This week's local government news.
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Municipal Association of Victoria


All your local government news this week

Issue 1110: 25 January 2017
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Strategic priorities
  • Essential report: Trust in local councils has bounced back by 2 per cent since the last Essential poll was held in September 2016. The total trust in local councils was 38 per cent in the latest survey results, up from 36 per cent. This compares to State Parliament at 31 per cent, Federal Parliament at 30 per cent and the Federal public service at 36 per cent.
  • Indexation: Following its pre-budget submission the Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) this week issued a press release calling the Federal Government to deliver its promise to restore indexation of Financial Assistance Grants in the 2017/18 Budget. 
  • NSW news: Local Government NSW has described new NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian’s commitment to listen to communities as a “fresh new start” for the state. LGNSW has also welcomed Deputy Premier John Barilaro’s announcement that the National Party would not support the continuation of forced council amalgamations in regional NSW. 

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The State Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) has extended the comment period for its review of Native Vegetation Clearing Regulations until 8 March.

The opportunity to comment on the proposed changes originally ended on 5 February, but due to a high level of stakeholder interest DELWP announced on Friday that it would be extended.

The MAV has been involved in a Stakeholder Reference Group throughout the review and made a submission to the Native Vegetation Discussion Paper.

The MAV also intends to make a short submission on the proposed native vegetation provisions.

A briefing for councils about the proposed changes was held today and received a high level of interest.

For more information contact Michelle Croughan.

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The MAV’s Councillor Development Program gets underway in February and councils are encouraged to register for sessions now, as numbers are limited.

The Councillor Development Program offers a range of options suitable to both newly elected councillors and more experienced returning councillors.

The program includes leadership scholarships, eLearning modules, non-accredited and accredited training, and working with established partners including the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD) and Swinburne University.

The MAV can also develop tailored Councillor Development Programs to meet councils’ individual needs.

For further information contact Julie Saylor-Briggs

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The MAV will host eight strategic planning sessions in February and March for members to provide input into the development of our 2017/18 Strategic Work Plan.

Input and feedback from councillors and chief executive officers is essential to ensure that the MAV remains focused on meeting our members’ needs.

Councillors, CEOs and relevant council officers are invited to attend any of these meetings:

  • 13 Feb: Bendigo 12.30-2.30pm
  • 17 Feb: Warracknabeal 12.30-2.30pm
  • 21 Feb: MAV offices 6-8pm
  • 23 Feb: MAV offices 2-4pm
  • 24 Feb: Wonthaggi 2-4pm
  • 2 Mar: Geelong 4-6pm
  • 9 Mar: Benalla 1-3pm
  • 10 Mar: Warrnambool 11am-1pm

Full details of session locations are available online. For inquiries or to RSVP, please contact Gavin Mahoney on 9667 5564.

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Mornington Peninsula Shire Council has made the commitment to becoming a ‘Towards Zero’ municipality as it strives to eliminate death and serious injuries from its roads.

This aligns with the State’s Towards Zero 2016-2020 Strategy and Action Plan, which aims to reduce lives lost on our roads by 200 people over the next five years.

This is the first collaboration of its type in Victoria, and the proposed initiative has already gained strong support from the Transport Accident Commission, Victoria Police, and VicRoads.

Assistant Commissioner for Road Policing, Doug Fryer, will be visiting Mornington Peninsula Shire Council to brief council in March to encourage the council to continue to pioneer in the road safety space.

The TAC and VicRoads have begun to develop criteria to assist other councils who wish to become a Towards Zero municipality and MAV is participating in this process.

More information will be circulated on this initiative as it is developed.

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Procurement Leaders Conference

The MAV’s annual MAV Procurement Leaders Conference is being held at Peppers the Sands in Torquay on 2-3 March.

The conference is an opportunity for current and aspiring procurement leaders to undertake an intensive two-day program of activities designed to support ongoing development.

It will include presentations, workshops and discussions, and will showcase examples of innovative approaches to procurement.

For further information on speakers and topics, please visit the MAV Events website. You can also register online.

For further information, contact Zara Ahmed.


Hacktivation: Transforming Local Government in the Innovation Era is a skills development conference taking place on Wednesday 15 and Thursday 16 March at the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons, East Melbourne.

Councillors, CEOs, directors, managers and officers in innovation, organisational development, corporate planners, human resources, service planners, business transformation, digital transformation, information management and business analysis are encouraged to attend.

You can find out more information and register online.

For further information contact John Hennessy.

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  • Public Safety Infrastructure: Community Crime Prevention has announced 19 grant recipients from its Public Safety Infrastructure Fund. The successful projects involve the installation of public safety and security infrastructure including lighting, CCTV, street furniture, signage and urban design initiatives, to help increase community safety and confidence in public places.
  • Rockin’ the Laneways: Five music history projects have been supported through the first round of the State Government’s Rockin’ the Laneways program. Applications for the next round of grants close on 20 March for projects and activities taking place from 1 July. Rockin’ the Laneways supports projects that highlight Victoria's celebrated popular music history, attract cultural tourism and encourage fans to discover more about Victoria's rich music history.
  • Preventing family violence: Community Partnerships for Primary Prevention Grants are designed to support community partnerships that seek to prevent family violence and other forms of violence against women in Victoria. Grants of up to $50,000 will be awarded to individual organisations, and up to $150,000 for new or existing partnerships between community groups, businesses, institutions, educational settings and community organisations, seeking to form a local partnership and develop an action plan to drive primary prevention efforts at the local level. Applications close 15 February. 

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Australian Institute of Company Directors 

The 2017 Australian Institute of Company Directors Course is essential for the professional development of those who want to further their directorship skills and knowledge.

One-day workshops will be held from 20-28 April at the Australian Institute of Company Directors, 367 Collins Street, Melbourne.

The program is suitable for councillors, senior managers, non-executive directors, CEOs and senior executives who report to boards.

It is recommended that participants have completed the Foundations of Directorship program or have equivalent professional experience before enrolling.

For further information visit the MAV Events page or contact Julie Saylor-Briggs.

National Awards for Local Government

Nominations for the Federal Government’s annual awards for innovative local government projects opened this week.

Minister Fiona Nash said the awards recognise innovative projects, which provide new or improved local government services to regional and rural communities.

Category winners will be announced in mid-April 2017 and the national winner will be announced at the Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) National General Assembly dinner in June.

Nominations for the National Awards for Local Government 2017 will close on 3 March.

Councils can lodge nominations online.

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  • The Council Alliance for a Sustainable Built Environment (CASBE) is currently facilitating a third round of councils interested in seeking a local ESD Planning Policy amendment. CASBE’s work on this issue has clearly demonstrated that councils can successfully work together to achieve a common goal. Seven councils have had a local ESD Policy gazetted in the past 12 months, with two more policies currently before the Minister, and another two councils with an amendment in process. For further information, contact Natasha Palich.
  • A fund has been established to support the victims of last week’s Bourke Street tragedy in Melbourne. The State Government has pledged an initial $100,000 and donations can be made online or via a bank transfer. The fund will be used to provide financial support to the immediate families of the deceased. If you have any general enquiries regarding the fund please call 1800 226 226. 
  • The State Government is providing funding to more than 100 organisations across Victoria to run youth-focussed activities during National Youth Week, which runs from 31 March to 9 April. The week, which celebrates young people aged 12 to 25 years of age, will be kicked off with an inaugural Youth Summit on 31 March.
  • Clearwater and Stormwater Victoria are hosting the first ‘Water Drinks’ networking event of the year on Thursday 2 February at the Boatbuilders Yard in South Wharf. This quarterly event encourages water professionals to share ideas, experiences and perspectives on Integrated Water Management and stormwater management in an informal environment. 

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