Coffs Harbour City Council

06 February 2019

 

Ordinary Council Meeting

 

The above meeting will be held in the Council Administration Building

Cnr Coff and Castle Streets, Coffs Harbour on:

 

Thursday, 14 February 2019

 

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.      Notices of Motion - Trust

19.      Trust Reports

20.      Requests for Leave of Absence

21.      Questions On Notice

22.      Matters of an Urgent Nature

23.      Consideration of Confidential Items (if any)

24.      Close of Ordinary Meeting.

 

 

Steve  McGrath

General Manager

 

 


Order of Business

  

General Manager's Reports

GM19/01         Community Safety Precinct Consultation............................................... 3

GM19/02         Coffs Harbour Bypass - Community Consultative Committee......... 6

Directorate Reports - Business Services

BS19/01          Bank and Investment Balances for November 2018.............................. 9

BS19/02          Bank and Investment Balances for December 2018.............................. 9

BS19/03          Monthly Financial Performance Report for the Month Ended 30 November 2018........................................................................................................ 9

BS19/04          City Centre Activation By Waiving Developer Contributions for Residential Development................................................................................. 9

BS19/05          Draft North Coast Regional Botanic Garden Strategic Plan 2018-2023 - Post Exhibition........................................................................................... 9

Notices of Motion Sustainable Infrastructure

NOM19/01      Rotary Auction Waste Disposal.................................................................... 9

Directorate Reports - Sustainable Infrastructure

SI19/01           House Sewer Connection Inflow Strategy............................................. 9

SI19/02           Detail Design of Wharf Street Woolgoolga.......................................... 9   


GM19/01      Community Safety Precinct Consultation

Author:                        Governance Coordinator

Authoriser:                  Group Leader Governance

MyCoffs:                      A.2 An active, safe and healthy community

Attachments:              Nil

 

Executive Summary

Following a Mayoral Minute in December 2017, it was resolved:

 

“That Council support the Community Precinct Safety Consultation forum by way of trialling the conduct of the Community Precinct Safety Consultation forums to be conducted commencing at 4.30pm immediately preceding an Ordinary Council Meeting three times a year.”

 

Three forums were held in 2018 and were considered successful.

 

The purpose of this report is to consider the continuation of the Community Precinct Safety Consultation forums through 2019 and 2020, to be reviewed in 2021.

 

 

Recommendation:

That Council:

1.   Continue support for the Community Precinct Safety Consultation forums by facilitating the conduct of another three forums annually in 2019 and 2020, preceding the Ordinary Council Meeting, with a review to be conducted at the end of this two-year period.

2.   Inform the Coffs/Clarence Police Local Area Command of Council’s continued support for the forums. 

 

Report

Description of Item:

In late 2017, the Coffs/Clarence Police Local Area Command met with the Mayor and proposed to revise the approach to the conduct of Community Precinct Safety Consultation forum. As a result, Council resolved to support as a trial, the Coffs/Clarence Police Local Area Command proposal by commencing the Community Precinct Safety Consultation forums at 4.30pm immediately preceding an Ordinary Council Meeting three times a year.

 

The trial is now complete and three forums were held on 22 March, 12 July and 8 November 2018. In reviewing the outcomes of this trial, the forums were considered to be well attended and provided a good opportunity to:

 

·     Focus on specific issues and areas

·     Provide information to the public as to crime trends and issues

·     Increase attendance, as previous forums had run with no attendees

·     Generated media access

·     Provided a platform for the Council to advise what actions they are taking to support crime reduction

 

Feedback from the Coffs Harbour Police was that they were pleased with the success of the forums as they provided feedback as to what the community’s concerns were and are an opportunity to dispel myths about crime and police operations.

 

Due to the success of the trial, it is recommended that Council continues its support for the Community Precinct Safety Consultation forums and facilitate another three forums annually in 2019 and 2020, with a further review for 2021.  

Issues:

There are no issues associated with this report.

Options:

The following options are available:

 

1.    Adopt the recommendation provided to Council.

2.    Amend the recommendation and then adopt. e.g. Decrease/increase the number of forums, adjust the timeframes.

3.    Reject the recommendation provided to Council and cease support for the Community Precinct Safety Consultation forums.

Sustainability Assessment:

•     Environment

This is not applicable to this report.

•     Social

These forums can have a positive social impact as the community will be better informed of the successes in reducing crime.  Additionally, this consultation will assist in developing local solutions to crime that is impacting on the local government area as a whole.

•     Civic Leadership

The facilitation of the Community Precinct Safety Consultation forum is consistent with the Council’s MyCoffs Community Strategic Plan, A.2 An active, safe and healthy community, in particular, A2.4 We cultivate a safe community.

 

Council’s role in cultivating a safe community is to provide, partner and advocate the following outcomes:

 

·    Safe design of our public realm is a key driver in all planning

·    Our key places and spaces are activated to be vibrant and welcoming at all times

·    We address the challenges of family violence, child protection, addiction and road safety

•     Economic – Broader Economic Implications

As crime has a broad economic impact on the Coffs Harbour Local Government Area, any steps that Council and the Coffs/Clarence Police Local Area Command can take reducing incidences which have a positive economic effect.

•     Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

As these forums are mainly organised and coordinated by the Coffs/Clarence Police Local Area Command, there are minimal delivery program/operational plan implications.

Risk Analysis:

There are no identified risks associated with this report or in facilitation Community Precinct Safety Consultation forums.

Consultation:

Council has maintained regular communication and consultation with Coffs/Clarence Police Local Area Command in regards to the continuation of the Community Precinct Safety Consultation forums.

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

Not applicable.

Implementation Date / Priority:

Immediate.

Conclusion:

That Council continue support for the Community Precinct Safety Consultation forums.

 


GM19/02      Coffs Harbour Bypass - Community Consultative Committee

Author:                        General Manager

Authoriser:                  General Manager

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

Attachments:              ATT1  GM19/02  NSW DPE Coffs Harbour Bypass CCC - Correspondence  

 

Executive Summary

The Pacific Highway of Coffs Harbour has been in various stages of planning since around 2004.  In August 2018, the State and Federal Governments announced the preferred concept design for the bypass, noting that this design no longer included the significant tunnels that had been mooted over many years, in preference for large scale cuttings at the Shephards Lane and Gateleys Road locations.

 

Council and the community generally have raised significant concerns at this announcement.  On 15 January 2019, the NSW Deputy Premier, Hon John Barilaro, announced that a Coffs Harbour Bypass Community Consultative Committee is to be formed to assist in progressing the bypass of Coffs Harbour.  Council is now in receipt of correspondence for the NSW Department of Planning & Environment (NSW DPE) requesting Council nominate two representatives to the Community Consultative Committee.

 

This report recommends that Council nominate representatives to the NSW DPE and the Committee Chair.

 

Recommendation:

That Council:

1.       Correspond with the NSW Department of Planning and Environment expressing appreciation for the opportunity to nominate representatives to the Coffs Harbour Bypass Community Consultative Committee.

2.       Nominate the Mayor, Cr Denise Knight, and Council’s General Manager, or his delegate, to be Council’s representatives on the Coffs Harbour Bypass Community Consultative Committee.

 

Report

Description of Item:

On the morning of 15 January 2019 a joint media release was issued by the Deputy Premier, Hon John Barilaro MP, the NSW Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight, Hon Melinda Pavey MP, and the Nationals Candidate for Coffs Harbour, Gurmesh Singh, announcing a Coffs Harbour Bypass Community Consultative Committee featuring an independent chairperson, Kathy Jones, to drive engagement.

 

The announcement further indicated that the “…. new Committee will progress the Coffs Harbour bypass, which will feature tunnels and other significant design improvements in response to community feedback.”  The announcement did not contain detail regarding the exact nature of the tunnels proposed or the specific design improvements.

 

Immediately following the announcement Council issued a media release welcoming the announcement and expressing a strong desire to work with the State Government in achieving the best outcome for the Coffs Harbour community.

 

Council is now in receipt of a formal request from the NSW DPE to nominate two representatives to the Coffs Harbour Bypass Community Consultative Committee, a copy of this correspondence is attached as Attachment 1.  The request indicated that the two representatives should be able to commit long term and at least one of the nominees should have technical experience in the areas of environment, planning and/or design.

 

Further clarification was sought from NSW DPE.  Council is able to choose the two nominees, whether they be Councillors or officers, noting that NSW DPE has indicated that if a Councillor is appointed to a CCC, it is common practice for them to be accompanied by a senior staff member who holds the necessary expertise in the areas of environment, planning and/or design.  The advice further states that in this circumstance the Department does not support Council observers at CCC meetings.

Issues:

Council resolved at its 8 November meeting to establish the Bypass Impact Working Group with a view to supporting the NSW Governments proposed corridor for the bypass of Coffs Harbour but rejecting the concept of major cuttings in preference to tunnels.

 

Whilst further detail of the tunnels and other significant design improvements is not available at this stage, participation in the Coffs Harbour Bypass Community Consultative Committee at least provides a potential opportunity to achieve the aims aligned with the formation of Council’s Bypass Impact Working Group.

Options:

1.    Accept the NSW DPE invitation to nominate two representatives to the Coffs Harbour Bypass Community Consultative Committee.

 

2.    Not accept the invitation from NSW DPE to nominate representatives to the Coffs Harbour Bypass Community Consultative Committee.

 

The recommendation in this report is that Council should pursue Option 1. In doing so, Council will also need to consider whether it would like to nominate the Mayor and another Councillor, or the Mayor and the General Manager, noting that the General Manager is able to delegate to an appropriate officer.

Sustainability Assessment:

•     Environment

From Council’s perspective, the opportunity to participate on the Coffs Harbour Bypass Community Consultative Committee provides an opportunity to influence the ultimate solution for the Coffs Harbour bypass, including achieving the most appropriate environmental outcome.

•     Social

Participation on the Coffs Harbour Bypass Community Consultative Committee provides an opportunity to influence, in a positive way, the impacts that the bypass solution has on the Coffs Harbour Community.

•     Civic Leadership

By nominating representatives to the Coffs Harbour Bypass Community Consultative Committee Council is demonstrating civic leadership and taking the opportunity to provide community leadership on an important infrastructure project for the city and broader region.

•     Economic – Broader Economic Implications

There are no real economic considerations associated with Council’s participation on the Coffs Harbour Bypass Community Consultative Committee.

•     Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

There are no direct Delivery Program or Operational Plan implications per se.

Risk Analysis:

By participating on the Coffs Harbour Bypass Community Consultative Committee, Council has the opportunity to influence the final solution for the bypass, acknowledging that Council does not have the final say in this process.  Should Council decide not to participate on the Community Consultative Committee, Council risks missing the opportunity to influence the final solution for the Coffs Harbour bypass.

Consultation:

An invitation has been extended to Coffs Harbour City Council by the NSW DPE to participate in the Coffs Harbour Bypass Community Consultative Committee, the community has also been invited by the NSW DPE to nominate for membership of the Committee.  Given the timeframes allowed in this matter, consultation within Council is limited to this report.

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

The NSW Government has previously formed Community Consultative Committees to support the delivery of significant infrastructure projects.

Implementation Date / Priority:

Should Council accept the invitation from NSW DPE a response will be provided to NSW DPE immediately following Council’s meeting thus meeting the 18 February 2019 deadline for nominations to the Coffs Harbour Bypass Community Consultative Committee.

Conclusion:

Given the concern that has been expressed in regard to the preferred concept design for the Coffs Harbour bypass that was announced in August 2018 by the State and Federal Government, the opportunity to participate on the Coffs Harbour Bypass Community Consultative Committee provides an opportunity for Council and the community to influence the ultimate solution.  It is therefore recommended that Council nominate two representatives to participate on the Coffs Harbour Bypass Community Consultative Committee.

 

 

 


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BS19/01       Bank and Investment Balances for November 2018

Author:                        Senior Finance Business Partner

Authoriser:                  Director Business Services

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

Attachments:              ATT1  BS19/01   Monthly Investment Performance Report for the month ended 30 November 2018  

 

Executive Summary

Council’s Bank Balances and Investments as at 30 November 2018 totalled $214,816,178.78.  Council receives independent advice and invests surplus funds in accordance with Council’s Investment Policy to maximise investment income and preserve capital to assist with funding requirements for projects listed under the My Coffs Community Strategic Plan.

 

Also included in the monthly report is a summary of Council’s Socially Responsible Investment Performance (refer Attachment 1).

 

 

Recommendation:

That Council note the bank balances and investments totalling $214,816,178.78 (including from loans, Developer Contributions and other avenues that form the restricted accounts and are committed for future works) as at 30 November 2018.

 

Report

Description of Item:

A copy of the state of Bank Balances and Investments as at 30 November 2018 is attached.  Also included is a summary of Council’s Socially Responsible Investment Performance.

 

It should be noted that Council is required to account for investments in accordance with the Australian International Financial Reporting Standards.  Term deposits are shown at face value and all other investment balances at the end of each month reflect market value movements which would be inclusive of accrued interest.

 

Interest when paid, say quarterly, would result in reductions in the market value of the investments.  The Investment Report reflects the above requirements and reflects the interest earned (or accrued) on each investment, based on the acquisition price.

 

Reports written by Laminar Group Pty Ltd (Council’s investment portfolio advisors), which examine economic and financial markets data for November 2018 are available in the Councillors’ Resource Centre.

Issues:

There are no issues associated with the report.

Options:

As the report is for noting only, an options analysis is not required.

Sustainability Assessment:

•     Environment

There are no perceived current or future environmental impacts from the information contained in this report.

•     Social

There are no perceived current or future social impacts from the information contained in this report.

•     Civic Leadership

Council invests surplus funds to maximise investment income and preserve capital to assist with funding requirements for projects listed under the My Coffs Community Strategic Plan.

•     Economic – Broader Economic Implications

Council’s investments are held according to the requirements stated within Council’s Investment Policy and the returns are acceptable in relation thereto.  In the long term, earnings from investments can vary due to economic conditions and financial markets.  Council constructs its investment portfolio with consideration of current conditions and to comply with the Office of Local Government investment policy guidelines.

•     Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

As at 30 November 2018, it is noted that the total bank and investment balance was $214,816,178.78 comprising restricted and unrestricted General, Trust, Water and Sewerage Fund cash and investments.

Risk Analysis:

The likelihood of risks associated with New South Wales Local Government’s investing funds is now remote due to the conservative nature of investments permitted under statutory requirements.  The risk of capital not being returned in relation to each individual investment Council owns is indicated in the attachment.

 

The main risks for Council’s investment portfolio are liquidity and credit risk, both of which are being managed under the advice of Laminar Group Pty Ltd.  Liquidity risk is the risk that the Council is unable to redeem the investment at a fair price within a timely period and thereby incurs additional costs (or in the worst case is unable to execute its spending plans).  Credit risk is the risk of loss of principal stemming from a financial institutions failure to repay that principal when that principal is due.  Council is compensated for assuming credit risk by way of interest payments from the financial institutions issuing the investment security.

 

Credit risk is rated by various rating agencies. Investment securities in Council’s current portfolio are rated by either Standard and Poors or Fitch, with the majority of the portfolio rated by Standard and Poors. Standard and Poors credit ratings and an explanation of their ratings are as follows:

 


 

 

Rating

Ratings Explanation

AAA

Extremely strong capacity to meet financial commitments.  Highest Rating.

AA

Very strong capacity to meet financial commitments.

A

Strong capacity to meet financial commitments, but somewhat susceptible to adverse economic conditions and changes in circumstances.

BBB

Adequate capacity to meet financial commitments, but more subject to adverse economic conditions.

BBB-

Considered lowest investment grade by market participants.

BB+

Considered highest speculative grade by market participants.

BB

Less vulnerable in the near term but faces major ongoing uncertainties to adverse business, financial and economic conditions.

B

More vulnerable to adverse business, financial and economic conditions but currently has the capacity to meet financial commitments.

CCC

Currently vulnerable and dependent on favourable business, financial and economic conditions to meet financial commitments.

CC

Currently highly vulnerable.

C

Currently highly vulnerable obligations and other defined circumstances.

D

Payment default on financial commitments.

 

Ratings from ‘AA’ to ‘CCC’ may be modified by the addition of a plus (+) or minus (-) sign to show relative standing within the major rating categories.

 

Types of investment securities by credit risk ranking from highest to lowest are as follows:

 

·    Deposits/Covered Bonds – these share first ranking

·    Senior debt – Floating Rate Notes/Fixed Coupon Bonds.

·    Subordinated debt

·    Hybrids

·    Preference shares

·    Equity shares (common shares).

 

Subordinated debt, hybrids, preference and equity shares are not a permitted investment under the current Ministerial Order.  Term deposits of $250,000 or less per financial institution are covered under the Commonwealth Government Deposit Guarantee Scheme and therefore by default have the same credit rating as the Commonwealth Government, ie AAA.

 

All credit unions, building societies and mutual banks are Authorised Deposit-taking Institutions (ADIs) and are regulated in the same way as all other Australian banks.  ADIs are regulated by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission under the Corporations Act 2001, and by the Australian Prudential Regulatory Authority under the Banking Act 1959.

Consultation:

Council’s investment advisors, Laminar Group Pty Ltd have been consulted in the preparation of this report.

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

Council funds have been invested in accordance with Council’s Investment Policy (POL‑049), which was adopted on 24 August 2017.

Local Government Act 1993 – Section 625

Local Government Act 1993 – Investment Order (dated 12 January 2011)

Local Government General Regulation 2005

The Trustee Amendment (Discretionary Investments) Act 1997 – Sections 14A(2), 14C(1) and 14C(2)

Implementation Date / Priority:

Nil.

Conclusion:

Council should consider the information provided in the report and the Councillors’ Resource Centre and the recommendation provided.

 

 

 


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BS19/02       Bank and Investment Balances for December 2018

Author:                        Section Leader Financial Planning

Authoriser:                  Director Business Services

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

Attachments:              ATT1  BS19/02   Monthly Investment Performance Report for the month ended 31 December 2018  

 

Executive Summary

Council’s Bank Balances and Investments as at 31 December 2018 totalled $207,747,543.98.  Council receives independent advice and invests surplus funds in accordance with Council’s Investment Policy to maximise investment income and preserve capital to assist with funding requirements for projects listed under the My Coffs Community Strategic Plan.

 

Also included in the monthly report is a summary of Council’s Socially Responsible Investment Performance (refer Attachment 1).

 

 

Recommendation:

That Council note the bank balances and investments totalling $207,747,543.98 (including from loans, Developer Contributions and other avenues that form the restricted accounts and are committed for future works) as at 31 December 2018.

 

Report

Description of Item:

A copy of the state of Bank Balances and Investments as at 31 December 2018 is attached.  Also included is a summary of Council’s Socially Responsible Investment Performance.

 

It should be noted that Council is required to account for investments in accordance with the Australian International Financial Reporting Standards.  Term deposits are shown at face value and all other investment balances at the end of each month reflect market value movements which would be inclusive of accrued interest.

 

Interest when paid, say quarterly, would result in reductions in the market value of the investments.  The Investment Report reflects the above requirements and reflects the interest earned (or accrued) on each investment, based on the acquisition price.

 

Reports written by Laminar Group Pty Ltd (Council’s investment portfolio advisors), which examine economic and financial markets data for December 2018 are available in the Councillors’ Resource Centre.

Issues:

There are no issues associated with the report.

Options:

As the report is for noting only, an options analysis is not required.

Sustainability Assessment:

•     Environment

There are no perceived current or future environmental impacts from the information contained in this report.

•     Social

There are no perceived current or future social impacts from the information contained in this report.

•     Civic Leadership

Council invests surplus funds to maximise investment income and preserve capital to assist with funding requirements for projects listed under the My Coffs Community Strategic Plan.

•     Economic – Broader Economic Implications

Council’s investments are held according to the requirements stated within Council’s Investment Policy and the returns are acceptable in relation thereto.  In the long term, earnings from investments can vary due to economic conditions and financial markets.  Council constructs its investment portfolio with consideration of current conditions and to comply with the Office of Local Government investment policy guidelines.

•     Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

As at 31 December 2018, it is noted that the total bank and investment balance was $207,747,543.98 comprising restricted and unrestricted General, Trust, Water and Sewerage Fund cash and investments.

Risk Analysis:

The likelihood of risks associated with New South Wales Local Government’s investing funds is now remote due to the conservative nature of investments permitted under statutory requirements.  The risk of capital not being returned in relation to each individual investment Council owns is indicated in the attachment.

 

The main risks for Council’s investment portfolio are liquidity and credit risk, both of which are being managed under the advice of Laminar Group Pty Ltd.  Liquidity risk is the risk that the Council is unable to redeem the investment at a fair price within a timely period and thereby incurs additional costs (or in the worst case is unable to execute its spending plans).  Credit risk is the risk of loss of principal stemming from a financial institutions failure to repay that principal when that principal is due.  Council is compensated for assuming credit risk by way of interest payments from the financial institutions issuing the investment security.

 

Credit risk is rated by various rating agencies. Investment securities in Council’s current portfolio are rated by either Standard and Poors or Fitch, with the majority of the portfolio rated by Standard and Poors.  Standard and Poors credit ratings and an explanation of their ratings are as follows:

 


 

 

Rating

Ratings Explanation

AAA

Extremely strong capacity to meet financial commitments.  Highest Rating.

AA

Very strong capacity to meet financial commitments.

A

Strong capacity to meet financial commitments, but somewhat susceptible to adverse economic conditions and changes in circumstances.

BBB

Adequate capacity to meet financial commitments, but more subject to adverse economic conditions.

BBB-

Considered lowest investment grade by market participants.

BB+

Considered highest speculative grade by market participants.

BB

Less vulnerable in the near term but faces major ongoing uncertainties to adverse business, financial and economic conditions.

B

More vulnerable to adverse business, financial and economic conditions but currently has the capacity to meet financial commitments.

CCC

Currently vulnerable and dependent on favourable business, financial and economic conditions to meet financial commitments.

CC

Currently highly vulnerable.

C

Currently highly vulnerable obligations and other defined circumstances.

D

Payment default on financial commitments.

 

Ratings from ‘AA’ to ‘CCC’ may be modified by the addition of a plus (+) or minus (-) sign to show relative standing within the major rating categories.

 

Types of investment securities by credit risk ranking from highest to lowest are as follows:

 

·    Deposits/Covered Bonds – these share first ranking

·    Senior debt – Floating Rate Notes/Fixed Coupon Bonds.

·    Subordinated debt

·    Hybrids

·    Preference shares

·    Equity shares (common shares).

 

Subordinated debt, hybrids, preference and equity shares are not a permitted investment under the current Ministerial Order.  Term deposits of $250,000 or less per financial institution are covered under the Commonwealth Government Deposit Guarantee Scheme and therefore by default have the same credit rating as the Commonwealth Government, ie AAA.

 

All credit unions, building societies and mutual banks are Authorised Deposit-taking Institutions (ADIs) and are regulated in the same way as all other Australian banks.  ADIs are regulated by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission under the Corporations Act 2001, and by the Australian Prudential Regulatory Authority under the Banking Act 1959.

Consultation:

Council’s investment advisors, Laminar Group Pty Ltd have been consulted in the preparation of this report.

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

Council funds have been invested in accordance with Council’s Investment Policy (POL‑049), which was adopted on 24 August 2017.

Local Government Act 1993 – Section 625

Local Government Act 1993 – Investment Order (dated 12 January 2011)

Local Government General Regulation 2005

The Trustee Amendment (Discretionary Investments) Act 1997 – Sections 14A(2), 14C(1) and 14C(2)

Implementation Date / Priority:

Nil.

Conclusion:

Council should consider the information provided in the report and the Councillors’ Resource Centre and the recommendation provided.

 

 

 


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BS19/03       Monthly Financial Performance Report for the Month Ended 30 November 2018

Author:                        Senior Finance Business Partner

Authoriser:                  Director Business Services

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

Attachments:              ATT1  BS19/03   Monthly Financial Performance Report for the month ended 30 November 2018  

 

Executive Summary

This report presents the Monthly Financial Performance Report for 30 November 2018.  The report provides information on the actual to budget position at the financial statement level and capital expenditure reports for the current financial year.  The projected year to date surplus is $60.8M with the actual year to date being $63.8M.  The surplus result will reduce over the course of the year as Council delivers services to the community.

 

The explanation of year to date variances is contained within the Income Statement commentary under Variance Comments for variances greater than 10%.  There are individual recurrent revenue sources with variances but overall recurrent revenue is on track, similarly for recurrent expenditure.  Capital revenue had a negative income primarily due to accrual reversals for grant income on major capital projects, the variances are timing differences which will decrease over the coming months.

 

The capital expenditure target for the current financial year is $89.5M with $19.9M expended to the end of November.

 

 

Recommendation:

That Council note the Monthly Financial Performance Report for 30 November 2018.

 

Report

Description of Item:

The Monthly Financial Performance Report provides information on Council’s actual to budget performance.  The report provides accrual based information to Council on a monthly basis and is designed to identify and explain any major variances between budgeted and actual results.

 

The report includes:

 

Financial Management Summary

·     The net operating surplus at the end of October is $3.8M ahead of budget expectations with the majority of rates income budgeted and raised in the first month of the financial year.  The total surplus after capital grants is $63.8M against a budget of $60.8M.  Operating expenses is within $1.2M of budget expectations with total operating expenditure to the end of November $68.5M against a budget of $69.8M.

·     Capital expenses is behind budget expectations by $0.3M with total capital expenditure to the end of November of $19.9M versus a YTD budget of $19.6M and annual targeted expenditure of $89.5M.  Further details are provided in the Capital Expenditure Report comments.

 

Income Statement

·     This is a comprehensive income statement detailing the monthly performance for November 2018.  This statement compares actual to budget on a monthly and year to date basis at the financial statement level.  In terms of monthly percentages, although some percentages may be large in dollar terms, they have a minor impact on financial performance.  There are individual comments for any monthly and YTD variances greater than 10%.

 

Capital Expenditure Summary and Detailed

·     Capital expenditure by cost centre and then at a more detailed level is also provided in the attachment.  Explanations have been provided for any variances greater than $200,000.

Issues:

Income Statement commentary as at 30 November 2018 for Year to Date (YTD) variances:

 

Recurrent Revenue

·     User Charges and Fees: This positive variance of $1,721,000 is due to The Gap Rd bridge commercial works project budgetted as other revenue but has been invoiced as user charges and fees, this will be revised as part of the December quarterly review. In addition the caravan parks have exceeded expected income by $500k due to seasonal demands.

·     Interest and Investments Revenue:  This positive variance of $865,000 is due to having more cash and investments on hand than anticipated  with the resulting investment income trending higher than budgetted. This will be reviewed within the December QBRS. Some of the interest income relates to reserves, water, sewer which results in a minor increase to the general fund revenue

 

Capital Revenue

·     Capital Grants and Contributions:  Several accruals of grant income from last year now reversed and expected grant income yet to be invoiced.

Options:

An options analysis is not provided as the report is for noting only.

Sustainability Assessment:

•      Environment

There are no perceived short or long term environmental impacts for the information contained within the report.

•      Social

There are no perceived short or long term social impacts for the information contained within the report.

•      Civic Leadership

Council supports the delivery of high quality, sustainable outcomes for Coffs Harbour by monitoring financial performance which assists the decision making process to allocate funding for projects listed under the MyCoffs Community Strategic Plan.

•      Economic – Broader Economic Implications

This report assesses the current year’s budget position only.  Any variations approved by Council are subsequently reflected in Council’s Delivery Plan and may affect future economic sustainability.

•      Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

The year to date surplus, after capital revenue, is estimated to be $60.8M as at 30 November 2018.

Risk Analysis:

There are no risks associated with this report.

Consultation:

Group Leaders and their relevant staff have been provided with budget reports for each cost centre on a monthly basis for review.  Any variations will be provided to Council for adoption through the Quarterly Budget Review process.

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

Local government regulations require the Responsible Accounting Officer to submit a quarterly budget review to Council.  There is no obligation to provide monthly financial performance reports but as part of prudent financial management we have opted to do so.

Implementation Date / Priority:

This report is for noting only and therefore there are no implementation actions.

 

Conclusion:

 

This Monthly Financial Performance Report provides information on the actual to budget results at the financial statement level along with capital expenditure reports for the current financial year.

 

The Responsible Accounting Officer confirms the Monthly Financial Performance Report for the month ended 30 November 2018 indicates the financial position of the Council is satisfactory, having regard to the projected estimates of income and expenditure and the original budgeted income and expenditure.

 

 

 


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BS19/04       City Centre Activation By Waiving Developer Contributions for Residential Development

Author:                        Developer Contributions Officer

Authoriser:                  Director Business Services

MyCoffs:                      C.1 Liveable neighbourhoods with a defined identity

Attachments:              Nil

 

Executive Summary

At the Council meeting held on the 9 August 2018, a resolution was passed that a report be provided outlining the opportunities for activating the City Centre that can occur by exempting development contributions for residential development in the Coffs Harbour City Centre in the short term.

 

Many social and economic benefits have been identified with increasing public activity within the City Centre.  With the recent introduction of the Business Incentive Policy, the opportunity to further enhance the growth of the City Centre is gaining momentum.

 

Over the last two financial years there has been very limited residential growth within the Coffs City Centre area.  Providing financial incentives has proven to be an effective strategy to generate growth and investment across various local government areas.  The opportunity to increase residential development within the Coffs CBD precinct could compliment the City Centre activation initative and help stimulate overall investment in this area.

 

The additional benefits could be extended to improve the City Centre by way of enhancing a vibrant community and business space.  This incentive has the potential to increase economic activity and in turn promote many positive social outcomes.

 

 

Recommendation:

That Council:

1.   Receives a further report presenting a draft Coffs Harbour City Centre Development Incentive Policy based on the following principles:

a.    an exemption of developer contribution charges for residential development, consisting of at least four Equivalent Tenements (ETs) for developments within the Coffs Harbour City Centre;

b.    an exemption of developer contributions charges for tourist accommodation and shop top housing, consisting of at least one Equivalent Tenements (ET) for developments within the Coffs Harbour City Centre;

c.    the period of exemption to run for two years from the date the policy is approved or until a maximum cap (incentive allowance) of $2,500,000 is reached, whichever comes first;

d.    to qualifiy for the exemption developments must be issued with an occupation certificate within three years from the time the application is lodged; and

e.    a review of the effectiveness of the policy after a twelve month period.

2.   Receives applicable draft revised Developer Contributions Plans to reflect the proposed policy implications.

 

Report

Description of Item:

At the Council meeting held on the 9 August 2018, a resolution was passed that a report be provided outlining the options and opportunities for activating the City Centre by exempting development contributions for residential development in the Coffs Harbour City Centre in the short term.

 

Within the Coffs City Centre, Council currently imposes a charge for developer contributions for Water Supply/Wastewater under Section 64 of the Local Government Act and the LGA wide Developer Contributions under Section 7:11 (formerly known as section 94) of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act.  These charges are applied upon the creation of additional sub-dividable lots, new dual or multi occupancy residential development.  The contribution charge is calculated on an Equivalent Tenement (ET) unit rate, based on the size and type of development.

 

A standard residential lot, dwelling or unit over the size of 100 sqm equates to one ET.  A small dwelling/unit, less than 100sqm in size attracts the unit rate of 0.7 ET.

 

The current and relevant section 7:11 & section 64 plans for the mentioned area include:

 

·     Developer Contributions for Administration

·     Developer Contributions for Roads Network

·     Developer Contributions for Surf Rescue Facilities

·     Developer Contributions for Open Space

·     Development Servicing Plan for Wastewater

·     Development Servicing Plan for Water Supply

 

In some instances, contribution charges may also be applicable for City Centre car parking for commercial developments.  Residential developments must provide all relevant car parking onsite as per the Coffs Development Control Plan (DCP), unless a formal agreement has been arranged with Coffs Harbour City Council.  Therefore the Coffs City Centre Developer Contributions Car Parking Plan would not be pertinent for general residential accommodation.  However, tourist accommodation developments within the commercial core zoning may be entitled to a concession under the Business Incentive Policy.

 

There are approximately 143 standard residential zoned properties within the Coffs City Centre precinct.  These vary from general residential to low, medium and high density residential properties.  It is forecasted that an increased occupancy of 546 multi-dwelling housing is projected by 2036.  This will predominately come from infill development.  In addition there are approximately 280 commercial core (B3) zoned properties.

 

Providing an exemption to developer contributions could potentially stimulate accommodation development in the Coffs CBD precinct.  Stimulating residential and other accommodation growth within this area could provide many other additional benefits:

 

·     A place for community - help enhance a vibrant, exciting and busy City Centre.  Current activity is mainly limited to the morning and lunchtime periods.  Cafés, restaurants and other retail outlets may be encouraged to extend their normal operations into the evening.

·     Economic - increasing the population density in the CBD could directly increase business activity and further promote business and investment growth.  It would be reasonable to assume boosting community activity could have a significant and positive outcome on general revenue produced by local businesses.

·     Social - help assist the growth of a lively, hospitable and safe space to enjoy.  Increasing public activity, particularly out of regular business hours could also reduce anti-social behaviour, a community concern expressed over recent years.

 

The City Centre is an important and central part of community and business space.  It could be considered a prudent approach to invest in this area over the short term.  This initiative meets the expectations of the MyCoffs Community Strategic Plan.

 

The following map highlights the Coffs City Centre CBD precinct and provides a breakdown of relevant zoned properties.

 

 

Based on an analysis conducted, it is apparent that residential development in this area has been very limited over the two last financial years (1 July 2016 to 30 June 2018).  Across the Coffs Harbour LGA during this period there were a total of 114 development applications approved for new dual and/or multi occupancy residential developments.  However, in comparison there were no development applications approved for new dual and/or multi occupancy residential development in the designated Coffs City Centre precinct.

 

The table below illustrates costing scenarios that highlight the potential savings/benefits for developers by exempting the developer contribution charges.  Also provided are the relevant types of developments applicable for the area.

 

Types of Development

GFA (Gross Floor Area) per unit

Section 7:11

Water and Wastewater
(section 64)

Total Developer Contributions Payable

Dual Occupancy (GFA >100 sqm)
or additional sub divided lot

$5,456

$20,817

$26,273

3 units (GFA >100 sqm)

$10,913

$41,634

$52,547

4 units (GFA >100 sqm)

$16,369

$62,450

$78,819

8 units (GFA <100 sqm)

$25,100

$95,757

$120,857

19 units (GFA <100 sqm)

$61,659

$235,231

$296,890

2 lots credit applied

 

Issues:

Council would forego any potential financial income derived from developer contributions as displayed in the above table, over the specified time.  The exemption of contributions on a larger area and over an extended time could have an adverse impact upon Council’s finances and affect the ability to provide infrastructure to a growing population.  Given the limited amount of residential growth over the last two years, this would not pose any significant impact to Council’s anticipated financial position over the short term.  The aim of this incentive is to encourage further development, where the development may not otherwise occur.

 

At this stage, the potential uptake of this initiative is unable to be quantified.  By incorporating a maximum cap (an incentive allowance) of $2,500,000 would regulate Council’s financial commitment and reduce the overall risk.  Limiting the incentive commitment to $2,500,000 would allow for approx 100 ETs being incentivised.  This figure could be revised on the subsequent 12 month review.

 

To reduce long term exposure it is recommended that a provision be included that developments must be issued with an occupation certificate within three years from the time the application is lodged.

 

General residential developments must provide all relevant car parking onsite as per the Coffs Development Control Plan (DCP), unless a formal planning agreement is approved.  Therefore the Coffs City Centre Developer Contributions Car Parking Plan would not be pertinent for general residential development.  However, tourist accommodation developments may be entitled to a concession under the Business Incentive Policy, for any applicable car spaces required.  This may increase the number of tourist accommodation development applications with reduced onsite car parking provided.  The developer contribution concession could place greater pressure on the car parking supply within the City Centre.  However, a recent parking study in 2017 determined there is currently adequate parking supply in the City Centre to meet parking demand.  The demand for parking at peak times was 77% of the existing supply - leaving appoximately 870 unoccupied public car spaces.  The 2017 study showed there has been no significant increase in parking demand over the five-year period from a previous study in 2012.  The uptake of City Centre living may also offset increases in out-of-centre living and associated car travel and car parking demand for trips to the CBD precinct.  The car parking demand will be reviewed as part of the proposed annual review to ensure no signficant impact to the supply.

 

An incentive such as this can affect the collection of revenue that is normally utilised for future infrastructure – this is addressed in more detail in the Broader Economic Implications contained in this report.

Options:

In considering this report Council has the following options:

 

1.    Exempt developer contributions for residential development, consisting of at least four Equivalent Tenements (ETs) for developments within the Coffs Harbour City Centre.

 

Also allow for the exemption of developer contributions for tourist accommodation and shop top housing, consisting of at least one Equivalent Tenements (ET) for developments within the Coffs Harbour City Centre.

 

The period of exemption to run for two years from the date the policy is approved OR until a maximum cap (incentive allowance) of $2.5m is reached, whichever comes first. To qualify for the exemption, developments must be issued with an occupation certificate within three years from the time the application is lodged.

 

A review after 12 months is recommended.

 

If Council adopts this option a subsequent report will be provided to Council including a draft Coffs Harbour City Centre Development Incentive Policy, with any affected Developer Contributions Plans also presented.

 

This option will provide a direct incentive and potentially attract larger scale multi occupancy developments. By implementing a greater than one ET provision for shop top housing could encourage and potentially foster the use of space above existing commerical premises.

 

2.    Exempt developer contributions for all residential, tourist accommodation and shop top housing within the Coffs Harbour City Centre.

 

The period of exemption to run for two years from the date the policy is approved OR until a maximum cap (incentive allowance) of $2.5m is reached, whichever comes first. To qualify for the exemption, developments must be issued with an occupation certificate within three years from the time the application is lodged.

 

A review after 12 months is recommended.

 

If Council adopts this option a subsequent report will be provided to Council including a draft Coffs Harbour City Centre Development Incentive Policy, with any affected Developer Contributions Plans also presented.

 

As highlighted in option 1, this option could also attract smaller scale (ie dual occupancy and duplex) style development. Council could forego a greater amount of Developer Contribution revenue under this option and may not effectively maximise the objective of the incentive.

 

3.    Amend the portion of the exemption amount (i.e only limit the exemption to section 7:11 contributions OR only limit the exemption to section 64 contributions) and/or opt for an alternative time frame and/or maximum cap (incentive allowance).

 

If Council adopts this option a subsequent report will be provided to Council including a draft Coffs Harbour City Centre Development Incentive Policy, with any affected Developer Contributions Plans also presented.

 

Any amendment and reduction in the incentive being offered could limit the uptake of development and possibly affect the desired outcomes of the initative. This option could reduce the foregoing of developer contributions collected and limit the potential loss in revenue.

 

4.    Decline the exemption of the developer contributions initiative in it’s entirety.

 

If this option is adopted it may be fair to assume that there is no expected change or significant increase of growth in this area.

 

Option 1 is recommended.

Sustainability Assessment:

•     Environment

Environmental issues have been considered.  If this exemption is adopted the general CBD landscape could have an increased level of medium and high density dwellings within the confined area.  This could assist in achieving Council’s urban growth objectives of a “compact city” model, thereby limiting the footprint of residential growth.  This could also assist with more efficient use of existing infrastructure and could encourage more active forms of transport, such as walking and cycling, in turn possibily less reliance on cars.

•     Social

The exemption to contributions could provide many additional benefits to the City Centre precinct.  Activating the City Centre would enhance the general atmosphere by way of creating a vibrant and exciting CBD hub.  Current people activity is mainly limited to the morning and lunchtime periods.  By increasing the local population in this area it could create longer hours of general social activity and provide passive surveillance of the City Centre after normal working hours.  This initiative could further assist the growth of a lively, hospitable and safe space to enjoy, beyond current periods of activity.  Removing the developer contributions on residential and tourist accommodation development within the Coffs City Centre would likely generate support from the community and business sector.

•     Civic Leadership

The MyCoffs Community Strategic Plan includes the specific strategy:

 

C1.2 – We undertake development that is environmentally, socially and economically responsible.

 

This incentive also supports a number of the fundamental points identified in the Coffs Harbour Economic Development Strategy 2017-2022.  The incentive specifically targets an increase in population growth focused within the existing developed footprint.  The short term exemption could assist in advancing these strategies further.

•     Economic – Broader Economic Implications

Developer contribution charges fund infrastructure projects that potentially would not otherwise be undertaken.  The exemption of contributions on a larger area and over an extended time could have an adverse impact upon Council’s finances and affect the ability to provide infrastructure to a growing population.  However, given this exemption is only proposed for the short term and in a relatively confined area with the predominate development being infill, the impacts could be considered marginal.

 

The uptake of City Centre living may offset increases in out-of-centre living and higher overall infrastructure costs associated with more dispersed growth.

 

Local Government Area-wide Section 7:11 (formerly section 94)_ Plans

 

Local Government Area wide Section 7:11 plans include; Administration Levy, Road Network, Surf Rescue facilities and Open Space.  Total contributions for a standard sized dwelling / lot is $5,456.

 

These plans are based on future population projections and therefore exempting such developments could affect income derived from these plans.  Any potential shortfall in income may need to be funded from an alternative source.  Unfortunately it is not possible to quantify the potential uptake and potential loss of income.  However, by incorporating a maximum cap (incentive allowance) of $2,500,000 would limit Council’s financial commitment.  This amount would allow for approx 100 ETs being incentivised.

 

If Council selects option 1 then smaller scale general residential development (i.e. dual occupancy, number of units less than four) will not attract the exemption of section 7:11 developer contributions.  Exercising this option will reduce the financial impact to Council and put a stronger weighting on the initiative encouraging higher density residential accommodation.  However, implementing a greater than one ET provision for shop top housing may encourage the occupation of space over existing commerical premises.

If Council selects option 2 – all residential and tourist accommodation development will attract the exemption under section 7:11 and the financial impact to Council will be the greatest under this option.

If Council selects option 3 and maintains the section 7:11 component, there would be no impact to the relevant Coffs LGA wide section 7:11 development contribution plans.

 

Section 64 Development Servicing Plans

 

The Section 64 plans for both the water supply and wastewater networks are not based on specific locality but rather are based on a whole of network approach and equivalent tenements likely to be added to the network over the life of the Development Servicing Plans.  The current plans were developed and prepared with the factor of population growth over the whole Local Government area.  However, the current network does provide for a capacity approximately eight times it’s initial projected usage.

 

Total contributions for a standard sized dwelling/lot is $20,817 (per ET).  It can be noted the area in question has an established water supply and wastewater network; however, with increased population a greater burden will be placed on the whole water and wastewater network.  Any shortfall or reduction in water and wastewater contributions will impact on revenue flows for these services and may require additional funding from other sources for future works.

 

If Council selects option 1 then smaller scale general residential development (i.e. dual occupancy, number of units less than four) will not attract the exemption of section 64 developer contributions.  Exercising this option will reduce the financial impact to Council and put a stronger weighting on the initiative encouraging higher density residential accommodation.  However, implementing a greater than one ET provision for shop top housing may encourage the occupation of space over existing commerical premises.

If Council selects option 2 – all residential and tourist accommodation development will attract the exemption for section 64 and the financial impact to Council will be the greatest under this option.

If Council selects option 3 and maintains the section 64 component, there would be no impact to the relevant section 64 Development Servicing Plans.

•     Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

For the reasons oulined above, there are no significant forseeible financial implications to Council’s operational or delivery program.  Extending the timing or the designated area could have significant impacts to Council’s financial position.

Risk Analysis:

It is considered that the recommended exemption presents minimal financial risk over the short term.  The social benefits and potential business growth derived from the exemption could be seen as outweighing the impacts of foregoing contributions over the short term.

Consultation:

Relevant staff members and Developer Contributions Working Group members across Council have been consulted in the preparation of this report.

 

Over recent years there has been a strong support that activating the Coffs City Centre will provide many positive outcomes and benefits.  This is particularly supported within the local business sector with the view to enhance business investment.  This initiative could also be seen to compliment the recently adopted - Business Incentive Policy.

 

Public consultation will be required in order to approve the draft Coffs City Centre Development Incentive Policy.  This will be arranged after the draft policy is presented to Council.

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

The relevant statutory requirements for the preparation of developer contribution plans and collection of contributions are principally the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979, the Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation 2000, the Local Government Act 1993 and the Water Management Act 2000.

Implementation Date / Priority:

Upon direction from this report, if either options 1, 2 or 3 are selected, a subsequent report will be provided to Council including a draft Coffs Harbour City Centre Development Incentive Policy, with any affected Developer Contributions Plans also presented.  At that time a request to approve a public exhibition and invite public submissions, will be presented.  The final effective date for this initiative, depending on consideration of the public submissions, would be estimated to be in 3 to 4 months.

Conclusion:

This report addresses the request to provide options for exempting developer contributions for residential development in the Coffs Harbour City Centre over a short term period.  Extending the timing or the designated area could have significant impacts to Council’s financial position.

 

The last two years indicate minimal residential growth in the Coffs Harbour City Centre precinct.  Being an area potentially available to multi occupancy development, the reliance on new income is not as significant, compared to areas specific to (Greenfield) new urban release.

 

The area highlighted above contains approximately 143 residential and 280 commercial core (B3) zoned properties.  The recommendation provided, maximises the opportunities across the different accommodation types whilst providing a prudent and regulated approach to managing the financial considerations of this incentive.  It is noted the financial implications are estimated as being marginal over the short term.

 

The exemption of developer contributions in the Coffs City Centre for residential, tourist accommodation and shop top housing development could significantly stimulate residential growth and business activity – the additional benefits could be extended to improve the City Centre by way of enhancing a vibrant community and business space by potentially increasing economic activity and promoting many other positive social outcomes.

 

 

 


BS19/05       Draft North Coast Regional Botanic Garden Strategic Plan 2018-2023 - Post Exhibition

Author:                        Manager Holiday Parks and Reserves

Authoriser:                  Director Business Services

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

Attachments:              ATT1  BS19/05   CONFIDENTIAL Submissions

Confidential in accordance with Section 10A(2)(a) of the Local Government Act as it contains personnel matters concerning particular individuals (other than Councillors).

ATT2  BS19/05   Draft North Coast Regional Botanic Garden Strategic Plan 2018-2023  

 

Executive Summary

The draft North Coast Regional Botanic Garden (NCRBG) Strategic Plan 2018-2023 was placed on public exhibition for 28 days closing 28 November 2018 with four submissions being received during the exhibition period (Confidential Attachment 1).

 

This report brings to Council the outcomes of the public exhibition and a recommendation to progress the planning process for the Botanic Garden.

 

 

Recommendation:

That Council:

1.       Approve the priority development of a Plan of Management for Reserve 540000 (North Coast Regional Botanic Garden).

2.       Utilise the Draft North Coast Regional Botanic Garden Strategic Plan 2018-2023, feedback received during the public exhibition period and input from the new Advisory Committee to inform the development of the Plan of Management.

 

Report

Description of Item:

On 11 October 2018 Council resolved to:

 

1.   Endorse the draft North Coast Regional Botanic Garden Strategic Plan 2018-2023 and place it on public exhibition for a period of 28 days.

2.   Use the Strategic Plan as the basis for the new Plan of Management, notwithstanding other statutory requirements.

3.   That a new Advisory Committee be formed and that this committee will have input into the new Plan of Management.

 

The draft North Coast Regional Botanic Garden Strategic Plan 2018-2023 was placed on public exhibition for 28 days closing 28 November 2018 with four submissions being received during the exhibition period (Confidential Attachment 1). Each submission and internal feedback received is outlined in the Consultation section of this report.

 

Following Council’s decision on the Strategic Plan, officers will progress the terms of reference and formation of a new advisory committee.

Issues:

The submissions and feedback received during the public exhibition period did not raise any issues that cannot be considered and resolved as part of the Plan of Management process.

 

The key issue to consider is the adoption of the draft Strategic Plan as an interim management tool while a Plan of Management is developed.  Adopting the draft Strategic Plan for an interim period when its purpose is the establishment and implementation of long term strategies and objectives is considered counter-intuitive. It is recommended that rather than formally adopting the draft Strategic Plan, it is used as an informing document for the development of the reserve Plan of Management.

Options:

Options available to Council in this matter are:

 

1.    Adopt the recommendation provided to Council.

2.    Amend the recommendation to reflect the adoption the NCRBG Strategic Plan 2018-2023 as an interim management document while the Plan of Management is developed.

Sustainability Assessment:

•     Environment

The draft Strategic Plan contains a number of objectives and strategies to improve environmental outcomes within the NCRBG.  The new Plan of Management will also be required to address these matters.

•     Social

The draft Strategic Plan contains a number of objectives and strategies to improve social outcomes within the NCRBG.  The new Plan of Management will also be required to address these matters.

•     Civic Leadership

The development of a strategic plan for the NCRBG works towards achieving outcomes identified in the MyCoffs Community Strategic Plan across a number of themes despite the lack of connection provided within the Draft Strategy.  Importantly, solid strategic planning supports the theme: ‘Our leaders give us confidence in the future.’  A new Plan of Management is the legislative planning mechanism to provide strategic direction for the NCRBG.

•     Economic – Broader Economic Implications

Tourism is a key driver of the Coffs Coast economy.  The NCRBG’s central location and unique botanical collection lends itself to supporting environmental tourism in the region and as a venue for events, passive recreation and potential further sympathetic development.

•     Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

Council currently contributes over $500,000 per annum towards maintenance and development of the NCRBG.  The current draft strategic plan does provide the financial arrangements for the management of the NCRBG.  These arrangements will be addressed as outcome of a new Plan of Management.

 

Risk Analysis:

A key risk identified at the commencement of the NCRBG’s strategic planning process was the absence of any formal tenure between Council, as reserve manager, and the Friends of the NCRBG Inc.  This risk has been mitigated in the short term through an annual temporary licence agreement.  Long term tenure and governance arrangements will be addressed as an outcome of a new Plan of Management.

 

Council continues to carry a financial risk through its ongoing responsibilities as reserve manager and its limited access to income generating activities, which are largely carried out by the Friends of the NCRBG Inc.

Consultation:

A summary of the three submissions received during the public exhibition period (Confidential Attachment 1) is detailed as follows:

 

Submission 1

 

Submission supported low key community events but not excessive development.

 

Submission 2

 

Submission congratulated CHCC and Friends on outcomes achieved to date and recommended NCRBG continue as a community led project with the main emphasis on Flora aspects.  Submission opposed major commercial development and expressed concern over “community enrichment” that suggested expansion of the shop and café.

 

Submission 3

 

Botanic Garden is a wonderful resource and well managed.  Agrees with Conservation and Education goals and strategies and recommended focus upon endemic flora and fauna.  Recommended site be smoke and alcohol free.

 

The submissions all contain relevant feedback on future planning and management regimes and should be used as a reference for the development of a Plan of Management (and subsidiary plans) for the Reserve.

 

Also, during the public exhibition period further internal feedback was received which identified a range of issues with the draft Strategic Plan and suggested a number of improvements to ensure the Strategic Plan was fit for purpose.  The identified concerns and recommendations included:

 

·     Key planning and reference documents were missing from the draft Strategic Plan

·     There were inconsistencies between Objectives and Strategies

·     Objectives and Strategies were not measurable with too many ‘micro’ strategies

·     Plan requires ‘macro’ strategies

·     Plan requires a section on strategic context and alignment, especially in relation to other CHCC planning documents and instruments

·     Plan requires more detail on Councils role to reflect similar level of detail provided highlighting the ‘Friends’ role

·     Plan should have a key objective of reviewing, updating and/or developing a new Master Plan for the site.

 

Based on the consultation and feedback received the draft Strategic Plan could be amended or, the draft and the consultation and feedback be used as inputs into a new Plan of Management.

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

Council is the responsible Crown Land Manager for the NCRBG under the Crown Lands Management Act 2016.  As Crown Land Manager, Council is responsible for ensuring the reserve is operating at its highest and best use in line with its purpose and zoning.  Council is also now required to prepare a new Plan of Management for the NCRBG under the Local Government Act 1993 by no later than 30 June 2021.

 

The management and operations of the NCRBG supports a number of Council strategies, including:

 

·     Coffs Harbour Open Space Strategy 2010

·     Coffs Harbour Events Strategy

·     Coffs Harbour Tourism Strategy

·     Coffs Harbour Biodiversity Action Strategy

Implementation Date / Priority:

A preparation of a new Plan of Management for the NCRBG is considered a priority amongst the many Crown land reserves that Council manages.  It is expected that the preparation and consultation process will commence during this financial year.

Conclusion:

The public exhibition did not generate any feedback that cannot be incorporated into future planning for the North Coast Regional Botanic Garden.  It is recommended to commence a Local Government Act Plan of Management for the Crown Reserve in line with the requirements of the Crown Land Management Act 2016 as a priority, and utilise the draft Strategic Plan and the public exhibition outcomes to inform the development of the Plan of Management.

 

Following Council’s decision on the Strategic Plan, officers will progress the terms of reference and formation of a new advisory committee, which will be engaged in the Plan of Management’s development in coming months.

 

 

 


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NOM19/01   Rotary Auction Waste Disposal

Attachments:          Nil

 

Motion:

Councillor Arkan has given notice of his intention to move the following:

"That chcc liaise with the relevant person in the EPA to insure that service clubs such as Rotary, lions etc, are not charged to dispose of rubbish at Woolgoolga or Coffs Harbour Waste Transfer Stations"

 

 

Rationale:

“Service clubs have traditionally not been charged to dispose of rubbish at transfer stations or the tip in Coffs Harbour.

The costs associated with new rules associated with waste disposal on these clubs will have a very negative affect on these clubs.

How will these clubs, who are all run by volunteer residents with many many hours of volunteer time be able to bear these new charges?”

Staff Comment:

Staff can liaise with the Environmental Protection Agency in regard to this matter.

 

 

  


SI19/01         House Sewer Connection Inflow Strategy

Author:                        Group Leader Asset Construction and Maintenance

Authoriser:                  Director Sustainable Infrastructure

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

Attachments:              ATT1  SI19/01    CHCC Domestic Infiltration Fact Sheet No. 1

ATT2  SI19/01    CHCC House Sewer Connection Inflow Strategy  

 

Executive Summary

Council manages the transportation and treatment of sewerage for approximately 25,000 properties in the Coffs Harbour local government area. The system is deliberately designed with an inbuilt short term excess capacity for sewer flows of between 5 to 7 times the Average Dry Weather Flow (ADWF). 

This design component of the system is in recognition of the risk that sewer mains and manholes may malfunction from time to time and allow stormwater to enter the sewer system and will therefore need additional capacity during rain events to prevent overflows escaping the system. 

Current analysis indicates that during wet weather sewer flows (bolstered by stormwater ingressing the sewer system) are now sometimes reaching between 16 and 18 times the ADWF, or twice the actual capacity of the system. This results in an increased risk of potential overflows to the environment, sewer surcharging into properties, and a significant increase in transport and treatment costs. 

A major contributor to the wet weather inflow is the many private properties which are improperly discharging their stormwater into the sewer system.  The ingress of household stormwater is primarily occurring by either an improper direct stormwater connection to the sewer system or through improperly placed household sewer gully traps which facilitate stormwater to drain into the sewer system from residential hardstand and grassed areas.

This report requests that Council adopt the House Sewer Connection Inflow Strategy to achieve a reduction of stormwater from house service connections into the sewer system. A copy of the House Sewer Connection Inflow Strategy is attached.

 

Recommendation:

That Council:

1.       Adopt the House Sewer Connection Inflow Strategy.

2.       Allocate an amount of $286,816 from the Sewer Fund for 2018/19 to commence the implementation of the Strategy.

3.       Note that a report assessing the success of the Strategy over its first 12 months of operation will be provided to Council.

 

Report

Description of Item:

The Problem

Improper and/or faulty connections between household stormwater systems and Council’s sewer system is allowing the design capacity of Council’s sewer infrastructure to be overwhelmed during heavy rainfall events.

Industry studies of sewer systems installed around the same time as Coffs Harbour was connected to sewer have shown that household sewer systems on private property are a significant contributor (ie up to 50%) of stormwater inflow into sewer mains during rain events. To reduce the inflow of stormwater from house sewer service connections it is necessary to identify defects on house service connections and implement a process to ensure they are rectified.

The reduction of the inflow of stormwater into sewers is a priority for both the current Sewer Strategy and also the proposed replacement Sewerage Strategy 2020-2050. Transportation and treatment of sewerage is expensive, hence it is necessary to limit the flows in the sewerage system to sewage only. Additionally, stormwater inflow into the sewer system during rainfall events is a major cause of property damage and detrimental environmental risks.

Currently the sewer system is taking some stormwater flows directly from private properties and then being transported and treated as sewerage at significant additional cost.  The main causes are as follows:

-     Illegal connections of stormwater downpipes to sewer drains.

-     Broken or intentionally removed Sewer System Inspection Caps with overland flows directed towards them.

-     Household Gully Traps not constructed to code or installed too low allowing overland stormwater flows to drain into them.

-     Broken or fractured house drains that have not been repaired.

-     Bin wash down areas and industrial wash down areas that are quite properly connected to the sewer system but are not roofed, and therefore drain large areas during rain events directly into the sewerage system.

Council has spent in the order of $7M under the current Sewer Strategy to reduce infiltration into the sewer mains by lining aging pipes and repairing manholes in the public space. This work is an ongoing business-as-usual program to keep stormwater infiltration into Council sewer mains to a minimum. The Sewer Strategy identifies the need to also address inflow on the private property owners’ side of the sewer network.

Recent audits and inspections of house drains by an adjacent council demonstrated 46% of house drains were defective and contributing to stormwater inflows into sewers. To better understand how the industry is currently approaching this pervasive problem Council has also surveyed other like councils and their approaches to this issue. Councils surveyed included: Ballina Shire Council, Bega Valley Shire Council, Byron Shire Council, Eurobodalla Shire Council, Forbes Shire Council, Gladstone Regional Council, Shoalhaven City Council and Tweed Shire Council.

Key findings of that research are:

-     All Authorities have problems with stormwater inflows from house drains.

-     There is no consistent approach in dealing with this problem and their approaches vary from “Doing Nothing” to having a “Managed and Focused Strategy”.

-     All agree that to manage this problem dedicated fully funded resources are required.

-     Initial selection of properties, community communication, and physical inspections of properties is best managed by the inflow (Council) team with the actual works generally carried out by a mix of specialist contractors and Council staff.

-     The serving of defect notices, follow up inspections, and the serving of further notices on those who don’t comply with initial notices is required.

-     The landholders seem to be more responsive when they can see council also effectively repairing their side of the shared infrastructure.

The direct impact on property owners to rectify these defects can be considerable. However, a council which has implemented an inflow program which included a strong consultation element reports that most property owners rectified their defects without undue complaint as they acknowledged that their stormwater should not be discharged into the sewer system. 


 

The Response

Accordingly, a House Sewer Connection Inflow (HSCI) Strategy has been compiled. The aim of this Strategy is to reduce stormwater inflow into Council’s sewer system during wet weather events to a level that is financially sustainable and as close as possible to the design parameters for the sewer pipe network. If the Strategy is successfully implemented there are significant overall benefits to the future operation and augmentation of the sewerage transportation and treatment system can be expected.

The benefits of reducing stormwater inflows into the sewer system include:

-     A reduction in future augmentation costs of sewerage transport and treatment infrastructure and extended infrastructure asset life. Ie. There will be less upgrading to larger sewer pipes, and there will be a reduced need to duplicate sewer treatment facilities and outfall capacity.

-     A reduction in sewerage system operational costs.

-     A reduction of property and environmental impacts due to sewerage spills to the environment.

-     An improved access to the sewer network from the raising of buried manholes.

The House Sewer Connection Inflow Strategy proposes that no more than four catchments be addressed at the one time. The life of the program will be extensive as Council manages over 120 sewer catchments. From the analysed inflow measurements at pump stations it is estimated that it will take up to 10 years to resolve the high inflow flow areas, with completion due in 2029. By that time the existing newer areas will need investigation and are likely to require defect rectification. In summary, stormwater inflow management will become an ongoing routine operational activity. 


 

The proposed process to identify and rectify defects on private properties is as follows:

Issues:

Measurement of Strategy Outcomes

The designed sewer flows for the network during wet weather is five to seven times the ADWF. As stated previously the current flows during wet weather events vary from 12 to 18 the ADWF. To measure the effectiveness of the Strategy it is proposed to analyse the flows as the work in each catchment is completed. Other water authorities have seen a reduction in wet weather flows of around 40% to 50% post the effective implementation of an inflow strategy. The results of the Strategy will be reported in the Operational Plan and bi-annually to the Executive Leadership Team.

Raising of Buried Manholes

Investigations undertaken by RAIN Contracting found that 15-20% of manholes need either raising or could not be located, 41% of manholes had some inflow issue and 75% of the manholes surveyed over five catchments have defects that require rectification. Considering that there are 14,280 sewer manholes in the reticulation system this is a considerable issue. Inaccessible manholes cause significant maintenance issues when seeking access to the network to clear blockages, access CCTV lines or to reline and repair broken pipes.  Furthermore, a buried manhole is a major source of inflow into the system through ground water entering through the gap between the concrete lid and surrounds.

Defects associated with manholes are generally Council’s responsibility to rectify, except when the property owner has either buried or built a structure over the manhole.  Unfortunately to raise a manhole is expensive and can be specialised work. RAIN Contracting found that manholes had been buried between 200mm and 800mm deep.  The cost to raise the manholes will vary from around $800 to $2,500 each. The issue of who raises buried manholes will be contentious for the following reasons:

-     Many property owners will be unaware that there is a buried manhole on their property as a previous owner would have covered the manhole and at the time of purchase the existence of a buried manhole was not disclosed.

-     The cost will sometimes be significant and not part of the property owners planned expenditure.

-     Manhole work is not something that plumbers usually undertake and are they are therefore likely to charge more than necessary, increasing the cost to the property owner.

-     Any work on manholes will require inspection and approval by Council staff as the structure is part of the reticulation network.

Considering that Council will be requiring the property owner to pay for the rectification of defects on house service lines and gully traps it could be difficult to also expect them to pay for the raising of manholes.  Therefore, the Strategy proposes: where the manhole has been damaged or use-restricted, prior to 2009, by environmental factors or by a previous property owner, the defect rectification works associated with manholes is proposed to become Council’s responsibility.

Where the current property owner has buried a manhole and in effect restricted the use, post 2009, of a Council owned asset, that property owner will be held responsible for the rectification costs associated with the manhole.  Council is developing a Guideline for Cost Recovery Associated with Repair and Raising of Manholes in private property, which reflects the position adopted in this strategy.

Council Works on Sewer Mains and Manholes

As part of the findings of the previously cited SMEC report in looking at how other water authorities are addressing inflow it was noted that: The land holders seem to be more responsive when they can see council also repairing their own infrastructure. In essence, if Council expects householders to rectify defects on their private property then it is reasonable for them to expect Council to address defects on the sewer system for which it is responsible.

Council has spent in the order of $7M, reducing infiltration into the sewer mains by relining leaking pipes and repairing manholes.  The Delivery Plan includes further funding for pipe relining and repair works and this activity is now an ongoing commitment to reduce inflow on Council assets into the future.  The funding requested in this report would demonstrate a firm resolve by Council to address the inflow problem and is a strong platform from which to request householders to do the same.

Actions Being Taken by Other Water Authorities (Councils)

All Councils surveyed have the same problem with illegal connections and are aware that the issue needs to be addressed.  Actions being taken by other Councils are summarised in the table below, note that specific Council names have been removed:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Options:

There are limited options available regarding stormwater inflow into the sewerage system. Council may either implement a strategy to reduce the inflow or otherwise decide to accept environmental, social and financial implications. It is assessed that a ‘Do Nothing’ option would result in a high level risk of sewerage overflows into the environment and residential properties, and leave Council to fund a major infrastructure augmentation program in the coming years.

It is evident that the research that councils with an adopted strategy are making progress in reducing inflow.  From the lessons learnt, the inflow issue needs to be approached in a structured and transparent manner.  The HSCI Strategy can provide the structure and process needed along with a strong Community Engagement and Education Plan to delivery transparency to stakeholders.

Sustainability Assessment:

•     Environment

Currently there are a significant number of overflows from the sewerage system during rain events.  The majority of the flow that is released to the environment is actually stormwater which has come into the system through house service connections.  The implementation of this HSCI Strategy will reduce the flows and consequently the overflows to the environment.

•     Social

One of the consequences of house stormwater going into the sewer system is that there are surcharges into houses where sewerage comes up through the floor waste when the gully trap is higher than the floor level.  This is a major concern for a householder and avoidable when storm water flows are disconnected from the sewer system.

There will be a requirement on property owners to pay for the rectification of their plumbing to comply with the Australian Building Code and Legislation.  Another Council north of Coffs Harbour has found that most residents appreciate the situation and rectify their plumbing without objection.  For others this will be an unplanned financial expense that will be difficult to accommodate.  To assist property owners Council staff will be flexible in their timeframes for which works are to be completed and provide assistance where possible on case by case basis.

•     Civic Leadership

Whilst it may be convenient for some householders to discharge stormwater into the sewer system it has an overall detrimental effect on all users.  The implementation of a strategy to reduce flows into the sewer system will demonstrate a commitment that will benefit the whole community.  The HSCI Strategy demonstrates a strong alignment with the Community Strategic Plan and both the Delivery and Operational Plans.

•     Economic – Broader Economic Implications

An annual investment of $1,364,734 to implement the strategy will result in the following financial outcomes:

-     An ultimate decrease in OPEX expenditure of $540,000 per annum, ongoing (a reduction which is equal to 75% of existing additional costs due to inflow).

-     A required capital upgrade of the Coffs Waste Water Treatment Plant being deferred, saving $200M expenditure for a further 15 years.

-     The elimination of the need for another Sewerage Overflow Pond at the Coffs WWTP, saving $950,000 in the next five years.

-     The reduction of the quantity, and cost, of required augmentation works for existing reticulation infrastructure necessary for growth within the next 15 years by approximately $20M.

•      Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

Funding is available within the Sewer Fund to accommodate these works without unduly impacting the medium term financial sustainability of the fund. It is expected that the revenue projections will be maintained as per Council’s current Long Term Financial Plan.

The internal Financial Assessment for this project states: “The cost of the future required sewer system CAPEX works (assuming stormwater inflows continue at their current level) is very substantial and any postponement of them due to efficiency gains in the network will be beneficial. The annual repayment of a $200,000,000 loan at a very conservative rate of 4.5% per annum would be $21.2 million. The depreciation charge on the upgraded STP would increase by $6.7 million per annum.

This results in a total cost of approximately $28million per annum to fund the capital renewal of the Waste Water Treatment Plant alone.”

The current value of Council’s Sewerage Assets is over $700M.  An annual expenditure of $1.3m represents a 0.2% renewal ratio.  Considering the high value of the assets, the funding of this strategy is an appropriate and measured response to the inflow issue.  Council’s effective stewardship of the Sewerage Fund over many years now allows appropriate funding of this strategy and a favourable outcome be delivered.

Yearly Allocation Requested: Capital Renewal / Operational Expenditure

Item

Resource

2018/2019

2019/2020

Ongoing

Renewal

Operational

Renewal

Operational

Renewal

Operational

1

Internal Resource Costs

$171,066

$15,750

$502,934

$61,800

$502,934

$61,800

2

Connection Testing and Inspections

 

 

$400,000

 

$400,000

 

3

Repairs to Council infrastructure

$100,000

 

$400,000

 

$400,000

 

 

Total:

$271,066

$15,750

$1,302,934

$61,800

$1,302,934

$61,800

Annual Allocation:

$286,816

$1,364734

$1,364734

Note:  All amounts are given in present values

Risk Analysis:

Risk

Impact

Likelihood

Mitigation Strategy

Community objection to inspection of property

Medium

Possible

Develop and implement a Communication and Education Strategy

Project progress is delayed and slow, not meeting targets

High

Unlikely

Develop and Implement Project Plan for signoff by the Director SI

Property owners failing to repair defects in time nominated

High

Possible

Further communication and education

Council not carrying out repairs on Council infrastructure in properties after notices of intention served

High

Possible

Ensure council works are completed in a timely manner

Impact Ratings:   Low / Medium / High                 Likelihood Ratings:   Unlikely / Possible / Likely

Consultation:

Community Education and Engagement Plan

Council will be requesting residents rectify defects on their house connections at their cost. To ensure householders are informed, an outline of the Communication and Education Plan has been compiled targeting the relatively small number of households inspected annually. This document will be developed.  There is a draft community information pamphlet complied (refer attachment) and door-knocks planned to explain the proposed works to ensure property owners are correctly informed of the aims and intention of the program and their responsibilities. 

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

Legislative Framework

The supporting Legislative Framework for this strategy is very strong with the Local Government Act and Regulations identifying the importance of keeping Council’s sewer networks free of stormwater. The Local Government General Regulation (2005) has regulations pertaining to the Local Government Act (1993) and is the key legislative source that defines the obligations of councils to the enforcement powers and public services.  The key requirements and provisions that relate to inflow from house stormwater drains include:

-      16A Approvals for water supply or sewerage work subject to compliance with Plumbing and Drainage Act 2011, standards and requirements.

It is a condition of an approval allowing water supply or sewerage work that the activity approved, and any building or work associated or carried out in connection with the activity, complies with:

§ any applicable requirements of the Plumbing and Drainage Act 2011 or the regulations made under that Act, and

§ any applicable standards or requirements set out or referred to in this Regulation or any other regulation under the Act or the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.

Local Government (General) Regulation 2005

Part 6 Division 1 Clause 137A

137A Substances prohibited from being discharged into public sewers

(1)   For the purposes of section 638 of the Act (Discharge of prohibited matter into sewer or drain), roof, rain, surface, seepage or ground water is prescribed as prohibited matter.

There is a comprehensive list of legislation in the HSCI Strategy relevant to the inflow from house service connections.

Implementation Date / Priority:

Item

Project Milestones

Completion Date

1

Council Briefing

Feb 2019

2

Council Adopt Strategy

Feb 2019

3

Advertise and appoint a  supervising Engineer

Feb/Mar 2019

4

Refine Project Plan, Comms Strategy  and processes

Apr/May 2019

5

Advertise and appoint Inflow Reduction Supervisor

Apr 2019

6

Review Current Inspection data and prioritise works

May 2019

7

Implement a targeted Communication/Education Strategy

June 2019

8

Commence property inspections

Aug 2019

9

Prepare and serve Notices of Intention and follow through until repairs are completed.

Sept 2019

10

Prepare contract documents and tender a further 2000 house inspections and appoint contractor

Oct 2019

11

Develop procedures for inspecting properties when ownership occurs and charge policy for inspections

Dec 2019

12

Report back to Executive Leadership Team (ELT) on progress

Feb 2020

Conclusion:

Stormwater inflows from improper house stormwater connections into the sewerage system is a major problem.  As shown by the findings of the SMEC report it is the experience of other councils that the most effective way to address the issue is by adopting a defined strategy. The House Sewer Connection Inflow Strategy has been compiled for this purpose.

Funding for the implementation of the Strategy is available in the Sewer Fund thereby having no bearing on Council’s General Fund.  The majority of the expenditure is capital renewal, resulting in a favourable impact on Council’s Renewal Ratio.

This report assesses that Council is unable to continue the status quo without a consequent and substantial financial commitment to build new sewerage infrastructure.  The HSCI Strategy offers an alternative approach which is viable and will result in significant savings to operational and future capital budgets.

 


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SI19/02         Detail Design of Wharf Street Woolgoolga

Author:                        Group Leader Strategic Asset Management

Authoriser:                  Director Sustainable Infrastructure

MyCoffs:                      A.2 An active, safe and healthy community

Attachments:              ATT1  SI19/02    June 2016 Attachment 5 Original Concept

ATT2  SI19/02    Wharf Street Stage 2 Detail Design  

 

Executive Summary

At its meeting of 9 June 2016, Council adopted a concept design for the upgrade of Wharf Street Woolgoolga. Stage 1 of that Project (ie. the section from Beach Street to the new Caravan Park entrance) was completed in 2017. Detail Design of Stage 2, from the Caravan Park entrance northward to Pacific Street, has been finalised, and is due for construction in this current financial year.

This report provides information on the differences between the Original Concept, as resolved by Council in 2016, and the current Detail Design. This report seeks Council’s endorsement of the changes prior to proceeding to the construction of the final stage of the Project.

 

Recommendation:

That Council endorses the Detail Design of Stage 2 of the upgrade of Wharf Street, Woolgoolga.

 

Report

Description of Item:

At the meeting of 9 June 2016, Council resolved to:

1.   Endorses the relocation of the entrance to the Woolgoolga Beach Holiday Park from its current location in Beach Street to Wharf Street with a turning bay and additional parking on Wharf Street as shown in Attachment 5 with the inclusion of kerb and guttering.

2.   Request the Corporate Manager of the Coffs Coast State Park Trust revise and update the draft Woolgoolga Beach Reserve Plan of Management incorporating the relocated entry and report back to Council with submissions made during its exhibition.

3.   Finalise the preliminary draft Woolgoolga Town Centre Masterplan incorporating the relocated entry (including turning bay and additional parking on Wharf Street) and report back to Council seeking endorsement for its exhibition.

4.   Notify parties who made submission during community engagement of Council’s decision.

This Report is to advise Councillors of the Detail Design of Stage 2 of Wharf Street Woolgoolga upgrade.

At the time of the resolution, the designs of the Woolgoolga Beach Holiday Park entrance, and Wharf Street upgrade were conceptual only. The concept included a turning bay (roundabout) at the bend of Wharf Street was to ensure that caravans wishing to enter the Holiday Park would not need to queue in front of the commercial area of Wharf Street. The intention of the concept was that entering caravans would be able to proceed past the new entrance, proceed further along Wharf Street, where they could undertake a ‘u-turn’ and proceed back to the Park entrance. Any queuing would be on the opposite side of the road to the current commercial area.

Stage 1 of the work was completed last year, and Wharf Street was concurrently reconfigured for the new Holiday Park entrance. The new Park entrance was made operational at the end of 2018 and operated effectively at peak load during the recent holiday period.

The Detail Design of Stage 2 of the Wharf Street Upgrade (from the new Park entrance northward to the concept roundabout) has now been completed. The result is generally in line with the 2016 presentation made to Council in the report nominated as ‘Attachment 5’. The design objectives are to enhance the amenity of the street and to provide adequate parking for the commercial and residential areas.

The design includes kerb and gutter or concrete edge beams, extensive upgraded drainage, formal parking areas, and a 2.0m wide concrete footpath. The existing street trees on the western side will be retained, while some trees on the eastern side will be kept, but trimmed.

The design is consistent with the Woolgoolga Town Centre Masterplan, where it is classified as a ‘Living Street’.

A major difference from the original concept design previously presented to Council is the deletion of the turning bay/roundabout.

There are several reasons why this element has been deemed inappropriate for the Detail Design including:

-     Recent Holiday Park peak usage has shown that new Park management initiatives have completely mitigated the previously perceived risk issue of caravans queuing in Wharf Street.

-     The creation of major impacts on private residences to provide enough room to facilitate on the placement of an unnecessary u-turning radius suitable for large caravans and motorhomes.

-     The need to impact existing trees at the proposed turnaround location to facilitate its placement (some removal and adjacent filling which could damage the trees)

-     The need to provide additional significant drainage infrastructure at the proposed turnaround site.

-     The amenity impact which would be created by placing a roundabout adjacent to residences

-     The need for large caravans and motorhomes to make an inappropriate sharp left turn into the Holiday Park when entering from the north, rather than the easy right turn from the south.

-     Interruption to easy traffic flow to the Lakeside and Woolgoolga back beach areas.

Turning Bay in the original proposal

The turning bay at the end of Wharf Street contained in the original concept design was proposed to mitigate the possibility of caravans and motorhomes queuing on the roadway outside the commercial area of Wharf Street, while awaiting check-in to the Holiday Park.

Since the relocation of the new Park entry, managers have introduced both an internal waiting area for large vehicles and new electronic ‘check in’ procedures to improve efficiency and reduce waiting times. Recent peak holiday traffic over the busy Christmas Period has tested and validated these innovations.

The two busiest check-in days each year are 26th & 27th December. During this period over the recent holiday period 25 caravans checked in on 26th December and 31 caravans on 27th December with no incidence of queuing in Wharf Street.

These numbers do not factor in the high volume of traffic entering/exiting the park as guest undertake their usual activities exclusive to the check-in/check-out process. The entry worked as designed and further operational efficiencies will continue to improve the situation.

Due to this recent data and performance it is now assessed that a turnaround bay would be a superfluous addition to the project.

Attached to this report are the original concept plan referred to as Attachment 5 in the Council Report of June 2016, and the current Detail Design of Stage 2 of the Wharf Street Project.

Issues:

The design incorporates a change (deleted turnaround bay) from the concept that was originally endorsed by Council in 2016. This reasons for the change are addressed in the body of this report.

Options:

Option 1 - Endorse the new design which excludes the turning bay. Construction will commence as scheduled in the second quarter of 2019.

Option 2 – Alternatively, reindorse the original design which includes a turning bay. The turning bay would increase costs and create the issues mentioned in the body of the Report, for what is assessed as no additional benefit. 

Sustainability Assessment:

•     Environment

A draft Part V Environmental Assessment has not identified any major issues with the proposed design. A final assessment will ensure that construction methodology will provide environmental integrity.

•     Social

The project proposed in this report will enhance social aspects of the area. The Detail Design incorporates additional parking for both commercial and residential convenience. Extensive drainage and kerb and gutter will improve the aesthetics and amenity of the area. The inclusion of a wide footpath will enable better mobility and connectivity for non-vehicular traffic.

•     Civic Leadership

Council is the road authority for Wharf Street, and is responsible for any upgrades and operation of the road network. The Detail Design enhances several aspects of Council’s Community Strategic Plan, including:

-     A.1 A vibrant and inclusive place

-     A.2 An active, safe and health community

-     B.1 A thriving and sustainable local economy

-     C.1 Liveable neighbourhoods with a defined identity

-     D.2 We have effective use of public resources

The Detail Design is consistent with the Woolgoolga Town Centre Masterplan, where it is classified as a ‘Living Street’.

•     Economic – Broader Economic Implications

The project will enhance the amenity of the Commercial area of Wharf Street, making it a more attractive trading place.

Works will be undertaken by Coastal Works supported by local sub-contractors and suppliers ensuring money spent will largely remain in the local community.

•     Economic - Delivery Program/Operational Plan Implications

The costs of design and construction of the Stage 2 works is already included in the 2018/19 Operational Plan Budget.

Risk Analysis:

Normal construction and environmental risks will be managed by the Coastal Works’ Project Management System and procedures.

The expected risk of queuing of caravans in Wharf Street has been mitigated by the Park’s management initiatives, and has not eventuated.

The commercial community in Wharf Street will be consulted prior to construction.

Consultation:

Consultation with stakeholders at the project initiation stage raised a perceived but now invalid risk of queuing caravans and possible loss of parking amenity. Both issues have been mitigated by proposed design.

Further consultation with residential and commercial stakeholders will occur prior to construction.

Consultation will continue during the construction period.

Related Policy, Precedents and / or Statutory Requirements:

Designs have been undertaken to the relevant standards.

Implementation Date / Priority:

Construction is scheduled to be undertaken in the second quarter (April, May and June) of 2019.

Conclusion:

Operational initiatives at the Woolgoolga Holiday Park and validated performance data have made the proposed turnaround bay in the original concept design of Wharf Street redundant. This report seeks Council’s endorsement to delete the turnaround from the Project.

 


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