Infill, climate change on agenda at Joondalup AGM

Stock pic.
Stock pic.

JOONDALUP’S annual general meeting of electors last night saw 15 motions put forward covering topics such as infill, climate change, the Jinan sister city relationship, the Newstart Allowance, election signage and community consultation.

Duncraig resident Martin Dickie said while the City’s climate change strategy “clearly recognises the need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions”, it was “much more urgent today” than when the strategy was created for 2014-2019.

He moved a motion to request the City minimise the surplus cash it invests with institutions that fund fossil fuel industries and to include “much more ambitious mitigation strategies” when it reviews its climate change strategy.

Joondalup investment policy change not worth the risk

Mr Dickie also moved a second motion for the City to review its environmental and sustainability design policy to ensure all buildings are constructed to meet targets rather than “just a tick list”.

Edgewater resident Ziggy Murphy requested the City publicly advocate to the Federal Government to increase the Newstart Allowance to the level of the Henderson Poverty Line.

She said the allowance was a “one-way ticket to poverty” and was 41 per cent less than the minimum wage and 18 per cent less than the average wage.

She said increasing it would also benefit the local economy by “increasing the spending power of lower income earners”.

Mrs Murphy also moved a second motion requesting a “short plain English report” detailing the cost and benefits of infill in the City’s housing opportunity areas and how it “proposed to compensate homeowners who have bought their forever homes in neighbourhoods that have been completely changed by infill”.

Feedback sought on new standards for infill

David Wilkins moved a motion to request the City release transport studies and reports or undertake traffic impact assessments for the traffic likely to be generated by increased density in the housing opportunity areas, while Edgewater resident Juehui Quan requested the City publish how many infill developments there are each year and an estimate of the infill targets achieved to ensure the City was not “over achieving” its State Government targets.

Edgewater resident Mike Moore requested the City do more to combat the heat island effect by creating a tree retention policy, accelerating the street tree planting program, keeping all suburbs “leafy and green” and increasing landscaping requirements in housing opportunity areas.

He said highly developed areas could be as much as 10-15 degrees hotter and the “only way to combat this it to have green spaces and trees”.

Padbury resident Tim Green requested the City look to improve the amenity of suburbs by working with the State Government to underground power lines, particularly in the housing opportunity areas, installing shade sails over all play equipment within three years and planting trees to eventually replace the sails, and to partner with the State Government to subsidise the safe removal of asbestos from fences and properties across the City.

Dr Green also moved a second motion for the City to write a “short plain English report” with a register of plans for all new residential and commercial development in the City and to publish reasons for granting discretions as a database that can be followed up with “spot audits”.

He said this would allow residents to help ensure building requirements were met and to understand why discretions were made.

Tony Campbell moved a motion for the council to rescind its decision to spent $2.15 million on a Jinan garden and redeploy the funds to create community gardens across the City “for the benefit of all residents”.

Sister city garden takes root

He said the project could be called Gardens for Jinan to still honour the sister city relationship.

Edgewater resident Beth Hewitt also moved a motion for a “short plain English report detailing the true cost and benefit of the Jinan sister city relationship”, questioning how the City was able to value it at an economic benefit of $70 million.

Kinross resident Mary O’Byrne moved to make audio recordings of council briefings available to the public “to enhance the information flow between councillors and the public”.

She also moved a second motion for the City to “communicate in plain English rather than planning speak” to avoid a “disconnect” between residents and the City and improve response rates to community consultation.

Andy Murphy requested the City disallow election signs on road verges or public property, saying the recent local government election was a “debacle” because of the signage.

Candidate’s campaign signs a target

He also moved a second motion to levy proportional rates on church properties where facilities are hired out for profit.

This was the only motion to have a member of the gallery to vote against.

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