25 October 2016

Page 1

Mornington

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5973 6424 or email: team@mpnews.com.au www.mpnews.com.au New recruit: Tallara Gray is helping Baluk Arts make waves. Picture: Yanni

Indigenous art on show AN exciting month is coming up for Mornington-based Aboriginal art group, Baluk Arts, as artists prepare to show off their works for the ‘On the MAP’ (Mornington Arts Precinct) project 10am-4pm Saturday 12 and Sunday 13 November. The event is dedicated to showcasing the region’s creative talents and offers the chance for weekend visitors to the peninsula to view the artwork, meet the artists and even have a go at making a weaving or painting a boomerang. Baluk Arts’s newest recruit, administration officer Tallara Gray, a descendant of the Yadhaigana People of Cape York, will also present her work for the MAP event. Tallara, who graduated from the Queensland University of Technology last year, makes jewellery, sculptures and mixed media works from various materials. Also on the same weekend, some of the Baluk artists will be at the Black Arts Market at Carriageworks in Redfern,NSW, representing Indigenous artists of south east Melbourne, Frankston and the Mornington Peninsula. Baluk Arts opens Tuesday-Friday 10am-5pm at 6 Bruce St, Mornington.

New councillors lose support Neil Walker neil@mpnews.com.au NEW councillors elected to Mornington Peninsula Shire council will have half the support staff available to their predecessors. Council CEO Carl Cowie told councillors last week, just before council elections, that two councillor support positions will be made redundant. In an email, seen by The News, Mr Cowie said he had made a judgement

call to make the council support team “even better” despite the loss of two jobs from a team of four female employees. All four positions were made redundant and the staff involved have been told they can apply for the two new jobs. “We have a great team of people here and we will keep improving,” Mr Cowie stated in an email to all councillors. “In the end, you pay me to make decisions and execute the council plan, sometimes the decisions seem tough,

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not right, sometimes it just takes time to see the fruits of the labour.” Some councillors were surprised by the timing of the decision to axe two support jobs since there will be at least seven new councillors including firsttime councillors – likely needing extensive help learn about their new roles in local government – as a result of the weekend council elections. Just four councillors out of 11 in the previous administration – Antonella Celi, Bev Colomb, David Garnock and Hugh Fraser – decided to stand for re-

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election at this month’s council elections. Departing mayor Graham Pittock said councillors had been told a new process may be put in place to support councillors that will involve personnel from other departments pitching in to help. He expressed concern at the CEO’s decision to axe the council support staff. “I hope he knows what he’s doing,” Cr Pittock said. “The four-person council support team

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is disappointed. They did function well but obviously there’s another plan.” Results from the 22 October council elections will not be known until 30 October at the earliest after a count overseen by the Victorian Electoral Commission. Council elections are held every four years and, since so many councillors are stepping down, the shire faces an influx of councillors who may have no experience of local government or the administration of formal meetings. Continued Page 7

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