RETIRED judge and new councillor Tim Wood says he will fight for a fairer share of council cash for his Red Hill ward constituents.
Mr Wood was elected to the Mornington Peninsula Shire council at Saturday’s by-election for the Red Hill ward.
The by-election attracted a record 17 candidates and received more than 8000 postal votes, going to preference votes after no single candidate received a majority of votes.
Mr Wood, 67, told the Leader he first became interested in local government after he won a VCAT case against the shire.
“I had a planning case myself and I formed the view that although I got the permit, I thought some of the conditions were not right,” he said.
“So I went to VCAT about it and I won that.
“There was no point sitting around home crying about it, I had to prosecute my legal rights so I did.”
Mr Wood said the main priorities for Red Hill were road safety issues and council funding.
“People want the roads looked at and improved,” he said.
“Not just the surface of the roads, but the confusing speed limits that are there, it’s a big safety issue.
“They feel ... they haven’t got their fair allocation of council funds to improve the ward.
“The [Red Hill] ward is 45 per cent of the whole shire.
“I also want to listen to what people want to say.”
Mr Wood is well versed in public life as a QC and as a County Court judge for almost 15 years.
He also served as a lawyer in the navy and in 2006 was appointed as the Deputy Judge Advocate General for the Australian Defence Forces.
Mr Wood did not shy away from public comments that the high number of candidates was a sign of dissatisfaction with the shire council.
“I can’t speak for what they all say, but that was the feeling,” he said.
“The strong feeling was that Red Hill was a forgotten ward.”
Fellow candidates Kylie Greer, Alistair Young and Michael Treadwell congratulated the new councillor at a formal announcement on Monday morning.
The by-election was triggered in May after former councillor Frank Martin stepped down for health reasons.
Article reprinted from Leader Newspapers (Bayside)
At the MPS Council meeting on Monday 11 August 2014, the full Council approved the Andrew Rogers sculpture on the Flinders roundabout. Six votes to three.
The Leader and WPN were represented, and Red Hill Ward candidates, Barbara Porter and Mark Fancett, were in attendance.
The Council agreed to a condition that the community be consulted further in two years from the date of meeting.
FULL MORNINGTON PENINSULA SHIRE COUNCIL MEETING WAS HELD IN FLINDERS on July 26 - Discussion on Sculpture proposal was the First Item
The council invited members of the Flinders Community and those nearby to "have their say" at its meeting in the Flinders Village Hall. And a lively session it proved to be. No decision was taken as it was basically information gathering before the regular Council Meeting.
(The link to Sculpture below carries the FCA assessment and also a Position Paper received from those opposing its acceptance.)
LOCAL WINS "BEST IN SHOW" AT THE HAMPTON COURT FLOWER SHOW IN LONDON
Well, we will claim him as a local - his parents Steve and Pat Fogarty live in Bass street and were in London to see their son Jim, the Australian garden designer, win the top award at the prestigious Hampton Court show. He is a Flinders ratepayer and gave his services to three lucky Flinders residents to be auctioned at the FCA dinner a couple of years ago.
His display featured 50 Australian native plants and was inspired by the Aboriginal Dreamtime story of the Rainbow Serpent.
SOME HOPEFUL NEWS FOR THE FLINDERS TOWNSHIP
It seems as though the persistent lobbying by the FCA to gain Council funding for our parks and for general township enhancement has finally paid off.
CEO Dr. Michael Kennedy has written to the President of the FCA outlining the council’s response to our proposals for planting, minor streetscape projects and implementation of the Flinders Park Master Plan – recently approved by the MPS.
He has informed us that the Shire has budgeted for $80,000 for the Flinders Park Playground, Cook Street, for Flinders to be the only township to be allocated funding for township streetscape and beautification works ($50,000) and a further $50,000 for the first stage of the Flinders Park Master Plan implementation.
Importantly, for improving road safety, we have applied to VicRoads to reduce the speed limit within the town limits from 60 kmph to 40 kmph (unofficially, we have been told that the likely reduction will be to 50), finalization of the pedestrian crossings in Cook Street and the marking of a centre line in that street.
Other matters discussed by the CEO include immediate removal of a dangerous cypress tree and plans for work on the pier and the foreshore area, new picnic tables and chairs in the parks etc. etc.
The next item (below) shows volunteers at work on planting that took place in May.
Perhaps the 150th Birthday Gift to Flinders has been the cumulative work of the FCA over the years, which has before (and is now) bearing fruit?
FLINDERS PARKS - WORK HAS STARTED
On Friday 16 May 2014, a group of FCA Volunteers planted trees in the Flinders Parks. So the work of Park Renewal has begun and the FCA funded most of the work. More trees were planted on Friday 23 May and Friday 30 May to plant shrubs. See photo below of some of the volunteers.
NEWS FLASH Council Replaces Flinders Residential 1 Zone
with Neighbourhood Residential Zone as an Interim Response
At its meeting on Monday 24 February 2014 Council adopted Amendment C179 recommendations for the new residential zones to apply to all Residential 1 Zones (R1Z) on the Mornington Peninsula. The new Neighbourhood Residential Zone will not at this stage replace the Design and Development Overlays (DDOs) that contain building siting and design controls in Flinders.
The Council officer report with the Council meeting Agenda on 24 February states:
“The DDOs at this time provide options that are not available in the zone schedule and conversion would require careful consideration requiring more time for community consultation that is available” “The conversion to the new zones is as neutral as possible ie aligning the new controls as far a possible to those existing” “It is not feasible …to consider and justify any significant changes to planning controls”.
The Amendment by the Shire implements Government direction to provide greater certainty and emphasis on protection of neighbourhood character in new zones by identifying areas that are:
- To accommodate significant growth (Residential Growth Zone)
- Where moderate growth and incremental change may occur(General Residential Zone)
- Areas of limited (if any) growth and change (Neighbourhood Residential)
Neighbourhood Residential Zone (NRZ) replaces R1Z in Flinders and will retain DDO 2 and 3 areas. No General Residential Zone (GRZ) is proposed in Flinders. The GRZ will apply around specified centres such as Rosebud, Dromana and Mornington representing 37% of R1Z in the Shire. No Residential Growth Zoning is proposed anywhere in the Shire.
Flinders Residential 1 Zone is to be included in the Neighbourhood Residential Zone to:.
- Recognise the predominantly single and double storey development;
- Limited opportunities for increased development;
- Retain neighbourhood character, heritage, environmental and landscape character.
The new zone Schedules include:
- Mandatory maximum building height (8 metres) (Schedule may be varied).
- Mandatory minimum lot size and maximum number of dwellings per lot (default two dwellings per lot)
- Can prescribe the minimum lot size where a permit is required for a single dwelling (currently 300m2 proposed by Council to increase to 500m2).
However although the new zone could combine the elements of the existing R1Z and the DDOs, it is recommended by Council officers that the Schedules should not introduce new variations to the Zone requirements (ie provisions different from the DDOs)
Council report states:“Council will be able to pursue improved neighbourhood character controls through future planning scheme amendments”. (A number of investigation areas are proposed and changes at this time to both zones and overlays would be inappropriate because of need for public consultation, strategic assessment and lack of time available.)
Council will submit the new zones to the Ministers “Residential Zones Standing Advisory Committee” and will arranges notices in the press and to community groups etc. A public submission period of 20 days is proposed. The Advisory Committee will hear submissions and then provide advice to the Minister. Finalisation of the zone conversion throughout Victoria occurs by Ministerial Amendment by 1 July.
The meeting discussed Options for Flinders Village Residential Zones that are to replace the current Residential 1 Zone. The discussion paper prepared by your Association, originally presented at the January AGM, outlined some options for new residential zoning related to the character of Flinders village neighbourhoods. The paper also sought a review of the current Design and Development Overlay requirements to reflect the projected demographic changes and infrastructure capacities in the village.
Back to Saturday 22 Feb 2013 FCA meeting to discuss the Better Flinders of the Future - please direct enquiries to Neville Wale (5989 0974:firstname.lastname@example.org ) : or Peter Monie 0402207730:email@example.com
Copies of the discussion paper are available for $10 for FCA members or $15 for non members. The Paper is also available now on the web site:
16 September 2013
Flinders Park and the Cook Street Open Space Draft Long Term Master Plan – On Public Exhibition
The Shire has prepared a Draft Master Plan including actions for improving visitor facilities and protecting the heritage and natural features of the following open spaces in Flinders:
- Flinders Park at the south-west corner of Cook Street and Norman Street.
- Open space at 42 Cook Street.
You may view the Draft Master Plan at the Shire Offices in Mornington (2 Queen Street), Rosebud (90 Besgrove Street) and Hastings (21 Marine Parade) or online www.mornpen.vic.gov.au under the “What’s on – Your say” section.
It may also be viewed at the Flinders drop-in session described overleaf. You will be able to speak to a Shire officer about the Draft Master Plan at that session.
If you have any comments, please submit these to the Council for consideration using the feedback form that can be obtained online, from any of the Shire offices or at the drop-in session.
The closing date for return of feedback forms is Monday 28 October 2013. They should be posted, emailed or hand delivered as follows:
Postal address: Manager Strategic Planning, Mornington Peninsula Shire, Private Bag 1000, Rosebud 3939
Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Hand delivery: Any Shire office or at the Flinders drop-in session.
If you have any questions, please contact Emma Wakefield, Strategic Planner on (03) 5950 1928.
Manager Strategic Planning
1. Arthurs Seat Tip Proposal.
The EPA has rejected the proposed Tip. The proponent company may appeal to VCAT; they have about two more weeks to decide on an appeal.
2. Hanging Rock threatened by Development.
We have been informed by Macedon Ranges Residents Association that the famous, even iconic, site is under threat and that the potential culprit is their own Council who are reported to have initiated the development without consultation with their Community. If you would like more information, go to this link
Peter Hall's Letter:
The Mornington Peninsula Shire has formalised a programme to upgrade the town parks and have asked the FCA to provide its thoughts as to how these may be renovated. We are pleased to offer the following.
Over the last three years or so there has been much discussion on how the two park areas in Flinders village could be improved as it is apparent to all they have been largely neglected for some years and are in need of rehabilitation. The essence of those conversations would seem to distill down to the following:
We need to first define the nature and characteristics of the parks.
The main park opposite the community hall should be seen as a family oriented activity park and avoid becoming another example of a botanical park. It needs to have things for people and families to do such as picnic facilities and a BBQ, and childrens attractions – a maze, a play forest, a labyrinth have been suggested to complement the existing playground equipment.
It should not be overly formal and tightly structured. i.e. it ought not emphasise straight lines and neat rows of hedges etc.
It should have some uniqueness about it such that people will say “have you seen the................in the park at Flinders.”. This might be the overall nature of the park itself or it might be a particular element such as an architect designed pavilion rather than a standard rotunda or gazebo.
It should not have to rely on heavy maintenance.
The mid-town park is really a blank canvas the only feature being the toilet block. Therefore there is much scope to employ original ideas. It should not be converted to a car-park as this would destroy the whole feel and atmosphere of the village centre.
Due to its location right in the middle of the commercial section of the village perhaps the focus should be on adults more than children. It could lend itself as an occasional market square for special markets such as fine foods and produce but avoid being a trash and treasure market. It could be a “resting place” for tourists to sit and read a newspaper or enjoy a takeaway coffee from the cafes nearby.
Perhaps there is a way to link it to a path leading from the rear up to the recreation reserve.
We believe the priority of actions to be undertaken (once the overall plan has been agreed) should be;
1 Clean out those trees designated as no longer viable, demolish the old weatherboard shed and clear out all unnecessary clutter.
2 Repair and make safe the old cistern/well and present it as an historical feature.
3 Plant out a childrens maze and play forest and plant new trees as specified.
4 Construct a shelter pavilion and install a BBQ.
5 Install new tables and benches of an appropriate design; avoid standard issue treated pine models.
6 Install new toilet block if so decided. Decide whether it should be in the park or across the road next to the existing toilet block of the community hall.(this would be dependant on the planned pedestrian crossing included in the streetscape plan.)
1 Replace the four existing (broken) benches with attractively designed table/bench combination units.
2 Replace the no-longer working lamps with a design more appropriate.
3 Then proceed with the elements as identified by the architects and agreed with council and the community.
There is a third park like area which is the lawn space in the front of the community hall fronting Norman St. However, this should not be tackled without first recognising the community's hopes for renovating the hall. As it is, the hall is an architectural disaster but oddly its simple shape lends itself to a surrounding extension that would increase the inside usable space for such things as the annual art show and at the same time create a much more attractive facade. The front lawn therefore could become the basis of an amphitheatre. Thus this is probably a project in itself.
Latest Update on land clearance shown below - Council required owner to plant trees (we count 15) and also provide hessian protection for further planting to try and prevent loss of topsoil. Anyone who walks past on the beach can see how much erosion has taken place over the winter. Not a good look!
(original article in May, 2013)
See Below: it is clear what the Mornington Shire Council's planning
department was concerned about. The owner of the
property just north-west of the Flinders township and overlooking the
beach (just this side of Mornington Park) did not got the necessary
approvals for his destruction of trees and plants on the cliff face - and
the case was been before VCAT for mediation.
Substantial planting and renovation has since taken place.
The photograph was taken on December 27, last, on behalf of the
FCA and sent to the council.
The 46th Annual Flinders Art Show 2013 on the Queens Birthday Long Weekend in June introduced an exciting new art section with the introduction of an Equine Art Award.
The Judges for most successful Flinders 2013 Art Show were Susan McCulloch OAM and Kimberley Mannix and for the Equine Art Section Lyn Beaumont was the Judge.
SHIRE BRIEFING ON PLANNING ISSUES - Saturday, March 23, 2013
Allan Cowley, Shire Planning Guru, reported on progress with the Metropolitan Planning Strategy and to a lesser extent on the Peninsula Planning Statement. He spoke of the proposal to establish significant activity "Hubs" which would "compete" with the CBD for business and industry - thus improving the likelihood of making Melbourne a "20-minute city".
Allan answered a range of questions on the likely impact of planning changes. Questions were wide-ranging, including the potential harmful affect of Council Rates policy on maintenance of the Green Wedge areas. See the Plan Melbourne website. The closing date for comment was 5.00 pm Thursday 28th March, 2013. A copy of the Council’s response to the discussion paper is available on the Council website under the heading Melbourne: Let’s talk about the future.
Red Hill Ward Consultative Group - minutes of February 2013 meeting - lots of issues
The Flinders Historic Signage - more to come
In December 2012 a number of signs were installed to provide residents and visitors with information about the historical significance of some of our buildings and favourite spots. The new signage will feature points of interest around the Flinders Jetty and Beach. Meanwhile, do have a stroll round to look at the existing signs. The main signage is on the corner of Cook and Norman streets, and there are others near the PO, the General Store and in Cook St opposite the Flinders Hotel and Balin. Then there are the three Cable Station walk signs leading up from the Jetty. Please provide feedback through Contact Us which enables you to give us your thoughts on these and other issues.
Some of the volunteers erecting the frameworks Jo Monie, Peter Hall and Neil Williams who made it happen
FLINDERS PEOPLE AWAIT MINISTER'S RESPONSE
Since the Rally on PARLIAMENT HOUSE STEPS in November 2012 to protest Minister Guy's proposals for OUR Green Wedge areas, things have quietened and a deathly silence has ensued. We are told that the Submissions are being carefully considered, but we remain alert.
The Rally was another step in the growing opposition to Planning Minister Guy's proposals which, among other outrages, would permit schools, medical centres, service stations, hotels, shops and other suburban facilities to be built on our countryside.
The independent committee assessing the various submissions - reported to be well over 2,000 and most critical of the new planning laws - was due to report to Matthew Guy quickly. Their response has been delayed due to the weight of submissions - reputedly 1800 were related to the Mornington Peninsula.
PLANNING CHANGES AND THEIR LIKELY IMPACT
THIS IS OUR TOWN AND IT IS OUR PENINSULA.
IT IS UP TO US TO PROTECT IT!
PLEASE PLAY YOUR PART: KEEP OBJECTING
Wide ranging changes to planning announced September, 2012, by Planning Minister Matthew Guy would materially affect the character and ambience of the Mornington Peninsula and its towns and villages.
These changes have been announced and, while subject to review, are far reaching and will affect all of us in some way. The Minister has since announced that special consideration will be given to the Mornington Peninsula - so, we await his vision with bated breath.
The Government's “one shoe fits all” approach to planning is considered by the FCA to be inappropriate – particularly after analysing how the changes would affect the Mornington Peninsula.
Some publicity has been given to aspects of the substantial changes announced by the Minister earlier this month. These have not involved prior consultation yet responses are sought from interested parties by September 21, this year.
The new approach to planning will impact on the future of the Green Wedge, on farming and on the Flinders township - while also putting pressure on the vital Urban Boundaries. In addition, commercial interests will be encouraged to invest in tourism ventures in the National Parks and Reserves.
Ironically, the stated objective of removing uncertainty about rules, policies and planning regulations to encourage greater investment will create further uncertainty, according to our shire planning department, which believes VCAT will be used more often for decision-making and we will have “planning by appeal”. In some cases landowners and developers will be given “as of right” permission to do anything they want without anyone knowing about it and leaving others with no right of appeal!
A couple of specific local examples would be that the hotel (opposed by all parties, local members and community groups) proposed a few years ago to be sited at the corner of Browns and Greens roads beside the Mornington Peninsula National Park would just be given the go-ahead without even needing to pretend it was in any way rural or interested in environmental studies. A development like T’Gallant, the restaurant, would not have to be heard over the number of customers it could service as the limit of 150 patrons is to be scrapped, as will the requirement of 40 hectares site minimum in the Green Wedge needed before building group accommodation. Medical centres, places of assembly and primary and secondary schools are all listed as acceptable for the Green Wedge etc. etc.
What the Amendment Proposes
1. Green Wedge zone provisions are to be liberalized to increase the range of agricultural uses allowed without a permit. These include Primary produce sales (for produce grown on the land) and Rural Industry (other than an Abattoir and Sawmill and limited floor area to 200m2) but not within 100m of a dwelling in separate ownership and sale area less than 50 sq. m.
Comment: Not requiring a permit means people have the 'as of right' means to do anything they want without having to advertise their intentions so it could mean developments could spring up before anyone knows anything about it and with no right of appeal. The damage would be irreversible. In the interest of conserving landscape and amenity, the siting and design of new buildings such as Rural store demands a permit process. Compliance supervision will need to increase to ensure retail activities sources product only from the property. Near-by urban Industrial zones can readily accommodate rural service industry.
2. The list of Green Wedge zone uses subject to permit are to be widened to include Abattoir, Medical centre, Primary school, Sawmill, and Secondary school. Permits can be sought for many other uses including those previously prohibited such as Display home, and Service station, Place of assembly including Amusement parlor, Cinema, Drive-in-theatre, Library and Nightclub
Comment: These permits may not have to be advertised and can be purely at Council's discretion. There are no mandatory provisions that apply. These uses are essentially urban uses and should be located close to the urban population with access to the necessary utility services. Conflicts with farming activities producing smells, dust, noise, waste discharge etc. are likely.
3. Mandatory conditions are to be deleted relating to the establishment of Function Centre, Group Accommodation, R& D Centre and Research centre, Residential building, Restaurant in conjunction with agriculture etc.
Comment: Large cabin/camping parks, Function centres, and Restaurants etc. and could be established on relatively small sites unrelated to agricultural activity. The main tourist routes could become lined with an uninterrupted ribbon of retail activities and restaurants.
Retention of conditions on lot size, area of use, number of patrons, and use “in conjunction with agriculture” etc. is necessary to ensure that these uses do not become intrusive in the landscape. Conserving landscape and amenity is critical to maintaining the attraction of the Mornington Peninsula as a key recreation and tourist destination.
4. Mandatory restriction on further subdivision in the Green Wedge zone is removed leaving management and control to Council policy.
Comment: Since 1975 the planning scheme has sought to limit the fragmentation of the farming areas from subdivision. Unless relatively strict controls over further subdivision are implemented, adequate sites for agriculture will be difficult to obtain and the further detriment to Peninsula landscapes from closer settlement will occur.
5. Three new residential zones (Residential Growth, General Residential, Neighbourhood Residential) are to replace the current five Residential zones. - These will have more guidelines and multiple schedules. ResCode will stay in place as will control on building heights and some local policies (DDO).
Comment: The proposal to indicate growth/change expectations for residential zones could have merit but how will this translate to Flinders? Maintenance of existing village character is essential using existing DDO’s and policies but we will have to fight hard to ensure they remain in place. Growth should be limited to infill development within the Urban Growth Boundary.
6. Shops, Offices, Cafés, Medical, Centres etc. are to be allowed in these Residential zones without need for a permit within 100 metres of a Commercial zone on the same road frontage.
Comment: In Flinders, there is already an over-supply of retail floor space. The commercial frontage will be doubled under the Amendment. This 'as of right' process gives no opportunity for communi