22 February 2017
The announcement by Premier Gladys Berejiklian that her Government will go ahead with forced mergers for metropolitan is disappointing for Ryde and neighbouring councils.
The new Premier gave us a glimmer of hope recently when she stated she would be open to public concerns about forced amalgamations, but this decision means the amalgamation of Ryde, Hunters Hill and Lane Cove Councils is still on the agenda pending current legal challenges.
A forced amalgamation will initially mean an Administrator will be put in charge of a merged entity and the community will lose its voice through their democratically elected representatives.
There is a better solution and I have urged Ms Berejiklian and her peers to look more closely at our proposed Joint Regional Authority (JRA) model as a way of improving the three councils’ operations. A JRA allows our local councils to remain independent and provide regional cooperation.
Joint organisation arrangements were first supported by the Independent Local Government Review Panel and our specific JRA model was unanimously recommended by the NSW Legislative Council 2015 Inquiry into Local Government as a ‘co-operative and consensus model for local council reform in Metropolitan Sydney’.
The Hunters Hill and Lane Cove Council’s Directions Hearing for their appeal is listed for April.
Let’s get rid of graffiti
The City of Ryde spends more than $200,000 a year removing graffiti vandalism. In its fight against graffiti, Council works with various organisations, including Rotary and the NSW Government, to highlight the problem and help remove graffiti.
If you see a graffiti vandal in action, please report it immediately on the Police Assistance Line 131444 or Crime Stoppers 1800 333 000 (anonymous).
There is more information on the Graffiti Management page.
If you would like to be part of our community consultation on how to reduce graffiti vandalism, go to the Have Your Say website.
Small ideas. Big impact.
Boronia Park’s Pittwater Road shopping precinct is the latest town centre to benefit from small ideas with a big impact.
Shoppers, passers-by and the elderly are enjoying the new timber benches and tables for incidental chats and coffees. Kids and adults are having a quick game of hopscotch on the colourful new painted court. Local school students are grabbing paint brushes to create a Street Library for the community to take a book and leave a book!
With simple, fast and low-cost ideas with big impact, the area has really come alive, and to celebrate Council is planning a small community event in the near future … so watch this space.