Thursday 2 November 2017
In Council Chamber, 25 Ferres Boulevard, South Morang
TOM JOSEPH NORTH WARD
RICKY KIRKHAM NORTH WARD
EMILIA LISA STERJOVA NORTH WARD
SAM ALESSI SOUTH EAST WARD
NORM KELLY SOUTH EAST WARD
ALAHNA DESIATO SOUTH EAST WARD
MARY LALIOS SOUTH EAST WARD
LAWRIE COX SOUTH WEST WARD
STEVAN KOZMEVSKI SOUTH WEST WARD
CAZ MONTELEONE SOUTH WEST WARD
KRIS PAVLIDIS SOUTH WEST WARD
SIMON OVERLAND CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
RUSSELL HOPKINS DIRECTOR COMMUNITY SERVICES
STEVE O’BRIEN DIRECTOR PLANNING AND MAJOR PROJECTS
NICK MANN DIRECTOR CITY TRANSPORT & PRESENTATION
HELEN SUI DIRECTOR CORPORATE SERVICES
LIANA THOMPSON DIRECTOR PARTNERSHIPS & ENGAGEMENT
MICHAEL TONTA MANAGER GOVERNANCE
ORDER OF BUSINESS
The Chief Executive Officer submitted the following business:
The Chief Executive Officer acted as temporary Chairperson in accordance with the Procedural Matters Local Law.
1.2 MEETING OPENING AND PRAYER
The Chief Executive Officer opened the meeting with a prayer at 7.00pm.
On behalf of the City of Whittlesea the Chief Executive Officer recognised the rich Aboriginal heritage of this country and acknowledged the Wurundjeri Willam Clan as the Traditional Owners of this place.
Cr Tom Joseph Councillor (North Ward)
Cr Ricky Kirkham Councillor (North Ward)
Cr Emilia Lisa Sterjova Councillor (North Ward)
Cr Sam Alessi Councillor (South East Ward)
Cr Norm Kelly Councillor (South East Ward)
Cr Alahna Desiato Councillor (South East Ward)
Cr Mary Lalios Councillor (South East Ward)
Cr Lawrie Cox Councillor (South West Ward)
Cr Stevan Kozmevski Councillor (South West Ward)
Cr Caz Monteleone Councillor (South West Ward)
Cr Kris Pavlidis Councillor (South West Ward)
Mr Simon Overland Chief Executive Officer
Mr Steve O'Brien Director Planning and Major Projects
Mr Russell Hopkins Director Community Services
Mr Nick Mann Director City Transport & Presentation
Ms Helen Sui Director Corporate Services
Ms Liana Thompson Director Partnerships & Engagement
Mr Michael Tonta Manager Governance
The Chief Executive Office asked if Council wished to elect a Mayor for a term of 2 years.
MOVED: Cr Kirkham
Seconded: Cr Kelly
The Chief Executive Office invited nominations for the Office of Mayor for 2017/2018.
nominator: Cr Alessi
THAT Cr Kris Pavlidis be nominated for the Office of Mayor for 2017/2018.
THAT Cr Caz Monteleone be nominated for the Office of Mayor for 2017/2018.
Cr Sam Alessi spoke in support of Cr Kris Pavlidis’ nomination for Mayor.
Cr Ricky Kirkham spoke in support of Cr Caz Monteleone’s nomination for Mayor.
The Chief Executive Officer then called for a show of hands for each nominee.
Following a vote by show of hands for each nominee, the Chief Executive Officer declared Cr Kris Pavlidis elected Mayor for 2017/2018.
3.2 ELECTION OF THE DEPUTY MAYOR FOR 2017/2018
The Chief Executive Office invited nominations for the Office of Deputy Mayor for 2017/2018.
nominator: Cr Cox
THAT Cr Emilia Lisa Sterjova be nominated for the Office of Deputy Mayor for 2017/2018.
nominator: Cr Kirkham
THAT Cr Caz Monteleone be nominated for the Office of Deputy Mayor for 2017/2018.
Cr Laurie Cox spoke in support of Cr Emilia Lisa Sterjova’s nomination for Deputy Mayor.
Cr Ricky Kirkham spoke in support of Cr Caz Monteleone’s nomination for Deputy Mayor.
The Chief Executive Officer then called for a show of hands for each nominee.
Following a vote by show of hands for each nominee, the Chief Executive Officer declared Cr Emilia Lisa Sterjova elected Deputy Mayor for 2017/2018.
4. SPEECH FROM INCOMING MAYOR
Good evening to my colleagues, Chief Executive Officer, Directors, former Councillors Pam McLeod and Adrian Spinelli and former Mayor John Fry, Danielle Green MP for Yan Yean and very importantly our Whittlesea community here and otherwise.
I acknowledge the rich Aboriginal history of this country and pay my respects to the Wurundjeri people, their elders past and present and of course any other elders who are here tonight.
It is indeed an honour to be elected as Mayor of our wonderful City for the next 12 months and I thank my fellow Councillors for placing their trust in me. I look forward to serving with a high standard of integrity, transparency and accountability.
These are exciting, new and changing times for us here in the City of Whittlesea and I am grateful to have the privilege to lead a strong, skilled and committed team, moving forward with a firm direction and a clear vision of where we are heading.
I would like to acknowledge the outgoing Mayor we are heading towards a renewed invigorated regime. In the words of the great man Gough Whitlam: “IT’S TIME”. It’s time to revisit the core democratic function of our role as defined by the people, for the people, and to work in and receive direction from the people.
Importantly, it is time to raise the bar and assume the leadership role that the City of Whittlesea has enjoyed in the past. With a high standard of integrity, transparency and accountability, to deliver outcomes that our community requires and deserves.
Both around the chamber table, with other levels of Government and the broader sector.
There is no doubt the very fabric of our environment is changing, at an unprecedented rate, with confronting challenges.
When I last stood at this podium, all those years ago (10), it was a different social and physical landscape. Growth was approximately at 80 people per week and the crisis at hand was the impending drought. We strived for and delivered one new job per household.
Our growth is now 131 people per week; with 72 babies born per week. This sees growth in next 20 years being 353,910, a more than 140,000 increase from 210,000 today. We are cognizant that in many respects we are playing catch up.
It is exciting to visualise the rich tapestry that will be our City in the near future.
We know that we have to be better prepared and wiser in our planning approach, and avoid impediment on our resident’s amenity, safety and our City’s liveability.
We know very well about the critical traffic congestion on our roads and this is a current priority issue. Why should a 15 minute school trip take 45 minutes? Indeed that is what our community is facing particularly in the northern part of the municipality.
We are acutely aware of the lagging infrastructure in our municipality. Why should local schools such as Epping Views Primary School struggle at 300% it’s capacity? A school that was built for about 400 -500 students now having almost 1500 students.
We encourage business growth and development of our core service sector - Hospitals and the Cooper Street Employment Precinct.
Why should more than 50% of our residents travel outside the City of Whittlesea for work?
We are intensely aware and deeply concerned with the high incidence of family violence in the City of Whittlesea and the exorbitant level of gambling loss. This is unacceptable. Our community deserves better and deserves our unwavering support.
With unwavering determination we are committed to continuing our strong advocacy to address these issues in close collaboration and partnerships with our local Members of Parliament.
It is this approach with our local Members of Parliament that has delivered successful outcomes for our community, such as the Mernda Rail Extension, the Wholesale Markets in Epping and the imminent O’Herns Road interchange.
As the sphere of government closest to the people, local government has a real opportunity to develop its vision and strategic direction in a close collaborative relationship with its local residents.
It is for this reason that we have a well-considered Community Partnerships and Engagement Directorate and policy framework.
It is crucial that elected Councillors are as broadly representative as possible of our diverse community. I welcome recently elected Cr Tom Joseph to our team and proudly acknowledge you as the first elected member of an Indian Australian background. I also welcome our youngest elected representative Cr Emilia Sterjova, Deputy Mayor. In fact our table at this point in time enjoys notable diversity and it’s wonderful to see.
We are a proudly diverse municipality with approximately 50% of our population speaking a language other than English at home. We celebrate this diversity in all its forms and respectfully acknowledge our differences. Diversity forms a significant value of Council’s core mission and is enshrined in our policies. More recently we welcomed to our City a number of families seeking asylum.
In a similar fashion, we recognise that more than 50% of our population are women. We work with vigour toward redressing gender balance and equity through the creation of concrete opportunities for supported participation at all levels of decision making.
We also recognise the significant number of people who are living with disability and their careers in our community and support the Whittlesea Disability Network through our policies.
As a local planning authority we take very seriously our responsibility and obligation to deliver on state of the art precincts such as the award winning University Hill Mixed Use Integrated Prototype Precinct. We have never been a “growth at any cost” municipality and we will continue to ensure that we maintain our commitment to preserving and enhancing our natural and community character.
Our Housing Diversity Strategy is another example of robust community consultation to guide our development approach as we move forward.
This is further reflected in addressing the need for social and affordable housing in the municipality and we have recently negotiated a 5% stock allocation with key developers.
At a time when local government faces considerable constraints, it is more crucial than ever that we continue to advocate to all stakeholders for better outcomes for our community.
Our partnership relationship are critical as we move forward on significant projects such as Deveny Road finalisation, advancing Edgars Road connectivity, the duplication of Plenty Road up to Bridge Inn Road.
I look forward to working with the other 10 Councillors and our Executive Leadership Team around the table to engage in healthy robust discussion and debate for the wellbeing of our residents and towards building a sustainable and proud City.
I am proud to be part of a team that can thrive in the face of adversity, deliver for its residents and makes the right decisions for the right reasons.
Thank you all. Very importantly my family, firstly my mother who was a trail blazer in her era, secondly Zoe my daughter, who keeps crashing that glass ceiling and thirdly my son Christopher my rock, together with my friends and the community who have stuck by me all of these years!!
It has been a long journey to get here so thank you very much. I’m delighted to be here, I look forward to the year ahead.
THERE BEING NO FURTHER BUSINESS THE MAYOR DECLARED THE MEETING CLOSED AT 7.27PM.
CONFIRMED THIS 21ST DAY OF NOVEMBER 2017.
CR KRIS PAVLIDIS