Kiama Council - 2ST

A jump in Illawarra Shoalhaven COVID 19 case numbers

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The Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District has recorded seven COVID-19 cases in the 24 hours to 8 pm Friday night.

Four are from the Wollongong Local Government Area and investigations are ongoing.

Three are from the Kiama Local Government Area.

One Kiama case was acquired interstate.

There have been 2,499 cases of COVID-19 in the Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District since June.

The Health Department reminds the community to remain vigilant for even the mildest of symptoms and to continue to come forward for testing and vaccination.

A safety trial on a bad stretch of Kiama road

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Kiama council is trialling a new road safety initiative that it's hoped will reduce serious injury at a local accident black spot.

They've installed Raptor crash cushions on the stretch of road adjacent to the Seven Mile Beach Holiday Park, which has been the scene of  four crashes in five years.

The Raptor wraps around trees and poles and is designed to reduce the severity of collisions by absorbing the energy of the impact.

Photo: Jayd Marsh (Roads and Maritime Service), Mayor Mark Honey, Jordan Edwards (Kiama Council), Janelle Burns (Kiama Council).Source: supplied

Aged care visits announced but Blue Haven is not in the loop

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The NSW State Government has announced visits to aged care or nursing home facilities will be allowed from the 11th of October.

The relaxation of the restrictions has been welcomed by family and friends of aged care and nursing home residents, who have been kept apart during the NSW Coronavirus lockdown.

At least one Shoalhaven aged care provider was unaware of the announcement by Premier Gladys Berejiklian during Wednesday's 11 am COVID-19 case update.

The Kiama Council-controlled Blue Haven aged care group declined to comment because it had not been officially informed by the State Government or NSW Health of the easing of the visitation restrictions.

A spokesperson said late yesterday afternoon, that it had " Just checked and no formal change to health orders yet."

The Blue Haven spokesperson indicated it would not comment until the NSW public health orders had been changed.

Image: sabinevanerp / 318 images Pixabay

 

 

 

 

 

 

Australian Transport Safety Bureau final report released

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The collision of a passenger train with the open hatch of an adjacent locomotive emphasises the need for appropriate risk controls to prevent hatches from opening during service, a safety investigation has concluded.

On the evening of 21 July 2020, a passenger train bound for Kiama collided with the air filter hatch of a stationary Pacific National NR locomotive near Loftus station, on Sydney Trains’ Illawarra line.

There were no injuries reported, but the guard’s windscreen and passenger doors on the lead carriage of the passenger train were damaged in the collision.

Image: Australian Transport Safety Bureau

Everything you need to know ahead of council election day in the Shoalhaven, Wollongong, Shellharbour and Kiama

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With a re-emergence of COVID-19 cases across the Illawarra and Shoalhaven this week, the NSW Electoral Commission has a range of COVID safety measures in place for tomorrow's local government elections.

Cameron Whalan from the NSW Electoral Commission said there's a number of requirements voters must follow.

"That includes mandatory mask wearing, bringing your own pen from home or using one of the single use pens provided.

"Physical distancing when you're in polling places and lines to get in there as well and also checking in and out upon arrival and departure," he said.

Whalan said pre-polling will continue across Wollongong, Shellharbour and Kiama today.

"It's not too late to pre-poll.

"This morning you can look your address up (HERE).

"You'll find all of your closest pre-polling places but you can also plan ahead for the day following, for election day and find your closest polling locations too," he said.

Fines will apply for those who fail to vote.

Whalan said there are options if you can't physically get to a polling place.

"If you're outside of your local government area or council ward you might be eligible for i-Vote which is online or telephone voting but I would say that if you're unable to make it you will be issued with a failure to vote fine which is $55 but you will also have recourse, so you'll be given the chance to provide sufficient reason," Whalan said.

Image: NSW Electoral Commission

Fines to be issued for those who don't vote

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Shoalhaven residents face fines if they don't vote in the local government elections on Saturday December 4.

Enrolled voters in the Shoalhaven and Kiama can pre-poll, do a postal vote or hit the ballot box on election day.

Voting is compulsory for Australian residents aged 18 and over.

Cameron Whalan from the NSW Electoral Commission said fines apply for those who fail to vote.

"Penalties start at $55 but the best course of action is of course to avoid that entirely by just making sure that you've got a vote in by 6pm Saturday December 4," Whalan said.

Image: NSW Electoral Commission

Hundreds gather to oppose South Kiama housing development

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Opponents of a proposed large housing development in South Kiama turned out in a show of strength against the proposal for a community rally at Hindmarsh Park on Saturday.

Protesters sent a loud, clear message to Macquarie Street bureaucrats to stay out of local planning decisions.

Opponents, including Member for Kiama, Gareth Ward claim the development threatens the village character of the township and would place significant pressure on local infrastructure.

"What we have at South Kiama is ad hoc planning," Ward said.

"Planning that will put pressure on very limited roads.

"We've already got overflow from the sewage system.

"We don't have the community infrastructure that after the land is gone and the profits have been pocketed it will be this community that will have deal with the consequences and for that friends, I say no! Ward said.

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Housing Minister Anthony Roberts was a no-show after an invitation to attend by Ward but the minister can expect significant letters from those opposed to the South Kiama planning Proposal.

Ward said a better site would be at Bombo.

"Things like the Bombo Quarry, that's the future of where we can have the development that younger families need.

"That is potentially a new suburb with the infrastructure, next to a railway station, next to the M1.

"That's the sort of vision we need," Ward said.

The plan is currently being assessed by an independent review.

Images: Mark Croxford Facebook

Kiama Council getting back to business after Coronavirus restrictions are eased

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Kiama Council will welcome people back to its customer service centre this morning after the easing of COVID-19 health restrictions.

Council said it'll be operational for limited face-to-face services and residents can make payments and drop off documents without being fully vaccinated against Coronavirus.

Kiama's pools are also reopening today for lap and recreational swimming and aqua classes.

Image: Kiama Council

Kiama Council leadership settled

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Veteran councillor Neil Reilly has been elected Mayor of Kiama.

Reilly beat Kathy Rice in a secret ballot for the top job.

22-year-old Imogen Draisma was voted his deputy by the newly elected councillors who were all sworn yesterday afternoon.

The pair will hold the roles until September 2023.

Council CEO Jane Stroud formally welcomed Kiama's new and returning Councillors and congratulated the new Mayor and Deputy Mayor on their election.

Image: Kiama Council

Kiama Council offers free disposal of 'green' storm debris

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Kiama Council’s storm damage clean-up continues with a free green waste drop-off underway.

Council is providing a free, five-day green waste drop-off for residents to dispose of their storm debris.

Residents can dispose of two ute or trailer loads each.

Trucks are not permitted.

You will need proof of residency when dropping off, such as your driver’s licence or rates notice.

Residents are being asked to observe COVID safety measures such as wearing a mask in the car when talking to our weighbridge staff, only leaving your vehicle at the designated location and handling the unloading of their own material themselves.

If residents have much larger trees or volumes than two trailers/utes, they're being asked to get in touch so Council can provide further advice on disposal methods.

Kiama Council advises if you have an issue with damage to your property, please contact the relevant emergency service.

Image: Supplied 

 

Kiama Council pushes for ambitious Federal Government targets ahead of the UN climate summit

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Kiama Council is one of seventeen councils nationwide calling for ambitious Federal Government targets ahead of the UN climate summit.

The Better Futures Australia Declaration urges the Federal Government to commit to strong, unified action on climate change, ahead of the UN Climate Conference, COP26 in November.

The councils represent more than seven million Australians and over $330 billion in GDP and assets and are members of the Cities Power Partnership. 

It urges federal leaders to put politics aside and work with them to slash greenhouse gas emissions.

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Kiama Mayor Mark Honey said he supports the call for Australia to make an international commitment to transition to net zero emissions before 2050.

"While it is pleasing to see various state governments fill some of the Federal Government's void in this space, Canberra remains the place that has the deep pockets and legal clout needed to get this nation united and on the road to net zero," he said.

Mr. Honey said, " In the lead up to the Glasgow UN meeting, and a looming federal election, there are rumours and noises from our capital they might soon be changing their ways. For my part, I think we should keep up the pressure on our leaders until we have something more concrete.”

The Cities Power Partnership is a national network of local councils promoting a zero-emissions future.

Images: Kiama Council Facebook & Kanenori / 585 images Pixabay

 

Kiama to launch autumn festival after cancelling NYE fireworks

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Kiama's New Year's Eve fireworks and laser show have been cancelled because of uncertainty around COVID and large crowds.

"We know this event will be sorely missed by some of our community but rest assured we are doing what we can to keep the good-event vibes alive and well, just in different sizes, shapes, and forms," Council said.

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Council will replace the NYE event with REVEL, a series of local, bespoke, and fun community events set for next autumn.

Council said it will develop a program of events with successful local event operators, food and drink providers, artists, and performers.

"The month-long REVEL festival will offer a range of activities appealing to a wide spectrum of people, to be held at different locations across the municipality," said Council.

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"The extended duration of the events is designed to provide more ways and dates for locals and visitors to take part and more opportunities for local businesses to benefit from the events," Council said.

Images: Destination Kiama and Kiama Council

L'Etape community meetings planned

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L’Étape Australia by Tour de France will host face-to-face local community meetings in April ahead of the cycling event that has been rescheduled for December.

A first series of meetings will take place from April 12-14 at berry, Kiama and Robertson.

During these meetings, the organisers will present the 2021 local community engagement campaign and give a presentation of the modifications and improvement implemented (date, road closure timings).

They will also hold a Q&A session.

The capacity of each room is strictly limited to between 80 and 90 people under the current Covid restrictions and registration is essential.

To join a meeting, please secure your spot via one of the links below:

  • Berry (residents and businesses from Shoalhaven Heads, Bomaderry, Cambewarra, Berry and Kangaroo Valley) - Monday 12 April, 6pm at the Berry School of Arts -  Register for the Shoalhaven Meeting
  • Kiama (residents and businesses from Kiama, Gerringong, Gerroa and Jamberoo) - Tuesday 13 April, 6pm at the Pavilion Kiama - Register for the Kiama Meeting
  • Robertson (residents and businesses from Fitzroy Falls, Robertson and Burrawang) - Wednesday 14 April, 6pm at the Robertson School of Arts - Register for the Robertson Meeting

Photo L'Etape.

L'Etape community meetings planned

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L’Étape Australia by Tour de France will host face-to-face local community meetings in April ahead of the cycling event that has been rescheduled for December.

A first series of meetings will take place from April 12-14 at berry, Kiama and Robertson.

During these meetings, the organisers will present the 2021 local community engagement campaign and give a presentation of the modifications and improvement implemented (date, road closure timings).

They will also hold a Q&A session.

The capacity of each room is strictly limited to between 80 and 90 people under the current Covid restrictions and registration is essential.

To join a meeting, please secure your spot via one of the links below:

  • Berry (residents and businesses from Shoalhaven Heads, Bomaderry, Cambewarra, Berry and Kangaroo Valley) - Monday 12 April, 6pm at the Berry School of Arts -  Register for the Shoalhaven Meeting
  • Kiama (residents and businesses from Kiama, Gerringong, Gerroa and Jamberoo) - Tuesday 13 April, 6pm at the Pavilion Kiama - Register for the Kiama Meeting
  • Robertson (residents and businesses from Fitzroy Falls, Robertson and Burrawang) - Wednesday 14 April, 6pm at the Robertson School of Arts - Register for the Robertson Meeting

Photo L'Etape.

Lateral Events cancels L’ÉTAPE Australia

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 Lateral Events has cancelled L’Étape Australia, scheduled for 27 and 28 November 2021 in Kiama, the Shoalhaven and Southern Highlands.

Lateral Events advises L’Étape Australia is not able to proceed following a decision by Shoalhaven City Council to ‘discourage’ the event from being held on public roads in the Shoalhaven, one of three Local Government Areas spanning the Race route.

L’Étape Australia is run on closed roads, under full Tour de France professional race conditions and requires support from authorities including local Councils to safely deliver the event and Traffic Management Plan.

Lateral Events has engaged and collaborated with many businesses and residents in the area to welcome the event and, to celebrate cycling in the region. However, Shoalhaven City Council’s withdrawal of support has left Lateral Events no other option but to cancel the event.

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Race Director Florent Malézieux said the decision by Shoalhaven City Council was a surprise given their earlier written letter of support, and did not align with feedback Lateral Events had received from much of the community and Council officials and Councillors, during the consultation process.

“We were led to believe that the councillors and local businesses supported the race and had embraced the benefits of staging the event, which included having up to 6,000 riders, their families and supporters stay in the region, delivering millions of dollars of direct tourism expenditure, and a year-long national TV campaign promoting the event and the region.”

L’Étape Australia Community Liaison Manager, Megan Peters, has been working tirelessly with the communities in Kiama, Shoalhaven and the Southern Highlands, to identify significant adjustments to the event route, communicate the revised road management plans and respond to any community concerns regarding any potential impacts of the event.

The company will now review the location of L’Étape Australia for 2022 and beyond.

Images: Supplied

 

 

New Councillor wants forensic financial audit of Kiama Council

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A newly elected Kiama councillor won't be supporting any incumbent councillor for the role of Mayor or Deputy Mayor in today's vote.

Mark Croxford said Kiama Council is at serious risk of ministerial suspension and the appointment of an administrator because of financial issues under the previous leadership.

"These matters were hidden from the public during the last Council election.

"This was an outrageous cover-up and our local residents have every right to know the true financial sustainability of our Council," Croxford said.

He said he will be asking his fellow councillors to elect a fresh leadership team with no baggage.

"Should any re-elected councillors nominate for either leadership role I will not be voting for them, and if necessary abstain from any vote involving them at this time.

"If by my abstaining from the mayoral vote the vote is tied at four all it would require a name to drawn by ballot, e.g.out of a hat, as prescribed under the Local Government (General) Regulation 2005 (NSW) Schedule 7, Section 11," he said.

"Once a new Mayor and deputy are elected, regardless of what position I have within the Chamber, I will move for an extraordinary meeting of council to be scheduled at the first available opportunity to:

a) Move a Notice of Motion instructing Council's CEO to initiate an external forensic audit of council's finances covering the sixty-three (63) month period of the previous council, to determine why Kiama Council is potentially vulnerable to ministerial suspension and any recommendations arising, with the findings of the forensic audit to be made available to the public once considered by Council, and

b) As part of this motion, I will seek council's support to instruct the Council's CEO to prepare a report for councillors consideration to approve new terms of reference of the recently appointed Finance Advisory Committee to enable the committee to:

* Review Council's Long Term Financial Plan and strategies that deliver financial objectives to Council

* Develop and review action plans aimed at delivering financial performance

* Review service levels ensuring sustainable resourcing

* Review and monitor Council's financial performance

* Review and investigate opportunities proposed by Council officers or other committee members," Croxford said.

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In 2016 Kiama Council avoided council amalgamation with Shoalhaven City through a grassroots campaign which resulted in more than 95 per cent of 8,400 people voting to reject amalgamation at a cost of $120,000 to ratepayers.

Later in 2016 the NSW Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal deemed the Kiama Council was Fit For The Future after previously determining in October 2015 that Kiama had failed to meet four of the seven Long Term Financial Plan benchmarks it had set for councils.

"Since 2016 something has gone seriously wrong with the financial management of Kiama Council and we need to get to the bottom of it and chart of course for correction before the matter is taken out of Council's control and handed over to a NSW Government appointed administrator," Croxford said.

Images: Mark Croxford Facebook and Google Maps

Police appeal to identify man following incident in Kiama

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Police have released multiple images of man as part of an investigation into an incident at Kiama Train Station.

Wollongong Police Transit Command are appealing for public assistance to identify the male.

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Police said they would like to speak with the man in relation to an incident at Kiama Station on Wednesday April 28.

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Any information can be provided by calling Wollongong Transit Police on 4220 2405 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

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Images: Lake Illawarra Police District

Raptor to help road safety

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Kiama Council is trialling 'Raptor' crash cushions at an accident black spot near Crooked River at Gerroa, to improve road safety.

The Raptor, which wraps around trees and poles, is designed to reduce the severity of collisions by absorbing the energy of the impact.

Normally the car and its passengers feel the full effect of a collision with a pole or tree.

The Raptors are also designed to deflect cars in side-on collisions, reducing the tendency of vehicles to 'wrap' themselves around the pole or tree.

Photo supplied:  Jayd Marsh (Roads and Maritime Service), Mayor Mark Honey, Jordan Edwards (Kiama Council), Janelle Burns (Kiama Council).

Roads close for Gerringong Christmas parade

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A crowd of between three and five thousand is expected for tomorrow's Christmas Parade in Gerringong.

Around 50 floats by service and sporting clubs, community groups, vintage car clubs and local businesses will feature in the event.

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Kiama Council said the parade gets underway at 10am with a number of local street closures and detours in effect from 8.30am to 11am.

  •          Blackwood St - Michael Cronin Oval carpark entrance to Fern St
  •          Belinda St – Coal St to Greta St
  •          Fern St – Jupiter St to Bridges Rd
  •          Greta St - Belinda St to Blackwood St
  •          Myamba St and Noble St

Images: Destination Kiama and Kiama Municipal Council

Water tests clear the way for Boneyard reopening

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Kiama Council has reopened The Boneyard at Bombo Headland after water quality checks gave the popular beach the all clear.

Council closed the beach last month after an overflow from a nearby Sydney Water wastewater pipeline.

Sydney Water completed repairs to the pipeline and cleaned the area last week.

Council then conducted water quality tests, with results falling within public health guidelines.

Residents and visitors are reminded to avoid swimming at beaches and rockpools immediately after heavy rain.

Image: Kiama Council