City of Boroondara council meeting: 9 June 2020

Video URL
Wed 17 June 2020
Audio description

Welcome everyone to tonight's council meeting. My name is councillor Cynthia Watson and I'm the mayor of Boroondara.

I would now like to call upon councillor Healey to read the council prayer. Please bear with me. 

Almighty God we humbly seek your blessings upon this council, direct and prosper its deliberations to the advancement of your glory and the true welfare of the people of the city of Boroondara, amen.

The City of Boroondara acknowledges the traditional custodians of this land and respects their customs and traditions.

The health safety and well-being of the community has and will always be the paramount consideration of the council. 

Council continues to be guided by the government directives and wants to be able to do the right thing for the health of our community during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The COVID-19 omnibus emergency measures act 2020 passed by the Victorian Parliament on 23 April 2020. Excuse me madam mayor there's an echo coming through on your feed.

Thank You Councillor Hurd we're just dealing with that now, has that been resolved, yes I'm getting the nod that that's been resolved. That's better. Okay I'll just recommence that last sentence and thank you councillor Hurd. 

The COVID-19 omnibus emergency measures act 2020 passed by the Victorian Parliament on 23rd April 2020 included changes to the Local Government Act 2020 which affected the conduct of council meetings.

The change became effective from the 1st of May 2020. Council is now able to hold virtual meetings and councillors can participate in meetings remotely by electronic means of communication.

The council meeting is being live-streamed on the council website so you'll be able to view the Proceedings of the meeting, councillor deliberations and voting.

The meeting is also being recorded and will be made available on the council website as soon as practicable after the meeting.

Should technical problems be encountered by the council then the meeting will be adjourned until resolution or postponed if needed.

I'll start by introducing my fellow councillors and officers who are present for this meeting. Councillor Coral Ross, present. Councillor Felicity Sinfield, good evening present. Councillor Jim Parke, good evening. Councillor Garry Thompson, good evening. 

Councillor Jack Wegman, good evening. Councillor Jane Addis, good evening. Councillor Lisa Hollingsworth, good evening. Councillor Phillip Healey, good evening. And councillor Steve Hurd, good evening.

Thank You councillors for declaring your presence. We also have in attendance our chief executive officer mr. Phillip Storer, director of City Planning Shiran Wickramasinghe, the director of community development Carolyn McClean, the director of environment and infrastructure Daniel Freer, director of customer experience and business transformation mr Bruce Dobson, manager of governance mr. David Thompson, governance projects officer miss Elizabeth Manou. 

There are also a number of officers in attendance tonight and they will be introduced as they present their reports.

I will now move on the order of business as listed on our business papers. Mr Thompson we're considering apologies for this evening are there any apologies. 

Through you madam mayor there are no apologies for this evening. Thank you very much.

Councillors we'll now proceed to have a look at item 1 which is the adoption and confirmation of the minutes of the council meeting held on the 25th of May 2020.

Councillor Ross, happy to move. Thank you, do we have a seconder we do councillor Hollingsworth.

Councillors is there anyone opposed to the adoption of the minutes, there being no one opposed then I declare the motion carried.

Second on the agenda for this evening is a declaration of conflict of interest of any councillor or council officers. Is there anyone who needs to declare a conflict of interest.

I note that councillor Healey has indicated that he has a conflict to declare this evening, councillor Healey.

Madam mayor through you I'll be declaring a leave application under general business that therefore constitutes a conflict of interest.

Thank you very much and at the appropriate time we will deal with that matter. Item three deputations presentations petitions and public submissions, mr. Thompson are there any of the above this evening.

Through you madam mayor there are none of the aforementioned for consideration this evening. Thank you very much mr. Thompson.

Item four on the agenda this evening is assemblies of councillors. Councillors is anyone prepared to move a motion to receive and note the record of assemblies of councillors as printed, councillor Thompson are you prepared to move the motion. I am. 

Thank you and councillor Parke as second, thank you very much. Is there anyone opposed to this motion this evening, there being no opposition I declare the motion carried and thanks councillor Thompson and councillor Parke for moving that motion. 

Item five is public question time. Council encourages the submission of public questions prior to 12:00 p.m. on the day of the meeting.

Questions submitted prior to 12:00 noon will be provided with a detailed verbal response as well as a response in writing.

Those submitted after 12:00 p.m. will receive a verbal response if possible and will otherwise be taken on notice for a written response to be provided in due course.

Mr. Thompson do we have any public questions tonight. Through you madam mayor three residents have submitted five questions. Copies of the questions have been circulated to councillors.

Thank you very much mr. Thompson. I will read the questions concerned. The first question is regarding the North East link and has been submitted by mr. Ian Hundley of Balwyn North. 

The question asked is as follows. Given that Boroondara Council is a party to a Memorandum of Understanding with the North East Link project concerning the provision of information in the project please advise on how including the issue of timeliness the Memorandum of Understanding constrains the council in advising Boroondara residents and ratepayers on the impact of the North East Link project.

This question has been allowed because it has been previously put in writing to a member of council staff and received a written response from the member of council staff and is allowed in accordance with Clause 60.2.2 of the meeting procedure local law.

I call upon the director of Environment and infrastructure to respond to this question from mr. Hundley, mr. Freer if you would be so kind.

Thank you madam mayor. In response to the question provided council is party to a memorandum of understanding with the North East Link project. 

All councils impacted by the North East link have entered into an MoU with the North East Link project as advised in response to your question on the 25th of may council meeting NELP required all councils impacted by the project to enter the MOU and would not share information about the project until the MOU was executed.

The MOU includes a confidentiality clause which requires all information passed between the two parties to be treated as confidential if it is not in the public domain. Where information is in the public domain Council is able to share it with residents and ratepayers and we generally do so by our website or by direct contact.

As you are also aware Council is currently party to a Supreme Court challenge. Some information and documents relating to this aspect of the northeast link project may not be immediately available to the community and when it can be shared will again be shared using our website thank you.

Thank You mr. Freer. The second question again comes from mr. Ian Hundley of Balwyn North and the subject of the second question reflects the subject in title terms of reference for the Boroondara public health and well-being Advisory Committee.

The question before us is please advise why Council did not consult members of the general public in its review of the public health and well-being Advisory Committee. 

This question is allowed as it relates to a matter on the agenda before us this evening and I now call upon the Director of Community Development to respond to this question from mr. Hundley, ms McClean if you would be so kind.

Through you madam mayor the Boroondara public health and well-being Advisory Committee provides feedback to support Council's decision making on the implementation and evaluation of the municipal public health and well-being plan.

The committee functions as an important consultative mechanism to Council and provides feedback regarding the benefits of including resident members on the committee as well as community agencies representation.

It is considered that feedback received from this committee provides an effective consultative mechanism in determining additions to this committee. The committee is just one range of ways that council provides for community involvement in matters that are important for the health and well-being of Boroondara.

Thank you very much ms McClean for that answer and to assure mr. Hundley that the two questions that he has asked will receive a written response in due course.

The third question we have this evening is from mr. Leigh Naunton of Balwyn North and again the same subject matter which is terms of reference for the Boroondara public health and well-being Advisory Committee.

The question is, will Council include terms of reference for the public health and well-being committee acknowledging a climate change a climate emergency and instructing the committee to pay particular attention to the effects of increased heat waves air pollution bush fires food and safety issues and shortages increases in infectious the water and food borne disease severe weather events and mental health crisis and suicide rates on the people living and working in the city of Boroondara.

This question relates to a matter on the agenda and is therefore allowable in accordance with our meeting procedure. I would again call upon the Director of Community Development to respond to this question this evening for mr. Naunton. Thank You ms McClean.
Through you madam mayor the Boroondara public health and well-being Advisory Committee terms of reference outlines the role of the committee and the structure in place to provide advice.

It does not prescribe the various issues to be considered during its term. The committee in general provides advice regarding the implementation and annual review of the health and well-being issues as set out in the Boroondara Community Plan, thank you.

Thank you ms McClean and again to reiterate that a written response will be provided in due course.

We've also received another question from a community member but this question has been disallowed as it does not relate to a matter on the agenda before us this evening. So we will not be considering this particular question. 

The submitter will however receive a written response to their question in due course from the director of environment and infrastructure. That concludes public question time.

Now look at item six on the agenda this evening which is notices of motion mr. Thompson do we have any notices of motion. Through you madam mayor there are no notices of motion for consideration this evening. Thank You mr. Thompson.

We will now proceed to item 7 on the agenda which is the presentation of officer's reports. Item 7.1 before us this evening is concerning the updated terms of reference for the Boroondara public health and well-being Advisory Committee.

Introducing this report this evening is ms Nicole White the manager of Community Planning and Development thank you Ms White.

Thank you madam mayor. Since 2011 the Community Planning and Development Department has convened a Boroondara public health and well-being advisory committee to assist by providing advice on the implementation and annual review and evaluation of council's municipal public health and well-being plan.

The committee currently has ten members from external organizations that provide services in Boroondara. It was identified that the committee could benefit from the addition of community representatives to assist Council to meet its requirements under the public health and well-being Act to provide for the involvement of people in the local community in the development implementation and evaluation of the public health and well-being plan.

The addition of community representatives on the committee would also add value to the discussions at the meetings by ensuring a diversity of health and well-being views and interests in the community represented.

The purpose of this report is to seek Council's approval of the proposed changes to the terms of reference which are highlighted in track changes in attachment 1. The changes reflect the addition of community representatives on the committee and the criteria that will be used to select them, as well as how they'll be recruited and the maximum term they can serve. Thank you.

Thank you very much ms. White. Councillors are there any questions for officers this evening, we've got a couple of them in attendance that are able to assist us with any inquiries. Councillor Hollingsworth.

Thank you madam mayor. Just a question for Ms White just with regard to the outlined key of issues and options with regard to the term of reference and the candidates that will be eligible to nominate to go on the actual committee. It states that they must have residency in Boroondara and I was just going to ask the question if we had someone that worked in the health industry that was associated with some of the councillor assignment councillor committees that may not reside in Boroondara but has very good knowledge of the residents and the issues that would be relevant to this particular committee could it be considered that that person be eligible to go on the committee.

At this stage we're looking for residents in Boroondara because that's consistent with all of our other terms of reference and other committees that we currently have. We do have different organizations that sit outside of Boroondara that do provide that advice, so when we put out the selection criteria they can definitely put in a response and then we can have a look at that compared to the others and make the appropriate selection.

Thank you. Thank you very much councillor Hollingsworth, councillor Hurd you indicated you would like to speak. Yes just as printed to move the motion at the right time madam mayor. 

Thank You Councillor Hurd. Is there anyone prepared to second the motion or I haven't asked for if there are any further questions, so councillor Addis I note that you are willing to second the motion. 

Are there any other questions for officers this evening, there being none councillor Hurd would you like to speak to the motion. Yes thank you madam mayor. Public health is probably one of the most important areas that this council has to deal with. 

And whilst I take one of the points one of the questions that the effects of climate change may indeed have a heavy impact on our public health I think to expressly put those things in can often limit what the committee can do rather than give it the broader impetus to look across a number of different areas that the committee has at the moment. 

Criteria can work both ways so sometimes they can be a blessing and sometimes it can be a curse so I think that whilst those things aren't expressly in the committee's terms of reference they will be by reference. I certainly as indeed number of other people will be looking at those things as the years go by. 

I'd like to thank the officers for their work. I've been on this committee before it does a lot of really good work and I think it really develops strong partnerships across the sector and I encourage people in the community to be involved and to really make this work. 

So thanks ms McClean and your team for the work that you've done and I certainly support this motion.

Thank You councillor Hurd. Is there anyone else wishing to speak to the motion before I put it this evening, councillor Addis. 

Thank you very much madam mayor. As the chair of the committee I am aware of what really important work this committee does and at the moment we're very blessed with a number of community provider organizations who do provide Council with truly excellent advice and tell us about all that's happening in Boroondara but we actually don't hear a lot from actual community members so to me this is going to provide a real balance that it gives us an opportunity to hear about the lived experience of our residents as well as the community organizations which undoubtedly provide us with really valuable information.

So I very much support this motion and thank the officers for the work that they've undertaken in putting this together Thank You madam mayor. 

Thank You councillor Addis for your remarks. If there's no one else wishing to speak to the motion and that looks like that is the case I will now put this motion to the vote. All those in favor. 

As I call your name if you'd put your hands down. Councillor Ross, councillor Sinfield, councillor Parke, councillor Thompson, councillor Wegman, councillor Addis, councillor Healey, councillor Hollingsworth, and councillor Hurd, and myself I declare that motion carried unanimously. Thank you councillors for the discussion this evening. 

Now move to item 8 on the agenda which is general business and councillor Healey I believe that you're going to declare a conflict of interest for the item before us.

I am madam mayor as I'm seeking leave until the next council meeting, I believe you have the dates mr. Thompson as the dates ready to put up on the screen, I'll be declaring an interest given that I'd be a beneficiary of the outcome and I'll take my leave.

Thank You councillor Healey. If you'd like to take your leave I'll then put the discussion of the motion to your fellow councillors. 

Ok councillor Healey has now left the meeting, so councillors the motion for our consideration is as follows. That council resolve to grant councillor Healey a leave of absence from Council for the period 10th of June to 12th of July 2020 inclusive.

I'm in search of a motion councillor Ross. Happy to move as printed. All right and councillor Thompson you are happy to second. 

If there is no opposition to this motion I'll now put this motion to the vote. All those in favour, I declare the motion carried. 

And we'll now wait for governance to contact councillor Healey and request that he re-join the meeting. 

Looks like we've got councillor Healey back with us so thank you very much for your patience there. 

Councillors are there any other items of general business this evening, there being none I'll ask if there are any items of urgent business. 

Any items of urgent business this evening, there being none. Any items of confidential business, and there being none. I now declare the council meeting closed.