News in Brief
- Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has announced his new cabinet, and we welcome the new Minister for Territories, Local Government and Major Projects, Paul Fletcher. He will be joined by Jamie Briggs as the Minister for Cities and the Built Environment. We look forward to working productively with both ministers and other Federal ministers.
- The MAV has welcomed $4.54 million from the State Government for the Municipal Emergency Resourcing Program (MERP) for 64 councils. Further details below.
- The MAV, along with the Early Learning Association Australia, and the Australian Education Union has signed a Heads of Agreement for the early childhood enterprise bargaining agreement.
- Signed copies of the recent Home and Community Care and National Disability Insurance Scheme are now available.
Maternal and Child Health Data Management System now live
Following an initial pilot with Banyule City Council, four more councils have transitioned to a new Maternal and Child Health Data Management system this week. More than 200,000 client records have been successfully migrated into the Child Development Information System (CDIS) across the five councils, equating to approximately 3.5 per cent of the Victorian population.
The training and implementation of councils will continue throughout October and November as the system is rolled-out to the 59 councils and regional health services who are participating in the project.
The project will increase the security of family data, will provide a holistic picture of the needs of a child and its family, and will give more reliable and consistent information in support of service development and the targeting of programs.
The MAV would like to acknowledge the outstanding support provided by Banyule City Council in undertaking the role of pilot council in this challenging and exciting project. Councils who have chosen not to participate are reminded that they can join at any time.
For further information, contact Cameron Spence.
Continuation of funding for the Municipal Emergency Resourcing Program
The Minister for Local Government, Natalie Hutchins has announced continued funding for the Municipal Emergency Resourcing Program (MERP), for councils in the 64 CFA areas.
New funding agreements will take effect from 1 July 2016, and negotiations will include an opportunity for councils that are currently partnered with one or more neighbouring councils to review arrangements for sharing their funding allocation.
The new funding agreements will be informed by outcomes of the evaluation of the MERP that is currently underway.
Local Government Victoria intend to reconvene the MERP Steering Committee - which includes Emergency Management Commissioner, Craig Lapsley, and our CEO Rob Spence. The committee will assist the Department of Environement, Land, Water, and Planning to design the next round of funding and ensure the MERP continues to make a meaningful contribution to supporting the role of local government in emergency management.
Join the MAV and embrace diversity
On 17 September the MAV became a supporter of the Victorian Government’s Embrace Diversity Campaign.
The MAV encourages Victorian councils to join us on this campaign, which celebrates Australia’s place as one of the most multicultural and diverse societies on earth as our greatest strength.
The campaign calls on Victorians not to take this strength for granted, especially as other parts of the world show us how precious and fragile harmony can be.
Further information is available online.
Environmental Upgrade Agreements
The Local Government Legislation Amendment (Environmental Upgrade Agreements) Act 2015 received royal assent on 8 September. The Act amends the Local Government Act 1989 to enable all Victorian councils to enter into Environmental Upgrade Agreements (EUA). A number of councils and greenhouse alliances advocated for this change.
An EUA is a tripartite agreement between a non-residential property owner, a lending body and a council. Under the agreement, the lending body advances funds to the building owner to finance works that improve the energy, water or environmental efficiency or sustainability of the building. The council then levies an environmental upgrade charge to recover the funds and repay the lending body.
The City of Melbourne has been implementing EUAs since 2011. Further information is available from the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources, and the Sustainable Melbourne Fund.
LG roundtable: prevention of family violence
Council CEOs in regional Victoria have been invited to Local Government Roundtables by the Minister for Women and for the Prevention of Family Violence, Fiona Richardson, to discuss the role of local government in relation to the prevention of family violence.
The insights will help the Minister inform the Royal Commission into Family Violence.
Roundtables will be held on 25 September in Ballarat, 15 October in Bendigo, 30 October in Shepparton (TBC), and 1 December in the Barwon/South Coast region. There is one being held in Morwell today.
For further information, contact Kellie Nagle.
OurSay: local government forum
OurSay is hosting the Minister for Local Government, Natalie Hutchins in a no-holds barred interview about local government on 5 October.
Councils and communities can get involved in the forum by submitting questions relevant to local government.
Further information is available online.
Council takes home Resilient Australia Award
The MAV would like to congratulate Mansfield Shire Council for winning a Resilient Australia Government Award for its Community Resilience Leadership Program.
The program brought together community, council and emergency services to build and lead resilience, and improve how communities prepare for, respond to and recover from emergencies.
Pyrenees Shire Council was also highly commended in the government category for its Emergencies Happen in the Pyrenees: Think ahead, know what to do initiative.
The national awards promote local projects that help make communities safer and better prepared for natural disasters, such as bushfires or floods.
Mansfield Shire Council with Emergency Management Commissioner, Craig Lapsley (left), and Parliamentary Secretary for Justice Ben Carroll.
E-waste ban discussion paper
The State has released a discussion paper in order to gather feedback to inform the design of an approach to banning e-waste from landfill in Victoria. The ban is an election commitment of the government.
E-waste, which includes TVs, computers and white-goods, is growing three times faster than general municipal waste in Australia. Banning e-waste from landfill in Victoria will increase recovery of valuable resources, and support jobs and investment in the recycling industry. Careful design of the ban will be essential in order to avoid unintended consequences, such as increased illegal dumping and inappropriate storage of e-waste.
The closing date for submissions is 1 November. The MAV will be seeking input from councils to inform a MAV submission. For further information, contact Claire Dunn.
Australian Human Rights Awards 2015
Nominations for the Australian Human Rights Awards 2015 close this week on 25 September.
The Australian Human Rights Awards honour the achievements of individuals and organisations in promoting and protecting human rights in Australia.
There are a total of seven human rights awards. Nominations can be made online.
Scholarships for council executives and senior management
Up to 40 scholarships are available to help fund training for local government staff to participate in the University of Technology Sydney (Centre for Local Government) accredited course Enhanced Local Government Service Delivery.
The course is designed to help senior staff develop a systematic way to review council services and operations, incorporate knowledge of climate change into service delivery and help identify efficiencies.
The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning will fund up to 55 per cent of the cost of the course.
The course is being offered in Warragul and Wedderburn in November. For further information contact Kath Gosden. Applications close 20 October.
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