth areas. This will put new pressure on current infrastructure (pipe and pump capacity) that was not designed for high density service. The new Sewage Strategy that is currently being prepared will identify these issues and will inform both upgrade and new infrastructure requirements for the next 30 years and beyond.

 

As stated, there is capacity in the existing system to accommodate development in the medium term.  However, the new Sewage Strategy will ensure that the system upgrade requirements to handle the new anticipated developments will be available for implementation by the second quarter of the 2018 financial year.