Barkly Shire Council Newsletter
Barkly Shire Council
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Barkly Shire Council
Issue no 6, May 2009
Barkly Shire Council
This month the Council met in Ampilatwatja as part of its commitment to meet in communities on a rotating basis with meetings in Tenant Creek. These meetings are a great opportunity for you to see and meet with the elected Council and the Senior staff on a formal basis. I also welcome to the management team Brian Phillips as Shire Service Manager in Elliott and Valda Shannon as Cultural Advi sor. Both will play important roles in ensuring that services are provided to communities and that Staff and Councillors are well advised of cultural and community issues. The permanent full time staff now employed in Barkly Shire exceed 200 and this is well above the previous level of 158 em ployed in the former Town and community Councils. It is also pleasing to report that over 68% of staff employed are Aboriginal and this reflects a positive outcome from an active campaign to employ local people in real jobs. There are still vacancies in a number of areas and Council is keen to employ local people wherever possible. This month I believe we may see the finishing touches to a new collective union agreement covering all staff of the Barkly Shire. This process has been ongoing for over 12 months now and it will be pleasing to have an agreement in place soon. The condition of our plant and equipment is an ongoing issue, this month the Street sweeper at Tenant Creek has been out of action for extensive repairs, unfortunately there is no plant reserve to fund the replacement of plant and no recognition of this cost by agencies involved in funding Council services. Plant replacement will be an important issue for the Council in upcoming budget deliberations. F R O M T H E C E O S D E S K C O N F L I C T W I T H P L A N N I N G A P P R O V A L S Page 2 B A R K L Y S H I R E U P D A T E The approval of a new school and teachers accommodation at Arlparra did not take into consideration responsibility for rubbish removal, road sealing, kerbing, drainage, landscaping etc. which would be a mandatory requirement if it were to happen in mainstream townships anywhere else in Australia. In this case, Council is required to assume responsibility to relocate and manage the waste facilities to enable the develop ment of the new school. When asked how such a development could be approved without the usual planning approvals in place, Council was told by Department of Planning staff, that moving the waste facility to another location was not a planning issue and that funding should be sought from the Department of Local Government to carry out this work. This response would bring howls of protest in Alice Springs or Darwin if it were to happen there. It would appear that major building renovations and construction projects that generate huge amounts of waste have also been approved without any consideration as to where the waste materials created by such developments will be disposed of. It would appear Barkly Shire is not considered important enough to be considered before new developments take place in the region. Jeff SowiakCEO Barkly Shire Council
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