Issue 988:                                                      Week ending 25 July 2014

National Twitter Day success
MH-17 assistance and condolence book
Carbon Tax repeal
DTPLI bushfire planning provisions briefing
Early Years update
Productivity Commission Inquiry: childcare
Call for nominations: MAV Technology Executive Committee
Emergency Management Victoria Forums

MAV Technology Awards for Excellence:  finalists announced
Victorian Premier's Volunteer Awards 2014
PIA Victoria Excellence Awards 2014
Mayoral Forum: settlement of asylum seekers and refugees
Cycling road rules survey for councils: last chance!
In social media news...

National Twitter Day success

Our first ever National Twitter Day was held on 23 July in collaboration with other state Local Government Associations, and proved to be a great success.

The aim of the day was to engage all councils with Twitter accounts to illustrate the diverse range of services they carry out on a day-to-day basis.

Trendsmap shows a total of 2,100 tweets were collected nationally under the hashtag #MPMC, which stands for My Place, My Council. On average there were 13 tweets per minute, and Victorian councils attributed approximately 350 tweets.

We look forward to holding similar Twitter days in future, and aim to drive more social media engagement between councils and communities.

MH-17 assistance and condolence book

The Department of Premier and Cabinet has asked us to provide councils with information regarding assistance for those affected by Malaysian Airlines Flight MH-17, and are concerned about their own wellbeing.

A new hotline is available on (freecall) 1800 675 398, and is staffed by qualified nurses from Nurse-On-Call, operated by Medibank Health Solutions.

In the first instance, callers could be directed on to the Commonwealth Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre information line on 1300 555 135. Alternately, calls could be directed to a range of specialist personal support agencies, including Lifeline and BeyondBlue.

Information has been provided to all councils about making condolence books available for those wishing to pay their respects, and show support for the families and communities. Condolence books can be made available in reception at council offices.

We would appreciate if you could advise Polly Banks if you will be making this condolence book available in your community.

For further information contact the Department of Premier and Cabinet on 9651 1126.

Carbon Tax repeal

The Clean Energy Act 2011 has been repealed. This removes the carbon pricing mechanism from 1 July 2014. However the carbon tax liabilities incurred before 30 June 2014 have not been removed. Therefore carbon tax liability reporting for 2013-14 will need to follow the process and timeframes set out in the carbon tax legislation.

The Clean Energy Regulator will continue to ensure that carbon tax liabilities are met in full. Any enquiries regarding compliance and reporting arrangements for 2013-14 should be directed to the Clean Energy Regulator.

The Federal Government is keen to ensure that consumers benefit from the removal of the carbon tax. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) will monitor and enforce reasonably expected price reductions across key sectors of the economy, including the electricity, gas and waste sectors, and local government.

Further information about the repeal legislation can be found at the Department of the Environment website.

DTPLI bushfire planning provisions briefing

The Department of Transport, Planning and Local Infrastructure (DTPLI) is inviting mayors, councillors and CEOs to a DTPLI bushfire planning provisions briefing for councils, government departments and fire authorities.

The Minister for Planning announced reforms to streamline bushfire regulations in May. Information on the reforms can be found here. The briefing is on 31 July, 10.30am-12pm, Level 5, 121 Exhibition Street.

The briefing will provide further detail on the reforms.

For further information and to register, contact DTPLI. Registration is essential to gain access to the venue. Please provide your name and organisation when registering so that a security pass can be created.

Early Years update

The Senate Education and Employment References Committee has released two reports: Delivery of quality and affordable early childhood education and care services and Immediate future of the childcare sector in Australia.

The reports support every family's right to quality, affordable and accessible early childhood education, and the role of the government in ensuring its delivery. The committee has identified the problem of low wages in the sector as a barrier in retaining staff, and called for an immediate government review of the low wages in the sector.

The Senate Committee also recommends that the government maintain the National Partnership agreements put in place by the previous Labor Government to guarantee universal access for four-year-olds.

The Review of the National Partnership on Early Childhood Education (15 hrs) has still not been released but the MAV will keep councils informed of its progress. The MAV will be seeking commitment in its Call to Parties state election 2014 (draft sent to all councils in July) to recurrent government funding for 15 hours of kindergarten.

For further information, contact Jan Barrett.

Productivity Commission Inquiry: childcare

The Productivity Commission Inquiry into Childcare and Early Childhood Learning has announced they will be conducting public hearings in August following the release of their draft report.

Sessions in Melbourne are on 18-19 August. The MAV will be attending to support our submission - particularly in relation to retention of funding for 15 hours of kindergarten, the National Quality Framework and Family Day Care.

For further information, contact Wendy Allan.

Call for nominations – MAV Technology Executive Committee

Applications are now invited for representative members to join the Executive Committee of MAV Technology. The Executive Committee makes decisions about the direction and activities of MAV Technology, including project funding priorities and event programs.

It is comprised of 15 members with ICT expertise, who are appointed to ensure a continuing balance of regional, rural and metro council representation.

To nominate, please send an email including your representative’s name, job title, council and a brief overview of areas of ICT interest and expertise by 31 July to Lisa Bennetto.

Emergency Management Victoria Forums

Emergency Management Victoria (EMV) is holding a series of metropolitan and regional workshops in the coming weeks.

These forums will provide an opportunity to learn more about EMV, and will be attended by the Emergency Management Commissioner, Craig Lapsley.

To register for a forum in your region please follow one of the below links:

Sale – Tuesday 29 July, 11am-12:30pm
Melbourne - Monday 4 August, 11am-12:30pm
Swan Hill -Tuesday 5 August, 11am-12:30pm
Ringwood – Wednesday 13 August, 10am-11:30am
Ararat - Tuesday 19 August, 1pm-2:30pm
Benalla - Friday 22 August, 11am-12:30pm
Colac – Wednesday 27 August, 1pm-2:30pm

The password for registration is ‘emergency’.

MAV Technology Awards for Excellence: finalists announce

Independent expert judges have identified the following finalists for this year’s MAV Technology Awards for Excellence.

Individual Achievement:
  • Jason Williams, City of Greater Dandenong for Transforming Greater Dandenong City Council’s network infrastructure
  • Richard Barrow, City of Casey for the IT Applications Roadmap.
Collaboration of the Year:
  • City of Port Phillip - Online permits payment
  • Corangamite Shire - Electronic food sampling app
Team Achievement:
  • City of Greater Bendigo - Website Strategy and Development
  • City of Whittlesea - Councillor Portal Development
  • Brimbank City Council - My Brimbank City App
  • Nillumbik Shire Council - A centralised approach to Information Management
  • Rural City of Wangaratta - Journey from Latitude to Intramaps.

The most outstanding entry from all categories will be eligible for the Exemplar Award.

Winners will be announced at the 2014 MAV Technology Annual Conference on 13 August.

Victorian Premier's Volunteer Awards 2014

Nominations for the 2014 Victorian Premier’s Volunteer Awards are officially open.

Each year, the Awards highlight outstanding achievements made by volunteers across Victoria and are a great opportunity to recognise, thank and celebrate their significant contribution and support.

The 2014 Awards will cover six categories including the $10,000 Victorian Volunteer of the Year - Dame Elisabeth Murdoch Award, the Regional and Metropolitan Youth Volunteer of the Year, and Regional and Metropolitan Volunteer of the Year.

Nominations close on 1 August and winners will be announced on 12 October.

PIA Victoria Excellence Awards 2014

The PIA Awards offer the opportunity to share achievements and celebrate the value that planning brings to our communities.

PIA invites you to nominate yourself, a colleague, or student in the following categories:

  • Planner of the Year
  • Cutting Edge Research and Teaching Award.
  • The Great Place Award
  • Best Planning Ideas
  • Outstanding Achievement by a Young Planner
  • Public Engagement and Community Plan
  • Outstanding Secondary or Tertiary Student Projects
  • Workplace Awards for Government and Consultant Planners

Nominations for the PIA Awards will close on 18 August. Winners will be announced on 10 October.

For further information, contact Liz Johnstone on 9654 3777 or 0412 135 350, or Brett Davis on 0412 006 682.

Mayoral Forum: settlement of asylum seekers and refugees

Local government plays an instrumental role in the settlement of asylum seekers and refugees in communities. In recognition of the service pressures this can create, the City of Greater Dandenong will be hosting a Mayoral Forum on 6 August at 10.30am.

The event can be attended by mayors, senior council staff, peak bodies and elected officials. This forum will provide an opportunity to share experiences, issues and concerns regarding the local impact of adequately meeting the needs of asylum seekers.

It will also offer an opportunity to seek high level agreement on key elements of a joint response to the Federal Government on increased resourcing to meet this need.

To RSVP for this event, contact Kathni Cumine on 8571 5199.

For further questions or additional information please contact Sharon Sykes on 8571 5387.

Cycling road rules survey for councils: last chance!

VicRoads is currently reviewing and examining the Victorian cycling-related road rules and road safety legislation.

A council survey is open until midnight on Sunday 27 July, with VicRoads keen to capture council views.

The aims of this review are to identify opportunities to make it easier for people to take up riding and for current bike riders to use roads and better protect bike riders and other road users.

In social media news...

Upcoming MAV events...

30 July

Cultural planning in local government in Victoria

13 August

MAV Technology Annual Conference 2014

22 August

Evaluation & Negotiation in LG


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