Media Releases & Exhibitions
Mayor of Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC), Councillor Andrew Hope, wishes to remind the community of a number of issues from the local calendar heading towards Christmas and 2017.
“Council’s final Ordinary Meeting for 2016 will be held on Wednesday 14 December commencing at 2.30 pm. As always we invite and encourage members of the community to attend. Council’s Administration Centre will close at 5pm on Friday 23 December and re-open at 8.30am on Tuesday 3 January 2017. We will have skeleton crews on duty over this period but we do request that only real emergency situations are called through to the holiday/out of hour’s answering service through 6746 1755 and following the prompts,” Councillor Hope said.
“Free entry to the LPSC 2016 Christmas Lights Competition closes at 4.00pm on Monday 12 December. Entry forms are available from the Administration Centre, the Shire libraries, the Visitor Information Centre, calling the Customer Service Desk on 6746 1755, from the website or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. A lot of people go to the trouble of adding cheer to the Festive Season and this is an opportunity to be recognised for the joy you bring to others,” he said.
“Please nominate someone you’d like to see recognised for their community input, a community leader and/or event, for LPSC’s 2017 Australia Day Awards. Nominations close Friday 23 December. Nomination forms are available from the same locations as entries to the Christmas Lights Competition. Winners will be announced at the Australia Day Flag Raising and Citizenship Ceremony at the Royal Theatre,” he continued.
“Excitement is building as we get closer to the inaugural Quirindi Military Tattoo which will be staged at Longfield Oval on Saturday 28 January 2017. The Tattoo is a joint initiative of the Quirindi RSL Sub Branch, the Quirindi and District Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and Council. The event will be free entry and will showcase military bands in both a competition and exhibition format. The organisers are looking for stalls of all types from Food, Markets and Charities to attend. The cost per stall is $50 a site with discounts for recognised charities. Application forms for stalls and further information about the Tattoo is available online at https://quirindimilitarytattoo.com.au/ or by calling 6746 1755 during business hours. There is also a Facebook page Quirindi Military Tattoo. This is going to be one of the Shire’s major events for 2017 when the sounds of pipes and drums and the colour and entertainment of marching bands will bring a fantastic atmosphere to town,” Councillor Hope concluded.
Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) has resolved to construct a shared pathway in Hoamm Park, Werris Creek to improve facilities and provide disabled access to the precinct. The path will run from the northern end of Hoamm Park, near the access road to the rail line, to the area adjacent to the playground. It will also provide approximately 230 metres of cycleway.
“The recently built Hoamm Park Playground was constructed to facilitate disabled play so it makes a lot of sense to improve access. Not only will this assist people with a disability, it will also make it safer for families and young people heading to the park,” said LPSC Mayor, Councillor Andrew Hope.
“The funding will be provided through the redistribution of $121,500 in Federal Assistance Grants (FAG) money that was originally allocated to match an application to Roads and Maritime Services for funding to reconstruct the Gap Road Shared pathway on a 50%-50% basis. Unfortunately, the application was unsuccessful thus making the original $121,500 component available for other works,” he said.
“The Werris Creek Advisory Committee was advised at a meeting earlier this year that the funding application had failed and discussed alternative projects and they were generally supportive of the Hoamm Park proposal,” he continued.
“Council recently received a donation of $2,756 from the Werris Creek Sporting Complex Committee to construct a bridge across the stormwater outlet in the park so this pathway will also compliment that project,” he said.
“Hoamm Park has become an increasingly popular area with locals and travellers and the construction of a shared pathway will assist with the further beautification of Werris Creek as well as encouraging healthy lifestyles plus improving disabled access,” Councillor Hope concluded.
International Volunteer Day (IVD) is mandated by the UN General Assembly and is held each December. It is a day for volunteers and volunteer based organisations to celebrate their efforts, to share their values, and to showcase the difference they make in their communities. The 2016 theme is Global Applause, Give Volunteers a Hand.
According to Liverpool Plains Shire Council’s (LPSC) Deputy Mayor, Councillor Doug Hawkins, the community’s volunteers are arguably its most valuable and hidden asset.
“On behalf of LPSC, the wider community and to mark International Volunteers Day, I’d like to say thank you to all the Shire’s volunteers for the massive contribution they make, be it as individuals, through service and sporting organisations, emergency services, in aged care, in our schools, our libraries, our Home Support Services, the health system, at our cemeteries, in restoring and maintaining the natural environment and community development, the list goes on and on. To all volunteers, your contribution is invaluable and crucial to society’s wellbeing. At the same time, I’d like others in the community to ponder how much the poorer we’d be without the volunteers’ selfless giving of their time and energies,” Councillor Hawkins said.
“It is vital we all recognise and celebrate the outstanding contribution that volunteers make to a strong, cohesive society. It is essential the community, business, and all tiers of government work together to build an Australian society that encourages and nurtures a culture of volunteering whilst supporting our communities in their engagement in valuable and productive voluntary activities,” he continued.
Recent studies of the level of volunteer activity in Australia indicate that volunteers contribute significantly to the economy. It has been suggested that the value and volume of volunteer contribution should be included in the national accounts published quarterly by the Australian
Bureau of Statistics because failure to recognise the economic value of volunteer work to the national economy has implications for evaluating policy alternatives and the social recognition of volunteer effort. Whatever we do, we must never take their contribution for granted,” Councillor Hawkins said.
“Considering the massive contribution our volunteers make and an ageing population it is becoming more and more important that we encourage additional young people to become volunteers. One of the many myths about volunteering is that most are older people. Yes, the highest rates of volunteering are to be found in older age brackets, but that doesn’t mean that younger people don’t, or don’t want to, volunteer.
“A couple of years ago, the Australian Bureau of Statistics found that of all the people who volunteered 9.4% were between 18 and 24. As almost 6.1 million people volunteered in that year, that means over a half million young people, some 27%, volunteered in some fashion. Volunteering for groups related to sport and recreation was the most popular choice.
“Keeping this in mind, those looking to recruit volunteers need to remember that they will give their time only if they are motivated to do so. This means that recruitment must not be a process of persuading people to do something they don’t want to do, rather it needs to be a process of showing people they can do something they already want to do,” he continued.
“Global Applause recognises all volunteers everywhere and the contribution they make. So, join us in giving the Shire’s volunteers a hand. 95% of volunteers say that volunteering is related to feelings of wellbeing and that just a few hours of volunteer work makes a difference in happiness and mood. The experience of helping others provides meaning, a sense of self-worth, a social role and health enhancement. How about putting your hand up and volunteering?” Councillor Hawkins concluded.
Mayor of Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC), Councillor Andrew Hope, is encouraging community members to have a look at the LPSC 2015-16 Annual Report which has just been released, either online at http://www.lpsc.nsw.gov.au/index.php/component/rsfiles/download-file/files?path=Downloads%252FCOUNCIL%252FCouncil%2BDocuments%252FAnnual%2BReports%252F2015-2016%2BAnnual%2BReport.pdf&Itemid=661 or via hard copy available at the Customer Service Desk at the Administration Centre.
“This 45 page report explains LPSC’s operations in a clear and concise fashion and highlights our vision and mission for the Shire. It demonstrates our commitment to continually improving our financial viability, the growth of our great Shire, improving our customer service and delivering outcomes for the LPSC community,” Councillor Hope said.
“I’ve often been asked by residents ‘What does the Council do..?’. This report concisely answers that question. There are many challenges delivering the necessary services across an area as big as the Shire. The staff and management of LPSC work diligently, within budgetary constraints, to ensure that the expectations of the community are met. This report really explains what and how big this task is,” he said.
“It clearly reports on Council’s performance over the past 12 months, the planning delivery process of Council and how we identify, plan and deliver the services expected. Through the creation of our Community Strategic Plan, five main themes have been identified through community consultation being Social, Environmental, Economic, Governance and Economic Development. The report demonstrates how the operational action plans have been pursued and developed throughout the past 12 months,” he continued.
To ensure Council functions as effectively and efficiently as possible, operations are structured into four operational areas, the Executive Office, overseen by the General Manager and three Directorates, Business, Engineering and Environmental and Economic Development, managed by the respective Directors. Their achievements over the last 12 months are fully documented in the report,” he said.
Councillor Hope said that the report also contains legislative information that LPSC is required to provide under Part 4, section 428 of the Local Government Act, 1993 and Division 7, Regulation 217 of the Local Government (General) Regulations, 2005.
“The Annual Report shows the dedication and hard work achieved by all involved and our commitment to delivering our Fit for the Future (FFTF) strategy. As Mayor I say thanks and congratulations to LPSC’s dedicated team of professional people delivering for the Shire and our Community,” he continued.
“I encourage as many people as possible to look at the report because I think it will open many eyes to the mammoth job local government is tasked with. We realise you can please most of the people most of the time but not all of the people all of the time. However, we strive to be transparent and to deliver as fairly and equitably as possible within the budget constraints we must manage with,” Councillor Hope concluded.
Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) Deputy Mayor, Doug Hawkins, is encouraging the community to display the festive spirit by adorning homes, business premises and community organisation's premises with Christmas lights and decorations and entering the LPSC Christmas Lights Competition.
“You could win prizes just for spreading a little Christmas cheer and providing some great family enjoyment. It is a thrill to watch families drive their kids around checking out the displays and the joy it engenders,” he said.
“Entry forms are now available and can be obtained at Council’s Administration Centre, at Werris Creek and Quirindi Libraries and the Willow Tree Visitor Information Centre (VIC). You can also call the Customer Service Desk on 6746 1755 or email email@example.com to have one sent out to you or download it from below. Details of the various categories are on the entry forms,” he continued.
“Entry is FREE! They close at 4.00pm on Monday 12 December. Get into the festive mood, decorate your house, garden, street or store and bring extra Christmas cheer to the LPS,” Councillor Hawkins concluded.
There have been some stunning displays around the Shire over recent years.
The Liverpool Plains Shire Council’s (LPSC) Visitor Information Centre (VIC) at Willow Tree won a Highly Commended award in the Visitor Information Services section of the 2016 NSW Tourism Awards held at Luna Park in Sydney.
“We’re over the moon,” said LPSC Mayor, Councillor Andrew Hope. “The award is the culmination of a number of years of hard, dedicated work by Council’s Tourism Team, particularly VIC Manager, Nikki Robertson and on behalf of our whole community I thank and congratulate Nikki and her team of volunteers on this great achievement.”
LPSC Mayor Andrew Hope attended the Tourism Awards in company with local State MP, Michael Johnsen, LPSC Director Economic Development, Donna Ausling, and Nikki Robertson who is proudly holding the much valued award.
“I’d like to thank Michael Johnsen for attending the awards with us and for his ongoing support of projects to improve tourism potential for the Shire and wider region,” Councillor Hope said.
“Our Director of Economic Development, Donna Ausling, has worked closely with Nikki in developing our Recreational Vehicle (RV) and Tourism Strategies, which are paying dividends, and involving the whole community in our drive to welcome visitors and ensuring they enjoy a value for money experience. They are a great team, achieving great results,” Councillor Hope concluded.
Liverpool Plains Shire Council Mayor, Councillor Andrew Hope, says he is bitterly disappointed at the recent rise in the number of people who are failing to abide by the regulations governing recreational use at Quipolly Dam.
“Quipolly Dam is first and foremost a town water supply and until such time as we can build a new water treatment plant, recreational uses are limited and clearly sign posted at the recreation reserve. We are currently waiting for the State Government to match the $10 million put up by the Federal Government to get this vital project up and running. In the meantime people who ignore the regulations face fines from Council’s Rangers,” Councillor Hope said.
“Recreational fishers must only do so from the bank within the recreation reserve. All other areas are out of bounds. The Rangers have recently had to issue fines to people using boats, which powered or unpowered cannot be used on any part of the dam waterway. We’ve also had people allowing dogs to swim and camp fires being lit as well as litter being dumped. These activities are all illegal and pose a risk to public health. There will be no more warnings, people caught acting illegally will be fined,” Councillor Hope warned.
Quipolly Dam is looking its best in many years at 100% capacity. However, it is first and foremost a town water supply and until such time as a new water treatment plant is constructed people must abide by the current regulations for its recreational use, for the sake of public health requirements.
According to Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) Mayor, Councillor Andrew Hope, changes to operating hours for the Recreation Centre agreed to at November’s Council Meeting will see the facility open an extra 18 hours a week when it reopens on Monday January 9 2017 following the Christmas/New Year break which commences at 7pm Friday 23 December 2016.
“Currently the Centre is open 51 hours per week and that will rise to 69 from January. With Council focused on increasing membership and participation numbers to help rein in costs to ratepayers Centre staff and management have taken the challenge to provide sustainable solutions to reduce the deficit,” Councillor Hope said.
“Staff have been undertaking consultation with members and Centre users, both through hardcopy surveys and face-to-face discussions, to try and come up with an operating regime that suits the majority.
“Thus, from January, Monday to Thursday operational hours will increase by 4 per day opening continuously from 6am to 7pm. Friday will also operate 6am to 7pm, an increase of 5 hrs on the day. Saturday will continue as now opening between 8am and midday. The least demand has always been on Sundays and it has been decided to cancel the 3 hours operation on this day. Many people have indicated they support the option of the Centre being open at lunchtime 5 days a week, and while they are disappointed the Sunday timeslot is being cancelled they are understanding of the overall benefits to members and the community,” he said.
Additionally, in the New Year staff will have the opportunity to stage promotional days and to trial additional programs. They are focussed on growing the membership base and new programs will be an integral part of achieving this. Staff are interested in hearing from any community members who may have ideas. We wish to cater for all age groups and to grow health, wellness and fitness initiatives. The business community, organisations and sporting clubs are reminded of the recently introduced corporate rate whereby 5 or more new members paid for by them will attract reduced rates of $600 each for 12 months or $350 each for 6 months,” he continued.
“In the longer term, if we can attract new members, flow on benefits will accrue for all concerned. Call into the Centre personally, phone 6746 3122, look on Facebook at Liverpool Plains Recreation and Swim Centres, or email firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more and the programs most suited to your requirements. You’d be surprised how a couple of hours a week can make a huge difference to your health and wellbeing,” Councillor Hope concluded.
Liverpool Plains Shire Council Mayor, Councillor Andrew Hope is extending a cordial invitation to the Currabubula and wider Shire community to attend the official opening of the Free Camping Area at the Recreation Ground in Maitland Street Currabubula and the sod-turning for the Currabubula Pony Club Storage Shed. These events will take place from 10am on Tuesday 6 December.
“Council is delighted to be involved in a community partnership with Currabubula Pony Club to improve facilities for this important community organisation. A sod-turning will commemorate the proposed improvements, a new storage shed, to this valuable local recreational asset,” he said.
“We are also excited to be opening the new Free Camping Site which is an important additional component to the Liverpool Plains Recreational Vehicle Strategy and will complement the recently commissioned ground at Willow Tree, the Caravan Park in Quirindi, and popular existing sites at Wallabadah and Premer. Council is continuing with its planning to improve existing basic sites at Caroona and Spring Ridge and new sites at Werris Creek and Blackville,” he continued.
“We look forward to this event which is yet another step forward for Council’s economic development strategy. This strategy aims to benefit not only the major centres of Werris Creek and Quirindi, but also our smaller villages. Council is thankful to the Currabubula community for partnering with us towards these goals,” he said.
“We will be serving light refreshments following the official proceedings. If you would like to attend please RSVP to Council’s Visitor Information Centre Manager, Mrs Nikki Robertson on (02) 6747 1226 or email email@example.com for catering purposes. We look forward to seeing you on the day,” Councillor Hope concluded.
Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) Mayor, Councillor Andrew Hope, has congratulated the winners of Council’s 2016 Garden Competition at a ceremony held at the Council Chambers.
(Category – Sponsor – Winner)
• Best Environmental and Water Efficient Garden – LPSC - Bob and Christine Khan
• Best Flower Display - Castlemountain Zeolites – Rosalind and Mervyn Constable
• Best Vegetable Garden - Quirindi Grain & Produce - Bob and Christine Khan
• Best Native Garden - Quirindi Community Nursery - Ann Barwick
• Best Newly Established Residential Garden (under 5 years old) - Quirindi Florist 2343/The Lollie Box - Ian and Carole Taylor
• Best Rural Garden (outside town limits) - Country Mile Signs - Priscilla Love
• Best Senior Citizens Garden (over 65 years old) - Quirindi Branch CWA - Bob and Christine Khan
• Best Residential Garden - Quirindi Aboriginal Corp – Rosalind and Mervyn Constable
• Best Patio Garden - Ray White Real Estate - Kerry Green
• Best Water Feature - LPSC - Ken and Ruth Lawrence
• Best Potted Garden - Werris Creek Bowling and Tennis Club - Gwen Cone
• Best Childs Garden - Mary Roberts - Kylie Turner
• Best Institutional Garden - JBS Caroona Feedlot - Werris Creek Library
• Overall Garden Winner – Quirindi Commonwealth Bank - Priscilla Love
Overall Garden Winner - Priscilla Love
Winners and Sponsors who attended the ceremony were - Back (L – R): Bob and Christine Khan, Ken Lawrence, Ann Barwick, Ruth Lawrence, Colleen Wills (QDI Branch CWA), Donna Burt (Ray White Real Estate), Kath Davis (Commonwealth Bank QDI), Marilyn Deeks, Mary Roberts, Carole Taylor, Pat Wallace (QDI Community Nursery), Mayor Andrew Hope. Front (L – R): Kerry Green, Gwen Cone, Priscilla Love, Rosalind and Mervyn Constable.
Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) Mayor, Councillor Andrew Hope, has welcomed two grants delivered to projects in the Shire during a visit by State Minister for Corrections, Emergency Services and Veterans Affairs, David Elliott MP. Councillor Hope along with Deputy Mayor and RSL President, Doug Hawkins, LPSC Director Economic Development, Donna Ausling, the RSL’s Ray Hatch and Quirindi High School students Wade Clarke, Sari Hamblin and Ben Hope welcomed the Minister and Local State MP, Michael Johnsen, to the Shire.
“It’s great news for the community that $60,000 has been granted to refurbish the Quirindi Town Clock and War Memorial. This memorial is important because it acts as a historical touchstone. It links the past to the present and enables people to remember and respect the sacrifice of those who died, fought, participated or were affected by conflicts,” said Councillor Hawkins.
Councillor Hope said the War Memorial was the focal point for numerous community commemorations throughout the year and that honouring the sacrifices made by so many for freedom needs to be remembered with Quirindi’s memorial playing a vital role in ensuring that continues.
Minister Elliott also presented Braefield/Dury Rural Fire Brigade with an $8,000 grant to fund an electric hose reel for a fire truck as well as other operational equipment.
“The Braefield/Dury RFS volunteers are a very dedicated group who give of their time to protect families, friends, homes and assets, our community, and way of life. It is great to see funding such as this flow to them to assist them in their vital role,” Councillor Hope said.
“This is another great opportunity for me to remind the wider community that the RFS needs all types of people, with a wide range of skills, to keep brigades running and communities safe. It is not only about firefighting they also need people to assist with administration, communications, catering, community education and engagement, training, operational logistics support, welfare support and youth development. If you think you can contribute contact your local rural fire brigade,” Councillor Hope said.“The whole community benefits when local government works in partnership with State and Federal Governments and on behalf of the Shire’s residents I’d like to thank Minister Elliott and our local MP Michael Johnsen for the contributions they’ve made with this funding,” Councillor Hope concluded.
State Minister for Veteran’s Affairs David Elliott shakes hands with Councillor Doug Hawkins (local RSL President) as he announces $60,000 funding to refurbish the Quirindi Town Clock and War Memorial. Representatives from Quirindi High School, the local RSL and LPSC welcomed the Minister and State Member Michael Johnsen to town.
LPSC Mayor Andrew Hope, Ben Hope (QHS), State MP Michael Johnsen, Sari Hamblin (QHS), Minister David Elliott MP, Wade Clarke (QHS), Deputy Mayor Doug Hawkins (RSL President), LPSC’s Director Economic Development Donna Ausling and Ray Hatch (RSL).
Notice of intention to undertake Helicopter Survey Inspections within the LPSC area for: Noxious Weeds, Council Assets and Creek Reclamation Project areas is scheduled between 23rd November and 9th December and will be dependent on favorable weather conditions.
If you require any further information please do not hesitate to contact Council Senior Weeds Officer Peter Scott 0427961980 or Regulatory Services Manager Steve Ryder on 67461755
Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) has received, noted and accepted the relative progress reported in the First Quarter Operational Plan review for operations in the 2016/17 financial year.
“Section 403 of the Local Government Act requires Council to adopt an Operational Plan. It spells out the detail of the Delivery Program, identifying the individual projects and activities that will be undertaken in a specific year to achieve the commitments made in its Delivery Program. The report Council received comments on the status of the Operational Plan at the end of the first quarter 2016/17 and the extent to which the performance targets have been achieved,” said LPSC Mayor, Councillor Andrew Hope.
“I am pleased to report that the majority of targets relevant to the quarter have been achieved. Some delays have been caused by unseasonably wet conditions however ongoing targets will receive additional attention as we move further into the plan. Progress as always is subject to adequate staff resources, no additional unexpected workloads or disruptive climatic events,” he said.
The Operational Plan activities work towards achieving the longer term Delivery Program, and in turn work towards achieving the objectives of the Community Strategic Plan. The activities of the Operational Plan are enabled by the Budget Strategy.
“As always, transparency of operations is paramount and all of these documents can be found on our website at http://www.lpsc.nsw.gov.au/index.php/my-council/council-plans-reports.
“The full First Quarter Operational Plan report can be found by going to - http://www.lpsc.nsw.gov.au/index.php/my-council/council-papers-meeting-minutes, clicking on the link for Council Meeting 10, October 2016 and going to pages 218 to 227 of the document,” he continued.
“LPSC strives to ensure good management and governance of the Shire and the wellbeing of its residents and to develop and apply model policies for the effective delivery of core business activities,” Councillor Hope concluded.
Whether you’re a railway or hotel hobbyist, interested in social history, architecture, a local historian, researcher or genealogist you will find Scott Whitaker’s author talk Railway Hotels of Australia fascinating and informative, at Werris Creek library, Wednesday 7 December at 3.30pm.
Scott Whitaker has journeyed around Australia investigating the life of the Railway Hotel, beginning with his multipart work, Volume One – Railway Hotels of Victoria, and now the newly released Volume Two – Railway Hotels of New South Wales. Scott is a railway enthusiast and part-time historian and the book details the history of every Railway Hotel that trades, or once traded in New South Wales.
Author Scott Whitaker in the cab of a steam locomotive. In addition to detailing the history of the local Railway Hotels, Scott’s talk will cover the coming of the railway, the social development of regional NSW and researching tips.
In the early days, Railway Hotels, along with Terminus, Junction and Station Hotels, were quickly established to service the railway construction workers, or navvies. Some publicans stayed in the new town, others moved on with the navvies to the next camp. Some existing hotels were renamed to celebrate the arrival of the railway, and some were moved to a new site nearer the railway station. Inevitably, the Railway Hotel was the haunt of many of the local railway workforce.
The book, 312 pages in length, contains a wealth of information on the history of railways in New South Wales, and explores the social, economic and political themes that helped to shape the state. It contains hundreds of historic and contemporary images on high quality art paper, and includes a range of advertisements and anecdotes that add interest and establish the mood of the era.
Everyone is welcome to come along and meet Scott and to enjoy afternoon tea provided by the Friends of Werris Creek Library.
It is only fitting that the North West’s major railway centre, Werris Creek, has its own Railway Hotel.
Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) is seeking community comment on a proposed addition to its 2016/17 adopted fees and charges applicable to the Quirindi Recreation Centre (QRC). Council is proposing to introduce a Corporate Program whereby 5 or more new members paid for by a business, sporting-club or organisation will attract reduced rates of $600 each for 12 months or $350 each for 6 months. The proposals will be on public exhibition at Council’s Administration Centre until Monday 12 December and written submissions will be accepted up to 5pm on this day.
According to LPSC Mayor, Councillor Andrew Hope, Council is investigating a number of ideas to assist the QRC attract new members.
“We’ve had some interest shown from business/clubs/organisations for the establishment of a Corporate Fitness Program which can provide staff health and wellness initiatives. An increasing number of businesses have come to understand the strong relationship between healthy employees, a more motivated workforce and increased productivity,” Councillor Hope said.
“QRC provides a fully equipped gym with cardio, weight machines & free weights, squash courts and equipment, group fitness classes including boxing, yoga, aerobics and gym circuits and, by appointment, personal training at a slightly additional cost. It also provides a pleasant social environment for members,” he said.
“Most people spend more hours at work than anywhere else except home and many are putting in more hours than the average twenty years ago. As a result, maintaining a healthy work/life balance is becoming increasingly important. One of the primary benefits of employee wellness programs involves a reduction in the rates of illness and injuries. In addition to preventing illnesses, wellness programs also lead to a reduction in absenteeism. Employees who are stressed, unhealthy or overworked tend to become sick much more often than healthy employees. There is a lot of evidence that the relatively small investment required to get employees into such programs is recouped many times over a twelve month period,” he continued.
“In the longer term, if we can attract new members, flow on benefits will accrue for existing members with the possibility of reduced fees, extension of operating hours, the establishment of a more vibrant and functional QRC environment, seasonal promotions and combined pools/QRC membership,” he said.
“Council has made substantial investments in improving the infrastructure at the QRC over recent years however income still fails to meet expenses. It is prudent we review options now for the Centre’s long-term sustainability,” Councillor Hope concluded.
Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) General Manager, Ron Van Katwyk, recently visited the Quirindi Aero Club (QAC) to thank them for their ongoing efforts in keeping the airport surroundings neat and tidy and to learn a little more about their operations and the important role the club plays providing a bit of ‘time out’ from busy schedules for its members.
“Sonja Thorneycroft who is Secretary of the QAC as well as having a medical background pointed out to me the importance for the members, many of whom are local farmers, of a past time where they can enjoy one another’s company and relax away from busy work schedules, which provides benefits not only for them but also their families,” Mr Van Katwyk said.
At the Aero Club’s monthly breakfast, (l to r) Ron Van Katwyk, Greg Giblet, Sonja Thorneycroft, Lloyd Whitsed, Lyle Passfield, Ian Carter, Malcolm Alcorn, Craig Charters and Cliff Van Praag
Quirindi Airport covers about 87 hectares and is owned, operated and maintained by the LPSC. Located approximately 20km west of Quirindi, along the Pine Ridge Road (SR1), it is surrounded by open grazing and farming land.
“Council provides the facilities to enable light aircraft operations. The majority or aircraft movements are for pilot training, conducted by the Tamworth based Flying College. Aerial agriculture is another significant component of its use. Charter aircraft, and privately owned aircraft account for a small percentage of movements,” Mr Van Katwyk said.
“The QAC hold a BBQ breakfast the second Saturday of the month at 7.30am followed by flying time. Members love to chat about their common interest in various aircraft and often fly to other Aero Clubs social events. They recently attended Scone Aero Club’s Warbirds and Aerobatic display,” he said.
The QAC is open to the community and they’d welcome anyone who turned up at their monthly get together. They work in partnership with LPSC for the benefit of club members and the general community. Anyone interested in finding out more information can contact Sonja at firstname.lastname@example.org,” he said.
“Council has a 10 year plan to operate and maintain the Airport and facilities network to achieve the following strategic objectives. To ensure it is maintained at a safe and functional standard as set out in the LPSC Airport asset management plan, to provide a safe and functional aerodrome for light aircraft activities and to ensure Quirindi Aerodrome meets all accountability, responsibility and reporting requirements to CASA, whilst maintained in partnership with other levels of government and stakeholders,” Mr Van Katwyk concluded.
“Why does Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) invest so much time during Get to kNOw asbestos this NOvember month? Simply because far too many people are continuing to put themselves and their families at risk from this insidious product with do it yourself renovations and it’s too late if they get the fibres into their lungs. We hope continuously hammering the message home may save lives,” said LPSC Regulatory Services Manager Steve Ryder.
“Despite asbestos having been banned in Australia since 2003, the deadly material is still found across the country and death rates continue to rise. In fact, about 12 Australians die each week from cancer caused by asbestos exposure and the nation has one of the highest rates of asbestos disease in the world. Sadly, asbestos-laced products are still being illegally imported from overseas and ending up in buildings,” he said.
“One of the most insidious things about disease caused by asbestos is the time length between exposure and disease being diagnosed. Most will not become apparent for at least 10 years after exposure and more commonly 15-20 years, in some instances it takes up to 40 or more years to develop. Keeping this is mind I urge people not to put themselves or their families at risk, remember renovating now could see your kids struck down after you’re long gone,” he continued.
“Before renovating or doing maintenance work on your home, find out if it contains asbestos and know what to do to remove and dispose of it safely. If more than 10 square metres of bonded asbestos needs to be removed, you must engage a bonded asbestos removalist who is licensed by WorkCover,” Steve warned.
“Most building or demolition work requires some form of approval. Before erecting or demolishing a building, or making any alterations, find out from the local council if a development consent or complying development certificate is required. Before any asbestos is removed, advise your neighbours of the time and date of removal, and the name of the licensed removalist.
For more information, see WorkCover’s guide, Working with asbestos (catalogue no. WC05484),” he said
“Recently, scientists at Adelaide's Flinders University have found that malignant mesothelioma tumours are able to transform into blood vessels, promoting their own growth. They’ve found that instead of waiting for the outside of the tissue to grow blood vessels in, the tumour cells themselves branch out, growing blood vessels that reach out into surrounding tissues. One of the scientists involved doesn’t think a cure for mesothelioma is on the horizon in the immediate future although this work could eventually lead to finding treatments that will prolong life, with less impacts on quality of life. Keeping this is mind I urge people not to put themselves or their families at risk of a death sentence,” he continued.
“Think Smart. Think Safe. Think www.asbestosawareness.com.au,” Steve concluded.
According to Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) Mayor, Councillor Andrew Hope, he and other Councillors are often asked by ratepayers about how planning is carried out in both the short term and the longer term to get the best results for the community into the future. He said the easiest way for residents to find about these issues is to go to Council’s website where the whole suite of documents is available.
“All NSW councils are required to have an integrated planning and reporting framework, to ensure local government operations and strategic planning are meeting the needs of the community. Under this framework we have a 10+ year Community Strategic Plan, a four-year Delivery Program and an annual Operational Plan,” Councillor Hope said.
“The Strategic Planning Documents identify the long-term aspirations our communities want to see delivered in the Shire. The Strategic Planning Documents stretch beyond the next 10 years, identifying the outcomes and long term strategic responses needed to achieve the agreed directions. It demands strong leadership from Council in working with others to grow our Shire into the future. The documents have been developed through community consultation and written submissions received when drafts of the proposals have been put on public exhibition,” he said.
“Council’s Operational Plan for the 2016/17 financial year includes the twelve month Community Strategic Plan, the Delivery Program, the Long Term Financial Plan, the Operational Plan, the WH&S Strategy and a Workforce Plan all of which which were adopted by Council on 29 June following a period of public exhibition.
“Guiding long term planning are the Asset Management Plans for LPSC Airport and Facilities, LPSC Bridges Asset Management Plan, LPSC Buildings and Other Structures Asset Management Plan, LPSC Fleet and Plant Asset Management Plan, LPSC Footpaths Asset Management Plan, LPSC Roads Asset Management Plan, LPSC Sewer Asset Management Plan and LPSC Water Management Plan. These and things like the Liverpool Plains Tourism Plan are living documents that are regularly reviewed and updated where necessary,” he continued.
“However, it is not just a case of having plans for the future, operations are backed up with Annual Reports and Financial Reports for community perusal,” he said.
“Transparency of operations is paramount and all of these documents can be found on our website at http://www.lpsc.nsw.gov.au/index.php/my-council/council-plans-reports. If residents require further information please contact Council's Customer Service Desk on 6746 1755 and they will refer you to the appropriate Council Officer,” Councillor Hope concluded.
Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) is encouraging the community to report defects on the road network by lodging a customer action request on 6746 1755 or filling one out on line at http://www.lpsc.nsw.gov.au/index.php/liverpool-plains-shire-council-customer-action-request.
In a report to Council, LPSC Engineering Services Manager, Sally Rozemulder said that four years of extremely dry conditions followed recently by several months of exceptionally wet conditions had seen the road network deteriorate in places to standards that are not acceptable to the community.
“During the dry, maintaining gravel roads was impeded due to a lack of water making it difficult and costly to complete maintenance and re-sheeting work on the network. The sealed network also suffered from the inability to access water required for construction and heavy patching programs. To help overcome these problems into the future a 22,000 litre water tanker was purchased recently,” Ms Rozemulder said.
“The rains that have followed caused ‘gully rakers’ with causeways and road pavements being damaged and washed away. The impact of heavy rain has highlighted areas with an inadequate thickness of gravel due to the previous constraints on gravel re-sheeting. Drainage issues, not readily identified during dry periods have also become apparent,” she continued.
Ms Rozemulder pointed out that current funding levels for gravel re-sheeting will only allow the network to be maintained on a 36 year cycle when ideally re-sheeting should be undertaken on a 10 year cycle and even more frequently on heavily trafficked roads. She said that if Federal and State Governments continue to freeze and cut back grant funding the problem will be further exacerbated.
“Road maintenance staff have been working towards rectifying the worst issues based on Council’s roads hierarchy and an informal risk assessment process. To expedite repairs staff are working overtime, contractors have been engaged and some casual labour has been recruited to assist with maintenance. These works are being funded under the existing maintenance budget, however if further events occur and natural disaster funding is not forthcoming Council will have to further consider the financial implications of maintaining the network,” she said.
“In the coming 9 months, staff will be reviewing all of Council’s Asset Management Plans prior to consideration by Council, public exhibition and adoption. This review will include general maintenance of roads, gravel re-sheeting frequency, heavy patching programs and causeway construction program. They will be reviewed to reflect the road hierarchy and to ensure that roads that are important transport routes, such as freight and school bus routes are serviced sustainably. Based on this information Council will need to consider the financial implications, the level of service that is affordable, satisfies community expectations and is sustainable within resource limitations. ” she continued.
“Residents can greatly assist this whole process by lodging a customer action request to help Council develop a better understanding of the damage caused by recent rains and any other concerns. Reality is that with finite resources of funding, staff and machinery we can’t deal with every issue immediately but it will help us prioritise what is required and to plan accordingly,” Ms Rozemulder concluded.
To expedite road repairs staff are working overtime, contractors have been engaged and some casual labour recruited.
Get to kNOw asbestos this NOvember because there is no safe level of exposure to asbestos fibres!
Unfortunately, a lot of people think that exposure to asbestos is something that won’t happen to them or their family. Wrong! If you are thinking about renovating, you must be aware of asbestos simply because there is no safe level of exposure to asbestos fibres!
You must observe safety precautions when removing or working with asbestos, otherwise you risk exposing yourself and your family to long-term health risks. Importantly, if you suspect you have asbestos in your home, Don’t cut it! Don’t drill it! Don’t drop it! Don’t sand it! Don’t saw it! Don’t scrape it! Don’t scrub it! Don’t dismantle it! Don’t tip it! Don’t waterblast it! Don’t demolish it! And whatever you do… Don’t dump it!
If asbestos is disturbed it can release dangerous fine particles of dust containing asbestos fibres. Imbedded asbestos fibres irritate lung tissue around them, causing a number of diseases. Asbestos related diseases can take many years to develop. Most diseases will not become apparent for at least 10 years after exposure to asbestos and more commonly 15-20 years. Some diseases, may take up to 40 or more years to develop.
Breathing in dust containing asbestos fibres can cause asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is a cancer which most often occurs in the lining of the lung. There is no cure. The rates of malignant mesothelioma, an incurable cancer, are expected to rise in coming years with the average time between exposure and developing mesothelioma being about 45 years.
The risk of contracting asbestos related diseases increases with the number of fibres inhaled and the length of time that you inhaled asbestos fibres, that is the number of years exposed. The risk of lung cancer from inhaling asbestos fibres is greatly increased if you smoke.
What precautions should you take? Firstly, get to kNOw Asbestos and take The 20 Point Asbestos Safety Check at http://asbestosawareness.com.au/20-point-safety-check/.
While some people may ensure they follow the regulations and safety requirements to remove small amounts of asbestos themselves, Liverpool Plains Shire Council recommends retaining a licenced asbestos removal professional who is equipped to protect you and your family from the dangers of asbestos dust.