shoalhaven city council - 2ST

James Ruprai Shoalhaven Council's Director City Development.  

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Shoalhaven City Council has announced the appointment of James Ruprai to the role of Director, City Development.  

Mr Ruprai comes to Shoalhaven having departed his role as the Group Executive, Customer Engagement and Planning Services at Sunshine Coast Council in Queensland.  

Mayor, Amanda Findley said, “I am extremely pleased to announce the appointment of James Ruprai to the position of Director, City Development as incoming Director to replace the retiring Phil Costello.”  

“Mr Ruprai joins us with a wealth of experience in planning, compliance and environmental services at councils in both Queensland and New South Wales, having previously worked for the Sydney Olympic Park Authority, as well as his time in an executive planning role with one of Australia’s largest local governments.”  

“He is most pleased to relocate back to NSW and to the Shoalhaven. I look forward to working closely with James on our important current and future city development projects for our community,” Mayor Findley said. 

Under James’ leadership, the City Development Directorate is responsible for Development Assessments, Certification, Building Assessments and Compliance.

The Directorate is also responsible for Ranger Services, Animal Management, Environmental Services, Policy, Regulation, Compliance, Weeds, Natural Areas , Waterways, Beaches, Bushland, and the Ulladulla Service Centre.  

James holds tertiary qualifications appropriate for the position as well as an MBA.

He is also a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. James has commenced with Council on 14 February 2022. 

Image: Shoalhaven City Council

 

$3 million to finish harbour boardwalk

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After almost 30 years, the Ulladulla Harbour Boardwalk will be completed.

Shoalhaven City Council has received a $3 million State Government grant to finish the timber elevated walkway around to the fishing co-op and sea pool.

Councillor Patricia White says the project has been a long time coming and she's thrilled the final stage will be built within 18 months to two years.

"This will be a major connection, from the main street, past all the coffee shops and all the way down to the fisherman's co-op and to the pool," she said.

"A lot of residents in Milton-Ulladulla would have thought the project would never be completed, but we're moving forward as council to actually complete this.

"It will be a wonderful walkway that everybody can walk along and also look at the wonderful Ulladulla Harbour and the boats."

It's hoped the project will be tied in with the future development of a large parcel of land above he boardwalk in Wason Street that is currently on the market.

Photo Katrina Condie.

 

2022 Shoalhaven Eucalypt Photo Competition

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Captivating images of flowering gums, towering trunks and burnt barks are among the entries in the 2022 Shoalhaven Eucalypt Photo Competition.

A total of 122 photo entries were submitted by 76 entrants from around the local area, including a budding photographer of just six years old.  

The winning entry was submitted by Alex Upitis.

Alex’s spectacular photo features towering eucalypts fringing a misty cliff in beautiful Kangaroo Valley. 

Second place was awarded to Dave Macquart, whose Instagram photo of ‘Thompson’s Point maculata’ beautifully captured its spotted trunk. 

Matt Jeffrey took home third place with his stunning Instagram photo of the sun streaking through eucalypts on Gerroa Road, Seven Mile Beach.   

Multiple photos of ‘Big Spotty’ in Termeil were also submitted.

Over 70 metres high and thought to be approximately 250 years old, ‘Big Spotty’ proves to be a well-known and well-loved local tree.  

In its inaugural year, the Shoalhaven Eucalypt Competition was held to celebrate National Eucalypt Day.

The national day helps to increase awareness and appreciation of these iconic Australian trees and their importance to the natural environment.  

Eucalypt native forests are essential for the conservation of Australia's rich biodiversity, by providing vital habitat for forest-dwelling or forest-dependent species of flora and fauna.

They have a strong symbology for Aboriginal people, given their historical use for their bark, wood and trees for practical and emblematic purposes.  

Eucalypt trees also play a crucial role in carbon abatement.

Given that they are endemic, they can grow in a wide range of environments and can store carbon quickly.

They also continue to store large amounts of carbon throughout their lifetime. 

The winner of the photo competition was awarded a $250 gift voucher from Holiday Haven, whilst second prize took home a $50 voucher from a local native plant nursery.

All three winners received a grafted dwarf flowering gum tree that they can plant in their gardens. 

Shoalhaven City Council Mayor Amanda Findley led the judging panel for the competition and was blown away by the quality and creativity of the submissions.   

“I want to congratulate all the entrants on their spectacular works that capture the beauty of our local landscapes so well and highlight the importance of eucalypt trees in the Shoalhaven.

"I hope everyone will enjoy viewing them as much as I have,” Mayor Findley said.  

To read more and view the 2nd and 3rd place winning photographs, visit: https://bit.ly/3vqVijq

To view the full exhibition of entries, visit https://bit.ly/3xlULCa

Image: Alex Upitis

 

5000 butts collected near hospital

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A Cigarette Butt blitz near Shoalhaven Hospital, has resulted in council ranger, the Riverwatch community group and Illawarra Shoalhaven Joint Organisation (ISJO) picking up around 5000 butts which may have otherwise ended up in the nearby river.

As part of the blitz, Shoalhaven City Council has installed four cigarette butt litter bins and pathway decals in Shoalhaven Street and Scenic Drive at Nowra.

Mayor Amanda Findley has congratulated those involved in the clean-up and says butts contribute to soil and water pollution and also wreak havoc on the marine environment.

“Being little and lightweight, cigarette butts are easily carried into our waterways. Littered butts leach toxins as they decompose, contributing to soil and water pollution and impacting on wildlife.," Cr Findley said.

"Cigarette filters, which are primarily made of plastic, also wreak havoc on the marine environment."

This is one of the final steps of a project rolled out over the past few months which has seen Shoalhaven City Council complete ‘Cigarette Butt Litter Checks’ to obtain necessary data to secure funding for the litter receptacles and pathway decals. 

Following liaison with a representative from NSW Health, Rangers plan to have two of the four receptacles relocated to better capture surrounding foot traffic and promote usage. 

The cigarette butt litter campaign and clean ups will continue over summer. 

"You should also look out for Council Rangers ‘pop-up’ education stalls that will be out and about this summer," Cr Findley added.

Advocating for the Shoalhaven indigenous community

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Shoalhaven City Council is looking to add new members to its Aboriginal Advisory Committee.

The Committee provides advice to Council on all relevant issues affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people within the Shoalhaven local area.

It also helps facilitate access and accessibility to services and facilities for Aboriginal people and promotes and increases knowledge and understanding of Aboriginal society, history and culture. 

The Committee are currently looking for Aboriginal people who are:  

  • Aboriginal community members living in the Shoalhaven local area 
  • Aboriginal community members who work with Aboriginal communities of the Shoalhaven on a full time or part time basis  
  • Passionate about increasing knowledge and understanding of Aboriginal people, history & culture in the Shoalhaven. 
  • Passionate about having an impact on the lives of Aboriginal people in the Shoalhaven region 
  • Interested in being an advocate for Aboriginal people in the community particularly in representing the various regions and communities of the Shoalhaven 
  • Motivated to identify opportunities for collaboration between Aboriginal communities and Council  

To apply, download and complete the application form and email it to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..   

Applications close on Wednesday 25 May 2022. 

If you need help completing your application or require interpretive services, please contact Council’s Community Connections Team on 1300 293 111.

Image: Polly Wilson 

Annual Children's Remembrance Service

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Parents whose children have died, no matter at what age or how long ago,  have been invited to attend a Children’s Remembrance Service at the Shoalhaven Memorial Gardens and Lawn Cemetery Chapel in Worrigee.  

Shoalhaven City Council’s Bereavement Services Manager Pamela Green said that everyone is welcome to attend.  

“The Children's Remembrance Service offers the opportunity for parents, family and friends who have experienced the loss of a child, to share a time of reflection. For more than 20 years, we have held this Service to provide a time and space for those in our community who have experienced such a profound loss,” Ms Green said. 

A local Celebrant will lead a time of reflection in a shared space with the lighting of named candles, the Message Tree, and a light supper at Reflections Café afterward.  

Shoalhaven City Council will hold the Children’s Remembrance Service on Wednesday,  December 8 from 6.30 pm. 

To RSVP, phone 02 4429 5788 by 5 pm Monday, December 6, 2021.

Image: Shoalhaven City Council   

Annual Children's Remembrance Service

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Parents whose children have died, no matter at what age or how long ago, their families and friends will attend a Children's Remembrance Service at the Shoalhaven Memorial Gardens and Lawn Cemetery Chapel in Worrigee tonight.  

A local Celebrant will lead a time of reflection in a shared space with the lighting of named candles, the Message Tree, and a light supper at Reflections Café afterwards.  

Shoalhaven City Council’s Bereavement Services Manager Pamela Green said that "Everyone is welcome to attend the service which begins at 6.30pm.  

“The Children's Remembrance Service offers the opportunity for parents, family and friends who have experienced the loss of a child, to share a time of reflection. For more than 20 years, we have held this Service to provide a time and space for those in our community who have experienced such a profound loss,” Ms. Green said.  

Image: Shoalhaven City Council

Anti-lockdown protesters target Shoalhaven Council Offices

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Anti-lockdown protestors have targeted Shoalhaven City Council offices at Nowra and Ulladulla.

At Graham Street in Nowra, a handful of people protested.

Police reportedly dispersed the crowd quickly.

Police also attended another unauthorised gathering at Deering Street Ulladulla, where an estimated 25 people turned up.

It was part of a state-wide orchestrated protest movement.

Police responded to 13 protests in the Southern region.

Across NSW 136 people have been arrested.

Shoalhaven Mayor Amanda Findley said she understands the frustration people feel about the NSW Government regional lockdown, but it's not local government locking down the state.

Kiama MP Gareth Ward criticised the protestors.

He said they could very well spread to the COVID-19 virus locking down regional NSW even longer.

Image : Supplied 

 

 

 

 

 

Artie Smith Oval transformation begins

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Shoalhaven City Council has started work on the redevelopment of Artie Smith Oval Bomaderry Project .

Shoalhaven City Council Director of City Lifestyles, Jane Lewis said the next stage of the Shoalhaven Community Recreation Precinct are  we are one step closer to building a world class sporting precinct for the whole of the Shoalhaven.  

“Residents to Bomaderry may have already noticed the construction zone has been fenced off,” said Ms Lewis. 

“The construction will see new AFL pitches for footy fans and cricket pitches for our favourite summer sporting activity. As well as croquet courts, cricket practice facility , a pavilion and clubhouse and landscaped open space for the community and visitors to enjoy.” 

“The redevelopment design will retain and embellish the current and significant stands of native trees. We are planting 77 new trees, 45 of which are of the same species as the significant trees on site (scribbly gum and Red Bloodwood) and all up an additional 30,465 of plantings (from trees to grasses) will be established on the site.” 

“The buildings and facilities design aims to sit comfortably amongst the semi-bushland setting of Bomaderry, allowing the current line of eucalypts to remain significant to the field and amenities.” 

“Maintaining the semi-bushland setting has been integral to the design considerations with a sympathetic tapering Pavilion Clubhouse building form to allow the line of eucalypts behind to remain significant in the sense of enclosure to the field and as an amenity to the overall streetscape.” 

“This next stage of the $20 million project has an $8 million investment to upgrade Artie Smith Oval from the Bushfire Local Economic Recovery Fund, co-funded by the Federal and NSW State Government, with a further $12 million investment by Shoalhaven City Council.” 

This will create an outstanding regional sporting facility for our local sporting clubs which is also capable of hosting significant sporting events for our community and visitors to the Shoalhaven to enjoy,” said Ms Lewis. 

Member for South Coast Shelley Hancock said the Bushfire Local Economic Recovery Fund is one part of the $4.5 billion overarching bushfire support program co-funded by the Australian and NSW Governments for bushfire recovery, response and preparedness in NSW.

“Almost two years have passed since we cleared 3,600 properties across NSW that were damaged or destroyed by the Black Summer bushfires and we are continuing to deliver the support that our region needs to keep moving forward in recovery,” Ms Hancock said. 

“People are rebuilding their lives and through the Bushfire Local Economic Recovery Fund we are backing projects that will bring communities together, support tourism, provide improved or new social amenity, and increase preparedness to future bushfires. All of these things play a part in recovery.”

Council will be working with the community to deliver a community facility for the new Artie Smith Oval which will include: 

  • New AFL/Cricket with 5 turf wickets, floodlighting, irrigation drainage, picket fencing, electronic scoreboard, sight screens, and spectator seating/mounding 
  • AFL/Cricket Pavilion Clubhouse and amenities 
  • Cricket Practice facility (4 X Synthetic pitches, 4 X turf pitches, storage shed) 
  • Four croquet courts 
  • Croquet clubhouse and amenities 
  • Onsite car parking 
  • Open space embellishments (pathways, playgrounds, exercise equipment, landscaping, furniture, etc.) 
  • Perimeter security fencing

The construction will use low maintenance, durable and robust materials such as brick, steel, concrete and some hardwood. The completed project will provide accessible open space and sporting facilities for all ages and abilities, designed for the comfort of users and spectators. 

Image; Shoalhaven City Council

Award for Conjola bushfire film

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The locally produced bushfire documentary, We Are Conjola, has been given an honourable mention the New York International Film Awards overnight, and has also made official selection in the Venice Film Awards.

Filmmaker Ash Brennan, who lost his home at Conjola Park 12 months ago, says he is thrilled with the response and the world-wide recognition the film is gaining.

"We didn’t win top prize, but this is still great news for our film. It’s an award for everyone in Conjola, our production team and all who supported us to enjoy," he said.

He says gaining fantastic feedback from the Conjola local community is more important to him than any award.

The film premiered at Warrawong's Gala Cinema on Boxing Day and will play at Ulladulla, Nowra, Huskission and Sussex Inlet cinemas from January 21 onwards.

Ulladulla's Arcadia Cinema will open its second cinema after the January 29 premier sold out in cinema one.  

Bookings are essential for this screening and tickets are available from the Arcadia website: https://www.arcadiatwin.com.au/

The Husky and Sussex cinemas will show the film from January 21-27, with Ash hosting a Q&A at Huskisson on opening night.

He'll also host a Q&A session at the Nowra Cinema on opening night, January 25.

Better lighting for Shoalhaven grounds

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New lighting will soon be installed at the Ulladulla Sporting Complex, Lyrebird Park in Nowra and Frogs Holla in Milton. 

The new sportsfield floodlights use 50 per cent less power than traditional floodlight fittings and will help to increase the safety and playability of sportsfields, especially during night-time training and will also benefit locations that host multi-day events which boost the local economy. 

Mayor Amanda Findley says the installation of energy saving LED lights reduces ‘light spill’ outside of fields, provides cost savings and reduces our energy consumption which is a great outcome for council and the community.

Nowra Showground will also see a fourth light tower installed to the main arena thanks to a grant of $76,361 from the NSW Government.  

“The recent improvements to Nowra Showground ensure the venue is a real drawcard for significant agricultural, sporting and community events," Cr Findley said.

The work follows recent installations that were undertaken including; Kangaroo Valley Basketball Court, Vic Zealand Oval at Shoalhaven Heads, six new 22-metre high light towers at Berry Showground and four new light towers, floodlights and electrical boards for the sportsfield at Nowra Showground.  

Boongaree Playground safety concerns

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There is concern about the safety of some of the play equipment at Berry's newly opened Boongaree playground.

Several parents have revealed on social media, that their children have suffered serious injury while playing on one slide at the park.

In one instance a four year old child allegedly suffered two broken legs  , another child is reportedly in Westmead Children's Hospital awaiting surgery for serious facial injuries after accidents on the slide.

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Another parent has posted, their child suffered a fractured collarbone on another piece of play equipment there.

Kiama MP Gareth Ward has responded to safety concerns about play equipment at Berry's new Boongaree playground by calling for parents to take a more active approach when supervising children.

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Shoalhaven Council , is responsible for the Boongaree playground .

A council spokesperson said "The General manager is aware of the concerns."

Mr Ward said, "While any child being injured in a playground is a concern, the Boongaree facility is designed for all ages, so some activities are not appropriate for all children."

Images: Shoalhaven City Council 

 

Brazen thieves target wire at sports fields

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Shoalhaven City Council is asking residents to notify NSW Police of any suspicious activity at sportsfields in the region following wire being stolen from floodlights at four facilities.

Access to the sportsgrounds will be restricted until the lights can be repaired.

At Huskisson Sportsground, the protective steel cover had been removed wiring stolen, wire cables were removed from the pits and poles at St Georges Basin Soccer Fields (pictured) and several hundred metres of underground cabling was removed from The Wool Lane Sportsfield.

The Crookhaven Rugby League Field at Culburra Beach also had all of its underground cables removed, along with cables removed from the plastic conduit on all light towers.

Shoalhaven Mayor Amanda Findley says council has advised a number of sports user groups that they will be unable to use the sportsfields until the grounds can be declared operational again.

“We take theft seriously and we are asking local communities to assist us by reporting any suspicious activity via phone or online to Crime Stoppers," she added.

Anyone with information should contact Crime stoppers on 1800 333 000

Photo Shoalhaven City Council

Bypass timeline to arm council and community

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An historic timeline, showing the previous correspondence and investigations surrounding the Nowra Bypass, will be compiled by Shoalhaven City Council.

Councillor Bob Proudfoot believes council can formulate a strong case to present to the State Government for funding.

He told last night's council meeting that, compared to the recently announced $1.8 billion Coffs Harbour bypass, Nowra is in a "far worse situation".

"In Nowra, we've got nine sets of traffic lights and eight roundabouts from Bomaderry to South Nowra, so there's 17 impediments," he said.

"The Princes Highway, compared to the Pacific Highway, as you go through through Nowra, is in a far worse situation.

"I think we can mount a very strong case.

"And if we're armed with more information, if we have the chronology, we know what's been occurring in the past and we're brought up to speed with that, then it can only give us a much, much better chance of pulling this one off."

He said councillors and the community would benefit from a timeline of information.

Councillors agreed to support Cr Proudfoot's Notice of Motion.

Photo Transport NSW

Call for comment on Hitchcocks Lane Berry rezoning

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Shoalhaven City Council is seeking community feedback on a proposal to rezone land south of Hitchcocks Lane in Berry to permit new housing development.

The land is on the western side of the Princes Highway, south of Hitchcocks Lane, adjacent to the Huntingdale Park residential estate. The proposal is now open for public comment with submissions accepted until 8 January 2021.

The Planning Proposal seeks to rezone approximately 11 hectares of rural land to the R2 Low Density Residential zone. The land is identified as a potential residential growth area in the Shoalhaven Growth Management Strategy (GMS) 2014.

The proposed changes to the local environmental plan (LEP) would allow subdivision of the land into up to approximately 150 new housing lots ranging in size from 700 m2 to 350 m2. Allowing for a limited amount of smaller lots is intended to encourage smaller homes to provide more housing choices and opportunities for the local community.

Shoalhaven Mayor Amanda Findley said, “Berry is a very popular place to visit and to move to, and state and local strategic plans identify this land as a potential location for housing growth. We also know the local community wants to protect the character qualities that make Berry such an attractive place.”

The proposed R2 Low Density Residential zone allows for mostly detached single houses. Providing a mix of lots sizes encourages housing variety, including two, three and four-bedroom homes to cater for a wide range of household needs and aspirations.

Council is also seeking feedback on a draft development control plan (DCP) that will support the proposed LEP changes and promote high quality design outcomes. The draft DCP focuses on promoting development that is compatible with Berry’s local character while also protecting the distinctive landscape views of the area.

The draft planning controls include the provision of landscape screening on the southern and eastern edges of the land, while also increasing landscaping opportunities within the future subdivision.

“The proposals are at a point where the Berry community can have their say on them before they are finalised and enable more detailed future residential subdivision applications.  Any feedback received will be considered by Council as part of the finalisation of the Planning Proposal and DCP,” said Clr Findley.

The proposal is open for comment via Council’s website getinvolved.shoalhaven.nsw.gov.au/projects/hitchcocks-lane.

Photo supplied.

Call for govt to follow Shoalhaven's lead on renewable energy

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Federal Member for Gilmore Fiona Phillips has told Parliament that Shoalhaven is leading the way when it comes to renewable energy innovation and she is calling for the Morrison Government to "step up and do the same".

She said Shoalhaven City Council's Reclaimed Water Management System will be up and running in about 12 months, with South Coast dairy farmers leading the way on energy in Australia.

"In March I've spent a lot of time talking with organisations about energy. I learnt so much, and I was so proud of what I saw," she said.

"I met with Phil from Innovate Energy at farmer Tim's farm-  one of the farms involved in Australia's first biogas waste energy plant, near Nowra.

"I've spoken about our cow poo energy project before, but I'm just so excited about it that I can't stop talking about it.

"Local farmers have been pushing to do this for years, and now it's becoming a reality.

"I got a first-hand run-through from Phil and Tim.

"There's another plant on its way, at Kangaroo Valley."

Mrs Phillips says Repower Shoalhaven's solar farm project, partnered with Flow Power, is looking to be up and running by the end of the year.

"Local businesses are excited to be involved, and it won't be long before the Shoalhaven solar farm becomes a real staple in our local energy market," she said.

"I also met with the South Coast Health and Sustainability Alliance in Moruya to talk about how they are helping the Far South Coast community become more energy resilient.

"They are focusing on strengthening the grid locally and, in only five days, they managed to secure 860 signatures in support of a feasibility study into microgrids across the Eurobodalla.

"This is remarkable, and it just goes to show that local people want to see us looking to our energy future and formulating a plan now that will help us build that future that will have all those mutual benefits for communities—job creation, lower power bills and addressing climate change."

Mrs Phillips says we are "facing one of the greatest challenges of our time, and the Morrison government is wasting precious time with its inaction".

"We need a clear and coherent energy plan, and we need it now," she added.

"We are getting closer and closer to a real energy crisis.

"We know some of the ways we can address that crisis but, without guidance and support from the government, industry will continue to be backed against a wall.

"Moving towards a renewable energy future also holds a wealth of opportunity.

"What frustrates me more than anything with this government's failure on energy is the opportunity for job creation that we are wasting.

"These industries won't pop up overnight. We won't suddenly become 100 per cent reliable on renewables tomorrow.

"What we are talking about is a transition, and transitions take time.

"They take careful planning—making sure we help those who are moving out of old industries at the same time that we are helping people move into new ones."

Photo Repower Shoalhaven

Candidate claims West Nowra is being neglected

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Shoalhaven council candidate Serena Copley is calling for a clean-up of Depot Farm at West Nowra, describing it as a "substandard open space for local families".

The Ward One hopeful says Shoalhaven City Council needs to clean up the property, which makes up a section of Ben’s Walk along Nowra Creek, and provide the advertised “picnic facilities” which she claims are currently non-existent.

“Depot Farm has been neglected for years and is more like the West Nowra tip than the picnic area it is advertised as,” Ms Copley said.

She says council has “neglected its basic responsibilities in providing services to the West Nowra community”.

“When I visited Depot Farm, I was horrified to find an abandoned car and a sum total of zero facilities for families to enjoy West Nowra’s only open space,” she said.

“It is time Shoalhaven City Council got back to basics and deliver the facilities West Nowra residents expect and deserve.

““Depot Farm should be a destination for residents and visitors to the Shoalhaven.

“Instead, it has become a dumping ground, more resembling a tip than the pristine open space it should be.”

West Nowra resident and candidate on Ms Copley’s Ward One ticket Francoise Sikora said West Nowra had been overlooked for years and it was time council “invested in one of the region’s fastest-growing communities”.

““New houses are popping up every day, yet local families are forced to push their prams on the road because we have no footpaths,” Ms Sikora said.

““Even our local Depot Farm picnic area doesn’t have a table, a barbeque or even a single seat for locals to enjoy this beautiful space in the Shoalhaven.

“Depot Farm is part of Ben’s Walk, one of the most advertised natural attractions in the Shoalhaven, but currently, it is an eyesore and embarrassment.”

However Mayor Amanda Findley says, while she admits the area is overgrown and needs to be mown, she adds it’s “a low priority recreational area for council”.

Ms Copely’s Ward One team includes herself, a vocational education trainer from North Nowra, Fred Campbell OAM a veteran and veteran advocate from Bangalee, Leonard White a lawyer and environmental volunteer from North Nowra and Francoise Sikora a former Small Business owner and community volunteer from West Nowra.

 “We are united in delivering the services that a council should deliver for their community; roads, footpaths, community infrastructure and a thriving environment and economy across the city to benefit all ratepayers and residents of the Shoalhaven,” Ms Copley said.

Photo Serena Copely

Celebrating four decades of day care in Shoalhaven

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Shoalhaven Family Day Care is celebrating 40 years of service to local families.

The service began operations as Nowra Family Day Care on 1 September 1980 and Shoalhaven mayor Mayor Amanda Findley says she is proud of the legacy that Shoalhaven Family Day Care has built in the region.  

“How our children are nurtured, developed and cared for helps shape our region, and I give my respect and gratitude to the many wonderful staff and educators who have, and continue to, care for Shoalhaven children over the past four decades," she said.  

Currently there are 30 registered educators, and the Coordination Unit are keen to expand the number of educators to meet the demand for childcare.

Educators enjoy the flexibility of family day care where they can set up their own hours and days, in their own home, creating environments that work for them.

The key benefit of Family Day Care is the intimacy – the small group numbers allow educators to build solid relationships with the children and families and enable educators to have quality interactions with the children. 

Cr Findley says our educators have a passion for working with children and are qualified with minimum Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care. Educators also benefit from ongoing professional development resulting in excellent outcomes for the children in their care. 

“There have been several inspiring and dedicated Nominated Supervisors over the 40 years, including Bev Wells, Jenny Gould, Sheila McMillian, Liz Daly, Winifred Sadlier, Helen Waterhouse, Cathy Ryman, Patrice Keegan and the current Nominated Supervisor Darlene Musgrove," Cr Findley added.

“There have also been several wonderful, dedicated Child Development Coordinators, who have shared their professional knowledge, skills, practical experience and early childhood expertise to the Educators and local families of the Shoalhaven.  

“Just as importantly, the service couldn’t function without the support and dedication of the admin staff, who are the lynchpin that keeps the service running smoothly."

The service initially operated out of a small cottage on council land adjacent to the main administration building in Bridge Road Nowra, before moving to a second cottage located next door to the original cottage, both of which have now been demolished.  

Nowra Family Day Care merged with its sister scheme, Ulladulla Family Day Care, in November 2006 and became Shoalhaven Family Day Care, supporting the Nowra and Ulladulla townships and outlying villages of both the Northern and Southern Shoalhaven.  

2006 also saw the coordination unit move to a purpose-built building in East Nowra, equipped with a range of facilities including a large office space, playroom, toy library and meeting room. Many local community groups have used and continue to use the building over the past 14 years. 

“The childcare sector has seen so much change over the years, and is a major element of the social and economic structure in Australia today, by allowing parents to continue to participate in the workforce and by caring for, teaching and preparing children for school and life.," Cr Findley said.

“Congratulations to all involved with Shoalhaven Family Day Care over the past 40 years, in an industry that has seen so much change.

"Your commitment, adaptability and flexibility which has not been more apparent than in 2020, is to be commended.

Photo Shoalhaven City Council

Charity foundation would support the arts

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Arts groups in the region will be the big winners if the newly created Shoalhaven Arts Foundation gets the green light.

Seed funding of up to $150,000 is being sought from Shoalhaven Council to set up the independent charity organisation.

Councillor John Wells says the Shoalhaven Arts Board has been looking to create a foundation for at least a decade to support arts groups and projects in the region.

He said the foundation would aim to attract donations and spondors to support a range of projects and events, as well as individual artists.

"What the foundation sets out to do is provide an independent fundraising body to support the arts," Cr Wells said.

"Council has invested heavily in the arts over the last decade with investment in our regional gallery and other events.

"However, to really kick the arts along, and to optimise the role of arts in our community, we really need private investment.

"The foundation will seek donations and determine where the funding goes, whether it's a new gallery, aquisition of artwork or support of theatre, sculptural or visual arts."

Cr Wells hopes council will include the seed funding in its next budget so the proposal can move forward.

Photo Shoalhaven City Council.

 

 

 

Comerong Island Ferry "High and Dry"

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Shoalhaven City Council will commence refurbishment works to refurbish the Comerong Island Ferry and replace the concrete approach ramps on either side of Berry's Canal from today.  

The work, which is expected to take 3-4 months, will include renewal and repair work to the vessel including hull repairs, ramp overhaul, renewal of deck fittings, and landing and moorings. 

Shoalhaven City Council Mayor Amanda Findley said the refurbishment works are necessary to maintain the long-term safety and viability of the service.

“Council is regularly required to service the Ferry to maintain its Certificate of Survey in order to operate the vessel. This out of water survey is required to be completed every five years," she said.

On this occasion, work will also be undertaken to replace the concrete approach ramps on either side of Berry’s Canal.” 

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 “Council is completing both major projects at the same time to limit the disruption to residents, as both works prevent the operation of the ferry service.”

“Over the past few months Council staff have worked closely with residents to ensure they have been kept informed of the project and can prepare for the ferry closure period,” Clr Findley said.   

The normal ferry service will be out of commission whilst the works are being undertaken.

A pedestrian ferry service will be provided for residents of Comerong Island during the refurbishment of the 'Cormorant' Ferry and reconstruction of the approach ramps. 

Members of the public will be unable to access Comerong Island during the ferry service closure. 

Images: Peter Andrea

 

 

 

Conjola community desperate for help

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The Conjola Community Association is pleading with Shoalhaven City Council to take immediate action to open the lake.

Rain this week caused low level flooding and residents woke up surrounded by floodwater.

It prompted this Facebook post from the Association: "  Please we need your help now. Fast track and implement the recommendations for a CMP and immediately commence strategic procedures to open and maintain an opening to restore some normality to both the physical and economic status of Lake Conjola."

The council has responded with a statement saying they are pushing as hard as possible to get the necessary permission to carry out the work.

Photos from Conjola Community Association Facebook page

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Construction to commence of Nowra's Resource Recovery Facility

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The future of waste management has arrived with the commencement of works to construct the new Resource Recovery Facility (RRF). 

The Shoalhaven landfill is fast approaching capacity and Shoalhaven  Council proactively undertook an extensive process of consulting with industry experts to find an economically and environmentally sound solution to reduce the need for landfill.

This Australia first technology is expected to extend the life of the West Nowra landfill for another 50 years. 

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Shoalhaven City Council Mayor, Amanda Findley said, “I am delighted to advise that Bioelektra Australia has received development consent for the Resource Recovery Facility from NSW Planning.

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The facility will use advanced processes to recover and recycle as much household waste from the red bin as possible. Construction of the facility has now commenced.”  

“This system is far superior to any other currently operating in Australia,” added Mayor Findley. 

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The RRF will be funded, built and operated by Bioelektra Australia and aims to be fully operational by late 2023. It will provide around 200 jobs during the construction phase and ongoing job opportunities for over 30 people. 

Images: Bioelektra Australia 

Council struggling to keep up mowing schedule

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Like most of us, Shoalhaven City council has had to step up its lawn mowing routine due to the high rainfall and hot weather causing prolific growth.

In response to complaints about long grass on council assets over the summer, Mayor Amanda Findley is asking for patience as crews work hard to maintain public land.

She says the mowing program can be delayed due to wet weather, when grounds and machinery can be damaged, and the schedule is also adjusted on days of total fire ban as a precautionary measure to reduce the risk of fire. 

Mowing to ensure a clear line of sight along roads and access to essential assets and services is a priority.

“Council crews work hard to keep our public areas looking great and are committed to the mowing program, however recent conditions have led to a burst in grass growth, and crews are working hard to combat this additional pressure on the schedule," Cr Findley said.

“Mowing to ensure line of sight along roads and access to essential assets and services is prioritised by the crew, which may mean that only a section of grass is mown during periods of significant growth. Once able, crews will return and complete the job at a later time. 

“We appreciate the community’s patience as crew work to maintain our grassed areas.” Cr Findley added.

Photo Shoalhaven City Council.

 

Councillor Liza Butler new Shoalhaven deputy Mayor

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Shoalhaven City Councillor Liza Butler has been elected Deputy Mayor of Shoalhaven at Council’s first Ordinary meeting on Tuesday, 25 January 2022.   

Shoalhaven Mayor, Amanda Findley said, “Councillor Liza Butler is a successful businesswoman who created two highly successful businesses on the South Coast.”    

“Prior to being in business, Councillor Butler worked for the NSW and Federal Governments at the Department of Ageing Disability and Homecare and the Department of Human Services.   

 “Councillor Butler has also worked with remote Aboriginal Communities in the Northern Territory and the Office of Prime Minister and Cabinet.”  

 “I congratulate Councillor Butler on her appointment as Deputy Mayor and look forward to working closely with her.” Mayor Findley said.  

Councillor Butler will serve out her role of Deputy Mayor until September 2022. 

In the absence of the Mayor, the Deputy Mayor may exercise any function of the Mayor, at the request of the Mayor or if the Mayor is prevented from exercising the function or if there is a casual vacancy in the office of the Mayor.   

Images: Shoalhaven Council

Disability Inclusion Action Plan

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Shoalhaven City Council has drafted a new Shoalhaven Disability Inclusion Action Plan for 2022-2026. 

The Plan provides a four-year framework for inclusion planning under the requirements of the Disability Inclusion Act 2014. 

 After extensive community consultation to identify priority areas for inclusion, teams across Council developed actions to address the community-identified priorities.

The four focus areas for the plan are attitudes and behaviours, liveable communities, systems and processes, and employment. 

 Community input continues to be a driving force in developing the Disability Inclusion Action Plan.

The Disability Inclusion Action Plan aims to ensure that people living with disability have fair access to services and can participate in life in the Shoalhaven.  

 Council is now seeking feedback on the draft Plan to ensure it reflects the community’s aspirations and needs.

Council encourages everyone to have a say by completing the survey on the website, and particularly wants to hear from people living with a disability, as well as carers, businesses and organisations who support them. 

 Community feedback will be incorporated into the finalised Disability Inclusion Action Plan  and will be reported to Council on 20 June 2022, with implementation commencing on 1 July 2022. 

 The Draft Disability Inclusion Action Plan and Implementation Table are available to view on Councils website at https://bit.ly/3sNzGxc

The Online Feedback Form is athttps://bit.ly/3adJGJS

 If you have any questions about the plan, or need assistance, please contact Council’s Community Capacity Builder on (02) 4429 3411.  

Image: Shoalhaven City Council

 

 

Disaster recovery assistance is available for Shoalhaven residents affected by May’s severe storms.

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Disaster recovery assistance is available for Shoalhaven residents affected by May’s severe storms.

Senator for New South Wales Jim Molan said the DRFA will assist with damaged properties and help councils with the costs of road and infrastructure repairs and clean-up, and recovery efforts in affected communities. 

“None of us will soon forget the severe winds and heavy rain that lashed the region, washing out roads and causing widespread damage to properties,” Senator Molan said. 

“Importantly, a range of practical assistance measures are now available to support the affected communities with their recovery," he said.

Senator Molan said, "The Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements were ready to help after severe winds and heavy rain lashed the region, washing out roads and causing widespread damage to properties."

He said, "It will help for people whose homes or belongings have been damaged, freight subsidies for primary producers and support for councils to assist with costs of cleaning up and restoring damaged public assets."

New South Wales Minister for Police and Emergency Services David Elliott said communities experienced significant disruption due to heavy rainfall over several days, including damage and closure of major roads.

For information on personal hardship and distress assistance, contact Service NSW on13 77 88.

To apply for a concessional loan or grant, contact the NSW Rural Assistance Authority on 1800 678 593 or visit www.raa.nsw.gov.au 

Further information on disaster assistance is available on the Australian Government’s Disaster Assist website at www.disasterassist.gov.au and the NSW emergency information and response website at www.nsw.gov.au/resilience-nsw

Image: supplied

 

 

 

Double win for engineering excellence

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Shoalhaven City Council has won two awards in the 2021 Institute of Public Works Engineering Australasia (IPWEA) Excellence Awards. 

The awards recognise the most outstanding public works engineering projects and professionals. Council has won the Environmental Enhancement Project or Initiative Including Recovery, Recycling and Reusing Award for Shoalhaven Water’s Reclaimed Water Management Scheme (REMS). 

Council has also won the prestigious Minister for Local Government’s Award for Innovation in Local Government Engineering for the Shoalhaven Indoor Sports Centre after the project was entered into the 1C Projects greater than $5 million category. 

Shoalhaven City Council CEO Stephen Dunshea is pleased with the recent accolades.  

"These awards highlight the innovation, skill and dedication demonstrated by Council staff who have gone above and beyond in the provision of infrastructure and services for our community. 

“The importance of great infrastructure in the health, wealth and happiness of our community cannot be overestimated,” Mr Dunshea said. 

“Shoalhaven Water developed the REMS scheme to reduce potable water consumption, minimise the impacts of a rapidly expanding population and drought, and to protect our unique and valuable environment,” said Mr Dunshea. 

“The REMS enables collection and storage of treated effluent or reclaimed water for use on agricultural land and local sports grounds via a dedicated transfer and distribution system.  

“To date Shoalhaven Water has successfully implemented two stages of the scheme. The Stage 1B has effectively doubled the reclaimed water supply managed by the scheme to 13 million litres per day,” Mr Dunshea said. 

Stage 1A collects reclaimed water from St Georges Basin, Huskisson/Vincentia, Culburra, and Callala Wastewater Treatment Plants (WwTPs). Stage 1B Works entailed major upgrades to the Bomaderry and Nowra WwTPs and construction of associated reclaimed water transfer main beneath the Shoalhaven River.  

Mr Dunshea is also delighted with the Minister for Local Government’s Award for Innovation in Local Government Engineering for the Shoalhaven Indoor Sports Centre at Bomaderry. 

“Constructed in October 2019 at a cost of $16.4 million, the Shoalhaven Indoor Sports Centre is the only one of its kind outside the Sydney metropolitan area. It is fitting for the Centre to be acknowledged for its innovative design that is already benefiting our community,” Mr Dunshea said. 

The Centre has the capacity to cater for large-scale sporting and other events, with show court and grandstand seating for 600 people, along with three further multi-purpose courts, meeting rooms, offices, fitness facilities, change room facilities, commercial café and creche with a building area spanning 5,703 m2. 

The facility is part of the Shoalhaven Community and Recreational Precinct (SCaRP). The facility’s location within SCaRP is the first stage in the implementation of this impressive community investment by Council. When SCaRP is fully developed the SISC will provide co-joined and operational facilities that may be utilised individually or in unison with other facilities within the sporting precinct. More information is available on Council's Get Involved webpage.

PHOTO: From left Director City Services Paul Keech, Works and Services Manager Trevor Dando and Buildings Project Manager Gary George receive Council's IPWEA Excellence Awards.

Electric car fleet for Shoalhaven Council

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Shoalhaven City Council will today introduce its new fleet of electric vehicles.

Mayor AMANDA FINDLEY says three Hyundai Kona Electric cars are to be trialled." And the trial is to work out if there are cost benefits to council to having electric vehicles in the fleet. And that's in relation to the savings on fuel, to fuel up the electric car and of course then savings on the maintenance of the car."

The cars offer a range of 440 kilometres and can be charged using a household power point, although they cost alot more than the petrol-driven models, retailing at around 60-thousand dollars each.

Photo: Hyundai website

Endeavour ordered to stop cutting Shoalhaven trees

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Shoalhaven Council has ordered Endeavour Energy to stop removing trees.

The council has a management agreement allowing the electricity provider to remove trees considered high risk to power lines.

However it was brought to the council's attention that tree removals currently being undertaken by Endeavour are outside the scope of the agreement and they've been ordered to stop.

The council has requested Endeavour Energy now provide a comprehensive list of proposed tree removals prior to any further work.

Photo source: https://pixabay.com/photos/chainsaw-saw-sawdust-wood-branch-945411/

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

Final farewell for Carmel Krogh

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Shoalhaven City Council is marking an end of an era with Shoalhaven Water Director Carmel Krogh checking dam levels for the last time on Friday.

Carmel has spent the past twelve years with Shoalhaven City Council and Mayor Amanda Findley believes she has left a legacy on the organisation and has had a positive impact on many of our residents.

Her major projects included REMs and the Porters Creek Dam that provides drinking water for the Southern Shoalhaven.

Mayor Findley says Carmel has ensured that a total of 86 trainees have graduated through Shoalhaven Water with 70% of these trainees continuing on to full time employment.

Photo: Mayor Findley and Carmen Krogh

Source: Shoalhaven City Council

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

Fishing and boating facility upgrades

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Shoalhaven City Council has successfully secured $275,000 for jetty upgrades and launch facilities thanks to the NSW Government’s Recreational Fishing and Camping Facilities Grants Program

The communities of Lake Tabourie and Shoalhaven Heads will benefit from three grants which will improve the way people fish, boat, paddle and enjoy the area’s stunning waterways. 

Council thanks the Department of Primary Industries (DPI) for recognising the importance of the submissions and providing funds to promote the great outdoors and enrich the lives of the community and visitors. 

Shoalhaven Heads - jetty refurbishment 

Carter’s Corner Jetty on River Road will be the beneficiary of a $140,700 grant for a major upgrade. 

The picturesque jetty and walkway is not just a favourite with locals and tourists, it’s a destination. It provides easy access to the water to all members of the community, providing the perfect place to fish, swim, or just sit and watch the sunset.  

Unsurprisingly, time and weather has taken its toll on the jetty with timbers aged and deteriorated. Funding will go towards much-needed repairs such as: 

  • Refurbishment of deck (using robust fibre reinforced plastic micromesh) 
  • Repairs to substructure (piles and grouting) 
  • Replacement of handrails 
  • Relocation of solar light 
  • Fish cleaning repair with new pluming 
  • Improved drainage at fish cleaning table. 

The end result promises to be a jetty that will last another 40 years, bringing much joy to the community and perfectly insta-ready for tourists looking to visit the best Shoalhaven has to offer. 

Construction is scheduled to start in late July 2022. 

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Shoalhaven Heads – boat ramp repair and toe extension 

The boat ramp at River Road is in desperate need of repair. Large cracks appear on the surface, cars and trailers can’t get enough traction to tow their boats, and pedestrians have no sound footing on the concrete surface.   

A grant of $89,000 will transform the boat ramp into a much safer and use-friendly experience, promising to encourage more people to take advantage of the area’s water sports.  

Works will include deep grooves moulded into the surface which will provide: 

  • Traction for tow vehicles 
  • Sound footing for pedestrians 
  • Self-cleaning of the ramp (excess water and debris will be able to drain away). 

In addition to the surface repairs, works will extend the toe (bottom of the ramp) which will have significant benefits for the public and the environment. The toe extension means: 

  • Outboard motors will no longer be needed to drive boats onto trailers during retrieval 
  • Trailers will no longer drop off the edge of the ramp on to the riverbank (making it easier tow boats) 
  • Less chance of damage to the bottom of boats 
  • Reduced erosion. Rock scour protection will also prevent loss of seabed sediment and prevent a ‘drop off’ or hole at the end of the ramp. 

Funding will go towards: 

  • Precast panel installation to replace the existing broken panels 
  • Toe improvement works to reduce the drop off 
  • Project management.  

Construction is scheduled to start in early August 2022. 

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Lake Tabourie - paddle-craft access 

In response to community feedback, Council is thrilled to jointly fund a much-needed paddle-craft ramp to provide formal access to the lake at Short Street. 

Totalling $60,000, Council will contribute $15,000 to boost the state government’s grant of $45,000. 

Residents and visitors will soon enjoy safe and easy access to the lake via a new ramp, making kayaking and paddleboarding even more enjoyable.

The new ramp will also mean a decrease in shore erosion as watercraft no longer need to be launched off the shoreline.             

Combined funding of $60,000 will go towards: 

  • Community consultation (survey) 
  • Environmental assessment  
  • Ramp design 
  • Construction. 

Images: Shoalhaven City Council

Flood waste disposal extension

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An extension has been issued to 31 May 2022, allowing residents to continue disposing of their flood damaged waste free of charge.

In support of the clean-up effort, waste directly caused by the severe weather events and floods in the Shoalhaven in early March, can be disposed of free of charge at any Council Recycling and Waste Depot. 

Residents will be required to sign a declaration at the Waste Depot that the waste disposed is a result of the 2022 March East Coast Low severe weather and flooding event.  

The Shoalhaven community has shown such incredible resilience during yet another challenging event. Providing free tipping of flood damaged waste is a crucial step in the recovery phase for the whole community. 

Visit our Recycling and Waste Depots page for a list of Depots and operating hours

Image Shoalhaven City Council 

Four mayoral candidates an "experiment" for Watson's Independents

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The Shoalhaven Independents will run four mayoral candidates in the hope of getting one team member over line at the council elections in September.

Team leader, veteran councillor and former mayor Greg Watson, will throw his hat into the ring again, along with team mates Mitchell Pakes, Mark Kitchener and former Team Gash member Patricia White.

Cr Watson says preferences will be tightly held within the team.

He says putting up four candidates, instead of the usual one per team, is a "bit of an experiment", and admits there is the risk of fragmenting the vote and none of his team getting in, particularly with Crs Kitchener and White both standing in Ward Three.

Cr Watson said, at the last election “the community weren’t given a choice”.

“This time we’re giving people a choice, you decide who you’d like to support from the Independents.

“We offer a complete spectrum of experience, youthful endeavour and female.

“It will be the luck of the draw, but I hope one of us is successful.”

Former Team Gash members Patricia White and John Wells have teamed up with the Independents, while Cr Watson says Independents Bob Proudfoot and Andrew Guile will not be standing again.

Gardeners transform Berry park

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Shoalhaven City Council is continuing its roll-out of new and revamped parks, opening Berry’s George Street Park today.

Constructed on land that had been left vacant from the Berry Bypass, the park has undergone an impressive transformation thanks to the vision and work of Berry & District Garden Club members. 

Mayor Amanda Findley is impressed with the community spirit demonstrated by members who have built and will continue to maintain George Street Park. 

"This park certainly is a labour of love and is a true reflection of the Club’s motto 'Friendship through Gardening'," she said.

"I can see that many, many volunteer hours have been devoted to planning and planting the lawns, garden beds, trees, sculptures, paths and seating.

“Berry Garden Club members hand-watered the trees and shrubs throughout the heat and fires last summer and built most of the key garden features themselves.

"It is wonderful that they have made an ongoing commitment to weed and care for the garden plantings and trees at their monthly working bees.

“This is a fantastic asset for the Berry community and visitors and is a testament to the resilient spirit of the Berry community,” Cr Findley said. 

Award-winning local sculptor Michael Purdy, with assistance from local resident Bob Croker, has created two amazing sculptures that make a statement about nature's ability to triumph when threatened by urban development.   

A Red Cedar sapling is establishing itself strongly between the cleaved sandstone of the first sculpture. The second sculpture features a rescued red cedar branch symbolically banded by sunlight penetrating the rainforest. Leaning towards the first sculpture, it acts as the guardian tree of the sapling and of all the other young trees in the park. 

Sited between the two sculptures is a soaring curved timber pergola designed by Berry & District Club President, architect Stephen Buzacott.   

George Street Park can be accessed from the southern end of Albert Street or the western end of George Street, Berry. 

Photo: Shoalhaven City Council.

Go yellow for Recycling Week

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Residents are being encouraged to renew their commitment to recycling to help ensure the Shoalhaven region is doing all it can to minimise waste and maximise recycling by understanding what can and can’t be recycled.

This National Recycling Week, 9-15 November, is a good time for us all as consumers, to think about the choices we make when purchasing goods, says Shoalhaven Mayor Amanda Findley .

“Recycling is an important part of sustainable living. By recycling, you are ensuring valuable resources do not go to landfill and you are also reducing energy from producing new materials from scratch," she said.

“Try to choose metal and glass packaging over plastic, as metal and glass can be recycled indefinitely.

Mayor Findley recently toured the West Nowra Waste Depot and was impressed with the passion and innovation behind the current and impending waste management practices in place at Shoalhaven’s recycling and waste depots. 

“The Shoalhaven kerbside recycling trucks collect a staggering 12,000 tonnes of recyclable materials from 55,000 households annually.

“Over 30,000 tonnes of recyclable material is collected from our Recycling and Waste Depots annually. These include items that can’t go in the yellow bin, such as electronic waste, batteries, gas bottles and scrap steel.

“The team are working to set up a glass recycling plant at West Nowra, which will be operational soon and will supply glass sand for the Nowra Bridge construction project.

“It is pretty special to be able to see recycled material generated from the Shoalhaven being used to construct major projects here in our neighbourhood.

“I encourage all Shoalhaven residents and visitors to learn what can and cannot be recycled at our Waste Depots to ensure we minimise our landfill footprint and increase the life of recyclable materials.

“Recently, you would have received a Yellow Bin Guide in the mail, which helps you to make the right decision on what goes in the yellow bin, what goes in the red bin and what can go to local REDcycle collection points and our Waste Depots," Cr Findley said.

Shoalhaven City Council also have a number of informative videos featuring Waste Warrior Wombat, which take you through what can and can’t be recycled from around the home.

See the Waste and Recycling YouTube playlist HERE

Photo Shoalhaven City Council

Harmony Week celebrating our cultural diversity

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Shoalhaven City Council is encouraging the community to come together and celebrate its cultural diversity during Harmony Week on 15-21 March 2021.   

This year the theme for Harmony Week is “Everyone Belongs”.  

Vincentia Pharmacist Ali Nazim was born in Baghdad and raised in Istanbul.

He arrived in Australia with his family when he started high school and says it was a very daunting time for a teenager.

"We lived a very comfortable life in Iraq but had to leave because of the bombs continuously raining down upon us," Ali said.

"In Turkey we experienced extreme poverty living on day old bread that was thrown away by the bakers."

Upon his arrival in Australia, Ali says he gained tremendous community support.

"I had no English and used to think chicken was pronounced kitchen!" he said.

"However, the amount of support we received here was extraordinary.

"The school system and ESOL program really works."

Ali is very modest but from arriving here with no English he achieved an ATAR in the high 90s

"When I celebrated my first Harmony Day at school, I wore a galabya (a traditional Arabic robe). At my last Harmony Day at school I wore shorts and an Akubra."

Ali says coming to Australia was the best thing his family could have done.

"It is a land of opportunity where hopes and dreams are realised," he added.

"I know that here my daughter can be whoever she wants to be, unconstrained by the rules of my home country."

Ali is the owner of Choice Pharmacy in the HomeCo. shopping centre in Vincentia.

"I came to Vincentia in 2015 – I opened the pharmacy on a Monday, was married the following Saturday and in 2018 we had a lovely daughter. It did take two years before we could get away on honeymoon."

Ali says his pharmacy is a very happy and welcoming place and is a true melting pot, with staff members from Italy, Ireland and Germany.

Council has joined the Shoalhaven Harmony Week Planning Committee, along with five local organisations to promote the national week, encouraging the community to take part in a list of challenges, such as decorating a mailbox with orange-coloured decorations at home or for business owners to decorate a store-front shop.  

Mayor Amanda Findley is inviting the community to celebrate their own and others cultural heritage, by coming together during the national week.  

“Harmony Week is an opportunity for all communities to join together to celebrate the many cultures that make up our local community," she said.

"It’s about inclusiveness, respect and a sense of belonging for everyone,” Cr Findley said. 

“The Shoalhaven has a long history of embracing people from many cultures and recognising the richness of diversity it brings to the region.

“This year we are encouraging the community to hold an event or activity as part of Harmony Week, and to take part in the Shoalhaven Harmony Day competition.  

"I’m looking forward to seeing shop fronts, doors and letterboxes decorated with Harmony-themed, orange-coloured decorations as well as videos and photos of events posted on social media." 

A promotional stall will be held in Jelly Bean Park on Thursday March 18 between 11:30am and 2:30pm.  

Photo and interview courtesy Shoalhaven Harmony Week 2021 and SCC.

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Heavy rainfall causes landslips and minor flooding across the Shoalhaven

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Emergency crews are on the scene of a reported landslide on the Princes Highway.

There is also a report of a fallen tree which is blocking the Highway north of Mollymook at Corks Lane.

RMs crews are on the scene attempting got clear the slide and remove the tree.

Live Traffic NSW advised there are heavy traffic conditions and motorists should  allow extra travel time and exercise caution.

A NSW Police spokesperson said police units are at the scene undertaking traffic control.

Across the Shoalhaven,  SES crews are responding to more than 28 outstanding calls for assistance after heavy overnight rainfall, which has caused minor flash flooding.

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Ulladulla SES commander Tracey Provest said "There has been as much as 230 mm of rainfall recorded Porters Creek Dam in the past 24 hours.

"There has also been 180mm of rain also in the Manyana region which is causing minor landslips," she said.

Commander Provest said "There are a significant number of jobs at the moment where people are requiring sandbags."

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She said "SES Facebook pages at Ulladulla, St Georges Basin and Nowra  are continually updated to keep residents informed."

Commander Provest said "Numerous roads across the Shoalhaven are experiencing minor flooding, including Bawley Point Road which is close to being closed."

Commander Provest has urged motorists not to drive through floodwaters and said " Remember, if it's flooded, forget it."

Shoalhaven City Council has made the new disaster dashboard available on its website. 

The Disaster Dashboard provides information on fire and flood incidents, SES NSW advice, road conditions and power outages.

Images: Shoahaven City Council & Ulladulla SES   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image: Live Traffic NSW 

Holiday homes could solve housing shortage

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The owners of vacant properties are being urged to consider placing them on the rental market to support Shoalhaven families struggling to find accommodation.

As we near the anniversary of the Black Summer Fires, Shoalhaven Mayor Amanda Findley says many families that lost their homes are still looking for secure housing solutions. 

She says support services are reporting a critical shortage of rental accommodation in the region.

"We've got over 300 displaced families after bushfires and vacancy rates in the Shoalhaven are the lowest they've ever been," she said.

"People have got holiday homes sitting vacant for 9 or 10 months of the year and they're getting very little use at the moment.

"With the amount of housing pressure the Shoalhaven is experiencing, we could really do with those homes being made available."

She is urging holiday home owners to contact local real estate agent who have waiting lists and are being inundated with requests for rental properties.

 

Huge step for new Shoalhaven suburb

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The Moss Vale Road North Urban land release has taken a huge step forward, with the proposal for a new suburb, catering for up to 3400 homes, to be submitted to the NSW Department of Planning before the end of the year.

The as yet un-named suburb is expected to provide a mix of homes, including low, medium and high density housing, shops, offices and retail outlets, as well as sporting fields, parks and green corridors.

Shoalhaven City Councillor John Wells expects the state government to provide a Gateway determination early in 2021, after which he hopes people will start to suggest “innovative and insightful” names for the new suburb which will be about the size of Bomaderry.

“We’re aiming for a high quality project, with a mix of homes options, including affordable and accessible housing options,” Cr Wells said.

Cr Wells said road works would soon commence, with roundabout on Moss Vale Road to service both the proposed northern and southern land release areas.

NSW Government funding has been secured for the design and construction of the roundabout, with completion expected in the second half of 2021.

Photo: Shoalhaven City Council

Huskisson Woollamia Community Voice Zooms with candidates tonight

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The Huskisson Woollamia Community Voice group is reminding residents of a meet the candidates Zoom opportunity tonight.

Ward 2 Shoalhaven Council Green's candidates Evan Christen and Jo Warren will answer questions about their plans and policies in the lead-up to the December four local government elections.

to join Zoom meeting go to:
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85112838239?pwd=c2VscXl2aWJrZ2pibVdRa1poc2JCdz09
Meeting ID: 851 1283 8239
Passcode: 500337

A meet the Labor Candidates Zoom night is happening on the 22nd of November.

Image: Flickr

Hyams hopes for masterplan relief

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Hyams Beach residents are hoping a village masterplan will help alleviate overcrowding in the popular tourist hot spot.

Over summer, visitors have been turned away once a 300-car limit is reached, but that hasn’t stopped determined beach-goers from parking illegally and dangerously along Booderee Road and walking into the village.

Hyams Beach Village Association president Lois Sparkes says some visitors continue to ignore no parking signs that have been erected by Shoalhaven City Council, while others are confronting council-employed traffic controllers.

“This holiday season from Christmas to Australia Day has been continually busy, even on weekdays and it’s been compounded by covid restrictions that have limited international and interstate travel,” she said.

“At times the Booderee National Park has been closed to visitors, so people then flock to places like Hyams Beach.”

Ms Sparkes says traffic control has helped over the past three years, and moving the stop-point to Booderee Avenue instead of Naval College Road this year has also assisted traffic flow.

“The traffic controllers have been incredibly diplomatic and patient even though they have endured some very annoyed and very abusive people.”

However, she says there are still a number of issues that need to be addressed.

“Google Maps sends everyone to the south end of the beach, so we have loads of cars in one place looking for parking spots and trying to do U-turns – it’s very dangerous.

“We still have concerns around traffic flows in the village, which are actually quite dangerous, coupled with improved pedestrian safety particularly along Cyrus Street from Hyam Road through to Chinamans Beach

“We are also extremely concerned about the large number of illegal campers who camp on the beach and light fires on the beach. We’ve seen an increase in campervans this year - and many return offenders.”

Ms Sparkes said an incident, where a driver left a car in a residential driveway without the hand brake on,could have been disastrous.

“The car rolled down the driveway through a privacy screen and, fortunately, there were no children in the yard and no one in house as there could have been injuries incurred,” she added.

Members of the association are working closely with Shoalhaven City Council on the draft Masterplan which Ms Sparkes hopes will be progressed in the next few months.

She says members are also calling for council re-visit the use of digital technology to manage parking in the village.

“This has been proposed in the past, but not pursued.”

The other issue facing the community in busy times is rubbish.

“We have been absolutely trashed,” she concluded.

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Photos Shoalhaven Tourism and supplied.

Jo Gash to retire after 31 years in politics

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After 31 years in politics, Shoalhaven City Councillor and former Federal Member for Gilmore Joanna Gash has announced she will not stand at the upcoming September council elections.

Cr Gash has served nine years on council, six of those as mayor, and 17 years as the federal member.

Prior to that she was a Wingecarribee Shire Councillor after working for Bowral Council and as a regional tourism manager in Sydney.

Last week, Cr Gash walked out of a council meeting for the first time in her career.

She says the bullying and personal attacks at Shoalhaven City Council are one of the reasons she has decided to walk away from public life at the age of 77.

“I did a walk out which I never done before, ever in my 31 years,” she said.

“Councillors need to work together - we can all work together - and stop the personal attacks.”

Cr Gash says the behaviour of some councillors was the final straw, coupled with returning health issues, that cemented her decision.

“I had planned to run, but I thought no it’s time to leave and let somebody else have a go.

“I turn 77 this year and I think it’s time that somebody else took my place.

“And I’m hoping that some other councillors will take the same view and give somebody else a go.”

Cr Gash says she would like to see some fresh faces in council.

“We’ve been there a long time, we’ve done our commitments, things have changed and we need to encourage other people to have a go,” she added.

Following yesterday’s March4Justice rallies held around the country, including at Nowra, Cr Gash says she held her own in various political arenas and says she didn’t experience bullying or harassment of any kind during her career.

“In fact, my mentors were both men and they helped me in my career and my future,” she said.

“In life you have those men, who are not as good as they should be, and certainly in politics it happens anywhere.”

She said if men tried to intimidate her, she just put them in their place and said it was not acceptable.

“It’s certainly not acceptable.

“I can’t stand bullies and I don’t like being intimidated.

“These sorts of things that are happening in our council at the moment and shouldn’t be.

“That’s one of the reasons that I decided I’d had enough.

“I feel sorry for the young girls who haven’t had much life experience and are going into politics, or to work in politics, it’s a whole different world. It’s a whole different ball game.”

But Cr Gash is encouraging women of all ages to have a go and throw their hat into the political ring.

“I’d say find and good mentor and go for it. I really mean that,” she added.

“Politics needs young people, but you can’t just expect to walk into politics.

“You have to earn it and you have to have some life experiences and business knowledge, and you can gain those.”

She says she would “really be delighted to help people have a go” if they were considering running for council.

“Women undersell themselves, they don’t think they can do the job,” Cr Gash said.

“Actually, they can probably do the job equally - if not better - than men, because women can do so many things at once.”

Cr Gash says she has many highlights from her career, but the project that stands out as Member for Gilmore was getting Main Road 92 built, providing a link from the Shoalhaven to Canberra.

She said spending three months with the United Nations as a federal member and witnessing the first election in Iraq were also stand out moments.

“One of the best things I ever achieved was when I used to go door knocking, a man told me to P-off because he didn’t want to talk to me but, to cut a long story short, we managed to get him some new teeth.

“One day on a village he came around with flowers. I had changed his whole life and, to me, it was one of the best things I ever did.”

As the Shoalhaven Mayor, Cr Gash said she achieved a lot working as a team and she was disappointed and “very sad” when members of Team Gash moved over to Cr Greg Watson’s Shoalhaven Independents team.

“That was one of things that really hurt, to see some of my team go with Greg Watson’s team, but things happen in politics.

“I think they wanted to be in the spotlight to get things done and joined the Independents, but I have to say I was extremely hurt by that.”

Cr Gash says, with six months remaining in her role, she hopes to “change the behaviours at council” for the next generation.

Once she retires, she hopes to spend more time with her family, including six grandchildren and three great grandchildren.

After being diagnosed with breast cancer six years ago, she is also now required to travel to Sydney every three months for check-ups.

Photo Joanna Gash

Kangaroo Valley Showground plan of management under review

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Shoalhaven City Council is reviewing the Plan of Management for the Kangaroo Valley Showground and is inviting the community to provide feedback.

The Plan of Management will provide direction for the use of the Showground lands.

Shoalhaven City Council Mayor, Amanda Findley encouraged community members to provide their input as part of the review.   

“This is a fantastic opportunity for the Kangaroo Valley Community to have their say on the management of the land now and into the future.” Clr Findley said.  

The community can provide their feedback through an online survey until 5pm Thursday 3 June 2021.  

For more information visit Council’s Kangaroo Valley Showground Plan of Management Get Involved page.

Image:  Shoalhaven.nsw.gov.au

Keep domestic cats at home campaign

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Native wildlife in NSW will be better protected thanks to an innovative project officially launched by the NSW Government and RSPCA NSW encouraging cat owners to keep their pets safe at home.

Environment Minister James Griffin said nationally, domestic cats kill about 390 million animals every year in Australia, including mammals, reptiles and birds.

“Owners who let their cats roam might not think their moggie is doing much damage, but we know that on average, each roaming pet cat kills an average of 186 reptiles, bird and mammals per year in Australia,” Mr Griffin said.

“The majority of animals killed by pet cats are native Australian species.

Cats roaming away from home is disastrous for our native species and the ecosystems that rely on each species’ existence.

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“Cats are lovely companion animals, which is why we’re working with RSPCA NSW to encourage pet owners to keep their cats at home," Mr Griffin said.

The NSW Government has awarded a $2.5 million grant from the NSW Environmental Trust to RSPCA NSW to deliver the Keeping Cats Safe at Home project.

Minister for Local Government Wendy Tuckerman said the project involves partnering with 11 councils, including Shoalhaven City Council, to educate and help people contain their cats.

“Each Council will get a tailored program to address specific needs and challenges they encounter in their local government areas,” Ms Tuckerman said.

“Crucially, the project will also improve access to free desexing and microchipping for cat owners in target areas to address cat overpopulation, shown to be highly effective in curbing the stray population.”

RSPCA NSW CEO Steve Coleman said the project’s initial research showed the owners of Australia’s approximately 3.8 million cats are starting to understand the importance of keeping their cats at home.

“Although our surveys have found that at least 50 per cent of people contain their cats, either indoors or through outdoor enclosures, it’s vital that we continue to increase this," Mr Coleman said.

Images: Wikipedia

 

Kids rate Berry's Boongaree Nature Playpark after its official opening

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The Boongaree Nature Play Park has officially opened and hundreds of families have already experienced its attractions.

The six-point-four million dollar playground was previously known as the Berry District Park and is a result of a collaboration between Berry Rotary, Shoalhaven Council with funding from Federal and State Governments.

The Nature Play Park includes a dual, accessible flying fox, sensory play area, swings, slides climbing nets and exercise equipment. 

As well as family picnic and BBQ spaces, amenities with lift and change facilities and many more elements that create an exciting and inclusive play space for the community and visitors to enjoy.

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It builds on the existing successes of the area and facilitates future opportunities to meet the broader community’s needs and economic benefit from visitors for the Berry Township. 

Berry Rotary believes the Nature Play Park provides a unique opportunity to reinvigorate the northern edge of the township of Berry following the introduction of the Berry bypass road. 

Berry Rotary Club's Grahame Sweeney says the park had hundreds of vistors when it opened on Saturday the 22nd of January, with numbers increasing the following day.

He said, "It was a tremendous day."

Mr. Sweeney said, " It's certainly attracting young families to Berry to go down to the Rotary Nature Playpark."

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One of the first to experience the sensory play park facilities was 12-year-old Summer who said, " I loved the Berry Adventure Playground.

"I like all the pieces of equipment and it's a really good place to see friends and meet new friends." she said.

Summer said "All the equipment was well spaced and varied."

Summer's sister Daisy celebrated her tenth birthday by visiting the playpark with her family.

Daisy said, " I liked all the equipment and also liked the hamster wheels, the bike tracks, the flying fox and the slides."

"I would like to go back tomorrow morning," she said.

Future works include a new skate park and pump track, a dog park and improvements to the sporting facilities, including additional formal car parking for visitors in accordance with the Boongaree Master Plan.

Images: Shoalhaven City Council & the Sarges family & Carl Hubbers

Lifesavers watch over eight beaches during holidays

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Professional beach patrols will be in place at Shoalhaven beaches during the April NSW school holiday period from tomorrow until Sunday April 18. 

Shoalhaven City Council’s Director City Lifestyles Jane Lewis is reminding holiday makers and locals to swim between the red and yellow flags at patrolled beaches as the swimming season draws to a close.

“Our region boasts more than 100 stunning beaches, but if you plan to swim, we recommend choosing a beach that is patrolled," she said.

Patrols will be in place at Shoalhaven Heads, Crookhaven Heads, Warrain, Cudmirrah/Berrara, Narrawallee, North and South Mollymook beaches and Tilbury Cove.

“To make your next trip to the beach safer, make sure you read the safety signs, ask a lifeguard for safety advice and swim with a friend,” Ms Lewis said. 

A beach wheelchair service is also available during beach patrol season.   

“Make sure you book ahead, there are ten beach wheelchairs available for adults and children free of charge, at seven beaches across the Shoalhaven,” she added. 

To book a beach wheelchair.

Photo Shoalhaven City Council

 

Locals needed for homelessness taskforce

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Shoalhaven City Council wants to hear from locals who want to join the Homelessness Taskforce.

The committee was set up in October last year to help those doing it tough.

Interested people need the following qualities:

* Passionate about the issue of homelessness and/or have lived experience of homelessness whilst       living in the Shoalhaven Local Government Area.
* Interested in being an advocate for people experiencing homelessness in the community.
* Motivated to drive change through local government and would like to learn more about its role in     the community.
* Available to attend quarterly meetings.
* Reachable by phone, email or postal address in order to be notified of meetings and updates.

Applications close on January 20.

To apply click here

Image: Shoalhaven City Council 

Making your pool and spa summer safe

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Pool owners are being reminded the make sure their backyard pool or spa is safe for the upcoming summer season.

Shoalhaven City Council has launched a public awareness campaign to promote the many ways the community can make their pool or spa safe, including meeting mandatory compliance requirements. 

Any pool capable of being filled with water greater than 300mm in depth must have permanent child-resistant fencing. However, children should still be actively supervised during use of the swimming pool it should be emptied immediately after use.

NSW Law requires that child-resistant barriers are required for permanent pools (including swim spas) and portable pools.  Spas pools are required to be secured with a lockable lid or alternatively a compliant swimming pool barrier.  

Things you can do to make your pool a safe pool:   

  • Gain a safety compliance certificate  
  • Teach your children to swim  
  • Watch children in the pool & remain an arm’s reach  
  • Always watch your child when using flotation devices  
  • Ensure child-resistant barriers are installed correctly  
  • Maintain, repair or replace a faulty safety latch  
  • Remove climbable objects from around the fence  
  • Never prop open the pool gate  
  • Stay up to date with first aid skills 
  • Display a resuscitation CPR chart on your pool fence.   

For more information on Council's website on Swimming Pools & Spas or call Council on 1300 293 111.

Image: Shoalhaven City Council

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mayor tackling Tassie climate trek

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Shoalhaven Mayor Amanda Findley is walking the talk this week as she takes part in the Climate Council’s Tassie Trek.

Cr Findley is taking part in the ten-day walk through Tasmania’s Tarkine Wilderness region with climate change expert Professor Will Steffen.

The trek aims to raise $70,000 for the Climate Council’s extreme weather work and support activities of the Emergency Leaders for Climate Action for another 12 months.

A member of the Greens and climate activist, Cr Findley says she is pleased that Shoalhaven is part of the Councils City Power Partnership, the largest council network talking climate change.

Photo Amanda Findley Facebook

Motion calls for council to uphold values

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Shoalhaven City Councillor Nina Digiglio wants council to become a safer workplace and is calling for all elected councillors to uphold council’s core values of respect, collaboration, adaptability and integrity.

Cr Digiglio was a guest speaker at last week’s March4Justic rally in Nowra where she spoke about the challenges faced by current representatives at all level of government, and the importance of welcoming new, younger councillors who need to feel safe as they begin their political careers.

Tomorrow night, she will raise a Notice of Motion, calling for council to take a formal approach to reducing bullying in the chamber.

“This motion is not designed to blame or shame, but is a real opportunity to change the culture for the better,” she said.

“I believe we have an opportunity to be true leaders at leading the charge for change for the women at council, those from CALD Backgrounds, Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander people and those with disabilities.

“These voices have been missing from the conversations in Local Government for far too long.”

Cr Digiglio says she would like to see council embrace the new “Our Watch” Prevention Handbook, supported by the Australian Government Department of Social Services, aimed at reducing violence against women, workplace bullying and horizontal violence in the workplace.

She says the tool kit provides a strategy that “embraces all community diverse views, that will likely produce better community outcomes by their inclusion in the decision-making processes”.

“Our performance and approach to cooperation in the council chamber spills over into the community, impacting the quality of our work in the community we serve, and can damage the way that the community perceives us," she said.

"As leaders, and as the people who lead on the direction of this organisation, it is our responsibility to demonstrate best practice through our words and our deeds.

“There is considerable literature documenting the physical and mental health consequences that may arise due to a failure to act on the issues raised here as they pertain to our workplaces.

“Numerous councils are already addressing these issues and making changes.

“We have an opportunity now to be true leaders by reflecting an equitable, respectful, non discriminatory and harmonious culture in attending to our duties, to assist and promote safe workplaces thereby representing what we may rightfully aspire to see in the diverse community we represent.”

Photo Katrina Condie

Myola boat ramp upgrade plans

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Shoalhaven City Council is considering a repair or upgrade of the boat ramp at Catherine Street in Myola.

Council is currently putting together an application to the NSW Government to fund this project through the NSW Boating Now program.

The NSW Boating Now Program provides grant funding to improve maritime infrastructure and facilities across NSW.

This investment supports the needs of recreational and commercial boaters and enables broader economic and social benefits for communities.

The Program is funded from boating licence, registration and other fees collected by Transport for NSW (TfNSW).

Since its inception in 2014, the Program has already delivered over 200 boating projects to the benefit of boaters across the State. 

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The proposed upgrade provides a new boat ramp with two lanes and central accessible walkway pontoon.

Two lanes will double the capacity allowing two boats to be launched or retrieved at one time. Inclusion of a pontoon will greatly improve accessibility.

The proposed design will also address issues associated with the existing boat ramp, such as the deepening hole at the ramp’s toe.

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Environmental due diligence through the enaction of impact assessments and specialist studies, and licenses and permits needing to be obtained from State Government Agencies, will be explored, and addressed as the project continues to be developed. 

This project is in the conceptual stage and is currently unfunded.

Council is inviting the community to provide feedback on the need for improvements at this site and the suitability of the current upgrade concept to assist with decision-making on the future of the project, and to help inform grant funding applications. 

For more information, and to have your say, visit the Myola Boat Ramp Improvements Get Involved web page. 

Images: Shoalhaven City Council

National trainee award for Cassie

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Shoalhaven City Council trainee Cassandra O’Carroll was announced runner-up in the School Based Apprentice Trainee of the Year category of the Australian Training Awards on Friday night.

Cassie, 18, has been hosted by Shoalhaven City Council’s Environmental Services Section for on-the-job training since June 2019, while completing a Certificate II in Conservation and Land Management School-Based Traineeship. 

She recently also won the SBAT of the Year in the Apprentice Employment Network NSW & ACT Group Training Awards and took out the same category in the NSW Training Awards.  

Shoalhaven Mayor Amanda Findley says Cassie is an outstanding trainee who is focussed, organised and not afraid to ask questions and shows a level of maturity well beyond her years. 

“Cassie’s passion for protecting the environment, capacity to learn quickly and sense of humour have made her a welcome and very helpful addition to the Environmental Services Section," Cr Findley said.

“Shoalhaven City Council is proud of everything Cassie has achieved during her traineeship and her supervisors say she is incredibly deserving of each accolade."

Cassie recommends a school-based traineeship in local government as a great way to gain hands-on experience in an area of interest and to gain insight into how Councils work.  

“It has been very rewarding and learning the technology has been invaluable.," she said.

"I’ve gained skills that will translate into future settings, it is surprising the range of environmental services councils are involved in.  

“Although I’ve spent a lot of time with the threatened species team I’ve rotated between biosecurity, environmental health, natural resources (including bushcare) and flood plains as well as sewage management facilities. 

“I am a pretty ambitious person and have a lot of projects in the pipeline.

"One of them is building a small insect farm as the global insect population has declined by 90 per cent over the last 50 years.

"It will be a small one but hopefully great for birds, the fires earlier this year wiped out the understorey and food supply for many bird species.” 

In June Cassie won SBAT at the Illawarra and South East NSW Training Awards; and vocational education and training (VET) Student of the Year, as well as the Overall VET Student of the Year for the 2020 Shoalhaven Schools Excellence in VET Awards.

She was also named SBAT of the Year in the 2020 HVTC Excellence Awards, announced earlier this year. 

In 2021 Cassie will be studying at the University of Wollongong after receiving early entry into the Bachelor of Conservation Biology (Honours) (Dean's Scholar). 

Photo Shoalhaven City Council

New addition to Milton's 'big tree' park

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The glorious 190-year-old fig tree has always been the feature of Milton’s Mick Ryan Park, but now visitors can also test their climbing skills on a brand new playground.

The $130,000 playground was officially opened by Mayor Amanda Findley today, with some local children helping to cut the ribbon.

The equipment sits alongside the historic tree, manicured gardens, a toddler bike track and barbecue area which is popular with local families.

“In the modern play space we have here, there’s still that hark to nature - we’ve got a wonderful climbing tree, we’ve got a wonderful garden where the kids can play hide-and-seek, and then they can come back to this modern creation and play here,” Cr Findley said.

“It’s a stunning location and a must-do rest stop on the Princes Highway at Milton.”

Cr Findley said her children loved the park growing up, and she hopes the children of today and future generations will also enjoy the facility overlooking Milton farmland and beyond to the Budawang Ranges and Didthul.

“Parks are where memories are made, where we get cuts on our chins and scars for life.

“Parks are for making friends, building resilience and having a mighty fine time.”

After cutting the ribbon, Cr Findley - complete with her Christmas-y reindeer antlers - joined the kids on the playground and even tested out the tunnel slide, much to the delight of onlookers.

Children can now enjoy a basket swing, spinner, climbing cube and see saw as well as climbing wall, tunnel slide and climbing webs.

The new playground also has a shade sail which means both the playground and the tree can be enjoyed in the warmer months of the year. 

Council purchased Mick Ryan Park in the 1960s from dairy farmer Mick Ryan in order to preserve the fig tree and ensure a parcel of grassed land would be kept for future generations to enjoy.

"It is great to see nearly six decades on, residents and visitors have a wonderful precinct for families to spend the day or even a weekend,” Cr Findley said. 

The park is one of a series of playgrounds throughout the Shoalhaven that have been upgraded and opened in time for Christmas.

“The Shoalhaven’s locations for their parks are exquisite beyond belief,” Cr Findley said.

“And we have three more in the planning.”

Cr Findley said she will look into giving the amenities block a face-lift – perhaps a mural and a fresh coat of paint, as well as installing a water fountain in the park.

Photos Katrina Condie

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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

New look into parking near popular playground

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Shoalhaven City Council says it is aware of the issues, and community concerns, regarding car parking at Boongaree in Berry. 

Parking elements around such an important piece of infrastructure need to be considered in regard to the entire Boongaree project.

As a result, additional measures are currently being investigated to address parking issues at Boongaree. 

Taking into consideration the consultation that has already occurred for the Boongaree Master Plan, council has decided to re-open consultation with the community for proposed additional 90-degree formal car parking spaces along North Street, 80m west of Alexandra Street, Berry.

The area impacted by the proposal is depicted in red in the image. 

Please provide your feedback by completing the online survey on council's webpage by Sunday, 10 July

The survey also presents an opportunity for feedback on any other concerns surrounding the parking presented in the Master Plan, including LV parking. 

A hard copy of the survey can be completed upon request for residents without internet access. 

No public access while ferry works are carried out

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The Comerong Island Ferry will be refurbished and the concrete landings on either side of Berry's Canal replaced.

The works are expected to take up to four months to complete and Shoalhaven City Council is in the process of finalising the tender and contract process.

There will be no public access to the island during the construction period and a temporary ‘pedestrian service’ will be provided to residents, their guests and contractors.

A courtesy transit service will also be provided on the eastern (island) shore to enable access, and a temporary car park will be designated on the western (mainland) shore. 

Shoalhaven Mayor Amanda Findley says the works are necessary to maintain the long-term safety and viability of the service.

“Council is required to conduct out-of-water maintenance and inspections of the Comerong Island Ferry every five years to maintain its Certificate of Survey, which allows council to provide the service,” she said.

“As both the vessel refurbishment works and ramp reconstruction works prevent the operation of the ferry service, they will be scheduled to take place at the same time, to limit the disruption to residents.

“Council will do everything it can to lessen the impact on residents who will be affected by the temporary disruption to service.

"We do apologise for the inconvenience and thank the local community for their co-operation and understanding,” Cr Findley said.

Once the timing for the works has been confirmed, Council will notify residents.

Nowra Showground gets upgrade funding

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The NSW Government will provide $16,534 for upgrades at the Nowra Showground under its COVID-19 showground stimulus program.

Member for the South Coast Shelley Hancock said "The latest money brings the total funding for the region under the program to more than $700,000."

She said "During bushfires and floods showgrounds many also serve as emergency centres for residents, animals, firefighters and other support services, so we want them in good shape."

The Nowra Showground dollars will go towards drainage and landscaping improvements.

Image: supplied 

 

Palm Beach upgrade underway

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Sanctuary Point’s Palm Beach upgrade is underway, with the first sod on the project turned today (Thursday).

The popular picnic and boating area will be transformed into a tourism precinct with upgrades to Ray Brooks Reserve, including a two-metre-wide accessible concrete path linking the amenities building, carpark and playground; new accessible barbecues and picnic shelters, plus carpark improvements including accessible parking spaces.

A gravel path will also connect the reserve to the Basin Walking Trail which will continue along the foreshore.

Member for South Coast Shelley Hancock, who joined community advocates Dennis and Kate Williams and Shoalhaven Mayor Amanda Findley for the sod turning, said the project was part of a $5.3 million NSW Government funding commitment to Shoalhaven City Council and was the first of seven sustainable tourism infrastructure projects to be undertaken by council over the next three years.

Future works include upgrades to facilities at Hyams Beach, an extension of the Murramarang Coastal Walk, upgrades to the Basin Walk track and the construction of paths and boardwalks at Bherwerre Wetland.

Photo supplied.

 

Rates and rent cuts to go before Shoalhaven Council

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The issue of rate relief for Shoalhaven home owners and businesses will be raised again at tonight's council meeting.

The last meeting supported a motion to reduce rates by 25 percent for the next financial year, to help in the recovery from both the bushfires and the COVID-19 shutdown.

However Mayor AMANDA FINDLEY has lodged a rescission motion warning of critical financial recoil for the council and its operations if it goes ahead.

The council CEO has also warned such a move is illegal under the Local Government Act.

Meantime a motion to offer rent relief for those in council-owned properties impacted by the coronavirus is also on tonight's agenda.

Photo: news stock

Residential access on Moss Vale Road

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Residents can now travel in and out of Kangaroo Valley .

Escorts will depart hourly from:

  • Intersection of Moss Vale Rd and Barfield Rd, Cambewarra, to travel into Kangaroo Valley, on the hour i.e. 5pm, 6pm, 7pm etc.
  • Intersection of Moss Vale Rd and Kangaroo Valley Rd to head out of Kangaroo Valley, on the half hour, 5:30pm, 6:30pm, 7:30pm etc.

These will run around the clock until further notice.

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A massive cleanup continues on Moss Vale Rd from landslips at Barrengarry and Cambewarra Mountains.

Moss Vale Rd is closed in both directions.

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Motorists have been urged to stay home and don’t attempt to drive as there’s no access in or out of Kangaroo Valley at the moment.

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Council said, "Our priority is to clear the slips at Cambewarra Mountain as soon as possible, but it may take several days before we can restore access from the south."

Images: Shoalhaven City Council 

Reworked Nowra historic site opened

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Shoalhaven City Council has revamped the former Nowra Sailing Club site, with new picnic seating, interpretative signage and flood markers.

The Council funded project included the demolition of the former Nowra Sailing Club building.

The historic building survived two World Wars and many floods and was utilised by Nowra Sailing Club from 1964 until it was destroyed by fire. The pylons that supported the original building for more than 100 years remain as they are heritage listed.

You'll find it on the southern side of the Shoalhaven River near the Nowra Bridge.

Photo: Supplied

Roll up your sleeves and get rid of graffiti

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We're all being asked to roll up our sleeves and help remove graffiti from buildings across the Shoalhaven.  

The aim of Graffiti Removal Day on Sunday March 28 is to highlight the problem of graffiti and encourage people to remove and prevent graffiti in their community.   

Shoalhaven Mayor Amanda Findley is calling for Shoalhaven residents to ‘Love where they live’ by volunteering their time on the day at a clean-up site.  

“Graffiti vandalism can be a costly, antisocial, and often unsightly nuisance for the community," she said.

“Council is committed to presenting the Shoalhaven in a positive manner to both visitors and residents, in particular by swiftly removing graffiti from our public assets.  

“Graffiti can cause people to feel unsafe and may be offensive to members of the community, creating the impression that nobody cares about the area. 

“Evidence shows that the quick removal of graffiti helps to deter future vandalism events. Graffiti vandals like to admire their tags and this quick action removes the satisfaction of seeing their mark,” Cr Findley said. 

Residents can volunteer or nominate a site for Graffiti Removal Day on their website (https://graffitiremovalday.org.au). Anyone over the age of 12 with the ability to clean off graffiti can volunteer to participate. 

Council’s Graffiti Removal Coordinator works to remove graffiti from Council assets on a daily basis

Council also offers advice and support for residents and business owners when removing graffiti from private property. 

Graffiti vandalism is a crime. If you see something suspicious, report it to police. If you have information about graffiti vandalism, phone Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

The NSW Graffiti Hotline is also available for assistance on 1800 707 125 (Monday to Friday). 

Shoalhaven Australia Day Citizen of the Year Awards

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Shoalhaven City Council celebrated their annual Shoalhaven Australia Day Awards and Citizenship Ceremony on Monday, 31 January 2022 at the Ulladulla Civic Centre.  

The awards celebrate local people and the diverse ways they contribute to our community across eight categories including sports, the environment, the arts and to building an inclusive Shoalhaven.  

Shoalhaven City Council, Mayor Amanda Findley said she was immensely proud to see so many wonderful community-minded people being acknowledged and celebrated. 

“I am thrilled to celebrate the accomplishments of local people, often unsung heroes, doing amazing things in our community across a range of fields.” Mayor Findley said. 

“I would like to congratulate these inspirational award winners and the nominees in each category.

"You should be immensely proud of the positive impact your efforts make to our community. I would also like to thank those who took the time to nominate the deserving community members for the awards.," she said.

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Citizen of the Year – Fran Mooney 

Fran Mooney has been a member of the Rural Fire Service (RFS), St Georges Basin since 2012.

She has attended bushfires, motor vehicle accidents, back burning and more.  

Ms Mooney was instrumental in the redevelopment of the Sanctuary Point Skate Park.

Her involvement in the project has seen a significant decrease in antisocial behaviour.

She consistently promotes and encourages activities for young people to ensure parents and children know what they can access and build support around safe play for children.

She is an inspirational role model for the community through her tireless work for Sanctuary Point youth. 

Ms Mooney has also been a member of the St Georges Basin State Emergency Services for almost three years.  

She is an honest, open, and passionate individual who leads by example and has proved that things can change, if you keep at it, to support youth to have more opportunities and a stronger sense of community. 

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Young Citizen of the Year - Wade Cawley 

As a role model for young people, Wade Cawley demonstrates his passion for the environment by repurposing waste in meaningful ways. He took his passion from a hobby to starting a local e-Waste business to upcycle and keep recyclable material out of landfill. 

Mr Cawley networks with local businesses and LGA’s to ensure e-Waste is suitably recycled with his electric van enabling him to collect obsolete items directly from businesses and residents. 

Through Mr Cawley, his business educates clients on the intricacies of recycling and shows how small steps can create big solutions. His innovative approach to repurposing waste makes a major contribution to protecting the environment.  

He is also an organiser of Clean-up Australia Day in Berry. 

Mr Cawley’s love for helping others and making our environment cleaner for the next generation is incredible. This passionate young man is a role model and inspiration and deserves much recognition in the field of environmental excellence. 

Sports Person – Kelsey Bennett 

After 12 Years playing golf, Ms Bennett has achieved international status finishing equal second in the International Women's Amateur Asia Pacific Championship in Abu Dhabi.

She is now recognised as a leading young amateur in Australia and Internationally.  

She is a true inspiration. While currently studying for her HSC, teaches golf to young children.

She also assists PGA Professional Staff with Junior development at around 15 Junior Clinics at the local primary schools.  

In two years, she competed in 18 major amateur events across Australia where she had 13 top 10 finishes including two wins, second places and three third places. Kelsey's World Amateur Golf Ranking is an impressive 122. 

 Young Sports Person - Imogen Radburn 

In a short period of time, Imogen Radburn has gained respect and admiration from everyone in the karting community.

Last year Imogen became the youngest ambassador for Karting NSW. She is an inspirational role model who is passionate about growing the sport.  

She is committed to making strong connections with younger karters so they know they are fully supported in every way. 

Apart from becoming an excellent karter, she is not afraid to get her hands dirty. Younger karters are often seen surrounding Imogen while she works on karts.

After completing her HSC, Ms Radburn would like to become a diesel mechanic and one day drive V8 Supercars.  

Highly Commended Young Sports Person - Jackson Ingram 

Jackson Ingram has achieved outstanding junior sporting achievements in cricket and AFL.

His achievements include representing under 15's Shoalhaven and under 15's Great Southern Marlins in cricket. 

Mr Ingram has won 11 cricket awards, including, under 15's representative player of the year, Shoalhaven and under 15's Sydney Thunder Country player of the year. Jackson has now made his first-grade debut with Bomaderry. 

As an inspirational and talented sportsperson, Mr Ingram also represented Shoalhaven in AFL at state championships. 

Outstanding Contribution to the Environment – Maureen and Norman Webb 

Maureen and Norman Webb have been extensively involved in voluntary efforts for over three decades, especially in the Bay and Basin District.  

Since moving to St Georges Basin in 1990 Maureen and Norman established themselves in the community joining various groups committed to environmental conservation. They joined the Jervis Bay Regional Alliance and began a long association with the Australian Plant Society – Nowra, where Maureen is the current Conservation Officer.  

The breadth of their contributions to the environment is impressive. Maureen and Norman embrace bush care, park care and native animal rescue. They undertake conservation activism at various Shoalhaven sites and provide public education on environmental concerns. 

Highly Commended - Outstanding Contribution to the Environment - Julie Holstegge 

Julie Holstegge is actively involved in a range of land care and community activities. She encourages a passion for native gardening at the local primary schools and volunteers land care sites.  

She became a local champion educating and supporting landholders to undertake weed control. Ms Holstegge also volunteers on farms to support landholders to revegetate cleared farming landscapes.  

She established her own on-farm nursery, leading a team of volunteers to collect seed and growing 1000's of tube stock to put back into local projects. As a team leader, Julie has successfully turned her local farming community into an engaged, productive and sustainable farming community. 

Outstanding Contribution to an Inclusive Shoalhaven – Shirley Allison 

Shirley Allison has made an outstanding contribution to making Shoalhaven a more inclusive community for people of all abilities, ages and culture.  

Ms Allison has been a very diligent worker for Legacy, Coastal Controls, the War Widows, RSL Club and opportunity shop, Outreach and Ulladulla community transport for many years.  

Her tireless commitment to support and bring people together creates more opportunities for inclusiveness and a stronger sense of community. 

Outstanding Emerging Artist – Anya Mai Ellerington 

Anya Mai Ellerington has excelled in her academic achievement in writing. Ms Ellerington had her first piece of work published at the early age of 13. 

She has contributed to the field of Motor Neuron Disease, inspired by the loss of her grandmother. Her personal experience inspired her to use poetry to reflect the needs of others including the patient’s experience, a family’s journey and as a bystander.  

Ms Ellerington has been a writer since her early primary years and her ability to articulate feelings on paper has become her passion. 

Outstanding Contribution to Arts and Culture – Bonnie Porter-Greene 

Outstanding contribution Shoalhaven’s Arts and Culture. As a multi-disciplinary creative Bonnie Porter-Greene is a powerhouse of local Art.  

Ms Porter-Greene was born, resides and creates in the Shoalhaven. She explores her love of the landscape, both built and natural, through reflective studio practice and air excursions resulting in direct and honest painted memories of the landscape and connection to the environment. 

She is the Director at Collator, a place for artist-led art education, design and murals. For the past two decades she has worked tirelessly within the local community. 

Images: Shoalhaven City Council & Wade Cawley 

Shoalhaven back in the swim with council pools to reopen

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Shoalhaven City Council staff are preparing to reopen outdoor pools following the most recent announcement from the NSW State Government.

Nowra Aquatic Park and Ulladulla outdoor pool are planning to re-open and return to their normal opening hours in time for the long weekend.

This will allow residents to take advantage of the easing of restrictions and warmer weather.

In addition, Bomaderry outdoor pool, which is currently undergoing some maintenance, will be opened shortly after.

All sea pools remain open; however, all indoor pools and gyms remain closed until further notice in accordance with the Public Health Order.

Shoalhaven City Council Mayor Amanda Findley said "The Council’s decision to reopen outdoor pools in time for the long weekend allowed staff time to prepare".

"I encourage everyone to read information on the COVID measures in place before your visit our facilities and follow Council’s website for more updates”, Clr Findley said.

For more information visit Council’s Swim Sport and Fitness website.

Image: Shoalhaven City Council

 

Shoalhaven City Council a climate challenge finalist

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Shoalhaven City Council has been named among the finalists in the third annual national climate awards.

The awards recognise the work of local governments in helping to reduce local greenhouse gas emissions.

CITIES POWER PARTNERSHIP describes them as local champions who are stepping up to the climate challenge in the face of ongoing Federal climate inaction.

Shoalhaven City Council is one of three finalists in the Energy Efficiency Achievement section - described as ' a ray of light still shines bright in the Shoalhaven.'

The winners will be announced next week.

Image: https://pixabay.com/illustrations/search/light%20bulb/

Shoalhaven City Council closes its doors

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Shoalhaven City Council will be closing all in-person customer services to slow the spread of COVID-19 throughout the Shoalhaven, following the Federal Government’s announcement until further notice. 

Council continues to deliver essential services such as waste and recycling collections, as well as the cleaning of public amenities. Plans will be in place to manage this situation as it changes, as per advice from NSW Heatlh. 

The second stage of closures will take effect from close of business Wednesday, March 25. 

These services include:  


Swim, Sport and Fitness Facilities – all pools (including sea and Village pools) and gyms.  

Shoalhaven Libraries - a number of changes in service will enable customers to still access library services, some of these include Click and Collect, Phone Service and Home Library Service. 

Nowra and Ulladulla Customer Service – all customer service interactions will be taken online and over the phone only.  

Nowra and Ulladulla Visitor Information Services – All customer service interactions will be taken online and over the phone only.  

Waste Services Buyback Centres are closed and the Green & Bulky Waste Collection Service has ceased, all depots remain open.   

Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre 

Shoalhaven Regional Gallery & Arts Centre 

All community halls 

These closures are to ensure the safety of staff and customers in line with the Federal Government’s announcement.   

Residents are being encouraged to utilise Council’s online and phone services, which allows them to report a missed bin collection (1800 441 341), lodge and track Development Applications, pay bills online (rates – water), view property details, download dog attack witness report, register your pet, report illegal tree removal to Rangers (4429 3433), Application for Certificate of Compliance for Swimming Pools, current and upcoming road works or read an E-Book with further options available, see Shoalhaven Libraries Website and Social Media. 

Closures came into effect from 5 o'clock yesterday ( Wednesday ) afternoon. 

For more information on coronavirus, including updates, alerts and resources, please visit the NSW Health website. Alternatively, you can call the Coronavirus Health Information Line (1800 020 080) for information on novel coronavirus. The line operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Photo: nsw.gov.au

Shoalhaven City Council closes some services

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Shoalhaven City Council’s stage one plan in response to the Federal and State Government’s latest advice on COVID-19 will see the following facilities closed from midday today:   

Indoor Sports Facilities  

Shoalhaven Indoor Sports Centre   

Bay & Basin Leisure Centre 

Bomaderry Aquatic Centre Indoor Pool 

Sussex Inlet Aquatic Centre  

Ulladulla Leisure Centre Indoor Pool and Gym   

Outdoor pool facilities that remain open at this time include Nowra Aquatic Park, Bomaderry Outdoor Pool, Ulladulla Outdoor Pool and, all village pools and sea pools.  

Entertainment Facilities  

The Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre is now closed to the public. The Encore Café is still open for take away orders only.   

The Visitor Information Centre- Nowra 

The Visitor Information Centre at Nowra is now closed to the public, but enquires can still be made via phone on 44210778, with visitor information also available online.   

The Ulladulla Civic Centre will be restricting the use of their meeting rooms. The Recovery Centre will continue to be open to the public as it is deemed an essential gathering. The Recovery Centre will adhere to all social distancing measures implemented by the Federal Health Department within an enclosed space where the 1 person per 4 square metre rule applies are now restricted. The Ulladulla Civic Centre’s The Café is still operating but is restricted to providing a takeaway service only. 

Shoalhaven Regional Gallery & Arts Centre 

The Shoalhaven Regional Gallery & Arts Centre Gallery will remain closed as scheduled for the installation of the environmental / climate control system until 7 June 2020. Further to this the Gallery will be restricting the use of their meeting rooms, a further review will occur as the situation changes.  

Community Halls  

Council’s Community Halls will temporarily be unavailable for hire, as Council adheres to the Federal Health Department’s regulations. This includes buildings at showgrounds, community sporting facility building,  public halls, community centres and School of Arts.  Council has decided to close all Community Halls, due to uncertainty about private events adhering to current health regulations regarding social distancing. The health and well-being of our customers is always at the forefront of our mind, and we want to ensure their safety.  

Where can I find more information?  

You can also find information on COVID-19 on the below links:  

For further information, call the Coronavirus Health Information Line on  

1800 020 080. The line operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week.   

Image and info source: Shoalhaven City Council 

Shoalhaven City Council launch 'Get Ready' webinars

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In light of the previous fire season, Shoalhaven City Council has launched virtual city-wide meetings open to all residents and ratepayers.

The 'Recovery into Readiness' Community meetings are being held to prepare, educate and protect the Shoalhaven for the next emergency/fire season.

Held on Wednesday, 26th August 2020, these webinars will address matters relevant and important to the community and are hosted by a panel made up of emergency management experts, including members from the RFS, NSW Police and Shoalhaven City Council.

There are three time slots across the day, aiming to maximise participation and all residents and ratepayers are encouraged to submit their questions via the Bushfire Recovery webpage prior to each session.

To access the Recovery into Readiness Community meetings, please click the links below:

1pm – Webinar (Teams Event): https://bit.ly/3l8lk5k
4pm – Webinar (Teams Event): https://bit.ly/3iTiJdn
7pm - Facebook community live stream: https://bit.ly/31dQaBq

For more information, contact Shoalhaven City Council.

IMAGE CREDIT: Shoalhaven City Council

Shoalhaven City Council wins award

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SHOALHAVEN City Council has taken out a national climate gong for energy efficiency at the prestigious Cities Power Partnership Awards last night.

The Cities Power Partnership Awards recognise the work of climate heroes in local governments across the country who are transforming Australia’s energy landscape.

Shoalhaven took top honours for its ‘A ray of light still shines bright in the Shoalhaven’ project that includes a range of clean energy initiatives with a focus on energy efficiency.

Shoalhaven City Council’s Mayor Amanda Findley said she was delighted to hear the announcement.  

“I’m thrilled Council has been recognised for its adoption of a series of sustainable energy efficiency and renewable energy projects aimed at achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050,” Clr Findley said.  

“Some of the recent projects included trialing three fully electric vehicles in its fleet, installation of over 400 kW of solar panels across 10 sites, commencing a revolving energy fund, replacing 4,200 street lights with energy saving LEDs and supporting Repower Shoalhaven’s community energy solar farm.

“It goes to show that even regional Councils can play a big role in lowering greenhouse gas emissions and embracing clean energy to help generations to come.”  

Photo supplied

Shoalhaven Council flags a four point five three per cent rate hike

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Shoalhaven City Council’s Draft Delivery Program-Operational Plan and 2022/23 Budget is currently on exhibition until 10 June 2022 and includes the option of a 4.53% increase to rates to improve services as well as park and road maintenance.

The Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal of NSW (IPART) is responsible for setting the maximum amount councils can raise rates; known as a rate peg. 

The rate peg for the Shoalhaven in the 2022/23 budget year has been set at 1.7%.

Council will also apply a previously approved special rate variation of 2.83%, bringing the rate rise to 4.53%, which is an increase of approximately $60 per year to the 2022/23 rates for an average residential property.

The rates increase is outlined in the Draft Delivery Program-Operational Plan (DPOP) and 2022/23 Budget which was endorsed by Council to go on public exhibition until Friday, 10 June 2022.

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Shoalhaven City Council Mayor, Amanda Findley said Council faces a challenging time ahead to maintain community services, particularly with the recent damage to roads caused by the recent rain events.

“The City, and our people, have been through an extended period of challenging times, many are feeling impact fatigue and frustrations are high, Council staff are flat out trying to meet the expectations of the community on those simple but important maintenance jobs.”

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“The challenge of rate rises is that there never seems to be a good time, but it just cannot be put off any longer as the City falls further behind in meeting maintenance needs. This situation has been compounded by reduced revenue because of COVID, financial relief provided to the City during the really unknown early days of the pandemic, the impacts of severe weather, and rising costs.” 

“It is essential to maintain and improve services for the wider Shoalhaven community, services that are available for people from the cradle to the grave and that we tap into during different periods of our lives.” 

“Council is committed to providing important facilities and services that are often free or low cost.

These are the services that support quality of life for our residents, some of which are doing it tough in our community.

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“If there are any ratepayers struggling to make ends meet, Council has a hardship policy to ensure those who are vulnerable can pay in instalments. You can find more information on this on Council’s website at https://bit.ly/3w7mCoL,” Mayor Findley said.

“I know so many people in our City are too proud to ask for help, and just picking up the phone to make that call can be a struggle, but please reach out if you are suffering and don’t do that alone.”

“Getting our City back to where it was prior to this turbulent period is a priority of all the Councillors and finding ways to meet the expectations of the community is important.

"To that end, Councillors have made tough decisions to move some projects back to enable more funds to be available for the tasks at hand.”

“There are a number of projects that have received substantial funding from other levels of government and these projects will contribute to the ongoing prosperity of the City.”

“I encourage all people to engage with the budget, the elected Councillors are on the streets every day listening to the needs of the community and it is important that we hear from you on this important issue,” Mayor Findley said.

The Draft Delivery Program-Operational Plan and Budget 2022/23 is on public exhibition, on Council’s website, at getinvolved.shoalhaven.nsw.gov.au/dpop22-23, until, Friday, 10 June 2022. 

Images: Shoalhaven City Council & Shoalhaven Greens 

 

 

Shoalhaven Council prioritises clean-up efforts following east coast low storm

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Shoalhaven City Council is reassuring the community that clean-up works are a priority following the impact of the east coast low across the Shoalhaven region.

Council staff will focus on clearing trees and debris on roads over the next couple of days so that they can be opened as soon as possible.

Shoalhaven City Council Mayor Amanda Findley said the impact of the east coast low storm has been significant and predicted a long clean-up ahead for those who have been impacted.

“The storm has impacted many towns right across the Shoalhaven. I wish to thank the community for their patience and understanding as Council staff start the massive task of assessing damage and triaging information received from the emergency services and the public”, Clr Findley said.

“We appreciate that this can be a frustrating time for the community. Council staff are working as quickly as possible to reinstate access for individuals to their homes and properties and are busy clearing fallen trees”, Clr Findley said.  

“In particular I would like to recognise the tireless work of Council and SES staff, many who worked late into the night in pretty awful conditions”, Clr Findley said.

Council wishes to remind motorists to adhere to closed road signage to allow Council staff to complete urgent clean-up work across the Shoalhaven.    

To keep up to date with road closures caused by the storm or to report a problem,  visit Council’s Website.

Image: Supplied

Shoalhaven Council seeks your opinion about doggy do and what doggies do

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Shoalhaven City Council would like to hear about your experiences with dogs in our public spaces and is encouraging everyone to provide feedback before Monday 26 July 2021.  All feedback received will help inform the Council’s review of the Access for Dogs Policy and associated Dog Off-Leash Guide.

Shoalhaven City wants to hear from all users of public areas to gain a better understanding of how people currently share these spaces, including our natural areas with dogs, and ideas of how this could be improved in the future. Shoalhaven City Council Mayor Amanda Findley is encouraging everyone to take the survey. “Council is seeking feedback from everyone. People who live here all the time, people who live here some of the time, and people who visit our beautiful region” Clr Findley said. 

“We want to hear people’s experiences and thoughts on what they believe encourages positive shared use of space with our pets. You can submit your feedback through our online form, or pop by one of our drop-in sessions and speak with Council Staff directly” Clr Findley said.  

“I encourage everyone to not only complete the survey but also pass it on to your family and friends who spend time in the Shoalhaven, no matter where they live. We want to ensure public spaces in the Shoalhaven a positive and friendly place for both pet owners and those who prefer to walk alone alike.” Clr Findley noted.  

The community has until midnight on Monday 26 July 2021 to provide their feedback on the current Access for Dogs Policy and associated Dog Off-Leash Guide through the Online Survey. Individuals can also attend Community Drop-In Sessions where they will have the opportunity to speak with Council staff regarding any questions they may have on the Policy or the review progress. 

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 To complete the survey, and for more information visit Council’s Get Involved Page for the Access Areas for Dogs Policy Review.  

Council’s current Access Areas for Dogs Policy and associated Dog Off-Leash Guide can be viewed on Council’s website. 

Community Drop-In Sessions will be held at the following locations: 

Plantation Point

Where: Plantation Point Reserve (near toilet block) 

When: Friday 16 July 

Time: 7:00am-10:00am 

 Mollymook 

Where: Mollymook Beach (intersection of Donlan Rd south with Mitchell Parade) 

When: Friday 16 July 

Time: 1:30pm-4:30pm 

Ulladulla

Where: Ulladulla Civic Centre (grassed area outside Centre) 

When: Saturday 24 July 

Time: 10:00am-1:00pm 

Images: Peter Andrea

Shoalhaven council taping off no-go zones

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Shoalhaven City Council is taping off specific areas as it ramps up efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Public playgrounds, skateparks and outdoor gyms have all been closed and the council is asking us to avoid taped off areas with council staff  placing signage and barriers where needed at relevant locations over the coming days. 

 The council says it also reinforces Government advice that non-household public gatherings of over two people outdoors are not permitted and urging anyone who spots people not obeying the rules to contact Crimestoppers on 1800 333 000.

A full list of closed park facilities in the Shoalhaven can be found here, with further details of parks and playgrounds in the area at; https://shoalhaven.nsw.gov.au/Discover-Shoalhaven/Parks-playgrounds  

Residents are encouraged to view current Council service updates on Council’s website.

To date the following Council closures are now in place:  

·        Waste Depots-Kioloa, Lake Conjola, Bendalong, Sussex Inlet, Callala, Berry and Kangaroo Valley. 

·        Shoalhaven Swim, Sport and Fitness facilities – pools and gyms.  

·        Shoalhaven Libraries – services still available online. 

·        Nowra and Ulladulla Customer Service 

·        The Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre - café open for takeaway only.  

·        Nowra and Ulladulla Visitor Information Centre 

·        The Ulladulla Civic Centre 

·        Shoalhaven Regional Gallery and Arts Centre 

·        Community Buildings 

·        Camping Grounds 

·        Public Skate Parks, Playgrounds and Outdoor Gyms. 

For more information on COVID-19, including updates, alerts and resources, please visit the NSW Health website. Alternatively, you can call the Coronavirus Health Information Line (1800 020 080) for information on novel coronavirus. The line operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Photo supplied

Shoalhaven councillors push for better pay deal

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Shoalhaven councillors will get a pay rise from next month.. but believe they're being short-changed.

Councillor fees are determined by the Local Government Remuneration Tribunal and this year will rise by 2.5 percent to $19,790 for each councillor and an additional $43,170 for the Mayor.

However  the councillors believe Shoalhaven's category of Regional Rural is not realistic and this month's meeting agreed to put forward a submission to move into a  higher category.

They say Regional Rural councils typically have a minimum population of 20-thousand  while Shoalhaven's is around 104-thousand, significantly increasing the scope and responsibility of the councillors.

Photo source: Shoalhaven Council web page

Shoalhaven green waste fees back on

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Shoalhaven City Council's cancelled free green waste tipping from today, to discourage non-essential visits to waste management facilities during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Council is asking residents not to visit waste depots to dispose of non-essential waste i.e. waste that can be stored for a long time without creating a health hazard, including green waste. 

Council’s essential kerbside bin collection for domestic waste will continue.  

Council’s waste facilities in Nowra and Ulladulla have experienced a spike in green waste customers over the past two weekends despite the Government’s explicit non-essential travel restrictions to counter the risk of coronavirus spread. 

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Council is taking seriously the Federal and State Government's directive for Australians to stay home unless it is necessary to go outside. 

The changes to waste management services aim to protect staff and the community by minimising customer interactions as much as possible. 

As well as charging for green waste, Council has stopped the bulky and green waste collection service and closed the Buy Back Centres and small waste depots until further notice. This includes depots at: Bendalong, Berry, Callala, Conjola, Kangaroo Valley, Kioloa and Sussex Inlet. 

Photos: Google maps and Shoalhaven Council

Shoalhaven in the running for prestigious award

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Shoalhaven City Council's renewable energy efforts have earned them a finals spot  in the 2019 Cities Power Partnership Awards.

The council's 'Charging Ahead with Renewables' project was selected from a competitive field of entries from across the nation achieving a place in the final nine entries. 

The project includes council's increasing use of solar power and its Electric Vehicle Charging Station policy.

Mayor Amanda Findley said “It is a fantastic achievement for the Shoalhaven to be announced as a national finalist for this prestigious award, it further cements that Council is heading down the right path with its sustainable energy projects and policies.” 

The winners will be announced at the Cities Power Partnership's national awards night on Thursday August 29 in Sydney.

Photo source: Shoalhaven City Council

Shoalhaven open for dine and discover vouchers

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Shoalhaven is one of the leading regions in the uptake of the NSW Government’s Dine and Discover vouchers, with 17.9 per cent of business registrations in regional NSW coming from the Shoalhaven.

As part of a major economic stimulus package to support dining, arts and tourism businesses in NSW, residents aged 18 years and older can apply for four $25 vouchers worth $100 in total, to spend in participating businesses.

Shoalhaven Mayor Amanda Findley is encouraged by the response from local businesses.

“Council’s Economic Development staff have been actively working with Service NSW to communicate the opportunity to businesses. Recent figures confirm that at least 50 percent of eligible businesses have successfully registered to date,” Cr Findley said.

“Although our region has enjoyed a surge in tourism over the summer months and on weekends, this scheme encourages mid-week dining and activities which will give our local economy an added boost.

“It isn’t too late for local businesses to apply, registration for the scheme is still open,."

The vouchers are in two categories:

  • Two $25 vouchers to be used for eating in at restaurants, cafes, bars, pubs and clubs from Monday to Thursday, excluding public holidays.
  • Two $25 vouchers to be used for entertainment and recreation, including cultural institutions, live music, and arts venues, available 7 days a week, excluding public holidays.

To check if vouchers are available for your address; http://bit.ly/2Nm9msK

Find out more about the initiative and how your business can participate here: http://bit.ly/3cJfC8a

Shoalhaven ratepayers to get $300 each

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Shoalhaven ratepayers will soon be given the opportunity to put 300 of their ratepayer dollars back in their pocket.

Council has been looking at ways to help the city through the COVID-19 crisis.

An earlier decision to reduce rates next year by 25-percent had to be rejected because it was found to be illegal.

Instead at this week's extraordinary meeting of council there was narrow agreement to give ratepayers the option to take a one-off 300-dollar payment.

One of those in favour was councillor BOB PROUDFOOT.. 

"..and we've captured the mood of let's get out there and help our people".

" It's not throwing away money that can never be recouped again, it's not throwing away something that we cannot afford."

"It's giving people a simple option where when a person receives a letter from the council they can opt in or opt out." Councillor Proudfoot said.

It's estimated if everyone takes up the offer it will cost the council around  $17-million dollars.

Photo: Shoalhaven Council

Shoalhaven recognised for its action on Climate Change

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Shoalhaven City Council was among those who were recognised for their work at the Cities Power Partnership Awards overnight in Sydney.

The awards highlight and acknowledge the work of LOCAL GOVERNMENTS in tackling climate change.

Shoalhaven won a 'highly commended' for its 'Charging Ahead with Renewables' project, which is spear-heading Shoalhaven's push away from fossil fuels.

Photo supplied

Shoalhaven's new suburb Badagarang

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The Geographical Names Board  is seeking community feedback on a proposal by Shoalhaven City Council to create a new suburb named Badagarang in the Moss Vale Road Urban Release Area.

Acting Chair of the Geographical Names Board Thomas Grinter said the Board was encouraging community comment before considering the proposal.

“We want to make sure everyone has an opportunity to provide their feedback on the proposed suburb name and amendment,” Mr Grinter said.

“It is important suburb boundaries are easily identified and interpreted by the community to prevent confusion.”

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The proposed new suburb is located north of Bomaderry Creek and will amend the existing suburb boundaries of Camberwarra and Meroo Meadow.

These suburbs will be retained reflecting the longstanding rural history and use of the area.

Shoalhaven City Council developed a short list of names between 2020 and 2021 using local history resources and interest groups.

The short list was refined to two options and following a community consultation process by council in November 2021 the name Badagarang was identified as the preferred option.

The proposed name is pronounced “Bada-garang” and is from the local Aboriginal language group Dharawal.

Badagarang means Eastern Grey Kangaroo, a totem of the Dharawal people.

The name was chosen in consultation with the Nowra Local Aboriginal Land Council (LALC) and Shoalhaven City Council's Aboriginal Advisory Committee.

The proposed suburb captures the two urban release areas of Moss Vale Road North and South. Shoalhaven City Council anticipates the new release will be delivered across the next 10 to 15 years and will contain space for retail and services and a range of housing types.

As a result, a new suburb is needed to support the new community. GNB is seeking feedback to gauge community sentiment for the proposed names. Suggestions for alternative names is not being sought at this time.

Details of the proposal can be viewed and submissions lodged on the Geographical Names Board’s website https://www.gnb.nsw.gov.au/.

Alternatively, written submissions may be mailed to the Secretary, Geographical Names Board, 346 Panorama Ave, Bathurst, NSW 2795.

The closing date for submissions is 14 June 2022.

Images: Visitor Information NSW & Geographical Names Board 

Spend it here in the Shoalhaven

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Shoalhaven City Council is calling on the community to boost Shoalhaven businesses by exploring their own backyard and shopping local.  

Council is also encouraging residents use their NSW Dine and Discover vouchers locally, go to the movies, book a whale watching experience or enjoy one of our many wineries with wide open spaces for dining and exploring with the family.  

Mayor Amanda Findley said everyone could help play a part to keep local businesses afloat and community spirit alive during these uncertain times.   

She said if everyone did a little, it would add up to a lot, towards keeping people in jobs and your favourite places open. 

She encouraged everyone to Spend Here This Year in the Shoalhaven by shopping locally, having a staycation, and using your Dine and Discover vouchers for COVID-safe adventures and foodie experiences.  

image: supplied

Sports centre recognised as community hub

 

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The $16.4 million Shoalhaven Indoor Sports Centre at Bomaderry has received a Highly Commended Award at the Urban Development Institute of Australia (UDIA) NSW Crown Group Awards for Excellence in Social & Community Infrastructure 2020.   

The award recognises the innovative design and positive impact the centre has had on the community, in terms of infrastructure and place making.  

Shoalhaven Mayor Amanda Findley was thrilled to learn of the result. 

“Despite being a relatively new facility for the Shoalhaven, as restrictions have eased the centre has fast become a hub for the local community, encouraging and supporting a healthier, more active and connected lifestyle for residents and visitors," she said.

“This award is a great acknowledgement for all involved in its planning, design, construction and management and also demonstrates to the community the exceptional standard of community facility that we now have here in the Shoalhaven. 

“With the relaxation of restrictions, we look forward to the centre becoming a major drawcard for the Shoalhaven, attracting major sporting events and economic activity to the region, which will flow on to our communities."

The Centre has the capacity to cater for large-scale sporting and other events, with show court and grandstand seating, along with three further multi-purpose courts, meeting rooms, offices, fitness facilities, change room facilities, café and creche area. The precinct building area spans 5,703 m2.  

Constructed in October 2019, the Shoalhaven Indoor Sports Centre is the only one of its kind outside the Sydney metropolitan area. 

The centre was also named a finalist in the NSW Regional Development Award of Excellence category.  

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State-of-the-art library plan for Sanctuary Point

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Concept plans for the new state-of-the-art Sanctuary Point Library will soon go on public exhibition.

Plans include a roof-top garden terrace, art installation spaces, a children's area, meeting rooms and expansive library space.

Shoalhaven Councillor Patricia White expects the community to be impressed with both the design and the inclusions in the two-storey facility proposed for the corner of Paradise Beach Road and Kerry Street.

She says residents can expect the new library to be completed and open by the end of 2023.

"The plans are absolutely spectacular," Cr White said.

"I can’t believe we are going to have a library at Sanctuary Point of this credibility."

Cr White said the architects have done a "fantastic job" completing the plans in just 12 months.

"Normally these projects would take four or five years to get to this stage to put on public exhibition," she explained.

"I encourage people to have a look at the plans and to make submissions whether they like it, or if they see anywhere for improvement. "

The library project has been on council's book for a long time, with the existing library located in a small blue building on land owned by the nearby school.

Cr White says, despite its size, it’s the best used library in the city.

She said the design incorporates something for everyone, from study spaces and meeting rooms, to function areas.

"What is being delivered, I think everybody will want one because it’s so good and so suitable for the area.

"It’s really been designed around the library, but brings so much more - it’s really stunning."

While Cr White could not confirm the cost of the project, she said council has "the budget for it" in the 2020/21, 22/23 budget and price would be confirmed once the project goes out to tender.

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Images Shoalhaven City Council.

Students take on Shoalhaven City Council

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As expected a move by Shoalhaven Council to reverse a decision to support a student strike on Climate Change generated strong debate at last night's council meeting.

Some councillors wanted to rescind an earlier motion that indicated support for the strike.. fearing it would show the council was in favour of breaking the law.

However their efforts were strongly challenged by some of the students themselves.. helping to defeat the motion..

Ulladulla High School Captain TAKESA FRANK told the council " Whether or not you agree with our actions, doesn't change our actions. Whether you agree with our decisions doesn't change the fact that the cause we are arguing for exists."

Another student from Ulladulla High LACHLAN CONGRAM said " Students have a voice on this topic. If you are sitting in a corner focusing on one day that we took off school instead of supporting us.. please re-think" 

And Ulladulla High's JADE MUDGE summed it up " We are not asking for you to listen to statistics and facts but listen to reason. It's just common sense." 

Photo source: https://www.schoolstrike4climate.com/blog

Three children rescued from Swan Lake channel torrent after illegal opening

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Shoalhaven City Council has revealed the lives of three children were put at risk when they were rescued from fast flowing water after the Swan Lake entrance was allegedly illegally opened.

The artificial opening at Swan Lake was carried out by members of the public on 12 January 2022.

Shoalhaven City Council Manager of Environment Services, Dr Michael Roberts said NSW Police had advised council of three rescues involving children, who had been put at peril by the fast flowing water.

NSW Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries were alerted and will be enacting their compliance functions.

Council Rangers have also been in the area carrying out investigations as the artificial opening of the lake is an illegal activity as these works were not carried out in relation to the water trigger levels and Entrance Management Policy (EMP).

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The intervention works created a 20-30-metre-wide channel, which poses a public safety risk.

People need to be made aware of the danger this has created.

The channel, when opened by natural means or by Council,  is located to the south adjoining the rock platform.

This does not typically create a channel like the one that has formed from the recent artificial intervention.

Pending rainfall and tidal behaviour, it is expected that the sand bar will re-establish in four to eight weeks and return Swan Lake back to its natural form.

The entrance cannot be closed using any further artificial intervention.

In the meantime, signs have been posted by Council to alert the public to the swimming hazard. 

Shoalhaven City Council Manager of Environment Services, Dr Michael Roberts said, “This channel, between Swan Lake and the ocean, has resulted in the lake artificially opening at too low a water level and in unsuitable conditions.

"This may lead to significant adverse environmental impacts on Swan Lake, such as low oxygen levels, associated fish kills as well as a significant swimming hazard," he said.

 “It is an offence to open coastal lakes, or lagoons, using machinery or by hand, without a licence and could result in penalties of up to $220,000 per offence.” Dr. Roberts said. 

Council operates an Entrance Management Policy for Swan Lake, and other coastal lakes in the Shoalhaven region, with licenses from various State Government Agencies.   

This Policy allows Council to mechanically open Swan Lake to the ocean with an excavator to prevent flooding of low-lying properties surrounding the lake when the water level rises, typically following a large rainfall event, to a specific trigger level.  

Images: Dr Michael Roberts & NSW Environment

 

 

Thrive Together Fair

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This winter, Shoalhaven City Council is hosting a donations drive for people in the community that are doing it tough.

From Monday 13 June to Friday 15 July 2022, we’re collecting essential items and creating dignity packs that will be distributed to attendees at the Thrive Together Fair this August.   

The Thrive Together Fair, on Wednesday 3 August 2022, is a free one-day event that connects people with services and support they might need. 

You can donate essential items such as non-perishable food, blankets, new socks, toiletries, sanitary products, nappies & laundry soap.  

You can deliver your donations to the following drop-off points:  

  • Nowra Administration Building 
  • Nowra Aquatic Park 
  • Shoalhaven Regional Gallery 
  • Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre 
  • Shoalhaven Indoor Sports Centre, Bomaderry 
  • Nowra Library 
  • Mobile Library 
  • Ulladulla Library 
  • Milton Library 
  • Sanctuary Point Library 
  • Bay and Basin Leisure Centre 
  • Ulladulla Leisure Centre 
  • Ulladulla Civic Centre 

Please note, used clothes, money, vouchers, fresh produce and perishables cannot be accepted at our drop-off locations.  

If you'd prefer to donate online, please visit the Givit website

Donations include grocery vouchers, clothes and other essential items and will go to people in our community who really need it.  

Shoalhaven City Council Deputy Mayor Liza Butler said, “The last two and a half years have been particularly hard for a lot of our community. I urge you to donate generously to support those who are really doing it tough”.  

“Essential items such as toiletries, laundry items, nappies and non-perishable food will go a long way to helping people get through this winter”, Clr Butler said. 

“If you know anyone that is doing it tough, for whatever reason, please let them know, or bring them along to the upcoming free Thrive Together Fair to connect with others, access support service, and have some fun”, Clr Butler said. 

For more information visit Council’s donations drive web page

Image Pixabay 

 

Two COVID-19 cases confirmed in the Shoalhaven

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The Shoalhaven has recorded its first two cases of COVID-19.

Deputy NSW Premier John Barliaro said there were two Shoalhaven cases among the Illawarra's figures during this morning's COVID-19 update.

Dr Marianne Gayle from NSW Health again urged people in Bomaderry to come forward for testing after COVID virus fragments were found in the sewage.

Illawarra Shoalhaven Health District said the two cases are residents of Shoalhaven LGA.

It said case investigations are ongoing.

South Coast MP Shelley Hancock confirmed both cases were from the Nowra area.

Shoalhaven Mayor Amanda Findley said the local cases were inevitable but still shocking.

She said the Shoalhaven Council Emergency management committee had convened to discuss today's announcement.

Image: Supplied 

Unions rally to save Shoalhaven Council jobs

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A small group of union members rallied outside Shoalhaven Council 's offices yesterday evening, protesting against a proposal to outsource cleaning the area's public amenities.

United Services Union industrial officer Stuart Geddes said the work should be carried out by council employees, and contracting out secure council jobs was "a scourge on the industry".

He said it limited the number of secure jobs available in an area where jobs were often difficult to find.

"This is the type of work that council employee have traditionally done," he said.

"A lot of the time these roles have been effectively established for employees who may be moving towards retirement, who may not be able to do the physical capabilities of some of the labouring positions, but either way they're core positions so what has worked within the council as jobs within a community with a high rate of unemployment.

"So we have concerns that if this is contracted out, the broader implications on job security in this workplace."

Mr Geddes said the attempt to contract out council work was "the thin edge of the wedge", and could lead to outsourcing other council duties.

He said that was bad news for council workers and the local economy, and contractors would often take their profits out of the community, while council workers spent virtually all of their money supporting the local economy.

Image: Glenn Ellard

Vandals hit Vincentia playground

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An act of vandalism overnight has resulted in the closure of the Liberty Swing at Plantation Point Reserve in Vincentia.

The fence surrounding the swing was damaged and bottles were smashed a strewn around the barbecue area.

Shoalhaven City Council's Director City Lifestyles, Jane Lewis, is disappointed that the vandalism will impact families visiting Plantation Point over Easter and the school holidays. 

“The Liberty Swing fence at Plantation Point is a relatively new asset constructed at the end of 2020 thanks to a donation by Veolia Mulwaree Trust," she said.

"It is frustrating that council's efforts to provide great facilities to benefit our community can be damaged so readily by a destructive minority.

“We are determined to identify the culprits and are asking residents to assist us in protecting our community assets by reporting any suspicious activity at public facilities to NSW Police."

Liberty Swings are an Australian invention that enable people using wheelchairs to experience the fun and enjoyment of swinging.

"Inclusive play spaces are vital to help people of all ages and abilities to develop a wider sense of community," Ms Lewis said.

"The improvements at Plantation Point are designed to create a real community space, providing an environment facilitating safe play whilst developing further social skills."

As well as upgrades to the playground, current works include a new amenities building with provisions for persons with a disability and accessible beach access from the Reserve to Barfleur Beach.

Thie act of vandalism follows five incidents of wire theft from sportsfields in the Shoalhaven.

Crime stoppers can be reached on 1800 333 000 or online at https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au/

Photo SCC

Waste glass constructing Shoalhaven roads

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Shoalhaven City Council in partnership with Fulton Hogan is ensuring the region's discarded glass has a second life.  

Fulton Hogan has recently received full approval to utilise recycled glass sand produced from waste glass at Council's  West Nowra Waste facility. 

Fulton Hogan will use the glass sand in its asphalt mixes for constructing roads across the Shoalhaven.  

Shoalhaven City Council Mayor Amanda Findley said the new waste facility at West Nowra can create a premium glass sand mixture that is suitable for Fulton Hogan projects.  

“Our West Nowra Waste Facility has the ability to produce a quality recycled glass sand which can be incorporated into asphalt mixes, not only in the local region but also for all of Fulton Hogan’s future projects.” Clr Findley said.  

Fulton Hogan has agreed to use Shoalhaven recycled glass in any mix that may be remaining in the current supply and lay contract with Council, as well as all remaining asphalt on the  Nowra Bridge Project for Transport for NSW. 

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“Using this process, it is estimated that we can save annually almost two-and-a-half million glass bottles from landfill in the Shoalhaven on council roads, together with more than Five million glass bottles being reused on the Nowra Bridge Project,” Clr Findley said.  

The amount of glass in mixes can be up to five percent in wearing course mixes, and fifteen percent in lower course mixes. 

Images: Supplied