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Agenda

 

OF Ordinary
COUNCIL MEETING

HELD ON

Tuesday 5 May 2020

AT 3.00pm

summons

 

You are advised that a Meeting of Council has been called by the Acting Chief Executive Officer on Tuesday, 5 May 2020 in Council Chamber, 25 Ferres Boulevard, South Morang at 3.00pm for the transaction of the following business.

 

When attending a Council Meeting a condition of entry is to check-in upon arrival.  Staff are available to assist.

 

J CARBONE

ACTING CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER


Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                        Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

 

 

ADMINISTRATOR

 

LYDIA WILSON                                ADMINISTRATOR

 

 

SENIOR OFFICERS

 

 

JOE CARBONE                                 ACTING CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER

BELGIN BESIM                                  DIRECTOR COMMUNITY SERVICES

HELEN SUI                                         DIRECTOR CITY TRANSPORT & PRESENTATION

AMY MONTALTI                                DIRECTOR CORPORATE SERVICES

JULIAN EDWARDS                           DIRECTOR PARTNERSHIPS, PLANNING & ENGAGEMENT

MICHAEL TONTA                              MANAGER GOVERNANCE

 


Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                       Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

 

ORDER OF BUSINESS

 

The Acting Chief Executive Officer submits the following business:

1.            Opening.. 9

1.1         MEETING OPENING AND PRAYER.. 9

1.2         ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF TRADITIONAL OWNERS STATEMENT. 9

1.3         Present.. 9

2.            Apologies.. 9

3.            Declarations of Interest. 9

4.            Confirmation of Minutes of Previous Meeting.. 9

5.            Questions, Petitions and Joint Letters.. 9

5.1         Questions To ADMINISTRATOR.. 9

5.2         Petitions.. 11

Nil Reports.. 11

5.3         Joint Letters.. 13

Nil Reports.. 13

6.            Officers' Reports.. 15

6.1         Partnerships, Planning & Engagement. 15

6.1.1       PLANNING SCHEME AMENDMENT C245 - REQUEST FOR AUTHORISATION FOR A HERITAGE OVERLAY ON 90 AND 100 BINDTS ROAD, WOLLERT. 15

6.1.2       6 Pleasant Road Thomastown - Planning Permit Application No. 718660 - Construction of Four Dwellings.. 31

6.1.3       Statutory Planning Practices (IBAC - Operation Sandon, City of Casey) 59

6.2         Community Services.. 69

6.2.1       Provision of Delivered Meals Service.. 69

6.3         City Transport and Presentation.. 73

Nil Reports.. 73

6.4         Corporate Services.. 75

6.4.1       PANEL CONTRACT EXPENDITURE DISTRIBUTION.. 75

6.4.2       COUNCIL ACTION PLAN 2019-20 - Q3 PROGRESS REPORT. 81

 

6.5         Executive Services.. 93

6.5.1       Review of Council Delegations to the Chief Executive Officer.. 93

7.            Notices of Motion.. 113

Nil Reports.. 113

8.            Questions to Officers.. 113

9.            Urgent BusineSS.. 113

10.         Reports from Delegates Appointed BY Council TO Other Bodies. 113

11.         Confidential Business. 115

11.1       Partnerships, Planning & Engagement. 115

Nil Reports.. 115

11.2       Community Services.. 117

Nil Reports.. 117

11.3       City Transport and Presentation.. 119

Nil Reports.. 119

11.4       Corporate Services.. 121

Nil Reports.. 121

11.5       Executive Services.. 123

11.5.1    Outcome of Independent Investigation and Probity Audit  123

11.6       Notices of Motion.. 125

Nil Reports.. 125

12.         Closure.. 127

 

 


Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                        Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

 

Note:

At the Administrator’s discretion, the meeting may be closed in accordance with Section 89 of the Local Government Act 1989. The provision which is likely to be relied upon to enable closure is set out in each item. These reports are not available for public distribution.

 

 

Question Time:

During the meeting, the Administrator will answer questions from residents and ratepayers. Questions should be submitted in writing no later than 3pm on the day of the ordinary Council Meeting unless this unreasonably prevents or hinders you from participating. A Question Time form can be downloaded from Council’s website and copies of the form are available at the meeting. Refer: https://www.whittlesea.vic.gov.au/about-us/council/council-meetings/

 

Council is committed to ensuring that all residents and ratepayers of the municipality may contribute to Council’s democratic process and therefore, if you have special requirements, please telephone the Governance Team prior to any Council Meeting on 9217 2294.

 

 

Large Attachments:

Where large attachments form part of the Report, due to the size of the attachments – a copy has not been provided in the Agenda document

Copies of these attachments are available for inspection by the public at the following locations:

a)      Council offices at 25 Ferres Boulevard, South Morang; and

b)      Council’s internet site – http://cam.whittlesea.vic.gov.au/

 

 


Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                        Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

1.         Opening

1.1       MEETING OPENING AND PRAYER

The Acting Chief Executive Officer will open the meeting with the reading of the prayers:

 

Almighty God, we humbly beseech thee, to vouchsafe thy blessing upon this council.  Direct and prosper its deliberations to the advancement of thy glory and the true welfare of the people of the Whittlesea City Council.

 

Our father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name, Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive them that trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil, For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, for ever and ever.

 

Amen

 

1.2       ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF TRADITIONAL OWNERS STATEMENT

The Administrator will read the following Acknowledgement of Traditional Owners Statement.

 

On behalf of the Whittlesea City Council I recognise the rich Aboriginal heritage of this country and acknowledge the Wurundjeri Willum Clan as the traditional owners of this place.

 

I would also like to personally acknowledge Elders past, present and emerging.

 

1.3       Present

2.         Apologies

3.         Declarations of Interest

4.         Confirmation of Minutes of Previous Meeting

Ordinary Meeting of Council held 7 April 2020;

Adjourned Ordinary Meeting of Council held 15 April 2020;

Adjourned Ordinary Meeting of Council held 16 April 2020; and

Special Meeting of Council held 16 April 2020.

5.         Questions, Petitions and Joint Letters

5.1       Questions To ADMINISTRATOR

5.2       Petitions

Nil Reports

 

5.3       Joint Letters

Nil Reports   


Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                        Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

6.         Officers' Reports

6.1       Partnerships, Planning & Engagement

6.1.1      PLANNING SCHEME AMENDMENT C245 - REQUEST FOR AUTHORISATION FOR A HERITAGE OVERLAY ON 90 AND 100 BINDTS ROAD, WOLLERT

Attachments:                        1        90 and 100 Bindts Road, Wollert

2        Photos of 90 and 100 Bindts Road, Wollert

3        Proposed HO Curtilage - 90 Bindts Rd (Aerial)

4        Proposed HO Curtilage - 90 Bindts Rd (Map)   

Responsible Officer:           Director Partnerships, Planning & Engagement

Author:                                  Strategic Planner   

 

RECOMMENDATION SUMMARY

That Council:

1.       Seek authorisation from the Minister for Planning to prepare and exhibit an amendment to the Whittlesea Planning Scheme that seeks to apply the Heritage Overlay to 90 Bindts Road Wollert, generally in accordance with the curtilage identified in Attachment 4 of this report, and amend the existing Heritage Overlay (HO161) for 100 Bindts Road, Wollert;

2.       Set a Panel Hearing date, with the agreement of Planning Panels Victoria, before notice of amendment is given under section 10 of the Planning and Environment Act 1987, as part of the standard process; and

3.       Authorise the CEO (or their delegate) to determine the ultimate heritage curtilage for 90 Bindts Road, as part of any negotiated outcomes that may occur through the amendment process, but generally in line with the curtilage identified in Attachment 4 of this report.

KEY FACTS AND / OR ISSUES

·    This report seeks Council approval to request authorisation from the Minister for Planning to commence a Planning Scheme Amendment to apply and amend controls on two sites of local heritage significance.

·    The site at 90 Bindts Road, Wollert (Ewert Farm) has been identified as having local significance in a heritage assessment commissioned by Council, that recommends permanent protection by applying the Heritage Overlay.  The Amendment also seeks to correct an error in identification of the existing Heritage Overlay (HO161) for 100 Bindts Road, Wollert to identify it as Bindts Farm.

·    90 Bindts Road was the subject of a recent demolition request under Section 29A of the Building Act 1993. Council officers have suspended the demolition request to provide a temporary hold on the site until interim heritage controls are approved.  However, the Minister for Planning will only consider interim controls once it has been demonstrated that Council is advancing an amendment for permanent controls.

·    Council has a statutory obligation to undertake local heritage studies to identify places of local (or higher) heritage significance.

·    This Amendment seeking permanent controls will provide the opportunity for the affected landowners to make a submission to the amendment, and if necessary, for such a submission to be heard before an independent Panel before a final decision is made.

 

Report

PURPOSE

This report is requesting Council approval to seek authorisation from the Minister for Planning to prepare and exhibit a Planning Scheme Amendment to apply and amend heritage controls at 90 and 100 Bindts Road, Wollert. Refer to Attachment 1.

Council has a statutory obligation to undertake local heritage studies, as required, to identify places of local (or higher) heritage significance. This amendment is part of the on-going incremental identification, assessment and protection of significant local heritage places.

Background

There are currently 167 individual sites and 1 precinct afforded Planning Scheme protection under the HO (Heritage Overlay) under the Whittlesea Planning Scheme. This represents a culmination of significant work undertaken by the City of Whittlesea to identify, assess, and protect places of local heritage significance across the municipality.

Planning application 718008 was lodged with Council in October 2018 for a multi-lot subdivision (116 lots including 1 super lot) of 40-100 Bindts Road, Wollert, which is part of the Quarry Hills Precinct Structure Plan (PSP). The application proposes to remove the buildings on 90 Bindts Road and only retain the farmhouse on 100 Bindts Road. The application is now subject to a VCAT hearing.

Council obtained a heritage assessment for the site as part of the consideration of the planning application which identified 90 Bindts Road (Ewerts Farm) as having local heritage significance and warranting local heritage protection. It also identified an error in the identification of the existing HO161 heritage citation for 100 Bindts Road, which was previously thought to be Ewerts Farm, but is now known to be Bindts Farm. Refer to Attachment 2.

The applicant for the planning permit was been made aware of Council officers’ intention to include the site in an upcoming HO amendment request to Council.

A demolition request under Section 29A of the Building Act was subsequently lodged for 90 Bindts Road, in line with the planning application. Council officers have suspended the demolition request which provides a temporary hold on the site until interim heritage controls are approved.  However, the Minister for Planning will only consider interim controls once it can be demonstrated that Council is advancing an amendment for permanent controls.

PROPOSAL

This Amendment seeks to apply the HO under Clause 43.01 of the Whittlesea Planning Scheme to areas within the western portion of 90 Bindts Road, Wollert which have been identified as having local significance in a heritage assessment commissioned by Council, as shown in Attachment 3 and 4. The Amendment also seeks to correct an error in identification of the existing Heritage Overlay (HO161) for 100 Bindts Road, Wollert to identify it as Bindts Farm. The properties are adjacent lots located on the eastern side of Bindts Road, Wollert.

Application of the HO will provide permanent heritage protection over the sites and enable Council to ensure that any proposals for these sites do not adversely or irreversibly alter a place’s heritage value. Standard planning permit requirements are set out in Clause 43.01 (Heritage Overlay) of the Whittlesea Planning Scheme for all places to which the HO applies.

 

This generally requires a permit to:

·    Demolish or remove a building, including part of a building;

·    Construct a building, including part of a building;

·    Externally alter a building;

·    Construct or display a sign; or

·    Other specific planning controls as identified in the Schedule to Clause 43.01.

The extent of the area affected by the HO is generally shown on the Planning Scheme map for each place. This is commonly referred to as the ‘curtilage’. A Statement of Significance acts as a reference for each heritage place through identification of the site’s contributing features. It is used to inform the Planning Scheme Amendment process as well as a guide for future applications to be assessed against the heritage criteria identified for the site.

The Schedule to Clause 43.01 (Heritage Overlay) formally identifies site specific information for each place as a unique item, including:

·    The address and description of the heritage place;

·    Whether it is also of State significance and listed on the Victorian Heritage Register or whether it is an Aboriginal heritage place;

·    The specific planning controls that may apply to ensure the integrity of the heritage features. These include external paint, internal alteration and tree controls;

·    Identifies whether uses that are otherwise prohibited in the underlying zone may be permitted to support the adaptive re-use of the heritage place.

It is important to note that the HO does not:

·    Prohibit development;

·    Require landowners to restore, update or maintain their properties;

·    Require a planning permit for routine maintenance or repairs that do not change the appearance of a heritage place;

·    Allow public access to private properties.

NOTIFICATION / STATUTORY EXHIBITION

The Planning and Environment Act 1987 requires notice to be given of an amendment. This process will be initiated through the resolution at this Council meeting where Council approval is sought to request authorisation from the Minister for Planning to prepare and exhibit the amendment.

Should authorisation be granted, the proposed Planning Scheme Amendment C245 will be required to undergo a standard exhibition process, including a 28 day notification period to potentially affected landowners, prescribed Ministers and State Referral Authorities.

Any submissions must be received by the date identified in the correspondence. The exhibition process will include:

·    A letter notifying the owner of the proposed Planning Scheme Amendment and identifying how they may participate in and make a submission through the exhibition process, if they choose to do so. It will also identify critical dates for making a submission as required;

 

·    A Statement of Significance for each property which identifies the heritage context, significance and contributing features that warrant Planning Scheme (HO) protection;

·    A map identifying the extent of the proposed HO curtilage and the specific planning controls that are proposed for the property.

CRITICAL DATES

The Minister for Planning will only consider the request for interim heritage controls for the site at 90 Bindts Road, Wollert, once it has been demonstrated that Council is advancing this Amendment for permanent controls on the site.

If authorisation from the Minister for Planning is granted, it is likely that the exhibition of the Amendment will commence in June 2020. Council officers will report to Council on the results of the exhibition process. If submissions are received and remain unresolved, Council Officers will recommend that a Planning Panel Hearing be established.

DISCUSSION

This Amendment which seeks to apply a HO to 90 Bindts Road, also seeks to correct the existing HO161 for 100 Bindts Road to replace the name Ewerts farmhouse with Bindts Farm.

The properties are adjacent lots located on the eastern side of Bindts Road, Wollert and are located within the Quarry Hills PSP. Given the nature of the PSP process and the scale of the sites being considered, it is not unusual that 90 Bindts Road was not identified as part of that process. Notwithstanding, the lack of a HO does not prevent Council from identifying and seeking protection of other sites identified through subsequent planning processes such as the current planning application for a multi-lot subdivision.

The strategic basis for protecting these sites identified with local heritage significance is the 2019 report conducted by Graeme Butler in 2019; “Assessment of Heritage Significance: 40 – 152 Bindts Road, Wollert.” The Amendment will ensure the conservation and enhancement of structures and other landscape features which have been identified in the report as having contributory or significant elements.

As 90 Bindts Road is under imminent threat of demolition, an application has been made to the Minister for Planning under Section 20(4) of the Planning and Environment Act 1987, for an Interim HO (Amendment C243). The Minister will only consider the request for interim controls once it has been demonstrated that Council is advancing an amendment for permanent controls.

Ewerts Farm - 90 Bindts Road and Bindts Farm – 100 Bindts Road

The Ewert farm complex at 90 Bindts Road dates back to the 1860s and 1880, and forms part of the early German settlement of the area. The identified elements of significance that make up Ewerts Farm, include a house with basalt facade, two outbuildings, stone fences, a stone track, water tank, earth dam and grasslands with River Red Gum trees.

The structures and landscape elements identified as requiring protection are located in the western section of the site, which is framed by Darebin Creek to the east, and Bindts Road to the West. This area is mostly characterised by flat grasslands, but the land to the east of the creek rises steeply to the flanks of Quarry Hill or The Morang Hills, with mainly exotic grasses, weeds such as Gauze, and indigenous mature River Red Gums. The proposed HO curtilage covers all of the significant elements associated with the complex, including a 5 metre buffer to the stone walls, and the landscape east of the complex to maintain the relationship with the Darebin Creek. Refer to Attachment 3 & 4.

The name Ewerts Farm was previously thought to belong to the neighbouring property at 100 Bindts Road which is already covered by HO161; but the property at 100 Bindts Road is now known to be the site of Bindts Farm. HO161 covers the farmhouse, outbuildings and other structures on the site.

The association of 100 Bindts Road as Ewerts Farm was initially identified in the ‘City of Whittlesea Heritage Study’ (Meredith Gould Architects, 1991). A later ‘Whittlesea Heritage Study (Context Pty Ltd, 2009-2011; reviewed in 2014) identified Ewerts Farm as 90 - 100 Bindts Road in the heritage citation. However, through the amendment process to implement the findings of the Context report (Amendment C153) a submission was received which suggested the structures described in the citation belonged solely to 100 Bindts Road.  Subsequently, 90 Bindts Road was omitted from Amendment C153, and the HO was only applied to 100 Bindts Road (HO161). The name Ewerts Farmhouse was retained in the citation report, although it was identified in the Schedule to Clause 43.01 (Heritage Overlay) only as ‘Farmhouse’. 

The more recent report conducted by Graeme Butler in 2019; “Assessment of Heritage Significance: 40 – 152 Bindts Road, Wollert” included detailed assessments including Statements of Significance for both 90 Bindts Road (Ewerts Farm) and 100 Bindts Road (Bindts Farm). This report has since clarified that the two farms are in fact linked by sisters Maria and Magdalena Maria of the Rosel family of Westgarthtown (now part of Thomastown) who each married Carl Ewert of 90 Bindts Road, and Christian Bindt of 100 Bindts Road respectively.   

This Amendment seeking permanent heritage controls to 90 Bindts Road, and a correction to the name of HO161 at 100 Bindts Road, Wollert will provide the opportunity for the affected landowners to make a submission to the amendment, and if necessary, for such a submission to be heard before an independent Panel before a final decision is made.

referral

The decision to seek interim heritage protection over 90 Bindts Road and this subsequent Amendment for permanent controls arose following discussions between Council’s Building and Planning, and Strategic Planning and Economic Development departments. 

The applicant for the planning permit was made aware of Council officers’ intention to include the site in an upcoming HO amendment request on 23 January 2020. A demolition request was subsequently received by Council on 28 January 2020, which has been suspended.

Policy strategy and legislation

Planning and Environment Act 1987

As the Planning Authority, Council must give effect to the objectives of planning in Victoria, including: “to conserve and enhance those buildings, areas or other places which are of…historical or otherwise special cultural value” (Section 4(d)).

Ministerial Directions

The Amendment will be prepared considering the following ministerial directions:

·    Ministerial Direction: The Form and Content of Planning Schemes

·    Direction No. 11: Strategic Assessment of Amendments

Planning Practice Notes

The Amendment documents will be prepared considering the following practice notes:

·    PPN01: Applying the Heritage Overlay

·    PPN46: Strategic Assessment Guidelines

Whittlesea Planning Scheme

·    Clause 15.03-1S (Heritage Conservation) sets out the State planning policy that must be applied through all local Planning Schemes. This compels Local Governments to “Identify, assess and document places of natural and cultural significance as a basis for their inclusion in the planning scheme.”

·    Clause 21.08-4 (Built Environment and Heritage) identifies the Local planning policy objective: “To identify, protect and enhance the City’s Aboriginal and European heritage.”

·    Clause 22.04 (Heritage Conservation Policy) identifies the following Local planning policy objectives:

“To identify, protect and maintain the integrity and character of Whittlesea’s heritage places,”

“To avoid the demolition or removal of dry stone walls.”

To support the conservation and repair of dry stone walls and their sympathetic integration within new developments.”

“Require subdivision and development to have regard to the heritage value of dry stone walls and their original alignments.”

link to strategic risks

Strategic Risk Not linked to the risks within the Strategic Risk Register.

No risks have been identified in relation to this Amendment.  Council has an obligation to protect places and sites with significant heritage, architectural, aesthetic, scientific and cultural value, including Aboriginal cultural heritage and post contact heritage places.

 

Links to whittlesea 2040 and the CoUNCIL Plan

Goal                              Liveable neighbourhoods

Key Direction              Well-designed neighbourhoods and vibrant town centres

 

The Amendment is consistent with the objectives set out in Whittlesea 2040 and the Council Plan, particularly, Council Plan Key Direction 2.2: “Well designed neighbourhood and vibrant town centres,” which includes the following action:

“Improve protection of historic dry-stone walls – use technology and planning tools so developers can protect and incorporate these important heritage features more effectively into our landscape and neighbourhoods.”

Dry-stone walls are amongst the contributory and significant structures identified at 90 Bindts Road, Wollert. Protecting this site will allow them to be incorporated into the planning for the subject site, and surrounding land as it is developed.

Declarations of Conflicts of Interest

Under section 80C of the Local Government Act 1989 officers providing advice to Council must disclose any interests, including the type of interest.

The Responsible Officer reviewing this report, having made enquiries with the relevant members of staff, reports that no disclosable interests have been raised in relation to this report.

Conclusion

The Amendment proposes to apply a Heritage Overlay to areas within the western portion of 90 Bindts Road, Wollert identified as having local significance, and to correct an error in identification of the existing Heritage Overlay (HO161) for 100 Bindts Road, to identify it as Bindts Farm. These sites have been identified as having local heritage significance and warrant protection under the Whittlesea Planning Scheme.

90 Bindts Road was subject to a recent demolition request under Section 29A of the Building Act. Council officers suspended the demolition request to provide a temporary hold on the site until interim heritage controls are approved.  The Minister for Planning will only consider interim controls once it has been demonstrated that Council is advancing an amendment for permanent controls

The Amendment supports Council’s recognised commitment and obligation to protect its local heritage through the ongoing identification of sites of local (or higher) significance and application of appropriate heritage protection controls.

The Amendment will provide the opportunity for the affected landowners to make a submission to the amendment, and if necessary, for such a submission to be heard before an independent Panel before a final decision is made.

 

RECOMMENDATION

THAT Council resolve to:

1.       Seek authorisation from the Minister for Planning to prepare and exhibit an amendment to the Whittlesea Planning Scheme that seeks to apply the Heritage Overlay to 90 Bindts Road Wollert, generally in accordance with the curtilage identified in Attachment 4 of this report, and amend the existing Heritage Overlay (HO161) for 100 Bindts Road, Wollert and;

2.       Set a Panel Hearing date, with the agreement of Planning Panels Victoria, before notice of amendment is given under section 10 of the Planning and Environment Act 1987, as part of the standard process.

3.       Authorise the CEO (or their delegate) to determine the ultimate heritage curtilage for 90 Bindts Road, as part of any negotiated outcomes that may occur through the amendment process, but generally in line with the curtilage identified in Attachment 4 of this report.

 


Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                                                  Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

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Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                                                  Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

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Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                                                  Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

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Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                                                  Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

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Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                        Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

6.1.2      6 Pleasant Road Thomastown - Planning Permit Application No. 718660 - Construction of Four Dwellings

Attachments:                        1        Architectural plans

2        Locality Maps   

Responsible Officer:           Director Partnerships, Planning & Engagement

Author:                                  Senior Planner   

APPLICANT:                        Kara Design and Consulting Pty Ltd

COUNCIL POLICY:              22.01 – Environmentally Sustainable Development

                                               22.11 – Development Contributions Plan Policy

                                               22.16 – Housing Diversity and Design

ZONING:                               Residential Growth Zone – Schedule 1

OVERLAY:                            Development Contributions Plan Overlay – Schedule 3

REFERRAL:                          Nil

OBJECTIONS:                      Two Objections and a Petition with Ten Signatories

RECOMMENDATION SUMMARY

That Council resolve to approve Planning Application No. 718660 and issue a Notice of Decision to Grant a Permit for the construction of four dwellings at 6 Pleasant Road, Thomastown.

KEY FACTS AND / OR ISSUES

·    It is proposed to construct four double storey dwellings on the land. 

·    Notification of the application was undertaken and two objections, including one petition with ten signatories, have been received.  Grounds of objection relate to; lack of airflow, overshadowing, overlooking, additional traffic, collection of waste, noise and decreased property values.   

·    The proposal, including the density and design of the built form, achieves an acceptable outcome in response to the policies of the Whittlesea Planning Scheme.  The proposal provides an acceptable response with regards to neighbourhood character, car parking and external and internal amenity and therefore support is recommended subject to conditions.

 

Report

SITE AND SURROUNDING AREA

The site is a residential property located on the northern side of Pleasant Road in Thomastown, 400m north of Thomastown train station and shopping precinct (see Attachment 1). 

The site contains a 15.9m frontage to Pleasant Road, an average depth of 46.9m and a total site area of 743.0m2.  The site is relatively flat. 

The site currently contains a single storey brick dwelling, with pitched tiled roof, and a detached single car space brick garage.  Vehicle access to the dwelling is obtained from a crossover and accessway along the eastern side boundary.  A low brick front fence encloses the site, with small and medium sized shrubs and grass landscaping within the front setback.

The surrounding area is characterised by both single and double storey dwellings, with a combination of older and newer housing stock.  Ground floors of dwellings are constructed from either brick veneer or weatherboards, with rendered first floors, and consistent tiled roofs.  Secondary additions and detached outbuildings are present alongside and rear boundaries.  Front fences, if present, are consistently low in overall height, however vary in transparency and construction materials.  Landscaping is present within front setbacks and more limited in rear secluded private open spaces.  

Directly to the north of the site are single dwelling developments fronting Chappell Street.  Directly to the east of the site are single dwelling developments fronting Pleasant Road and Chappell Street as well as medium density developments fronting Mustang Lane.  Directly to the south of the site is Pleasant Road and medium density developments fronting Pleasant Road.  Finally, directly to the west of the site are single dwelling developments fronting Pleasant Road as well as single and medium density developments fronting Chappell Street.  

Medium density developments are located at; 2, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 12, 14, 16, 18, 25, 27, 29, 30, 34 and 38 Pleasant Road, 6, 8, 11, 14, 17, 19, 23, 25, 27, 28, 29, 31 and 35 Central Avenue, 14, 20, 27, 29, 34, 38, 42, 44, 46, 48 and 56 Mount View Road, and 1, 8, 9, 13, 16, 18, 19, 22, 24, 28, 34, 37, 38 Chappell Street.  

The site is located in proximity to the following sites, services and infrastructure

·    Thomastown Train Station and Shopping Precinct (400m south);

·    Thomastown Mosque (650m south-east);

·    Maria Montessori Pre-school (700m south-west);

·    Main Street Reserve (700m west);

·    Thomastown Primary School (750m south); 

·    Lalor Library (800m north-east);

·    Thomastown Recreation and Aquatic Centre (1.0km south-west);

·    Peter Lalor Vocational College (1.4kms north); and 

·    Lalor Primary School (1.8kms north-east). 

restrictions and easements

The site is formally described as Lot No. 187 on Plan of Subdivision No. 013444. 

The site is not covered by any Restrictive Covenants or Section 173 Agreements. 

A 3.0m wide drainage and sewerage easement runs along the northern rear boundary of the site.   

Proposal

The application seeks approval for the construction of four dwellings (see Attachment 2).  The existing dwelling and associated structures will be demolished. 

Further details of the proposal are outlined in the following table;

Dwelling No.

Height / Scale

No. of Bedrooms

Setbacks

Secluded Private Open Space

Car Parking

Dwelling No. 1

Double Storey

3

0m side (east)

6.0m front (south)

4.0m side (west)

12.0m² (Balcony)

Single Garage and Tandem Car Space

Dwelling No. 2

Double Storey

3

4.0m side (east)

4.0m side (west)

40.0m²

Double Garage

Dwelling No. 3

Double Storey

2

4.0m side (east)

4.0m side (west)

42.0m²

Single Garage

Dwelling No. 4

Double Storey

3 + Study

3.2m rear (north)

0m side (east)

0m side (west)

47.0m²

Double Carport

Public Notification

Advertising of the application has resulted in two objections, including one petition with ten signatories, being received. The grounds of objection can be summarised as follows: 

1.       Lack of air flow onto the land to the east and west (4 and 8 Pleasant Road); 

2.       Overshadowing onto the land to the east (4 Pleasant Road);

3.       Overlooking onto the land to the west (8 Pleasant Road);

4.       Additional traffic and on-street car parking on Pleasant Road;

5.       Collection of waste bins; 

6.       Noise; and

7.       Decreased property values.

A response to the grounds of objection will be provided later in this report. 

HOUSING DIVERSITY STRATEGY

The Housing Diversity Strategy (HDS) was introduced into the Whittlesea Planning Scheme by Planning Scheme Amendment C181, gazetted on 22 October 2015.  The HDS provides a strategic framework for future residential development in the established areas of the municipality for the next 20 years.  It aims to guide the future location and diversity of housing stock and identifies areas of housing growth and change, including areas where future housing growth will not be supported.  In general, it aims to encourage higher residential densities and a diversity of housing types and sizes into areas within convenient walking distance to public transport and activity centres.

The HDS is a reference document in the Whittlesea Planning Scheme.

The site is within a Neighbourhood Renewal change area, which recognises areas close to services and facilities.  In this instance the site is only some 70m east of the High Street commercial area.  The preferred housing types are noted as townhouses, multi-units and small scale apartments.

 

The Neighbourhood Renewal change area has a number of Key Design Principles, including

·    A range of medium building heights;

·    Building heights that achieve passive surveillance;

·    Building heights that are of a human scale and integrate well with existing housing stock;

·    Reduced front setbacks to encourage activation to the street while still allowing space for low level landscaping;

·    Medium to higher site coverage to balance increased density and landscaping opportunities;

·    Usable private open space, balconies and communal shared spaces; and

·    Landscaping to complement medium to higher density built form.

ASSESSMENT AGAINST CLAUSE 55 OF THE WHITTLESEA PLANNING SCHEME

The following table provides details on whether the proposal complies with the requirements of Clause 55 of the Whittlesea Planning Scheme.  Under these provisions a development;

·    Must meet all of the objectives; and

·    Should meet all of the standards. 

If Council is satisfied that an application for an alternative design solution meets the objective, the alternative design solution may be considered.

 

ü - Compliance
× -  Non compliance

Objectives

Standards

Comments

B1

Neighbourhood Character

ü

ü

The existing neighbourhood character contains both single and double storey dwellings.  Older original housing stock consistently contains double fronted facades and pitched roofs.  More recent housing stock consistently contains single fronted facades, with protruding porches features, and pitched roofs.  Balconies are also present at 22 and 30 Pleasant Road.  Brick veneer, weatherboard, render and concrete roof tiles dominate the materials palette, while colour schemes vary.  Low level landscaping in consistently provided in both the older and more recent housing stock.  

The preferred neighbourhood character for the area is addressed in Clause 21.09-2 – Housing Diversity of the Local Planning Policy Framework and in Council’s Housing Diversity Strategy as detailed earlier in this report. 

Subject to conditions should a permit be issued, the proposal accords with the existing and preferred neighbourhood character. 

 

 

 

The sitting of the dwellings, including the number of crossovers and the walls on boundaries, is consistent with other medium density developments in Pleasant Road, including 7 Pleasant Road, which has two crossovers.  

The first floor footprints of the dwellings are well articulated, which renders the double storey nature of the built form acceptable. 

The southern façade of Dwelling No. 1, fronting onto Pleasant Road, has minor depth variation, which alongside the pitched roofs and the varied materials and colours palette is considered acceptable.

The provision of a balcony as the primary secluded private open space for Dwelling No. 1 is a new feature not seen previously in the immediate vicinity, however balconies themselves are not a new element along Pleasant Road. 

The front setback contains an area of 5.0m by 5.0m, which can accommodate the provision of a large canopy tree as well as other low level landscaping. 

A combination of slot and highlight windows have been provided to Bedroom Nos. 2 and 3 along the southern Pleasant Road façade of Dwelling No. 1.  As unobstructed walls are available elsewhere within each bedroom, larger or additional windows should be provided to improve ground floor passive surveillance, which can be addressed as a condition should a permit be issued.   

B2

Residential Policy

P

P

The site is located within a Residential Growth Zone – Schedule 1 and is within the Neighbourhood Renewal Change Area of Council’s Housing Diversity Strategy.  Clause 22.16 – Housing Diversity and Design of the Local Planning Policy Framework also applies to the site. 

Schedule 1 – Neighbourhood Renewal Areas of the Residential Growth Zone contains several design objectives, which include to:-

·      Encourage contemporary building design that softens the visual bulk of development by utilising architectural elements and a variety of materials, and that provides an active interface with the public realm.

·      Landscape plans will maximise landscaping within the front setback and throughout the site, which may include on balconies, roofs and walls.

·      Encourage secluded private open space and communal open space to be functional for residents through its orientation and design. 

·      Encourage the development of housing that is accessible and adaptable.

The proposal achieves the objectives of Council’s Housing Diversity Strategy, Clause 22.16 – Housing Diversity and Design and Schedule 1 – neighbourhood Renewal Areas of the Residential Growth Zone. 

The design of the dwellings as well as the selection of materials and colours is contemporary and will soften the almost continuous built form. 

A 5.0m by 5.0m area for landscaping has been provided in the front setback as well as other smaller landscape opportunities within the ground floor secluded private open spaces of Dwelling Nos. 2, 3 and 4. 

Dwelling No. 1 will have a reverse living layout, with a south west facing balcony overlooking Pleasant Road.  While the orientation of this balcony is not ideal, the location of the balcony does remove the need for 1.7m high screening, which allows for improved outlook for the residents of the dwelling as well as passive surveillance of Pleasant Road.    

B3

Dwelling Diversity

N/A

N/A

Only applicable in developments of ten or more dwellings. 

B4

Infrastructure

P

P

 

B5

Integration with the Street

P

P

 

B6

Street Setback

P

x

Pursuant to Schedule 1 of the Residential Growth Zone, a street setback of 7.0m is required. 

A street setback of 6.6m has been provided, noting this increases to 6.8m and 6.9m  across the varied depth of the front façade. 

The street setback provided is considered acceptable due to; the minor reduction sought, the 5.0m by 5.0m unobstructed landscape area available, the well-articulated southern façade of Dwelling No. 1 and the contemporary selection of materials and colours. 

B7

Building Height

P

P

 

B8

Site Coverage

P

P

 

B9

Permeability

P

P

 

B10

Energy Efficiency

P

P

 

B11

Open Space

N/A

N/A

 

B12

Safety

P

P

 

B13

Landscaping

P

Condition required

A landscape plan was submitted as part of the application, which identifies suitable landscaping.  This landscape plan must be updated to match; the submitted Sustainable Design Assessment and any amended architectural plans, which should be addressed as a condition should a permit be issued. 

B14

Access

P

P

The provision of two 3.0m wide crossovers represents 37.9% of the frontage of the site, which satisfies Standard B14.  The location of the crossovers will also allow for the provision of one on-street car parking space. 

B15

Parking Location

P

P

 

B17

Side and Rear Setbacks

P

P

 

B18

Walls on Boundaries

P

P

 

B19

Daylight to Existing Windows

P

P

 

B20

North-facing Windows

N/A

N/A

 

B21

Overshadowing Open Space

P

P

40.0m2 of secluded private open space on each of the abutting lots will receive five hours of unobstructed sunlight. 

B22

Overlooking

P

Condition required

The existing 1.6m high paling fence along the eastern side boundary must be increased to a minimum 1.8m to prevent overlooking in accordance with Standard B22.  This should be addressed as a condition of any permit issued. 

B23

Internal Views

P

P

 

B24

Noise Impacts

P

P

The noise generated by the proposed development is considered acceptable for a residential zoned area. 

B25

Accessibility

P

P

 

B26

Dwelling Entry

P

P

 

B27

Daylight to New Windows

P

P

 

B28

Private Open Space

P

P

The proposal satisfies the requirements of Schedule 1 of the Residential Growth Zone. 

B29

Solar Access to Open Space

P

P

 

B30

Storage

P

P

 

B31

Design Detail

P

Condition required

It is noted that an Arborist Report was submitted as part of the application to ensure the vegetation on the abutting land to the east (4 Pleasant Road) will not be destroyed as a result of the development.

It is also noted that eaves have not been used on all facades of all dwellings, which can be addressed as a condition should a permit be issued. 

While use of darker materials is suitable for trims, framing and highlights, the use of darker materials for large expanses of walls should be replaced with a lighter coloured material, which can be addressed as a condition should a permit be issued.

B32

Front Fences

N/A

N/A

 

B33

Common Property

P

P

 

B34

Site Services

P

P

   

Environmentally Sustainable development (ESD)

Clause 22.01 – Environmentally Sustainable Development and Clause 53.18 – Stormwater Management in Urban Development apply to the proposal. 

A Sustainable Design Assessment (SDA), including a BESS Report and STORM Rating Report, were submitted as part of the application.

The proposal complies with the aforementioned planning policies, subject to an amended SDA as well as amended architectural and landscape plans, which should be addressed as conditions should a permit be issued. 

CAR PARKING 

Clause 52.06 – Car Parking of the Whittlesea Planning Scheme prescribes the rate and design standards for car parking spaces required on site.  Pursuant to this Clause the following car spaces are required.

Dwelling No.

No. of Bedrooms

Car Spaces Required

Car Spaces Provided

Complies

1

3

2

2

Yes

2

3

2

2

Yes

3

2

1

1

Yes

4

3 + Study

2

2

Yes

 

Requirements

Compliance

Comment

Number of Car Parking Spaces Required Under Table 1

Condition required

It appears the first floor Retreat of Dwelling No. 3 could be easily converted to a third bedroom, which would render the proposal non-compliant with the Number of Car Parking Spaces Required Under Table 1.  A condition should be placed on any permit issued requiring the first floor Retreat of Dwelling No. 3 redesigned to ensure it is not converted to a third bedroom. 

Design Standard 1 – Accessways

P

 

Design Standard 2 – Car Parking Spaces (dimensions)

P

 

Design Standard 3 – Gradients

N/A

 

Design Standard 4 – Mechanical Parking

N/A

 

Design Standard 5 – Urban Design

P

 

Design Standard 6 – Safety

P

 

Design Standard 7 – Landscaping

P

 

DEVELOPMENT CONTRIBUTIONS PLAN OVERLAY - SCHEDULE 3

The site is affected by the Development Contributions Plan Overlay.  Pursuant to Clause 45.06 of the Whittlesea Planning Scheme, the Development Contributions Plan Overlay enables the levying of contributions for the provision of works, services and facilities prior to development commencing.  Schedule 3 to the Overlay requires contributions for drainage infrastructure for medium density residential development at a current rate of $2.19 per square metre of the total site area.  This requirement must be included as a condition on any planning permit that is issued.

Comments on Grounds of Objection

1.   Lack of air flow onto the land to the east and west

The siting of the dwellings complies with the requirements of Clause 55 – Two or More Dwellings on a Lot of the Whittlesea Planning Scheme, therefore the air flow likely to be available as a result of the development is acceptable. 

2.   Overshadowing onto the land to the east

The proposal will result in an acceptable amount of shadowing onto 4 Pleasant Road in accordance with Standards B19 and B21 of Clause 55 – Two or More Dwellings on a Lot of the Whittlesea Planning Scheme.

3.   Overlooking onto the land to the west

A condition will be required on any permit issued to address ground floor overlooking.  All first floor overlooking has been addressed through the use of window treatments.  The overlooking measures accord with Standards B22 and B23 of Clause 55 – Two or More Dwellings on a Lot of the Whittlesea Planning Scheme and are acceptable. 

4.   Additional traffic and on-street car parking on Pleasant Road

The increase in traffic volumes is acceptable for a residential zoned area.  The required number of car parking spaces for residents and visitors has been provided in accordance with the Whittlesea Planning Scheme, noting on-site visitor car parking spaces are not required. 

5.   Collection of waste bins

The collection of waste will occur from Pleasant Road in accordance with Council’s Waste Management Strategy. 

6.   Noise

The noise generated by the proposal is acceptable for a residential zoned area. 

7.   Decreased property values.

It has been consistently held by the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal that any perceived impacts on property values are not a relevant planning consideration. 

Declarations of Conflicts of Interest

Under Section 80C of the Local Government Act 1989, Officers providing advice to Council must disclose any interests, including the type of interest.

The Responsible Officer reviewing this report, having made enquiries with the relevant members of staff, reports that no disclosable interests have been raised in relation to this report.

Conclusion

The application has been assessed against the Whittlesea Planning Scheme, including Clause 22.01 – Environmentally Sustainable Development, Clause 22.11 – Development Contributions Plan Policy, Clause 22.16 – Housing Diversity and Design, Clause 32.07 – Residential Growth Zone – Schedule 1, Clause 45.06 – Development Contribution Plan Overlay, Clause 52.06 – Car Parking, Clause 53.18 – Stormwater Management in Urban Development and Clause 55 – ResCode.  The proposal demonstrates a satisfactory level of compliance, subject to minor modifications.  The density and design of the development, including the double storey nature of the dwellings, is acceptable.  Accordingly, approval of the application is recommended.

 

Recommendation

THAT Council resolve to approve Planning Application No. 718660 and issue a Notice of Decision to Grant a Permit, for the construction of four dwellings in accordance with the endorsed plans, at 6 Pleasant Road Thomastown, and subject to the following conditions:

Payments Required

1.       Prior to the endorsement of the plans required under Condition No. 2 of this Permit, the Permit Holder must pay to Council a contribution for drainage pursuant to Clause 45.06 of the Whittlesea Planning Scheme.  The drainage contribution will be subject to the Consumer Price Index (CPI) applicable at the time of payment.


Plans Required

2.       Before the development permitted starts, a digital copy of amended plans to the satisfaction of the Responsible Authority must be submitted to and approved by the Responsible Authority.  When approved, the plans will be endorsed and will then form part of this Permit. The plans must be generally in accordance with Project No. K045219, Revision No. B, dated 14.01.2020, by Kara Design and Consulting Pty Ltd, but modified to show:

(a)     Larger or additional windows along the southern Pleasant Road façade to improve ground floor passive surveillance for Bedroom Nos. 2 and 3 of Dwelling No. 1;

(b)     The existing 1.6m high paling fence along the eastern side boundary increased to a minimum overall height of 1.8m in accordance with Standard B22 – Overlooking of Clause 55 – ResCode of the Whittlesea Planning Scheme;

(c)     Eaves on all facades of each dwelling;

 

(d)     The expanses of walls, which utilise a darker looking material, replaced with a lighter looking material, noting the use of darker looking materials for trims, framing and highlights is acceptable;

(e)     The first floor Retreat of Dwelling No. 3 redesigned to ensure it is not converted to a third bedroom;

(f)      The following ESD measures;

i.    Rainwater tank sizes as shown in the STORM Rating Report;

ii.   Rainwater tank connections to toilets for flushing and irrigation;

iii.  Raingardens as shown in the STORM Rating Report;

iv.  All internal lighting to achieve a maximum illumination power density of 4W/sqm or less;

v.   A tap in each secluded private open space connected to a rainwater tank;

vi.  Shading to north and east facing sliding doors opening to the secluded private open spaces; and

vii.  A power point in the garage / carport to accommodate infrastructure for charging electric vehicles in future.

(g)     An amended Landscape Plan in accordance in accordance with Condition No. 3 of this Permit;

(h)     An amended Sustainable Design Assessment in accordance with Condition No. 4 of this Permit; and

(i)      Consistency with the amended Landscape Plans and the amended Sustainable Design Assessment.

3.       Concurrent with the endorsement of plans under Condition No. 2 and before the development permitted starts, a digital copy of an amended Landscape Plan to the satisfaction of the Responsible Authority must be submitted to and approved by the Responsible Authority.  When approved, the plans will be endorsed and will then form part of this Permit. The plans must be generally in accordance with Revision No. B, dated 14.01.20, by Born Horticultural, but modified to show:

(a)     Reference to the use of artificial turf deleted; and 

(b)     Consistency with the amended Architectural Plans and the amended Sustainable Design Assessment. 

4.       Concurrent with the endorsement of plans under Condition No. 2 and before the development permitted starts, a digital copy of an amended Sustainable Design Assessment to the satisfaction of the Responsible Authority must be submitted to and approved by the Responsible Authority.  When approved, the Sustainable Design Assessment will be endorsed and will then form part of this Permit. The Sustainable Design Assessment must be generally in accordance with the BESS and STORM Rating Reports, submitted on 30 December 2019, but modified to show:

(a)     Water - Appliances like dishwashers and washing machines if not provided by the Developer inputted as ‘Default or Unrated’ in the BESS rating;

(b)     Water - Bathroom taps at a minimum five star WELS rated;

(c)     Energy – A 6.5 star NatHERS average, with cooling loads not exceeding 22MJ/sqm for each dwelling;

(d)     Energy - All windows to habitable rooms double glazed;

(e)     Stormwater – The rainwater captured from the roof directed to raingardens;

(f)      Stormwater – Raingardens maintained regularly, with buffer strip planting;

(g)     Lighter coloured roofing (Shale Grey or lighter); 

(h)     A minimum 80% of construction and demolition waste recycled;

(i)      The use of low VOC paints and adhesives; and

(j)      All timber to be Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) or Program for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC) certified, or recycled / reused.

Layout Not Altered

5.       The development allowed by this Permit and shown on the plans and / or schedules endorsed to accompany this Permit must not be amended for any reason without the consent of the Responsible Authority.

6.       Once the development has started it must be continued and completed to the satisfaction of the Responsible Authority.

Landscaping

7.       Prior to the occupation of the dwellings hereby approved, landscaping works shown on the endorsed plan must be completed and then maintained to the satisfaction of the Responsible Authority.

Actions Before Use Commences

8.       Prior to the occupation of the dwellings approved, a Compliance Inspection and Report, from the author of the Sustainable Design Assessment, approved pursuant to this Permit, or suitably qualified person or company, must be submitted to the Responsible Authority.

The Compliance Inspection and Report must be to the satisfaction of the Responsible Authority and must confirm that all measures specified in the endorsed Sustainable Design Assessment have been implemented in accordance with the approved documentation.

9.       Prior to the occupation of the dwellings approved, the car parking areas and access ways must be drained, fully sealed and constructed with asphalt, interlocking paving bricks, coloured concrete or other similar materials to the satisfaction of the Responsible Authority.

In areas set aside for car parking, measures must be taken to the satisfaction of the Responsible Authority to prevent damage to fences or landscaped areas.

10.     Vehicular access to the site must be by way of a vehicle crossing constructed in accordance with Council’s Vehicle Crossing Specifications to suit the proposed driveway(s) and the vehicles that will be using the crossing(s).  The location, design and construction of the vehicle crossing(s) must be approved by the Responsible Authority.  Any existing unused or redundant crossing(s) must be removed and replaced with concrete kerb, channel and naturestrip to the satisfaction of the Responsible Authority.  All vehicle crossing works are to be carried out with Council supervision under a Road Opening Permit.

 

11.     The Permit Holder must be responsible to meet all costs associated with reinstatement and / or alterations to Council or other Public Authority assets deemed necessary by such Authorities as a result of the development.  The Permit Holder shall be responsible for obtaining prior specific written approval for any works involving the alteration of Council or other Public Authority assets.

12.     Prior to occupation of any dwelling on the subject site, a letter box and house number to the satisfaction of the Responsible Authority must be provided for each dwelling.

13.     At all times during the construction phase of the development, the Permit Holder must take measures to ensure that pedestrians are able to use with safety any footpath along the boundaries of the site.

14.     Upon completion of all buildings and works authorised by this Permit, the Permit Holder must notify the Responsible Authority of the satisfactory completion of the development and compliance with all relevant conditions.


Infrastructure

15.     Before starting any buildings or works, engineering plans showing a properly prepared design (with computations) for the internal drainage and method of disposal of stormwater from all roofed and sealed areas, including the use of an on-site detention system (if required), must be submitted to Council for approval.  These internal drainage works must be completed to Council’s satisfaction prior to using or occupying any building on the site.

16.     Prior to the occupation of the dwellings hereby approved, the permit holder is required to construct at no cost to Council, drainage works between the subject site and the Council nominated point of discharge.  Such drainage works must be designed by a qualified engineer and submitted to and approved by Council.  Computations will also be required to demonstrate that the drainage system will not be overloaded by the new development.  Construction of the drainage system must be carried out in accordance with Council specifications and under Council supervision.

17.     Prior to the occupation of the dwellings hereby approved, reticulated (water, sewerage, gas and electricity) services must be constructed and available to the satisfaction of the Responsible Authority.

General Amenity – Construction Works

18.     Prior to commencement of any works, a Construction Management Plan must be submitted to and approved by the Responsible Authority.  The plan must include details in relation to:-

(a)     Vehicle access to the site;

(b)     Parking of construction vehicles; and

(c)     Storage of materials / goods.

Prior to commencement of any works, the permit holder must contact Council’s Infrastructure Protection Unit on 9401 5532 to arrange a site inspection to ensure all requirements of the Construction Management Plan have been completed to the satisfaction of the Responsible Authority.

19.     Any litter generated by building activities on the site shall be collected and stored in an appropriate enclosure which complies with Council’s Code of Practice for building/development sites.  The enclosures shall be regularly emptied and maintained such that no litter overspills onto adjoining land.  Prior to occupation and/or use of the building, all litter shall be completely removed from the site.

20.     During the construction phase, a truck wheel washing facility or similar device must be installed and used to the satisfaction of the Responsible Authority so that vehicles leaving the site do not deposit mud or other materials on roadways. Any mud or other materials deposited on roadways as a result of construction works on the site must be cleaned to the satisfaction of the Responsible Authority within two hours of it being deposited.

Permit Expiry

21.     In accordance with the Planning and Environment Act 1987, a permit for the development expires if:

(a)     The approved development does not start within two years of the date of this permit; or

(b)     The approved development is not completed within four years of the date of this permit. 

The Responsible Authority may extend the periods referred to above if a request is made in writing.  This request must be made before or within 6 months after the permit expiry date where the development has not yet started and within 12 months after the permit expiry date where the development allowed by the permit has lawfully started before the permit expires.

Notes

Advanced Trees

An advanced tree under this Permit shall generally constitute the following;

·        Evergreen – minimum container size 45 litre spring ring, calliper at ground level 50mm.

·        Deciduous – minimum calliper at ground level 65mm, minimum height 2 metres.

Easements

No structure may be built over an easement on the subject site without the consent of the relevant Responsible Authority.

Property Numbering

Please note that property addresses and numbering is allocated by Council.  This is usually formalised at the time of the subdivision, however it is Council’s intention to number the proposed dwellings as follows;

Dwelling No. 1 – 1/6 Pleasant Road Thomastown;   

Dwelling No. 2 – 2/6 Pleasant Road Thomastown;

Dwelling No. 3 – 3/6 Pleasant Road Thomastown; and

Dwelling No. 4 – 4/6 Pleasant Road Thomastown. 

Please check with Council’s Subdivision Department to verify all street numberings.

 


Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                                                  Tuesday 5 May 2020

 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                                     Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

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Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                        Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

6.1.3      Statutory Planning Practices (IBAC - Operation Sandon, City of Casey)

Attachments:                        1        Developments table

2        Auditor Brief   

Responsible Officer:           Director Partnerships, Planning & Engagement

Author:                                  Director Partnerships, Planning & Engagement   

 

RECOMMENDATION SUMMARY

1.      That Council note:

a.    The preliminary investigations undertaken to date;

b.    The draft Terms of Reference prepared by Council’s Internal Auditors;

c.    The feedback from the Audit and Risk Committee; and

d.    No decision has been provided to date by IBAC in relation to operation Sandon which would likely provide further guidance to all Councils wanting to ensure best practice.

2.      That Council provide feedback to the Audit & Risk Committee placing any detailed review on hold until the outcomes of the IBAC hearing in relation to operation Sandon at the City of Casey are made available.

KEY FACTS AND / OR ISSUES

·    IBAC commenced public hearings in November 2019 into alleged corruption and to examine practices that occurred at the Casey City Council with respect to planning and development decisions.

·    Council and the Audit and Risk Committee both requested due diligence be undertaken through preliminary investigations and a review of certain practices where those parties listed within the IBAC investigation (Operation Sandon) have had interactions with the City of Whittlesea.

·    Council also requested a Terms of Reference be developed by the Audit and Risk Committee for further investigations to be undertaken by Council’s Internal Auditors.

·    Having reviewed the draft Terms prepared by the Auditors, the Audit and Risk Committee raised concerns that the outcomes from the proposed review might not meet the expectations of Council and would likely be limited, dealing only with internal controls and processes within Council.

·    This report provides an update following presentation and consideration of matters by the Audit and Risk Committee and seeks further guidance from Council around next steps.

 

Report

Introduction

Operation Sandon is a current IBAC investigation at the City of Casey looking at planning practices and decisions involving specific developers and consultants. 

Council and the Audit and Risk Committee both requested due diligence be undertaken given what was happening at the City of Casey through preliminary investigations and a review of certain practices where those parties listed within the IBAC investigation (Operation Sandon) have had interactions with the City of Whittlesea.

Background

At the Audit and Risk Committee meeting in November 2019, the Committee discussed the issues currently being investigated by IBAC in relation to the City of Casey. Issues relating to the City of Whittlesea that were considered included; processes in place at Council to record meetings / discussions with developers and the methods adopted by Council in relation to engaging with former employees that have moved into the broader planning sector and who may be representing third parties who deal with Council. The Committee requested a report be provided at the 27 February 2020 meeting outlining the following:

·    Any dealings (if any), between the City of Whittlesea and the organisations that are currently subject of the IBAC proceedings in relation to the City of Casey over the last three years.

·    An overview of any policies or procedures established in relation to employees that leave Council and then provide consulting services back to the organisation.

Council subsequently considered an item of urgent business at the Council meeting of 17 December 2019 where they resolved:

THAT Council refers the following to the Audit and Risk Committee to develop a terms of reference and undertake a probity audit and review incorporating the following points:

1.    Any developments incorporating more than 5 dwellings and any commercial/retail developments in the past 5 years in the City of Whittlesea with which the following planners and lobbyists, named in the current IBAC proceedings and by various media outlets, have been involved, if any:

 

• John Woodman, planner and developer

• Watsons Pty Ltd

 • Phil Staindl, lobbyist

 • Megan Schutz, planner

 • Lorraine Wreford, lobbyist

 • Heath Woodman; and

 • Wolfdene Development Company in Donnybrook

 

2.   That the list includes details including the date of the application and approval, what rezoning or planning permit application was involved and the names of any other lobbyists, planners, developers, landowners or individuals who made representations on their behalf associated with such applications or approvals;

3.   If required, noting the involvement of persons of interest from the recent IBAC hearings and operation Sandon or others and advice if Council requires the appointment of independent legal experts to audit such findings for potential referral to IBAC.

4.   Consideration of the size and overall scope of the audit and review is subject to a determination by the Audit and Risk Committee.

5.   A report be provided to Council at the conclusion of this review outlining any findings and recommendations.

6.   That the budget for this audit is not to come from the existing Audit and Risk budget and that the ACEO be authorised to proceed with the review under delegation.

7.   That no Councillor member of the Audit and Risk Committee is involved in the shaping or agreement on the terms of reference and associated process.

Officers subsequently presented a report to the Audit and Risk Committee on 5 March 2020, where the Committee requested that officers prepare a further report for Council that details:

·    The work that has been undertaken by management to date in relation to this matter and provided to the Audit & Risk Committee;

·    A copy of the draft Terms of Reference developed by the Internal Auditors including the limitations of such a review;

·    Recommendations of the Audit and Risk Committee; and

·    A request for Council to provide feedback to the Audit & Risk Committee as to how it wishes to proceed.

It is noted that since the above has occurred, the Councillors of the City were formally dismissed by an Act of Parliament on 19 March 2020 and an Administrator appointed.

DISCUSSION

A preliminary desktop assessment was undertaken in December 2019 and January 2020 in relation to understanding whether Council has had any dealings (if any), with the organisations that are currently subject of the IBAC proceedings in relation to the City of Casey.

 

Preliminary enquiries were made with senior staff of the relevant departments of Council as well as a more detailed review of the current IBAC investigation (Operation Sandon) involving the City of Casey.

 

The preliminary enquiries were made with Managers, Unit Leaders and Team Leaders from Building and Planning, Strategic Planning and Economic Development as well as City Design and Transport (Engineering).

 

The enquiries did not extend to councillors and any meetings or discussions that they may or may not have had with any of the people named in Operation Sandon.

 

Preliminary Findings

 

The preliminary findings indicate that the planning framework at the high level (i.e. Precinct Structure Plan, Mernda Strategy Plan, Development Plan Overlays etc) was already established by either Council or the State Government, prior to the 5 year timeframe outlined in the resolution, and they do not relate to any rezoning requests.  Below are the subsequent applications lodged and are/were required to be consistent with the established planning framework.

 

Attachment 1 outlines the developments identified where the parties specified in the Council resolution of 17 December 2019 were involved either as an applicant or consultant.

 

No current officers have ever met, spoken to or had any interactions with Mr Woodman.  No comment can be made at this stage on previous employees as there have been numerous staff through those departments over the years.

 

Some current officers have had limited dealings with Megan Schultz/Shultz Planning and Wolfdene, primarily in relation to an application for the more recent Platform Estate (805 Donnybrook Road & 55 Springs Road, Donnybrook), although recently staff from Schultz Planning advised that they were no longer part of the project.

Watsons (as a consultancy company) are a medium to large Planning and Engineering consultancy representing a number of developers.  Council records indicate that they have been the applicant at the following sites:

-      870 Donnybrook Road, Donnybrook (Two lot Subdivision lodged 23/10/2019);

-      805 Donnybrook Road & 55 Springs Road, Donnybrook (Platform Estate in Lockerbie PSP - approx. 400 lots - permit issued 25/10/2018).  This site also involves Wolfdene as the developers with Schultz Consulting having had involvement; and

-      755 Yan Yean Road, Doreen (Permits issued for sales information centre 9/12/2003 and display village 26/4/2004).

Watsons were also the Engineering company for:

The Summerhill Development, Wollert; and

Mernda Villages, Mernda (both of which are complete).

 

Given that Watsons are a Planning and Engineering company representing a number of developers as either the permit applicant or contractor delivering the construction works, there would have been numerous meetings held over the years as either pre-application meetings, general meetings to work through issues as part of the application process  and multiple post permit interactions, phone calls and meetings as part of construction supervision and resolution of engineering matters such as civil plan approval.

 

There is standard detail, information and correspondence on all planning and engineering files (which may include some file noted records of conversations and minutes), however, given the scale of this task, this process has not been undertaken as part of the preliminary enquiries to date.

 

It is noted that all Strategic land use decisions require a resolution of Council and all subsequent planning application processes that fall within delegation (i.e. Are not reported to Council) require officer management and recommendation as well as senior review and sign off.  These processes have been reviewed by insurance providers as well as through audits previously as suitably managing the risk of potential fraudulent or corrupt activities.

 

Terms of Reference

 

A draft Terms of Reference (refer Attachment 2) was prepared by Council’s Internal Auditors and reviewed by the Audit and Risk Committee who questioned whether the audit as currently proposed would provide the assurance Council was seeking.

 

The Committee noted that the outcomes of any review undertaken would likely be limited, in that only internal controls and processes within Council could be assessed and any dealings with the named parties outside of Council processes could not be considered as Council would have no authority to provide access.

 

 

 

The draft Terms of Reference, including an explanation of the limitations of the review are attached to this report for information.   Given the limitations raised and absence of any findings from IBAC in relation to Operation Sandon, the Audit and Risk Committee now seeks further advice from Council on how it wishes to proceed.

Consultation

Consultation has been undertaken with various senior officers of Council, the Audit and Risk Committee and Council’s Internal Auditors as detailed within this report.

The Audit and Risk Committee have advised as part of this process that it is their view that any review undertaken should not proceed until IBAC has finalised its investigations and the outcomes are known.

Critical Dates

There are no critical dates applicable to this report.

Financial Implications

There were no financial implications associated with preparation of this report.  There will be some unplanned cost associated with any audit undertaken by Council’s Internal Auditors that is presently unbudgeted.

Policy strategy and legislation

The Planning and Engineering industry contains specialist fields, limited professionals and regular job moving.  It is common for a planner or engineer to work for multiple councils, for multiple consultancies or other Government agencies (or a combination of all of the above) over their career.

 

Council has in place a hierarchy of multiple levels of protection for managing the planning decision making process.  This includes the Local Government Act, the requirement for all planning officers to complete ordinary returns declaring interests, the Staff Code of Conduct, the Conflicts of Interest Policy, a specific Planning Conflict of Interest Declaration Form and the Planning operating procedures that go beyond the above listed items.

 

These are brought to the attention of staff when commencing, at induction, reiterated through the performance development plan process and discussed at various meetings (individual, team, department).

 

Specific procedures for ex-employees have not been developed given the above measures that are in place.

link to strategic risks

Strategic Risk Governance - Management - Ineffective governance of Council’s operations and activities by Management resulting in either a legislative or policy breach

The purpose of the review and any associated investigation and audit is to review governance and decision making associated with particular projects where parties subject of a separate IBAC investigation may have had involvement.


 

Links to whittlesea 2040 and the CoUNCIL Plan

Goal                              High-performing organisation

Key Direction              More informed Council decisions based on strong advice and community consultation and engagement

 

Declarations of Conflicts of Interest

Under section 80C of the Local Government Act 1989 officers providing advice to Council must disclose any interests, including the type of interest.

The Responsible Officer reviewing this report, having made enquiries with the relevant members of staff, reports that no disclosable interests have been raised in relation to this report.

Conclusion

This report has been prepared to provide an update to Council on the investigations undertaken to date as well as provide a copy of the draft Terms of Reference developed by Council’s Internal Auditors.

The Internal Auditors have advised that there are limitations of the review in that it is not possible to review processes and controls external to Council in responding to Council’s request for the proposed review.

The Audit and Risk Committee have advised that any review undertaken should not proceed until IBAC has finalised its investigations and the outcomes are known.  This has therefore formed a recommendation that any further review be placed on hold until such time as the investigation at the City of Casey has concluded.

 

RECOMMENDATION

THAT Council resolve to:

1.       Note:

a)      The preliminary investigations undertaken to date;

b)      The draft Terms of Reference prepared by Council’s Internal Auditors;

c)      The feedback from the Audit and Risk Committee; and

d)      No decision has been provided to date by IBAC in relation to operation Sandon which would likely provide further guidance to all Councils wanting to ensure best practice.

2.       That Council provide feedback to the Audit & Risk Committee placing any detailed review on hold until the outcomes of the IBAC hearing in relation to operation Sandon at the City of Casey are made available.

 

 


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Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                                     Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

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Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                        Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

6.2       Community Services

6.2.1      Provision of Delivered Meals Service

Attachments:                        1        Tender Evaluation Summary - Confidential

Confidential in accordance with Section 89(2)(d) of the Local Government Act 1989 as it contains details relating to contractual matters.    

Responsible Officer:           Director Corporate Services

Author:                                  PAG Resource & Project Officer, Aged & Disability   

Acting Chief Executive Officer Explanatory Note
This item was withdrawn from the Ordinary Council Agenda for 7 April 2020 in order to allow for further discussion around the tender. Therefore, this report will be presented at the 5 May 2020 Council Meeting instead.
RECOMMENDATION SUMMARY

It is recommended that contract number 2019-117 for the Provision of Delivered Meals Service:

·    Is awarded to Moreland City Council Food Services;

·    For the tendered schedule of rates in relation to Option 1 (delivery of meals to a designated dispatch point) with total expenditure limited to $1,093,000.00 (excl. GST); and

·    For a term from 4 July 2020 to 3 July 2022 with extension options to 3 July 2024.

KEY FACTS AND / OR ISSUES

The tender evaluation panel advises that:

·    A total of four tender responses were received.

·    The recommended tender was the second highest ranked but is considered best value because the higher ranked tenderer was assessed for various reasons as presenting unacceptable risk.

 

Report

Background

The purpose of this contract is to replace the current contract that will expire on 5 July 2020.

Councils Home and Community Care Program for Younger People (HACC PYP) and Commonwealth Home Support Program (CHSP) program provides a range of services to local residents to assist them to continue living in their homes. These services are provided to eligible clients who are frail older people, people with disabilities and/or carers.

Delivered Meals Service provides home delivered meals (Meals on Wheels) to eligible residents assessed as being nutritionally at risk. It also provides delivered meals for Councils CHSP Social Support programs.

Council currently provides approximately 1,708 home delivered meals and 327 meals for Social Support participants per month.

As an essential part of this service all meals provided under this contract must meet a range of nutritional and food safety standards. Due to the health and vulnerability of CHSP eligible residents, it is also imperative that meals provided have a strong appeal to a wide range of people from diverse cultural backgrounds.

Tenders for the contract closed on 18 December 2019.  The tendered prices and a summary of the evaluation are detailed in the confidential attachment.

EVALUATION

No member of the Tender Evaluation Panel declared any conflict of interest in relation to this tender evaluation.

A Tender Probity & Evaluation Plan was designed specifically for this tender process and it was authorised prior to this tender being advertised.  All tenders received were evaluated in accordance with that plan.  The evaluation involved scoring of conforming and competitive tenders according to these pre-determined criteria and weightings:

Criteria

Weighting

Price

45%

Capability

25%

Capacity

15%

Impact

15%

The weightings reflect the relative importance of each element to this particular contract.  They were determined as being most appropriate after considering numerous factors including (but not restricted to) the time, quality, risk and contract management requirements which were likely to have the most impact on the achievement of best value.

Only tenders that were conforming and competitive were fully scored.  Tender submissions that were evaluated as non-conforming or not sufficiently competitive were set aside from further evaluation.  In cases where this occurred the reasons for that outcome are detailed in the confidential attachment.

 

 

 

The evaluation outcome was as follows:

TENDERER

CONFORMING

COMPETITIVE

SCORE

RANK

Tenderer A

Yes

Yes

96.6

1

Tenderer B - Moreland City Council Food Services

Yes

Yes

80.4

2

Tenderer C

No

N/A

-

-

Tenderer D

Yes

No

-

-

Refer to the confidential attachment for further details of the evaluation of all tenders. The risk analysis considered the current COVID 19 pandemic situation. Delivered Meals is deemed an essential service under the Business Continuity Plan. It was deemed that changing providers and implementing new systems was not in accordance with the Business Continuity Plan now. Therefore, the highest ranked tenderer was not recommended for award of this contract because they were assessed for various reasons as presenting unacceptable risk in the last stage of evaluation.

FINANCIAL IMPLICATIONS

Budget for this contract comprises a mix of Commonwealth, State and Council funding. Sufficient funding for this contract is available from existing recurrent budget allocations for the Delivered Meal and Social Support Programs.

link to strategic risks

Strategic Risk Service Delivery - Inability to plan for and provide critical community services and infrastructure impacting on community wellbeing

The provision of delivered meals services is a critical component of support for some of the most vulnerable members of our community.  This essential service ensures people at high-risk have access to nourishing meals that are fundamental to their health and wellbeing.

Links to WHITTLESEA 2040 AND the CoUNCIL Plan

Goal                                                 High-performing organisation

Key Direction                                 Driving better community outcomes through improved service access, satisfaction and advocacy

This contract will help ensure the Delivered Meals Service is provided to eligible clients who have been assessed as nutritionally ‘at risk’. 

Declarations of Conflicts of Interest

Under section 80C of the Local Government Act 1989 officers providing advice to Council must disclose any interests, including the type of interest.

The Responsible Officer reviewing this report, having made enquiries with the relevant members of staff, reports that no disclosable interests have been raised in relation to this report.

CONCLUSION

The tender from Moreland City Council Food Services was determined to be best value and it is considered that this company can perform the contract to the required standards. 

 

Recommendation

THAT Council resolve to:

1.         Accept the tender submitted by Moreland City Council Food Services for the schedule of rates detailed in the confidential attachment in relation to Option 1 (delivery of meals to a designated dispatch point) for the following contract:

Number:    2019 - 117

Title:          Provision of Delivered Meals Service

Term:         4 July 2020 to 3 July 2022

Options:    Term extensions up to 3 July 2024 (only to be exercised if separately approved by Council)

Value:        Total expenditure is limited to a maximum of $1,093,000.00 (excluding GST) unless otherwise approved by Council

subject to the following conditions:

a)   Tenderer to provide proof of currency of insurance cover as required in the tender documents.

b)   Price variations to be in accordance with the provisions as set out in the tender documents.

c)   Tenderer to provide contract security as required in the tender documents.

2.         Approve the funding arrangements detailed in the confidential attachment.

 

 

 

 

  


Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                        Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

6.3       City Transport and Presentation

Nil Reports


Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                        Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

6.4       Corporate Services

6.4.1      PANEL CONTRACT EXPENDITURE DISTRIBUTION

Attachments:                        1        Explanatory Notes re Panel Contract Orders

2        Panel Contract Expenditure Tables - Confidential

Confidential in accordance with Section 89(2)(d) of the Local Government Act 1989 as it contains details relating to contractual matters.    

Responsible Officer:           Director Corporate Services

Author:                                  Contracts Officer   

 

RECOMMENDATION SUMMARY

That Council note the report.

KEY FACTS AND / OR ISSUES

At Council’s request a report is presented biannually detailing the comparative distribution of expenditure to contractors engaged to deliver works, goods and services under current panel contract arrangements.

·           These reports have been presented since 20 March 2012;

 

·           The attached tables and supporting material explain the various methods of work order allocation and provide commentary on each panellist; and                                                      

·           The data indicates that panel contract expenditure is currently being allocated according to processes which enable fairness, transparency and best value.

 

Report

Introduction

Council undertakes tender processes to establish contracts for the provision of works, goods and services.  In accordance with approved procedures, the tenders received are evaluated against four standard criteria: price, capability, capacity and impact.

Depending on the nature of the contract, Council will either award it to a single company or appoint a panel of contractors to meet the organisation’s needs.  Panel contractors are usually selected due to their capacity or specialty.

Schedule of Rates (SoR) panel contracts are established to expedite the engagement of contractors where works or services are needed repeatedly over a period and where the total value of the contract is unknown at the time it is established.  This enables achievement of better value by:

·    Leveraging economies of scale

·    Minimising administration

·    Ensuring efficient, responsive and continuous service.

The expenditure data for this report was prepared on 12 March 2020 for active SoR panel contracts in use throughout the organisation. Expenditure to every contractor on these panels is addressed in the attachments.

Background

Expenditure is drawn from budgets which have previously been approved by Council.  Efficiency is achieved because the terms and conditions of SoR contracts are only established once at the beginning of the contract and apply throughout the whole contract term (generally a period of three to five years).  In accordance with the Council’s Procurement Policy the allocation, variation and finalisation of individual orders made under panel contracts may be approved by the CEO or under delegated authority.

Some key points to note include:

1.   The even distribution of spend across panel members is not an objective of the order allocation process.  If more than one panel member can satisfy the stated requirements then an evaluation is conducted to identify which contractor is available, has the most appropriate skills and resources, etc, and ultimately offers best value. 

This means that the value of work allocated to individual contractors over the life of the contract may vary substantially.

2.   The approved Procurement Procedures require that individual SoR contract orders for significant projects:

·    Are limited to a maximum value of:

$500,000 including GST for civil works, or

$100,000 including GST for all other works, goods and services.

·    Will predominantly consist of items that are listed in the contract schedules.  Non-scheduled items will only constitute a maximum of 20% of the total order value.

 

Proposal

Explanatory Notes (Attachment 1) and Panel Contract Expenditure Tables (confidential Attachment 2) are provided for Council’s information.  The tables detail payments made under all current panel contracts from the contract commencement date through to 12 March 2020.  It is proposed that Council reviews and notes this information.

Consultation

Contract Managers responsible for each contract were consulted for comment in relation to the expenditure.  Relevant commentary is included in confidential Attachment 2.

Financial Implications

Expenditure under panel contracts is drawn from operational budgets which have previously been approved by Council.  The estimated total expenditure under each panel contract is also approved by Council (or an appropriate Delegate) when the contract is awarded and again whenever it is extended or varied.

Policy strategy and legislation

Regular financial monitoring and reporting of panel contract expenditure is consistent with section 2.2.4 of Council’s Procurement Policy (Responsible Financial Management).

Wherever required, the panel contracts were established in accordance with the requirements of section 186 of the Local Government Act 1989.

link to strategic risks

Strategic Risk Contractor Management - Failure to manage contractors to deliver agreed outcomes

Effective management of work allocation under panel contracts helps to ensure that best value is obtained and that contractors deliver works and services that meet the needs of the Council and our community.

 

Links to whittlesea 2040 and the CoUNCIL Plan

Goal                              High-performing organisation

Key Direction              More cost-effective investment through better return on investment, efficiency and an engaged workforce

 

Declarations of Conflicts of Interest

Under section 80C of the Local Government Act 1989 officers providing advice to Council must disclose any interests, including the type of interest.

The Responsible Officer reviewing this report, having made enquiries with the relevant members of staff, reports that no disclosable interests have been raised in relation to this report.

Conclusion

The attached tables and supporting material indicate that panel contract expenditure is currently being allocated according to processes which enable fairness, transparency and best value.

 

RECOMMENDATION

THAT Council resolve to note the report.

 


Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                                     Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

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Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                        Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

6.4.2      COUNCIL ACTION PLAN 2019-20 - Q3 PROGRESS REPORT

Attachments:                        1        2019-20 Council Action Plan - Quarter 3 status   

Responsible Officer:           Director Corporate Services

Author:                                  Corporate Planner Business Partner   

 

RECOMMENDATION SUMMARY

That Council resolve to:

1.   Note the report, including that COVID-19 has impacted on the delivery timelines of some of the Council Action Plan 2019-20 milestones; and

2.   Note that one major initiative in the Council Action Plan 2019-20 will not be achieved by 30 June 2020.

KEY FACTS AND / OR ISSUES

·    The Council Action Plan 2019-20 has 28 major initiatives to be delivered in 2019/20.

·    One of the major initiatives is ‘Not on track’ to be achieved by 30 June 2020:

Improve the City's buildings and accessibility - better access to public buildings and toilets.

Remaining resources will be transferred into the 2020/21 budget to ensure all building upgrades are completed.

·    Council achieved 26 of the 36 milestones allocated against the 28 major initiatives for quarter 3 (72% achievement rate).

·    The achievement rate would have been 86% rather than 72% without the impact of COVID-19, which has delayed delivery of five milestones.

 

Report

Background

Council adopted the Council Plan 2017-21 (Update 2019) including the Council Action Plan 2019-20 on 6 June 2019.  The Council Plan is the key strategic document providing direction over the Council term.  The Council Action Plan is developed annually as an accompaniment to the Council Plan and includes the major initiatives that are to be achieved each year.

SUMMARY

One major initiative of the Council Action Plan 2019-20 will not be achieved by 30 June 2020:

GOAL

Major Initiative

19/20 Action

(Annual measure)

Q3 Milestone
Jan - Mar 2020

Q3 Comments

Liveable Neighbourhoods

Improve the City's buildings and accessibility - better access to public buildings and toilets

Successful delivery of annual Public Buildings Accessibilities upgrades program on time and budget.

Works detailed within the 2019/20 program scoped and allocated.

An audit was conducted to identify buildings to prioritise work for 2019/20, enabling more strategic investment of resources. The audit process resulted in a delay to the program of work. The program of work has commenced but not all budget will be spent by 30 June 2020. Any budget remaining will be transferred into the 2020/21 budget to ensure all building upgrades are completed.

 

Council achieved 26 of the 36 milestones allocated against the 28 major initiatives for quarter 3, which corresponds to an achievement rate of 72%.

Overall, five milestones have been delayed due to COVID-19 and a further five milestones due to other reasons. The achievement rate without the impact of COVID-19 would have been 86% rather than 72%.

Please refer to Attachment 1 for details on the status of the 28 major initiatives included in the Council Action Plan 2019-20.

Consultation

The Council Action Plan 2019-20 was developed by Council and adopted on 6 June 2019, following public consultation. Staff have been consulted regarding the status of each major initiative milestone and annual measure.

Critical Dates

Council Action Plan items need to be completed by 30 June 2020 to be reported as achieved in the Annual Report 2019-20.

Financial Implications

There are no direct financial implications resulting from this report. Reported items not progressing on track may be at risk of incurring additional costs to be completed.

Policy strategy and legislation

Under section 131 of the Local Government Act 1989 and section 14 of the Local Government (Planning and Reporting) Regulations 2014, Council is obliged to report on the performance against the major initiatives included in the Budget and Council Plan in the Annual Report. This report provides an interim status update to enhance Council’s transparency and accountability with the community on the delivery of the Council Action Plan 2019-20.

link to strategic risks

Strategic Risk Governance - Management - Ineffective governance of Council’s operations and activities by Management resulting in either a legislative or policy breach

Performance monitoring and reporting supports effective governance of Council operations and ensures Council is on track to achieve the Council Plan 2017-2021 (Update 2019), including the Council Action Plan 2019-20.

 

Links to whittlesea 2040 and the CoUNCIL Plan

Goal                              High-performing organisation

Key Direction              More informed Council decisions based on strong advice and community consultation and engagement

 

Declarations of Conflicts of Interest

Under section 80C of the Local Government Act 1989 officers providing advice to Council must disclose any interests, including the type of interest.

The Responsible Officer reviewing this report, having made enquiries with the relevant members of staff, reports that no disclosable interests have been raised in relation to this report.

Conclusion

27 of the 28 major initiatives in the Council Action Plan 2019-20 are on track to be achieved by 30 June 2020. 72% of the 36 milestones allocated for quarter 3 have been achieved. Without the impact of COVID-19, Council would have achieved 86% (31 of 36) of all milestones.

 

 

 

 

RECOMMENDATION

That Council resolve to:

1.    Note the report, including that COVID-19 has impacted on the delivery timelines of some of the Council Action Plan 2019-20 milestones.

2.    Note that one major initiative in the Council Action Plan 2019-20 will not be achieved by 30 June 2020.

 

 


Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                                                  Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

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6.5       Executive Services

6.5.1      Review of Council Delegations to the Chief Executive Officer

Attachments:                        1        Revised Instrument of Delegation from Council to the CEO

2        Revised Instrument of Delegation from Council to the CEO - Marked-Up   

Responsible Officer:           Acting Chief Executive Officer

Author:                                  Principal Governance Advisor   

 

RECOMMENDATION SUMMARY

This report reviews Council’s delegations to the Chief Executive Officer (‘the CEO’) in accordance with section 11 of the Local Government Act 2020.

The report recommends that the financial delegation to the CEO be increased from $500,000 to $1,000,000 for goods and services and to allow for the approval of variations within 20% of the originally approved contract sum.

KEY FACTS AND / OR ISSUES

Increases in the financial delegations of the CEO will:

·    Reflect the increased monetary value and complexity of the business carried out by the organisation;

·    Improve operational efficiencies by reducing the number of contract reports submitted to Council for consideration; and

·    Bring Whittlesea in line with CEO delegations in comparable municipalities in Victoria.

 

Report

Introduction

To streamline decision making and to improve organisation efficiency, it is proposed that financial delegations to the Chief Executive Officer be increased from $500,000 to $1,000,000 for goods and services and works, subject to any expenditures approved by the Chief Executive Officer under delegated power being within approved Council budgets. 

It is also proposed to amend the CEO delegation to allow approval of contract variations within 20% of the originally approved contract sum.

Background

As a legal entity, Council can exercise its powers by resolution of the Council at a Council meeting or through members of Council staff acting on its behalf.

Delegating specific functions to staff members enables Council decisions to be made more efficiently and effectively and contributes to improved functionality at Council meetings by reducing the number of operational matters considered.

In practice, Council delegates most of its powers to the CEO who subsequently delegates these powers to members of Council staff.

The CEO delegation was last reviewed in November 2018 when the CEO was given the power to enter into a contract for the supply of Utilities regardless of contract value.  Previous to that review, the delegation was amended in April 2018 to increase the financial threshold from the statutory minimum amounts of $150,000 for goods and services and $200,000 for works to $500,000 for all contracts.

Limitation for Awarding Contracts

Under the current Delegation, the CEO has the power to award, vary or extend a contract involving an amount less than $500,000 (GST inclusive). 

There is an exception for contracts involving an amount between $500,000 and $600,000 and/or the supply of Utilities regardless of contract value where a decision needs to be made urgently and cannot safely or conveniently be deferred to the next Council meeting for consideration. 

Contracts with a total value greater than these thresholds cannot be entered into without a Council resolution. 

Benchmarking

The current financial limitations for the CEO are above the legislated minimum values at which contracts must be publicly advertised but below CEO financial delegations of neighbouring Councils and other large metropolitan Councils.   

Below is a table that shows the relationship between the annual Council budget and the CEO financial delegations for Councils in this region as at 8 April 2020.

Council

Annual Budget

Financial Delegation

Comments

Whittlesea

$272M

$500,000

For both goods and services and works

Banyule

$216M

$500,000

For both goods and services and works

Hume

$267M

$500,000

For both goods and services and works

Darebin

$184M

$500,000

Council resolved on 27 March 2020 to increase the CEO’s delegation to $1M in an emergency.

Nillumbik

$122M

$500,000

For both goods and services and works

Moreland

$184M

$700,000

For both goods and services and works

Manningham

$176M

Unlimited

For both goods and services and works

Moonee Valley

$160M

Within 5% of the approved budget.

For both goods and services and works

Casey

$496M

$1M

For both goods and services and works

Wyndham

$370M

$1M

For both goods and services and works

Port Phillip

$224M

$1M

For both goods and services and works

Yarra Ranges

$193M

$1M

For both goods and services and works

Macedon

$119M

$1M

For both goods and services and works

Whittlesea’s delegation is in line with that of our regional partners but well below that of Casey and Wyndham and other larger metropolitan and growth area Councils.

The level of growth is the most significant factor that impacts the efficiency with which an organisation can function under delegated authority because high growth means substantially more high value contracting activity.  This suggests the Whittlesea delegation is below what it should be.

Manningham and Moonee Valley have conclusively dealt with the matter in different ways, either of which would streamline operations at Whittlesea.  However, an unspecified approval limit (whether it is linked to an approved budget) can be difficult to manage effectively.  Whittlesea would benefit from a higher, but specified, delegation limit.

Based on the analysis of comparable Councils in this region and comparable growth Councils, along with other operational matters set out in this report, it is proposed that the CEO financial delegations be revised up to $1,000,000.

The functions of the Superintendent with the CEO Delegation

There are fundamental difficulties in reconciling the relationship between the functions, duties and powers of the Superintendent in administering a construction contract and Council’s system of authorising contracts and expenditure. 

Council’s standard form construction contract documents are based on the Australian Standard General Conditions of Contract AS 4000-1997 which is widely used throughout Australia by public authorities and private entities for construction and civil works contracts.

AS 4000-1997 requires that there be a Superintendent appointed by Council to administer the contract and imposes and confers various duties, functions and powers on the Superintendent.  These duties, functions and powers are not derived from any delegation by Council and they operate independently of Council’s delegation system.

Further, Council is contractually obliged to ensure that the Superintendent properly exercises or performs his or her duties, functions and powers under the contract. Council will be in breach of the contract if the Superintendent does not do so.

In some circumstances, the Superintendent may be required to issue directions or make certifications which will result in Council being liable to pay moneys in excess of the total of the contract amounts authorised by Council.  In those circumstances, Council will be in breach of the contract if the Superintendent does not give prompt and appropriate directions or does not make the required certifications.  If Council requires that there be a further resolution of the Council before the Superintendent acts, Council will most likely breach the contract and will likely be liable to pay delay costs in those circumstances.

Under the Security of Payments Act 2002 (‘SOPA’) a contractor’s claim must be reviewed and either approved or rejected by the Superintendent within 10 business days or the entire claim becomes payable (subject to certain conditions). This makes Council’s approval of variation claims at a Council Meeting retrospective and redundant.

Increasing the delegation limit to $1 million will help address the efficiency issue by reducing the duplication of project/contract approvals.  Unfortunately, that change alone will not address the redundancy of capital works contract variation approvals due to the Superintendent’s obligations under the SOPA.  For this Council needs a more scalable solution.

To ensure our larger contracts remain compliant with section 186 of the Local Government Act, Council should avoid making materially significant changes to contracts valued above the public tender thresholds.  In practice, this means limiting variations in scope to less than 20% of the contract value. A delegated limit on variations of 20% above the approved contract sum would enable very high efficiency while maintaining prudent levels of good governance.

Operational issues with the current delegation limits

Increased complexity of the business

The proposed increase in the CEO financial delegation aligns with significant increases in Council’s operational budget over the past 15 years which have expanded to address development, population increases, service needs and the overall complexity of business transacted.   

The table below contains details of Council’s annual budgets (operating and capital) for every five years over a 15-year period commencing in 2005 to 2019 and the annual percentage increase for every 5-year period.

 

Year

Operating

Budget

 

Capital

Budget

Total

Budget

Percentage increase from previous period

CEO delegation

2019

$205M

$83M

$288M

22.5%

$500,000 goods and services and works

2017

$192M

$43M

$235M

11.9%

$150,000 goods and services

$200,000 works

 

 

 

 

2015

$171M

$39M

$210M

21.4%

$150,000 goods and services

$200,000 works

2010

$129M

$44M

$173M

61.7%

$150,000 goods and services

$200,000 works

 

2005

$85M

$22M

$107M

40.7%

$100,000 goods and services and works

 

Increased operational efficiency

Increasing the financial delegations of the CEO will further increase efficiencies of overall Council operations. Reduction in the number of contract reports for consideration by Council will improve the time taken to award or vary a certain percentage of the contracts.  This can save weeks and longer in some instances, depending on the time of year and the meeting schedule of the Council. 

Data from procurement records indicate that an increase in the CEO delegations to $1,000,000 would reduce the number of contracts that need to be considered by Council by approximately one third of contract reports being presented to Council.

Further, if the CEO authority to vary any contract by up to 20% is implemented, there will be a reduction of about two thirds of contract reports being presented to Council and the conflict between contractual requirements of the Superintendent and the Council’s delegation in terms of approving variations will be resolved.

A change to the CEO delegation will reduce the length of Council meetings and provide an opportunity for Council to spend more time on a broad range of strategic issues and less time on operational matters for lower level procurements.

The organisation has a range of policies and procedures in place to ensure appropriate management of funds and contracts, including those under the proposed revised threshold.

Proposal

It recommended that the financial delegation to the CEO be increased from $500,000 to $1,000,000 for the purchase of goods and services and for works to improve organisational efficiencies.  The proposed limitations are comparable to others across the local government sector in Victoria.

It is also recommended that the CEO be delegated the power to approve variations within 20% of the originally approved contract sum.  The contractual obligations of a construction Superintendent are independent of the Council and incompatible with Council’s approval process.  Attachment 1 is the revised Instrument and Attachment 2 shows the proposed amendments.

Consultation

This is a matter for consideration by Council and there is no requirement for external public consultation.

Critical Dates

Section 11 of the Local Government Act 2020 requires Council to review delegations to the CEO and members of Council staff by 1 September 2020.  In the meantime, existing delegations made under the Local Government Act 1989 will remain in force. 

Financial Implications

The cost of reviewing the Instrument is included within relevant budgets.

Policy strategy and legislation

The Council may delegate its powers in accordance with section 11 of the Local Government Act 2020. Delegating specific functions to staff members is administratively efficient and it enables decisions to be made more promptly to secure best value when the opportunity arises.

The procurement related provisions of the Local Government Act 2020 do not commence operation until 1 July 2021. In the meantime, section 186 of the Local Government Act 1989 continues to be in force.

link to strategic risks

Strategic Risk Governance - Management - Ineffective governance of Council’s operations and activities by Management resulting in either a legislative or policy breach

Council has a statutory responsibility to review its legislative delegations.

Links to whittlesea 2040 and the CoUNCIL Plan

Goal                              High-performing organisation

Key Direction              More cost-effective investment through better return on investment, efficiency and an engaged workforce

 

Declarations of Conflicts of Interest

Under section 80C of the Local Government Act 1989 officers providing advice to Council must disclose any interests, including the type of interest.

The Responsible Officer reviewing this report, having made enquiries with relevant members of staff, reports that no disclosable interests have been raised in relation to this report.

Conclusion

It is recommended that financial delegations to the CEO be increased from $500,000 to $1,000,000 for both goods and services and for works and that the CEO be allowed to approve contract variations within 20% of the originally approved contract sum

This will bring the CEO delegation in line with comparable Councils and streamline the decision-making process in relation to contractual matters.

 

 

RECOMMENDATION

In the exercise of the powers conferred by section 11(1) of the Local Government Act 2020, Council resolve that:

1.       There be delegated to the person holding the position, acting in or performing the duties of Chief Executive Officer the powers, duties and functions set out in the attached Instrument of Delegation to the Chief Executive Officer, subject to the conditions and limitations specified in that Instrument;

2.       The Instrument comes into force immediately the Common Seal of Council is affixed to the Instrument and remains in force until Council determines to vary or revoke it;

3.       On the coming into force of the Instrument all previous delegations to the Chief Executive Officer are revoked; and

4.       The duties and functions set out in the Instrument must be performed, and the powers set out in the Instruments must be exercised, in accordance with any Council guidelines or policies.

 


Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                                     Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

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Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                                     Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

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Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                        Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

7.         Notices of Motion

Nil Reports 

8.         Questions to Officers

9.         Urgent BusineSS

10.       Reports from Delegates Appointed BY Council TO Other Bodies


Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                        Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

11.       Confidential Business

11.1     Partnerships, Planning & Engagement

Nil Reports

 

11.2     Community Services

Nil Reports

 

11.3     City Transport and Presentation

Nil Reports

 

11.4     Corporate Services

 

Nil Reports


Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                        Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

11.5     Executive Services

11.5.1  Outcome of Independent Investigation and Probity Audit

Responsible Officer:           Manager Governance

Author:                                  Governance Officer

Report

It is proposed that the following item be considered in closed session.

 

Recommendation

 

 

THAT Council resolve to close the meeting to members of the public for the purpose of considering details relating to the following, in accordance with Section 89(2) of the Local Government Act 1989:

 

(a)        personnel matters;

(h)       any other matter which the Council or special committee considers would prejudice the Council or any person.

  


Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                        Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

11.6     Notices of Motion

Nil Reports

 


Ordinary Council Agenda                                                                        Tuesday 5 May 2020

 

12.       Closure