MINUTES


Council Meeting

 

Monday, 28 September 2020

7.00pm

 

Dragon Room

(Level 1, Georges River Civic Centre, Hurstville)

and

Skype Online Meeting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Georges River Council – Minutes of Council Meeting - Monday, 28 September 2020

Page 1

 

PRESENT

Council Members

The Mayor, Councillor Kevin Greene, Deputy Mayor, Councillor Stephen Agius, Councillor Vince Badalati, Councillor Sam Elmir, Councillor Sandy Grekas, Councillor Con Hindi, Councillor Rita Kastanias, Councillor Nick Katris, Councillor Lou Konjarski, Councillor Nancy Liu, Councillor Leesha Payor, Councillor Colleen Symington and Councillor Warren Tegg.

Council Staff

General Manager - Ms Gail Connolly, Director Assets and Infrastructure - Mr Andrew Latta, Director Environment and Planning - Ms Meryl Bishop, Director Community and Culture - Ms Rebekah Schulz, Director Business and Corporate Services - Mr David Tuxford, Director City Strategy and Innovation - Ms Sue Weatherley, Manager Children’s Services – Ms Kristie Dodd, Manager, Office of the General Manager - Ms Roxanne Thornton, Head of Strategic Property – Mr Bernard Morabito, Coordinator Communications and Engagement – Ms Catherine James, Executive Services Officer - Mrs Marina Cavar, Research and Projects Officer - Mrs Ann-Marie Svorinic and Executive Services Officer - Mr Neil Treadwell.

OPENING

The Mayor, Councillor Kevin Greene, opened the meeting at 7.11pm.

NATIONAL ANTHEM

All those present stood for the singing of the National Anthem.

PRAYER

The Mayor, Councillor Greene offered a prayer to the meeting.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF COUNTRY

The Mayor acknowledged the traditional custodians of the land, the Biddegal people of the Eora Nation.

APOLOGIES/LEAVE OF ABSENCE  

RESOLVED: Councillor Hindi and Councillor Kastanias

That apologies be accepted and leave of absence be granted for Councillor Landsberry and Councillor Wu.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

NOTICE OF WEBCASTING

The Mayor advised staff and the public that the meeting is being recorded for minute-taking purposes and is also webcast live on Council’s website, in accordance with section 4 of Council’s Code of Meeting Practice. This recording will be made available on Council’s Website.

CODE OF MEETING PRACTICE

The order of business is as shown in the agenda.

 

Council’s Code of Meeting Practice prohibits the electronic recording of meetings without the express permission of Council.

DISCLOSURES OF INTEREST

Councillor Agius disclosed a Pecuniary Interest in Item CCL057-20 Report of the Environment and Planning Committee Meeting Held 14 September 2020 (ENV046A-20 - Adoption of the Traffic Modelling Report (Kogarah Local Environmental Plan Rezoning)) for the reason that the matter relates to the Kogarah LEP and he owns a commercial property in the Kogarah area. As this is a Pecuniary disclosure, Councillor Agius will not be participating in the discussion or voting on this item.

Councillor Kastanias disclosed a Pecuniary Interest in CCL058-20 Report of the Finance and Governance Committee Meeting Held 14 September 2020 (FIN044-20 – Property Matter – Commercial Property Portfolio – 2019/20 Fourth Quarter Report) for the reason that she has a commercial lease with Georges River Council. As this is a Pecuniary disclosure, Councillor Kastanias will not be participating in the discussion or voting on this item.

The Mayor, Councillor Greene disclosed a Significant Non-Pecuniary Interest in Item CCL058-20 Report of the Finance and Governance Committee Meeting Held 14 September 2020 (FIN041-20 – Administrative Matter – Execution of Documents Under Delegated Authority (1 August 2020 to 31 August 2020)) for the reason that he is the President of the St George District Cricket Club who are lessees of Harold Fraser Oval for the period of report. This lease is one of the leases mentioned in the report. As this is a Significant Non-Pecuniary Interest disclosure, The Mayor, Councillor Greene will not be participating in the discussion or voting on this item.

Councillor Tegg disclosed a Significant Non-Pecuniary Interest in Item NM080-20 - COVID-19: Waiver of Application Fees for Residential Alterations and Additions Development Applications for the reason that he may be a beneficiary of this policy, should the report recommendation be adopted. As this is a Significant Non-Pecuniary Interest disclosure, Councillor Tegg will not be participating in the discussion or voting on this item.

 

Note:        Councillor Badalati requested that Items NM078-20 (Proposed Feasibility Study - Kogarah War Memorial Pool) and NM079-20 (Publication of Unconfirmed Minutes of Council and Committee Meetings) be deferred to the next Ordinary Council Meeting.

 

RESOLVED: Councillor Hindi and Councillor Kastanias

That items NM078-20 (Proposed Feasibility Study - Kogarah War Memorial Pool) and NM079-20 (Publication of Unconfirmed Minutes of Council and Committee Meetings) be deferred to the next ordinary Council meeting.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

PUBLIC FORUM

The following registered speakers addressed the Council.

ITEM

SPEAKER

 

NM081-20 Georges River Council Property Portfolio Strategy

Peter Mahoney

 

NM081-20 Georges River Council Property Portfolio Strategy

Elise Borg

Note:        Mr Peter Hill was registered to address Council in regards to Item NM078-20 (Proposed Feasibility Study - Kogarah War Memorial Pool), but as the Item was deferred to the next ordinary meeting of Council, his address was not heard at this meeting.

CONFIRMATION OF MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETINGS

CCL054-20       Confirmation of the Minutes of the Ordinary Council Meeting held 24 August 2020

(Report by Executive Services Officer)

RESOLVED: Councillor Katris and Councillor Grekas

That the Minutes of the Ordinary Council Meeting held on 24 August 2020 be adopted.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

CONDOLENCES

·            Councillor Sandy Grekas expressed condolences in regard to the recent passing of Susan Ryan and Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in America.  Sadly, advocates for gender equality around the world have lost two trailblazing women this week. The theme of NAIDOC week back in 2018 was “Because of her we can” that phrase comes to mind when you think of everything that both of these women achieved for women globally. It wasn’t just for women it was for equality on a broader scale whether it be LGBTQI rights, increased voting rights and anti-discrimination measures for the aged and disability community.

 

Susan Ryan was the first female minister from the Australian Labor Party (ALP) and the first woman to hold the portfolio relating to women’s affairs and she was largely responsible for enshrining the Sex Discrimination Act, Equal Employment Opportunity Act and Affirmative Action Act.  Most importantly, the Sex Discrimination Act outlawed discrimination on the basis of sex, marital status and pregnancy. 

 

In the US, Ruth Bader Ginsburg affectionately known as ‘RBG’, spent her entire career fighting against gender based discrimination whether that was against woman or against man. First as a lawyer and later as just the second woman ever to serve on the Supreme Court. Because of RBG, some of the rights that women now take for granted include the ability to hold a credit card in their name, serve on juries and keep their job when they become pregnant just to name a few.  So it’s hard to overstate the impact that Ryan and Ginsburg had on women worldwide.

 

Georges River Council is a living testament to a world made better by these women as a Council where female Councillors almost have parity with our male colleagues. It’s a fitting time to acknowledge that we stand on the shoulders of these trailblazers. It is truly “because of her that we can”.

 

·            The Mayor, Councillor Kevin Greene, expressed condolences in regard to the recent passing of Peter Newell OAM. Peter was a director of the St George Illawarra Dragons, and was also a past Chair of Clubs NSW. In his working life, he was the editor of the Illawarra Mercury newspaper and made a significant contribution to journalism. His journalistic skills came to the fore in many of the contributions he made to the broader community. He was a regular visitor to Netstrata Jubilee and many other functions throughout the Georges River community. To his wife Judy and family, we pay our deepest respects and condolences.

 

Note:        A moment’s silence was observed by Councillors and staff who were present at the meeting.

COMMITTEE REPORTS

CCL055-20       Report of the Assets and Infrastructure Committee Meeting held 14 September 2020

(Report by Executive Services Officer)

RESOLVED: Councillor Grekas and Councillor Tegg

That the Committee recommendations for Items ASS019-20 to ASS022-20, as detailed below, be adopted by Council.

ASS019-20       Confirmation of the Minutes of the Assets and Infrastructure Committee Meeting Held on 10 August 2020

(Report by Executive Services Officer)

That the Minutes of the Assets and Infrastructure Committee Meeting held on 10 August 2020 be adopted.

ASS020-20       Georges River Local Traffic Advisory Committee Meeting 1 September 2020

(Report by Coordinator Traffic & Transport)

That the recommendations contained within the minutes of the Georges River Local Traffic Advisory Committee Meeting held on 1 September 2020 be adopted by Council.

ASS021-20       Fire and Electrical (Trade) Services Contract

(Report by Coordinator Property & Assets)

(a)    That Council exercise the 2 year (1+1) year extension option for Fire Services T18/003 and Electrical Services T18/008 service panels.

(b)    That the General Manager be authorised to sign the two year extension letters with the T18/003 and T18/008 panel contractors on behalf of Council.

ASS022-20       Installation of Water Bottle Filling Stations in the Georges River Local Government Area

(Report by Manager Infrastructure)

That the installation of non-filtered water stations be included in the 5 year capital program and the priority locations highlighted in the report be considered as a budget bid in each consecutive financial year from 2021/22.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

 

 

CCL056-20       Report of the Community and Culture Committee Meeting held 14 September 2020

(Report by Executive Services Officer)

RESOLVED: Councillor Tegg and Councillor Grekas

That the Committee recommendations for Items COM034-20 to COM036-20, as detailed below, be adopted by Council.

COM034-20      Confirmation of the Minutes of the Community and Culture Committee Meeting Held on 10 August 2020

(Report by Executive Services Officer)

That the Minutes of the Community and Culture Standing Committee Meeting held on 10 August 2020 be confirmed.

COM035-20      Draft Georges River Council Interim Community Property Strategy 2020-2023 for Public Exhibition

(Report by Community Property Officer)

(a)    That Council approve the draft Georges River Council Interim Community Property Strategy 2020-2023 to be placed on public exhibition for 28 days to facilitate community consultation.

(b)    That a further report be submitted to Council detailing feedback from any public submissions made during the exhibition period, together with any recommended changes to the draft Georges River Council Interim Community Property Strategy 2020-2023 prior to adoption.

COM036-20      Economic and Social Recovery Plan - Monthly update

(Report by Coordinator, Strategy and Innovation)

(a)    That Council receive and note the attached Economic and Social Recovery Plan update for the July 2020 – August 2020 period.

(b)    That Council endorse the proposed amendments to the Plan outlined in this report, which include:

i.    Business Attraction Program.

ii.    Investigation of a business stimulus package.

iii.    Seeking partnership/s to create a precinct of superfast internet speed.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

 

 

Note:        Councillor Kastanias left the meeting at 7.34pm

 

 

CCL057-20       Report of the Environment and Planning Committee Meeting held 14 September 2020

(Report by Executive Services Officer)

RESOLVED: Councillor Katris and Councillor Agius

That the Committee recommendations for Item ENV034-20 to ENV037-20, with the exception of ENV046A-20, as detailed below, be adopted by Council.

ENV034-20       Confirmation of the Minutes of the Environment and Planning Committee Meeting Held on 10 August 2020

(Report by Executive Services Officer)

That the Minutes of the Environment and Planning Committee Meeting held on 10 August 2020 be adopted.

ENV035-20       Draft Georges River Management of Feral and Infant Companion Animals Policy 2020 for Public Exhibition

(Report by Manager Environment Health & Regulatory Services)

(a)    That Council endorse the Draft Georges River Management of Feral and Infant Companion Animals Policy 2020, contained in Attachment 1, to be placed on public exhibition for a minimum of 28 days.

(b)    That a further report be provided to Council on the:

i.      outcomes of the public exhibition; and

ii.      details of a future companion animal identification and de-sexing program.

ENV036-20       Adoption of Georges River Planning Agreements Policy 2020

(Report by Executive Strategic Planner)

That Council defer adoption of the Georges River Planning Agreements Policy 2020 (Version 2) in order to address the following issues;

(a)    Review Clause 5.17 for the purpose of establishing a simplified method of valuing the properties before any uplift is considered and the valuing of properties after an uplift is applied by identifying the current market value of the land and its improvements versus the market value of the land and its improvements following the development.

(b)    Consider replacing the term ‘Residual Land Value’ with ‘Market Value of the Development Site’.

(c)    Include a definition for the term ‘Market Value’ to be based on a valuation being prepared and certified by a suitably qualified person/s.

(d)    Consider allowing Council to provide instructions as to the most suitable method of establishing or preparing a valuation (to include comparable sales and hypothetical residual land value).

ENV037-20       Food Waste Feasibility Study and Recycling Trial

(Report by Manager Environment Health & Regulatory Services)

That a further report detailing the outcomes of the Food Waste Feasibility Study be provided to Council in early 2021.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

Note:     Due to disclosing a Pecuniary Interest in the following Item (ENV046A-20 - Adoption of the Traffic Modelling Report (Kogarah Local Environmental Plan Rezoning)), Councillor Agius left the meeting at 7.35pm.

ENV046A-20             Adoption of the Traffic Modelling Report (Kogarah Local Environmental Plan Rezoning)

(Report by Strategic Planner)

Note:   Councillor Agius disclosed a Pecuniary interest in this Item and did not participate in the discussion or voting on this item.

RESOLVED: Councillor Katris and Councillor Payor

(a)    That Council adopt the Traffic Modelling Report – Kogarah Local Environmental Plan Rezoning as a strategic planning document that will inform the development of policies and planning directions, including development contributions planning.

(b)    That the adopted copy of the Traffic Modelling Report – Kogarah Local Environmental Plan Rezoning be forwarded to Transport for NSW, Department of Planning Industry and Environment and Minister for Planning Mr Robert Stokes MP.

(c)    That the General Manager write to the NSW Government (Transport for NSW) requesting the intersection upgrades required to accommodate the proposed growth are included in the TfNSW forward works (capital) program.

(d)    That Council undertake further traffic analysis of the intersections of Jubilee Avenue / Princes Highway, Park Road / Princes Highway and South Street / Princes Highway to identify and implement mitigation measures in order to improve traffic flows, with the view of considering possible land acquisitions to achieve intersection improvements / road widening as recommended by TfNSW.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

Note:      Councillor Agius returned to the meeting at 7.36pm.

Note:     Due to disclosing a Significant Non-Pecuniary Interest in the following item (FIN041-20 – Administrative Matter – Execution of Documents Under Delegated Authority (1 August 2020 to 31 August 2020)) The Mayor, Councillor Greene left the meeting at 7.36pm.

Note:      The Mayor, Councillor Greene vacated the Chair at 7.36pm. 

Note:     In the absence of the Chairperson, The Deputy Mayor, Councillor Agius assumed the                  Position of the Chair, time being 7.36pm.

CCL058-20       Report of the Finance and Governance Committee Meeting held 14 September 2020

(Report by Executive Services Officer)

Note:     The Mayor, Councillor Greene disclosed a Significant Non-Pecuniary Interest in this Item and he did not  participate in the discussion or voting on this item.

Note:    Councillor Kastanias disclosed a Pecuniary Interest in this Item and she did not participate in the discussion or voting on this item.

RESOLVED: Councillor Badalati and Councillor Hindi

That the Committee recommendations for Items FIN039-20 to FIN044-20, as detailed below, be adopted by Council.

FIN039-20        Confirmation of the Minutes of the Finance and Governance Committee Meeting held on 10 August 2020

(Report by Executive Services Officer)

That the Minutes of the Finance and Governance Committee Meeting held on 10 August 2020 be adopted.

FIN040-20        Investment Report as at 31 July 2020

(Report by Senior Financial Accountant - Reporting)

That Council receives and notes the contents of the Investment Report as at 31 July, 2020.

FIN041-20        Administrative Matter - Execution of Documents Under Delegated Authority (1 August 2020 to 31 August 2020)

(Report by Manager, Office of the General Manager)

That Council note, for the period 1 August 2020 to 31 August 2020, there were two (2) relevant documents executed by the General Manager under delegation.

FIN042-20        End of Year Progress Report July 2019 - June 2020

(Report by Integrated Planning and Reporting Officer)

(a)    That Council receive and note the End of Year Progress Report July 2019 – June 2020 (Attachment 1) of performance made against Georges River Council’s Delivery Program 2018/2019 to 2020/2021 and Operational Plan 2019/2020.

(b)    That Council endorse the Delivery Program and Operational Plan items recommended for cancellation and carry over, as detailed in Table 1: Proposed Cancellations and  Table 2: Proposed Carry Overs.

(c)    That a copy of the End of Year Progress Report July 2019 – June 2020 be published on Council’s website.

FIN043-20        Update on Development Contributions Ministerial Directions, Reforms and Resourcing

(Report by Manager Strategic Planning)

(a)    That Council endorse the extension of the staffing of a finance resource position in the development contributions and VPA area until 30 March 2021.

(b)    That Council approve a 12 month full time secondment (from within Council) to be allocated to the development contributions and VPA area for a period of 12 months from appointment.

(c)    That the Council’s FY19/20 and 20/21 Budgets be updated to reflect the additional positions and salaries.

(d)    That paragraph 33(b) in the Report, be amended to read as follows;

“The data in the new Development Contributions Dashboard (which currently only has the Hurstville S94 Plan and the GRC S94A plan contributions levied and paid) has an issue with integrity with regard to the transfer of data to the new system. This needs to be fixed before the dashboard can be used with any confidence and will involve checking each DA and CDC, whether or not a CC or OC or Notice of Commencement had been issued and what account the development contribution was paid into.”

FIN044-20        Property Matter - Commercial Property Portfolio - 2019/20 Fourth Quarter Report

(Report by Strategic Property Specialist)

That Council receives and notes the Commercial Property Portfolio – 2019/2020 Fourth Quarter report.      

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

 

Note:        The Mayor, Councillor Greene returned to the meeting at 7.37pm and resumed the position of the Chair.

Note:        Councillor Kastanias returned to the meeting at 7.37pm.

FINANCE AND GOVERNANCE

CCL059-20       Proposed Council and Committee Meeting Schedule - 2020/21 and (part of) 2021/22

(Report by Manager, Office of the General Manager)

RESOLVED: Councillor Katris and Councillor Grekas

That Council endorse the proposed meeting schedule for 2020/21 and (part of) 2021/22, as attached to this report.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

 

CCL060-20       Adoption of new Code of Conduct and Associated Procedures 2020

(Report by Manager Governance and Risk)

RESOLVED: Councillor Hindi and Councillor Katris

That the Code of Conduct and Procedures for the Administration of the Code of Conduct (Attachments 1 and 2 to the report) be adopted.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

 

CCL061-20       COVID-19: Instrument of Delegation to the Mayor (Emergency Administrative Provisions) - September 2020 Report

(Report by Manager, Office of the General Manager)

RESOLVED: Councillor Badalati and Councillor Symington

That Council note the register of actions taken pursuant to the Instrument of Delegation to the Mayor (Emergency Administrative Provisions).

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

 

CCL062-20       Georges River Property Portfolio Strategy (Disposal of Stage 1 Surplus Property) - 59 Park Road, Kogarah Bay

(Report by Head of Strategic Property)

RESOLVED: Councillor Hindi and Councillor Badalati

That this item be considered in closed confidential session.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

NOTICES OF MOTION

NM072-20         COVID-19 Safe 'No Domestic Violence' Ceremony

(Report by Councillor Symington)

RESOLVED: Councillor Symington and Councillor Katris

(a)    That Council, in light of the ongoing COVID-19 restrictions impacting the community's ability to safely gather and reimagine the annual 'No to Domestic Violence Walk' event in November into a COVID-19 safe ceremony where the names of domestic violence victims within our community who have tragically lost their lives are read aloud and remembered via an online broadcast; and 

(b)    That a temporary public art installation at Kogarah Town Square honouring these victims is created to raise community awareness of the devastating impacts of domestic violence in our community. 

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

 

NM073-20         Hurstville Education and School Precinct - Support for Feasibility Study

(Report by Councillor Liu)

RESOLVED: Councillor Liu and Councillor Hindi

(a)    That Council write to Transport for NSW and request the urgent completion of its Feasibility Study into creating a 40km/h road safety zone around the educational precinct in Hurstville and the implementation of the Study findings before the end of January 2021.

(b)    That the Mayor write to the Mayor of Bayside Council requesting Bayside Council’s support by writing to Transport for NSW on the same basis.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion:    The Mayor, Councillor Greene, Deputy Mayor, Councillor Agius and Councillor Elmir, Grekas, Hindi, Konjarski, Liu, Payor and Tegg.

Against the Motion:   Councillors Badalati, Kastanias (abstained), Katris and Symington.

On being put to the meeting, the voting on the Motion was nine (9) FOR and four (4) AGAINST. The Motion was CARRIED.

 

Note:        Councillor Tegg left the meeting at 7.53pm.

 

NM074-20         Congratulations to Council Officers on the Towards Net Zero Emissions Initiatives

(Report by Councillor Grekas)

RESOLVED: Councillor Grekas and Councillor Kastanias

That Council congratulate Council’s Sustainability Team for the significant work conducted in advancing Council’s operations towards ‘net zero carbon emissions’ which is reflected in Council being nominated as a finalist for the LGNSW Excellence in the Environment Awards in the Towards Net Zero Emissions category.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

 

NM075-20         Good Luck to Georges River HSC Students for 2020 Exams

(Report by Councillor Konjarski)

RESOLVED: Councillor Konjarski and Councillor Hindi

That Council wish good luck and success to all the Year 12 students in the Georges River Local Government Area sitting their upcoming 2020 HSC exams.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

 

NM076-20         Congratulations to Council Officers on the Implementation of the Media Lab

(Report by Councillor Katris)

RESOLVED: Councillor Katris and Councillor Symington

That Council congratulates Council officers for their outstanding efforts in the completion of the Media Lab within Georges River Libraries and for providing a digital creation space for the community.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

 

NM077-20         Proposed 24/7 Stimulation of Georges River Economy

(Report by Councillor Konjarski)

RESOLVED: Councillor Konjarski and Councillor Kastanias

(a)    That Council, to support local businesses during the ongoing restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic and to promote safe outdoor gatherings, create more temporary or pop-up outdoor spaces and this should include:

i.    Use of parking spaces for outdoor dining/restaurants; and

ii.    Creation of pop up parks, such as the “parklets” proposed for Forest Road, Hurstville as part of the Streets as Shared Spaces grant funded project, temporary road closures or other underutilised public land (including land owned by the NSW government).

(b)    That these initiatives also include activities that better support a vibrant diverse night time economy for Georges River.

(c)    That the Economic and Social Recovery Plan be updated to include these initiatives and these initiatives be promoted to our community and businesses.

(d)    That a report be presented to Council on the implications and opportunities of the recently announced NSW Government’s 24 Hour Economy Strategy and how Georges River can be involved to help create a more diverse local economy.

(e)   That Council write to the Minister for Jobs Investment and Tourism and Western Sydney, The Hon. Stuart Ayres MP, to ask how Council can partner with them to promote a 24 hour economy in the Georges River Local Government Area.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

 

NM078-20         Proposed Feasibility Study - Kogarah War Memorial Pool

(Report by Councillor Badalati)

This matter was deferred to the next ordinary Council meeting, as detailed earlier in these Minutes.

 

NM079-20         Publication of Unconfirmed Minutes of Council and Committee Meetings

(Report by Councillor Landsberry)

This matter was deferred to the next ordinary Council meeting, as detailed earlier in these Minutes.

Note:        Councillor Elmir left the meeting at 8.10pm and did not return to the meeting.

NM080-20         COVID-19: Waiver of Application Fees for Residential Alterations and Additions Development Applications

(Report by Deputy Mayor, Councillor Hindi)

Note:        Councillor Tegg disclosed a Significant Non-Pecuniary Interest in this Item. Councillor Tegg did not  participate in the discussion or voting on this item.

RESOLVED: Councillor Hindi and Councillor Katris      

That the General Manager prepare a report to the October 2020 Council meeting, detailing the financial implications of Council waiving any application fees associated with alteration and additions to dwellings until 20 June 2021. This initiative is to help everyday small tradies to continue work and provide for the family during this pandemic. It will also assist mums and dads to renovate or extend their house to cater for growing families.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

Note:        Councillor Liu left the meeting at 8.19pm and did not return to the meeting.

Note:        Councillor Konjarski left the meeting at 8.19pm and did not return to the meeting.

Note:        Councillor Grekas left the meeting at 8.19pm.

Note:        Councillor Grekas returned to the meeting at 8.40pm.

Note:        Councillor Tegg returned to the meeting at 8.40pm.

NM081-20         Georges River Council Property Portfolio Strategy

(Report by Deputy Mayor, Councillor Hindi)

RESOLVED: Councillor Hindi and Councillor Badalati

That this item be deferred to a future Councillor Briefing / Workshop.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

 

QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE

QWN017-20     Question Without Notice - Council Meeting of 24 August 2020 (Council's General Income Base and the Financial Implications of Not Implementing a Special Rate Variation)

(Report by Councillor Badalati)

RESOLVED: Councillor Badalati and Councillor Hindi

That the information be received and noted.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

 

QWN018-20     Mental Health Programs and Support

(Report by Deputy Mayor, Councillor Hindi)

RESOLVED: Councillor Hindi and Councillor Badalati

That the information be received and noted.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

  

Note:        Councillor Hindi left the meeting at 9.11pm.

MOVE TO CLOSED SESSION

RECOMMENDATION: Councillor Tegg and Councillor Kastanias

At this stage of the meeting being 9.11pm the Mayor advised that the meeting would move into a Committee of the Whole to allow consideration of a matter in Closed Session in accordance with Section 10A of the Local Government Act 1993. Accordingly, members of the press and public are excluded from the closed session and access to the correspondence and reports relating to the items considered during the course of the closed session will be withheld.

This action was taken to allow discussion of the following item:

CCL047A-20    DEFERRED REPORT FROM THE COUNCIL MEETING OF 24 AUGUST 2020 - (CCL042A-20) Code of Conduct Investigation Report - Councillor Christina Wu

(Report by Complaint Coordinator (Director, Legal Services and General Counsel))

THAT in accordance with the provisions of Part 1 of Chapter 4 of the Local Government Act 1993, the matters dealt with in this report be considered in closed Council Meeting at which the press and public are excluded. In accordance with Section 10A(2) (I) it is considered the matter alleged contraventions of any code of conduct requirements applicable under section 440 of the Local Government Act 1993.

THAT in accordance with Section 10D it is considered that if the matter were discussed in an open Council Meeting, it would on balance, be contrary to the public interest as it alleged contraventions of any code of conduct requirements applicable under section 440 of the Local Government Act 1993.

 

CCL062-20       Georges River Property Portfolio Strategy (Disposal of Stage 1 Surplus Property) - 59 Park Road, Kogarah Bay

(Report by Head of Strategic Property)

THAT in accordance with the provisions of Part 1 of Chapter 4 of the Local Government Act 1993, the matters dealt with in this report be considered in closed Council Meeting at which the press and public are excluded. In accordance with Section 10A(2) (c) it is considered the matter information that would, if disclosed, confer a commercial advantage on a person with whom the Council is conducting (or proposes to conduct) business.

THAT in accordance with Section 10D it is considered that if the matter were discussed in an open Council Meeting, it would on balance, be contrary to the public interest as it information that would, if disclosed, confer a commercial advantage on a person with whom the Council is conducting (or proposes to conduct) business.

 

The Mayor asked the General Manager if any representations had been received from the public that the item should not be discussed in closed session.

The General Manager replied that no representations had been received to the item in closed session.

Due to the fact there was no public gallery present at the meeting, the Mayor was not able to ask if there were any members of the public gallery who wanted to speak on the reasons Council proposes to consider the items in Closed Session.

Record of Voting

For them Motion: Unanimous

 

 

Note:        Council moved to Closed Confidential session at 9.12pm.

 

CLOSED SESSION

CONFIDENTIAL ITEM

Note:        The following Councillors were present for Item CCL047A-20 (DEFERRED REPORT FROM THE COUNCIL MEETING OF 24 AUGUST 2020 - (CCL042A-20) Code of Conduct Investigation Report - Councillor Christina Wu);

The Mayor, Councillor Kevin Greene, Deputy Mayor, Councillor Stephen Agius, Councillor Vince Badalati, Councillor Sandy Grekas, Councillor Rita Kastanias, Councillor Nick Katris, Councillor Leesha Payor, Councillor Colleen Symington and Councillor Warren Tegg.

Note:        The following staff were present for Item CCL047A-20 (DEFERRED REPORT FROM THE COUNCIL MEETING OF 24 AUGUST 2020 - (CCL042A-20) Code of Conduct Investigation Report - Councillor Christina Wu);

General Manager - Ms Gail Connolly and Manager, Office of the General Manager - Ms Roxanne Thornton.

 

CCL047A-20    DEFERRED REPORT FROM THE COUNCIL MEETING OF 24 AUGUST 2020 - (CCL042A-20) Code of Conduct Investigation Report - Councillor Christina Wu

(Report by Complaint Coordinator (Director, Legal Services and General Counsel))

RECOMMENDATION: Councillor Tegg and Councillor Grekas

That:

(a)    Council adopt the external Conduct Reviewer’s recommendation.

(b)    Pursuant to section 440G of the Local Government Act, 1993 (NSW), (LG Act), Councillor Christina Wu be formally censured by Council for breaching the Council’s Code of Conduct.

(c)    Should Council determine to censure Councillor Wu, Council makes public the findings of inappropriate conduct by Councillor Wu by publishing those findings in the Minutes as:

        On 23 April 2019 Councillor Christina Wu failed to declare an interest in an agenda item at the ordinary meeting of Georges River Council, particularly:

a.  At the 23 April 2019 Council meeting, there was an item of business on the agenda (agenda item) containing a Notice of Motion, NM033-19, entitled “Maintaining Public Confidence in Georges River Council”.

b.  This agenda item moved that investigations be sought in relation to certain matters pertaining to the Council that had been aired in the media.

c.  This agenda item related, in part, to matters involving Councillor Con Hindi.

d.  Councillor Wu has personal family relationships with Councillor Hindi’s family that constitute potential conflicts of interests.

e.  Councillor Wu has a duty to declare any conflicts of interests and take appropriate action to deal with any such conflicts.

f.   Councillor Wu took part in the Council discussion of this agenda item and participated in the voting on this agenda item.

g.  Councillor Wu did not declare any interest in this agenda item.

h.  Councillor Wu did not take any action to appropriately deal with her conflicts of interests.

The external Conduct Reviewer has found that this allegation is substantiated.

Councillor Wu’s behaviour leading to the substantiated allegation, aside from being an undeclared conflict of interest, also comprises behaviour that is likely to bring the Council into disrepute, is unethical and demonstrates a failure to exercise due care and diligence.

Councillor Wu has breached the following clauses of the Code of Conduct in relation to the substantiated allegation:

3.1  You must not conduct yourself in carrying out your functions in a manner that is likely to bring the Council or holders of civic office into disrepute. Specifically, you must not act in a way that:

a)  contravenes the Act, associated regulations, Council’s relevant administrative requirements and policies.

c)  is improper or unethical.

3.2 You must act lawfully, honestly and exercise a reasonable degree of care and diligence in carrying out your functions under the Act or any other Act. (section 439).

4.1  A conflict of interests exists where a reasonable and informed person would perceive that you could be influenced by a private interest when carrying out your public duty.

4.2  You must avoid or appropriately manage any conflict of interests. The onus is on you to identify a conflict of interests and take the appropriate action to manage the conflict in favour of your public duty.

4.3  Any conflict of interests must be managed to uphold the probity of Council decision making. When considering whether or not you have a conflict of interests, it is always important to think about how others would view your situation.

4.10 Non-pecuniary interests are private or personal interests the Council official has that do not amount to a pecuniary interest as defined in the Act. These commonly arise out of family, or personal relationships, or involvement in sporting, social or other cultural groups and associations and may include an interest of a financial nature.

4.12 Where you have a non-pecuniary interest that conflicts with your public duty, you must disclose the interest fully and in writing, even if the conflict is not significant. You must do this as soon as practicable.

4.13 If a disclosure is made at a Council or Committee meeting, both the disclosure and the nature of the interest must be recorded in the minutes. This disclosure constitutes disclosure in writing for the purposes of clause 4.12.

4.14 How you manage a non-pecuniary conflict of interests will depend on whether or not it is significant.

4.15 As a general rule, a non-pecuniary conflict of interests will be significant where a matter does not raise a pecuniary interest but it involves:

a)   a relationship between a Council official and another person that is particularly close, for example, parent, grandparent, brother, sister, uncle, aunt, nephew, niece, lineal descendant or adopted child of the person or of the person’s spouse, current or former spouse or partner, de facto or other person living in the same household.

b)   other relationships that are particularly close, such as friendships and business relationships. Closeness is defined by the nature of the friendship or business relationship, the frequency of contact and the duration of the friendship or relationship.

c)   an affiliation between the Council official and an organisation, sporting body, club, corporation or association that is particularly strong.

4.16 If you are a Council official, other than a member of staff of Council, and you have disclosed that a significant non-pecuniary conflict of interests exists, you must manage it in one of two ways:

a)   remove the source of the conflict, by relinquishing or divesting the interest that creates the conflict, or reallocating the conflicting duties to another Council official.

b)   have no involvement in the matter, by absenting yourself from and not taking part in any debate or voting on the issue as if the provisions in section 451(2) of the Act apply.

 

Record of Voting:

For the Motion:     The Mayor, Councillor Greene, Deputy Mayor, Councillor Agius and Councillors Grekas, Katris, Symington and Tegg.

Against the Motion:       Councillors Badalati, Kastanias and Payor

On being put to the meeting, voting for the Motion was six (6) FOR and three (3) AGAINST. The Motion was CARRIED.

Note:        Councillor Hindi returned to the meeting at 9.26pm.

CCL062-20       Georges River Property Portfolio Strategy (Disposal of Stage 1 Surplus Property) - 59 Park Road, Kogarah Bay

(Report by Head of Strategic Property)

RECOMMENDATION: Councillor Payor and Councillor Kastanias

(a)       That Council defer the matter, for a maximum of 2 months, pending a response from TFNSW to the proposed mitigation measures provided in the adopted traffic modelling report (Kogarah Local Environmental Plan rezone) for the Princes Hwy/Park Rd intersection.

(b)       That the General Manager arrange a Councillor Workshop on this matter in the intervening period.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion:  The Mayor, Councillor Greene, Deputy Mayor, Councillor Agius and   Councillors Badalati, Grekas, Hindi, Kastanias, Payor and Tegg

Against the Motion:   Councillors Katris and Symington.

 

On being put to the meeting, voting for the Motion was eight (8) FOR and two (2) AGAINST. The Motion was CARRIED.

 

OPEN COUNCIL

RESOLVED: Councillor Badalati and Councillor Kastanias

That Council return to Open Session at 10.02pm.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

 

 

Note:        Council returned to Open Session at 10.02pm.

 

 

CONFIRMATION OF RECOMMENDATION FROM CLOSED SESSION

 

RESOLVED:       Councillor Kastanias and Councillor Tegg

That the Committee of the Whole recommendations from the Closed Session in relation to Item CCL047A-20 DEFERRED REPORT FROM THE COUNCIL MEETING OF 24 AUGUST 2020 - (CCL042A-20) Code of Conduct Investigation Report - Councillor Christina Wu and Item CCL062-20 Georges River Property Portfolio Strategy (Disposal of Stage 1 Surplus Property) - 59 Park Road, Kogarah Bay of this meeting be received and noted as a resolution of Council without any alteration or amendment thereto.

That the recommendations of the Closed Session be adopted, as follows;

CCL047A-20             DEFERRED REPORT FROM THE COUNCIL MEETING OF 24 AUGUST 2020 - (CCL042A-20) Code of Conduct Investigation Report - Councillor Christina Wu

(Report by Complaint Coordinator (Director, Legal Services and General Counsel))

That:

(a)    Council adopt the external Conduct Reviewer’s recommendation.

(b)    Pursuant to section 440G of the Local Government Act, 1993 (NSW), (LG Act), Councillor Christina Wu be formally censured by Council for breaching the Council’s Code of Conduct.

(c)    Should Council determine to censure Councillor Wu, Council makes public the findings of inappropriate conduct by Councillor Wu by publishing those findings in the Minutes as:

        On 23 April 2019 Councillor Christina Wu failed to declare an interest in an agenda item at the ordinary meeting of Georges River Council, particularly:

a.  At the 23 April 2019 Council meeting, there was an item of business on the agenda (agenda item) containing a Notice of Motion, NM033-19, entitled “Maintaining Public Confidence in Georges River Council”.

b.  This agenda item moved that investigations be sought in relation to certain matters pertaining to the Council that had been aired in the media.

c.  This agenda item related, in part, to matters involving Councillor Con Hindi.

d.  Councillor Wu has personal family relationships with Councillor Hindi’s family that constitute potential conflicts of interests.

e.  Councillor Wu has a duty to declare any conflicts of interests and take appropriate action to deal with any such conflicts.

f.   Councillor Wu took part in the Council discussion of this agenda item and participated in the voting on this agenda item.

g.  Councillor Wu did not declare any interest in this agenda item.

h.  Councillor Wu did not take any action to appropriately deal with her conflicts of interests.

The external Conduct Reviewer has found that this allegation is substantiated.

Councillor Wu’s behaviour leading to the substantiated allegation, aside from being an undeclared conflict of interest, also comprises behaviour that is likely to bring the Council into disrepute, is unethical and demonstrates a failure to exercise due care and diligence.

Councillor Wu has breached the following clauses of the Code of Conduct in relation to the substantiated allegation:

3.1  You must not conduct yourself in carrying out your functions in a manner that is likely to bring the Council or holders of civic office into disrepute. Specifically, you must not act in a way that:

a)  contravenes the Act, associated regulations, Council’s relevant administrative requirements and policies.

c)  is improper or unethical.

3.2 You must act lawfully, honestly and exercise a reasonable degree of care and diligence in carrying out your functions under the Act or any other Act. (section 439).

4.1  A conflict of interests exists where a reasonable and informed person would perceive that you could be influenced by a private interest when carrying out your public duty.

4.2  You must avoid or appropriately manage any conflict of interests. The onus is on you to identify a conflict of interests and take the appropriate action to manage the conflict in favour of your public duty.

4.3  Any conflict of interests must be managed to uphold the probity of Council decision making. When considering whether or not you have a conflict of interests, it is always important to think about how others would view your situation.

4.10 Non-pecuniary interests are private or personal interests the Council official has that do not amount to a pecuniary interest as defined in the Act. These commonly arise out of family, or personal relationships, or involvement in sporting, social or other cultural groups and associations and may include an interest of a financial nature.

4.12 Where you have a non-pecuniary interest that conflicts with your public    duty, you must disclose the interest fully and in writing, even if the conflict is not significant. You must do this as soon as practicable.

4.13 If a disclosure is made at a Council or Committee meeting, both the disclosure and the nature of the interest must be recorded in the minutes. This disclosure constitutes disclosure in writing for the purposes of clause 4.12.

4.14 How you manage a non-pecuniary conflict of interests will depend on whether or not it is significant.

4.15 As a general rule, a non-pecuniary conflict of interests will be significant where a matter does not raise a pecuniary interest but it involves:

a)   a relationship between a Council official and another person that is particularly close, for example, parent, grandparent, brother, sister, uncle, aunt, nephew, niece, lineal descendant or adopted child of the person or of the person’s spouse, current or former spouse or partner, de facto or other person living in the same household.

b)   other relationships that are particularly close, such as friendships and business relationships. Closeness is defined by the nature of the friendship or business relationship, the frequency of contact and the duration of the friendship or relationship.

c)   an affiliation between the Council official and an organisation, sporting body, club, corporation or association that is particularly strong.

4.16 If you are a Council official, other than a member of staff of Council, and you have disclosed that a significant non-pecuniary conflict of interests exists, you must manage it in one of two ways:

a)   remove the source of the conflict, by relinquishing or divesting the interest that creates the conflict, or reallocating the conflicting duties to another Council official.

b)   have no involvement in the matter, by absenting yourself from and not taking part in any debate or voting on the issue as if the provisions in section 451(2) of the Act apply.

 

CCL062-20       Georges River Property Portfolio Strategy (Disposal of Stage 1 Surplus Property) - 59 Park Road, Kogarah Bay

(Report by Head of Strategic Property)

(a)       That Council defer the matter, for a maximum of 2 months, pending a response from TFNSW to the proposed mitigation measures provided in the adopted traffic modelling report (Kogarah Local Environmental Plan rezone) for the Princes Hwy/Park Rd intersection.

 

(b)       That the General Manager arrange a Councillor Workshop on this matter in the intervening period.

Record of Voting:

For the Motion: Unanimous

 

 

CONCLUSION

The Meeting was closed at 10.03pm.

Chairperson

Mayor, Kevin Greene

 

Minutes confirmed at the Ordinary Meeting of Council on 26 October 2020 (CCL063-20)