Media Releases & Exhibitions
Liverpool Plains Shire welcomed representatives from its Sister City, Blacktown City, to share a weekend of events. Included in the party were Mt Druitt and Riverstone Men’s Shed, Mt Druitt and Blacktown Probus, the Woodworkers Club, Blacktown Community Garden Club, the Historical Society, Blacktown City Band and Blacktown Bowling Club. In addition the group included two Youth Ambassadors as well as two students visiting from Blacktown’s sister City in Korea. The party was accompanied by Sister City coordinators Gordon Allen and Greg McCallum, Blacktown City Council Events Manager Peter Filmer as well as the Chairman of the Blacktown Sister City Committee Leo Kelly and his wife Janet along with a Korean Official accompanying the Korean students plus Blacktown’s Showgirl Emily Kos
Pictured at Quirindi High School, Sari Hamlon, Ben Hope, Wade Clarke, Kieran Heggerty, Choi Jinhyuk, Lucy Crane, Ian Worley, Kim Hyunrog, Patrick Gleeson and Baek Seungchan.
The Blacktown contingent visited the Rail Journey Museum at Werris Creek.
Blacktown Showgirl Emily Kos (left) and Quirindi Showgirl Sophie McKenzie (right) with Hannah Shaw at the Plains Pantry Willow Tree
Blacktown City Youth Ambassadors Keiran Heggerty and Patrick Gleeson with Korean students Kim and Choi toured a shearing shed.
Blacktown City Councillor Leo Kelly (member of the Sister City Committee) and wife Janet enjoyed morning tea at Wallabadah.
On behalf of LPSC, Nikki Robertson Manager of the Visitor Information Centre, thanked the various community groups, the Showgirls and the High School for welcoming the visitors and sharing time with them. Nikki said the aim of the visit was to show our city cousins both the advantages and challenges of living in rural Australia, promoting our region as a good place for tree-change as well as a tourism destination, plus encouraging cooperation between our communities to get the most out of our sister-city relationship.
LPSC is promoting Communities Matter, a suicide prevention toolkit for small towns and rural communities developed by the NSW Mental Health Commission and suicide Prevention Australia. The resource provides a guide on how to set up and run local suicide prevention action groups, fact sheets, stories from existing groups, opportunities to connect with like-minded leaders, information on how to help as an individual and helping oneself. Go to https://communitiesmatter.suicidepreventionaust.org/ to find out more details.
Remember 24 hour support is available by calling Lifeline on 13 11 14.
The Manager of LPSC’s Visitor Information Centre (VIC), Nikki Robertson is organising a Familiarity Trip for accommodation providers and attraction operators on November 18. The aim of the day is to provide an opportunity for locals involved in tourism to network, to visit alternative accommodation such as Farm stays and to familiarise with the many attractions around the Shire. Nikki can be contacted on 6747 1226 for further info.
The Local Government Grants Commission has advised Council that the relevant Federal and State Minister have approved recommendations for the 2016/17 Financial Assistance Grants (FAG). The estimated General Purpose Component for LPSC is $2,089,573 and the Local Roads Component is $1,278,449. The 2016/17 provision is similar to that of the previous year because of a freeze on indexation until the 2017/18 financial year.
The LPSC Online Planning Services portal provides access to development application (DA) and complying development certificate (CDC) information 24/7. This tool allows applicants, and the wider community, to track the progress of applications throughout the Shire from initial lodgement through to final determination. To access the portal go to - http://myhorizon.solorient.com.au/Horizon/logonGuest.aw?domain=horizondap_lpsc. The Electronic Housing Code (EHC) is an online system that allows users to investigate, prepare, lodge and track development applications. To access the EHC go to - https://www.onegov.nsw.gov.au//gls_portal/LicenceForm.mvc/NewApplication?formId=fb97e90a-878b-4995-8314-beaf3bbd9aa6&agencyID=c5f16c24-350e-4402-9751-adfaf870ed14.
Werris Creek residents are reminded that Council and the local 355 development committee want to hear from you with your ideas on making Werris Creek a better place to live and work by. Peter Cunningham is the Committee President and can be emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org or phoned on 6768 7079. A full list of committee members, including Council representatives can be obtained by calling the Customer Service Desk on 6746 1755.
Following receipt of a petition from residents of Caroona, Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) has resolved that when work commences on an upgrade to Williewarina Road, one kilometre of the road from the Coonabarabran end, will be sealed to help manage the dust problem residents encounter during dry periods, caused by heavy truck movements. Williewarina Road connects the Coonabarabran Road with Bundella Road at Pine Ridge.
“Council is currently undertaking a geotechnical investigation, geometric design and pavement design for this project and at this stage believes construction will get under way during the first quarter of 2017,” said LPSC Mayor Councillor Andrew Hope.
“Apart from the one kilometre we’ll seal at the Caroona end, the majority of the work will be undertaken from the Pine Ridge end towards Caroona, to meet best practice criteria to reduce the impact of construction traffic on the life of the asset,” Councillor Hope concluded.
Work is now well underway on the Liverpool Plains Emergency Services Precinct. The multi-million dollar project, being developed on the old Quirindi Saleyards site, will provide a state-of-the-art precinct to accommodate the Liverpool Range Zone Rural Fire Service (RFS) Control Centre, a new shed for the Braefield Dury RFS Brigade, a Volunteer Rescue Association (VRA) shed, the State Emergency Service (SES) is already located within the area which will also provide training grounds to meet the needs of all emergency service organisations, a carpark and provision for shared infrastructure including telecommunications and amenities. The complex will eventually include a helipad suitable for the Westpac Rescue and other helicopters.
This slab is the site of what will be the RFS Control Centre
Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) Mayor, Councillor Andrew Hope said although recent rains had slowed things down a little good progress was being made and it was currently tracking on time.
“This project is not just important to LPS, it is also a vital control centre for Gunnedah and Upper Hunter Shires. The Liverpool Range Zone RFS has nearly 2,000 volunteers and looks after 18,000 square kilometres with seven staff supporting the volunteers with such things as training, provision and maintenance of equipment and vehicles, hazard reductions, hazard complaints, major incident coordination and logistics,” he said.
The two slabs at rear are for RFS sheds, while two more slabs will be laid in the area where the excavator is at work for the VRA shed and another RFS shed.
LPSC’s outlay for this project is 11.7% of the total cost of the new build with the remainder funded by the State Government/RFS. Council own the current Fire Control Centre Willow Tree site and we’re liaising with a number of people/organisations who have shown an interest in the future use of the building. The town of Willow Tree will continue to be served by its own local brigade,” he continued.
“Significant community consultation was involved in getting this project up and running and staff from the RFS, the VRA and LPSC worked on a Project Master Plan to provide a clear direction for the development of the site in the short, medium and long term. Weather permitting it is currently planned for the project to be completed early in the second half of 2017,” Councillor Hope concluded.
Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) Mayor, Councillor Andrew Hope, is encouraging the Shire’s residents to get behind its Visitor Information Centre (VIC) at Willow Tree and vote in the NSW Tourism Award’s, People's Choice Award competition. He said this award gives the public a chance to vote for their favourite 2016 Finalist at the NSW Tourism Awards with the most votes being announced as the 2016 People's Choice Winner at the 2016 Award Night on Thursday 24 November.
“There are Shires/Councils with much bigger populations than ours who have a tourism finalist berth at the awards, so in many ways we’re in a David vs Goliath situation, but if as many residents as possible voted for our VIC we could put up a great showing. The VIC has been chosen as one of six finalists for Visitor Information Services, one of numerous categories at the awards, and this is a great achievement for the team. Nikki and her team do a wonderful job welcoming visitors to the region and as such strongly support local economic development,” Councillor Hope said.
“Voting closes at 5pm on Monday 7 November so I encourage residents to get in now and go to https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/NSWTourismAwards2016 to cast a vote. You can only vote once per computer/device so I encourage everyone to also share details with family, friends and work colleagues,” he said.
There are prizes for some lucky voters including 2 x Premium tickets to Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour in 2017, valued up to $658.00, 1 night in a one bedroom Villa including Breakfast and a round of golf for 2, including cart hire, valued up to $570, a Zoofari Lodge experience at Taronga Western Plains Zoo which includes accommodation in a unique luxury lodge, exclusive behind the scenes tours an African inspired Dinner and breakfast, two day Zoo admission and bike hire valued up to $1,156.00 and a BridgeClimb at Twilight for 2 people valued up to $746.00. There are some conditions and exclusions for these prizes which entrants can check out on-line,” he continued.
Please support the Liverpool Plains VIC by voting for them. They do a great job on behalf of the Shire and the wider region,” Councillor Hope concluded.
Liverpool Plains Shire Council’s (LPSC) swimming pools will open on Saturday 29 October, Quirindi at 10am and Werris Creek at 11am.
The Swim Centres’ Manager, Annah O’Neil-Shaw said season tickets can now be purchased from the Quirindi Recreation Centre and they will be available from the pools from their opening date.
Annah said Early Bird purchasers can save money buying a season pass up until November 30 with child/pension price being $87, adult $114 and family $188.
She said bookings can now be made through the Recreation Centre for learn to swim classes which will start on November 7 at Quirindi pool. She added that interested parents should make arrangements as soon as possible as there are limited places available. Instructors will be Annah Maybury, Laura Hockey and Holly McNamara.
“Drowning is still one of the most common causes of accidental death in children, so being able to swim is an essential life-saving skill which can save your child’s life. Swimming also provides lots of health benefits, including keeping heart and lungs healthy, improving strength and flexibility, increasing stamina and improvements in balance and posture. Swimming provides challenges and rewards accomplishments, which helps children to become self-confident and to better believe in their abilities. It also provides entry to other sports such as kayaking, canoeing, scuba diving, surfing and triathlon,” Annah concluded.
Opening times for pools will be;
- Quirindi - Early morning swim Monday, Wednesday and Friday 6 to 8am, Monday to Friday 2 to 6pm and Saturday/Sunday 10am to 7pm.
- Werris Creek - Monday to Friday 3 to 6pm and Saturday/Sunday 11am to 7pm.
Further enquiries can be made through the Recreation Centre on 6746 3122 or email email@example.com
LPSC Mayor, Councillor Andrew Hope, said the swimming pools are important community facilities and he encouraged as many people as possible to use them, to improve their economic viability
Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) is advising residents they can dispose of their unwanted household chemicals at the Quirindi Landfill/Waste Depot on Saturday 22 October between 9am and 4pm.
“Leftover chemicals in the home including paints, solvents, and pesticides and even cleaning products can be hazardous and should be disposed of safely. On the 22nd residents can drop off their old and unwanted household chemicals with a maximum container size of 20 litres or 20kgs,” said LPSC Regulatory Services Manager, Steve Ryder.
“Handle and transport chemicals carefully, never mix chemicals as this may produce dangerous reactions and wherever possible keep all chemicals in their original containers.
Ensure containers are clearly labelled and well-sealed. If you do not know the contents, label the container 'unknown chemical'. Liquid can leak during transport so wrap containers holding liquids securely in newspaper, place in sturdy plastic bags and then in plastic buckets or trays. Make sure you keep household chemicals away from passengers in your vehicle,” he said.
“For the sake of your family’s safety check your cupboards and sheds for any old or unwanted chemicals and bring them along. For further info regarding the materials accepted, visit www.cleanout.com.au. Business-related and commercial quantities of chemicals are not accepted,” Steve concluded.
The Household Chemical Cleanout event is organised by Northern Inland Regional Waste (NIRW) and supported by LPSC.
Liverpool Plains Shire Council’s Weeds Officers are reminding landholders that the current prolific spring vegetation growth includes St Johns wort and the plants are starting to become erect. The developing buds will give way to the easily recognised, bright yellow five petal flowers that contain the toxin hypericin. This causes photosensitization, nervous disorders and impacts fertility in livestock. Individual plants can produce many thousands of viable seeds that can last for many years in the soil as a seed bank.
This Noxious Weed presents a major threat to grazing productivity, the profitability of agricultural enterprises as well as property values. St Johns wort can impact human and livestock health too, both in the short and long term.
Land owners and managers are urged to make a start now on an effective weed control program. Be diligent; inspect and monitor your known infestation sites now, with the intention of eliminating maturing perennial plants before viable seed is produced. Be on the lookout for any new occurrences. By being proactive and implementing an integrated weed management program, you will reclaim infested areas with productive pasture.
LPSC’s Noxious Weeds Inspectors are available to discuss options and your concerns for control. For further information contact them on 6746 1755. Private property inspections and roadside control work is planned for the 2016-17 St Johns wort growing season. Council’s inspectors will also be conducting Aerial Inspections over coming weeks.
Book lovers are invited to join author Frank Warburton when he presents a talk on his trilogy, Timeless Revenge, Where Worlds Collide and The Route to All Evil at Quirindi Library, from 11am on Friday 21 October.
Frank Warburton was born London UK in 1949. He quickly gained independence after losing his parents at 16. These were most difficult times but an experience that steered him through the rest of his life. He joined the British Army in 1968 and served abroad for the whole of his military service. On leaving the military in 1980, he immigrated to Australia and settled in Queensland.
Frank’s fictional books contain some authentic and personal experiences that will appeal to the conspirators among us. He will be pleased to answer questions including what’s involved in writing and publishing,” said Quirindi Librarian, Marcela Krasny.
During his presentation, light refreshment will be provided thanks to Friends of Quirindi Library and signed copies of his books will also be available for purchase. Come along and enjoy meeting an interesting personality,” Ms Krasny concluded.
Booking are essential and can be made via Quirindi Library’s Facebook page or calling 6746 2350.
Members of Blacktown community groups - Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) has a Sister City relationship with Blacktown City Council - will be visiting the Shire from the 21st to 23rd October. This visit follows a very successful one last year.
“Representatives from Mt Druitt and Riverstone Men’s Shed, Mt Druitt and Blacktown Probus, the Woodworkers Club, Blacktown Community Garden Club, the Historical Society, Blacktown City Band and Blacktown Bowling Club are coming to meet their counterparts in the Liverpool Plains as well as socialising with the wider community,” said the Manager of LPSC’s Visitor Information Centre”, Nikki Robertson.
“We’re very excited that the group will also include two Youth Ambassadors as well as two students visiting from Blacktown’s sister City in Korea and they will visit Quirindi High School. They will be accompanied by Sister City coordinators Gordon Allen and Greg McCallum, Blacktown City Council Events Manager Peter Filmer as well as the Chairman of the Blacktown Sister City Committee Leo Kelly and his wife Janet and a Korean Official accompanying the Korean students,” Mrs Robertson said.
“Blacktown’s Showgirl Emily Kos and her Mum will be meeting the 2015 Quirindi Showgirl Millie Macdonald and 2016 Showgirl Sophie McKenzie,” she said.
“Other events include a Blacktown vs Quirindi Bowling Competition on Friday afternoon. On Saturday we are taking the visitors for a trip around the Liverpool Plains and they are attending the Oktoberfest at the Royal Theatre on Saturday night. After a busy schedule they will head back home on the Sunday,” she continued.
“On behalf of LPSC I’d like to thank all the community groups, the Showgirls plus the High School who will be involved in welcoming our visitors and showing them a good time,” she said.
Mrs Robertson said the aim of the visit was to show our city cousins both the advantages and challenges of living in rural Australia, promoting our region as a good place for tree-change as well as a tourism destination, plus encouraging cooperation between our communities to get the most out of our sister-city relationship.
“If LP community members run into our visitors I encourage them to share a smile and to make them feel welcome,” Mrs Robertson concluded.
Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) is advising residents that it is taking all possible steps to gain the cooperation of the owner of the vacant property at 30 Station Street Quirindi (north of the Commonwealth Bank) to carry out the repairs necessary to the building’s awning to make it safe so the barricades and diversion in place can be removed.
“Currently these barricades are required due to concern that the awning is in immediate risk of collapse as it is in an advanced state of dilapidation. Awnings are part of the buildings to which they are attached and are the responsibility of the owner of the building, even when an awning is located over a public footpath,” said LPSC Regulatory Services Manager, Steve Ryder.
“The NSW Department of Planning and Infrastructure outline certain steps Council must undertake in consultation with building owners to identify potential safety issues with awnings and to ensure appropriate action is taken to avoid the risk of collapse.
“A risk assessment has been completed for this property and Council has advised the owner of their responsibility for the safety of their building and their legal liability if the awning fails or collapses,” Mr Ryder said.
“Council is aware that the owner has made enquiries to have works carried out but is concerned at the time this is taking and as a result the continuing inconvenience to pedestrians.
“Whilst there are further legal steps Council can take, we would prefer the owner to move quickly on repairs to avoid the issue ending up in court with associated legal costs,” he continued.
“Council apologises for the inconvenience to the public, is seeking to gain the property owner’s cooperation to expedite repairs and in the meantime the diversion measures in place are considered necessary and appropriate in the interest of community safety,” Mr Ryder concluded.
Awning at risk of collapse in Station St Quirindi
Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) and the Willow Tree 355 Harvest Committee are cordially inviting residents and other interested parties to the official launch of the new Willow Tree Freedom Camping Area, located at the Recreation Grounds, end of Recreation Street, commencing at 10.30am on Friday 28 October.
LPSC Mayor, Councillor Andrew Hope, said the new facility was an important part of Council’s Recreational Vehicle (RV) Strategy and will provide toilets and showers which visitors will be able to access via a keypad code.
“The location is pet friendly with potable water available and the ability to cater for large caravans and motorhomes,” Councillor Hope added.
“LPSC’s RV Strategy is designed to promote the Shire as a friendly and attractive region to visit and is already seeing results. We’re now listed amongst the top 10 Shires for RV users in NSW,” he said.
“The new facility at Willow Tree will complement the Caravan Park in Quirindi plus existing camping sites at Wallabadah and Premer along with some redevelopment taking place at Currabubula. We are working towards improving more basic sites at Caroona and Spring Ridge with new sites to be established at Werris Creek and Blackville. Visitors can stay for up to 72 hours at each site providing the opportunity to not only discover the LPS from the Great Dividing Range through the Slopes to the magnificent Plains of the Caroona Basin but also to use us as a base to explore adjoining regions,” he continued.
Councillor Hope said Willow Tree is a great place for visitors from the Sydney and Hunter districts to begin their tour of the region with its award winning Visitor Information Centre, Café 2339 and Kamilaroi a People and Highway interpretive walkway. He said Willow Tree also boasts the award winning Graze Restaurant, the recently established gourmet Plains Pantry, and several other eateries.
“We have forged good relationships with the Australian Caravan Club (ACC) and are currently liaising with the Campervan and Motorhome Club of Australia Ltd (CMCA) for CMCA RV Friendly Destination status. There is no doubt that “word of mouth” endorsement by travellers is also paying dividends for us and we will continue to build on this,” Councillor Hope concluded.
Along with its award winning Visitor Information Centre and Café 2339 Willow Tree also boasts the award winning Graze Restaurant, the recently established gourmet Plains Pantry, and several other eateries to cater for tourist’s requirements.
Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) has held its first meetings since the recent local government elections. To begin the day’s proceedings all seven councillors took an oath/affirmation of office at a signing ceremony to meet legislative requirements.
LPSC Councillors at oath/affirmation ceremony – (l to r) Councillors Paul Moules, Ian Lobsey OAM, Rob Webster, Virginia Black, Andrew Hope, Doug Hawkins and Ken Cudmore.
The oath/affirmation ceremony was followed by an Extraordinary Meeting for the election of the Mayor and Deputy Mayor. Under the new local government requirements the Mayor is elected for a two year term. Council also resolved to elect the Deputy Mayor for a two year term. In the ballot for Mayor, Councillor Andrew Hope was elected. Councillor Doug Hawkins was elected as Deputy Mayor.
Councillor Hope thanked the local community for their support and his fellow Councillors for the honour of re-electing him to the Mayoral position.
“I will be working with my colleagues to ensure LPSC provides strong and effective representation, leadership, planning and decision making that delivers the best possible value for residents and ratepayers. We will encourage community involvement in local government and continue to grow the consultative processes developed during Council’s last term. Council will continue to work co-operatively with the Namoi Joint Organisation
(JO) of Councils, neighbouring Councils and the State Government to achieve desired outcomes and appropriate services for the local community. Importantly, Council will recognise diverse local community needs and will act fairly, ethically and without bias to deliver,” Councillor Hope said.
Councillor Andrew Hope was elected Mayor with Councillor Doug Hawkins elected Deputy Mayor.
Councillor Hawkins said he felt privileged to have been elected to the role of Deputy Mayor and that he would support the Mayor and work closely with fellow Councillors to ensure the best outcomes for the Shire’s residents.
Councillor Hope added that continued economic development was vital and he would be championing the continuation of, and further progress on, the good groundwork put in place during Council’s last term. He also said that Council would continue its Fit for the Future process continuing to build a long term sustainable future for the Shire.
“Our greatest asset is our people, our community members and Council’s dedicated staff. Working together we can build for the future whilst delivering the grass roots services and amenity the community expects and deserves,” Councillor Hope concluded.
It was announced at the meeting that Councillor Hope has also been elected as the Chair of the Namoi JO of Councils.
Following the election of Mayor and Deputy Mayor all Councillors participated in an induction workshop to further outline their roles and responsibilities. This workshop was conducted by Steve Bartlett, Executive Officer of the Namoi JO of Councils.
All LPS Councillors participated in an induction workshop – (l to r around the table) Councillors Ken Cudmore, Doug Hawkins, Virginia Black, Paul Moules, Namoi JO Executive Officer Steve Bartlett standing with Councillor Andrew Hope and Councillors Ian Lobsey OAM and Rob Webster.
Liverpool Plains Shire Council’s (LPSC) Home Support Services (HSS) are asking the wider community to take 1 minute out of their day to offer thanks and show support for our unpaid carers. The theme for National Carers Week (Sunday 16 to Saturday 22 October) says it all Carers Count.
Most people will be amazed to know that Carers make an enormous contribution to our communities and their caring roles are valued nationally at $60.3 billion annually, that’s more than $1 billion per week! Carers are people who provide unpaid care and support to family members and friends who have a disability, mental illness, chronic condition, terminal illness, an alcohol or other drug issue or who are frail aged. As such Carers are an integral part of Australia's health system and are the foundation of our aged, disability, palliative and community care systems.
LPSC HSS Services, based in Willow Tree, Quirindi and Werris Creek, will be hosting a Mystery Bus Trip for Carers on Tuesday 18 October departing Werris Creek HSS at 8.45am, Quirindi HSS at 9.00am and Willow Tree HSS at 9.20am, to say thank you and to show appreciation to Carers.
All Carers are most welcome to attend and should call their local HSS Office, Willow Tree 6747 1525, Quirindi 6746 4545 and Werris Creek 6768 7505 to book their seat.
Anyone at any time can become a Carer, and National Carers Week provides an opportunity to raise awareness among all Australians about the diversity of carers and their caring roles.
Carers Australia are providing the opportunity for every one of us to say thank you to Carers simply by putting a message on their ‘Thank You Wall’ at http://www.carersweek.com.au/make-a-pledge/. Imagine the impact if there was one ‘thank you’ for every one of Australia’s 2.8 million unpaid carers! Put in perspective that’s 12% of the population. Putting these numbers in the spotlight helps demonstrate how much Australia counts on Carers.
Audrey and Geoffrey Smith of Werris Creek have been caring for their sister Karen for over
20 years and would not have it any other way. (Pictured Karen and Audrey)
LPSC’s HSS is funded by the Australian Government Department of Social Services.
Chances are you personally are a Carer,need a Carer or know a Carer. Carers Count so let’s all take a minute and say thank you.
Ratepayers and residents are advised that there will be two Extraordinary Meetings of Council on MONDAY 10 OCTOBER 2016. The meetings are open to all and will be preceded by the affirmation/oath of office ceremony for the Councillors commencing at 9.00 am. The first meeting, commencing at 9.30 am, is for the Election of the Mayor and Deputy Mayor for a two (2) year period. This will be followed by a Councillor Induction Workshop. The second Extraordinary Meeting will commence at 2.30 pm to consider matters that have arisen over the preceding six weeks affected by the 2016 Elections. Ratepayers and residents are encouraged to attend both the ceremony and the meetings. For further information please contact Kerrie Tolmie on 6746 1755.
Ph: 6746 1755
Fax: 6746 3255
R S (Ron) Van Katwyk
Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC) has raised concern at the number of people who ignored road closure signs during recent rain events and the number of people who had to be towed out of causeways and gullies.
“It’s been a long time since we had widespread road closures as a result of flooding so it is important people know their responsibilities and obey the law. ‘Road Closure’ signs and barriers across roads are legally enforceable. It is illegal to pass them, to bypass or move them. As waters start to subside the road must be inspected for safety reasons before an authorised officer removes the barriers to reopen the road. From erection to removal it is illegal to use the roadway impacted and people who flaunt the law can face penalty infringements,” said LPSC Director Engineering Services, Greg Tory.
It is illegal to pass road closed signs until such time as they are removed by authorised officers.
“Many people misjudge the depth of fast moving water and are unaware of damage that has been caused to the roadway putting themselves, their families and other motorists at risk. During the recent rain events at least a dozen motorists were pulled out of flood water and not only were they at risk, they also put Council or SES crews at risk when trying to save them. This is unacceptable and Council will have to consider passing details of those who break the law on to police for further action. Safety must be the number 1 priority,” he said.
Mr Tory said that while closure barriers were placed across some main roads not all roads are so treated. He said on many minor and side roads motorists needed to make informed judgements based on the water height indicators and the speed of flowing water.
“Obviously for someone in a small vehicle with water flowing quickly at 0.2 metres it probably isn’t safe to enter a crossing. 4WDs and trucks may be able to go through slightly deeper water provided it is not flowing too rapidly but in all situations Council encourages people to calculate on the side of caution. Remember you may not be able to see damaged roadway that may cause accidents when it is covered by water,” he said.
On many roads motorists need to make decisions based on the water height indicators placed on each side of flood ways. Motorists are encouraged to make decisions calculated on the side of caution.
“Floods can cause inconvenience however being held up or unable to proceed is nowhere near as inconvenient as being caught in rising waters or having a vehicle washaway,” he continued.
“During the last event we had occasions where motorists moved barriers and a case where a large vehicle simply ran over and smashed them. If a smaller vehicle followed and was washed away and a fatality eventuated the offenders could face manslaughter charges.
“Council will be discussing these issues further with our emergency service partners to develop further ways of getting this vital message through to the community. Nobody wants to see vehicles damaged or worse still a loss of life because individuals make the wrong decision,” Mr Tory concluded.
Saturday 22 October is set to be a big day across the Liverpool Plains Shire with Council (LPSC) supporting the National Garage Sale Trail, Australia’s big day with over 10,000 garage sales happening around the country. Then from 6pm till late the Royal Theatre is getting turned into a German Beer Hall with German Beer, German Food and music and fun for everyone to enjoy Oktoberfest. LPSC will also be welcoming visitors from Sister City Blacktown to the event.
“Garage Sale Trail, is now in its sixth year is a free, council-powered day of garage sales that attracts bargain-loving shoppers nationally. With over 2 million pre-loved treasures expected to be up for sale for many, it's Australia’s national day of haggling. Council is proud to support an event that has positive outcomes for the environment,” said LPSC Regulatory Services Manager, Steve Ryder.
Liverpool Plains Shire Council’s (LPSC) ongoing development of the Werris Creek Community/RFS Shed precinct has been delayed by the long periods of rain over recent weeks.
Council has prepared the site for the bitumen sealing of the car park however with the ongoing wet weather 8 – 10 days of fine weather are required to dry out some wet spots before the sealing can be completed.
Council’s Works Engineer reported that because of this requirement it could still be several weeks until the project can be finalised.
In July, LPSC agreed to provide an additional $44,000, sourced from Federal Financial Assistance Grants (FAG) funding, to complete required road upgrade works adjacent to the Community/RFS Sheds and Lions Club Park area in Single Street.
The final cost for the bitumen seal of the Community/RFS Sheds precinct along with kerb and guttering works for the full frontage of the site is approximately $50,000. In addition the work in front of Lions Club Park is estimated to cost around $20,000.
These projects are an important component of the ongoing rehabilitation of the western side of Single Street.
Local Government NSW (LGNSW) Chief Executive, Donna Rygate, and President, Keith Rhoades, have paid a visit to the Liverpool Plains Shire Council (LPSC).
LGNSW is the peak industry association that represents the interests of NSW general purpose councils, 12 special purpose councils and the NSW Aboriginal Land Council.
The purpose of the visit was to discuss local government issues being faced by LPSC.
(L to R) – LPSC Business Director Steve Potts, LGNSW Executive Director Donna Rygate, Councillor Rob Webster, LPSC GM Ron Van Katwyk, LGNSW President Keith Rhoades, Councillor Ian Lobsey OAM, LPSC Director Engineering Services Greg Tory and Director Environmental Services and Economic Development Donna Ausling.
LPSC Councillors Doug Hawkins and Andrew Hope, State MP for Upper Hunter Michael Johnsen, LPSC Councillor Virginia Black, Upper Hunter Shire Mayor Wayne Bedggood and A/Prime Minister and Member for New England Barnaby Joyce gathered at the corner of the New England Highway and Merriwa Road at Willow Tree for the announcement of $5.5 million through the Federal Governments Heavy Vehicle Productivity Funding to upgrade the Merriwa to Willow Tree Road for complete B-Double access. Mr Joyce said the project will reduce operational costs and safety concerns plus improve animal welfare standards. He said travel distances between Merriwa and Liverpool Plains Shire will be shortened by 44km each way, and cattle producers will save 50km to the Killara Feedlot. The project is a collaborative project between the Upper Hunter Shire Council and Liverpool Plains Shire Council.