Volume 5 Issue 3
Kerrie Lester with her winning artwork, Out on a limb.
Mosman Elections 2012 The political governance of the area will change in September next year when residents vote for the first popularly elected Mayor of Mosman. This decision was made by the electorate at a referendum held in conjunction with the 2008 Local Government elections. The referendum result meant there would be eight Councillors (in addition to the popularly elected Mayor) and Council has been consulting with the community to reduce Mosman's current three Wards to two - a legal requirement as Wards must have equal numbers of Councillors. (Wards also must not vary by more than a 10% difference in the number of electors per Ward). Until recently it has not been possible for a Council to abolish Wards or reduce numbers without a referendum, but the State Government has now amended the Local Government Act to enhance a Council's ability to engage in structural reform. Accordingly, at its August meeting Council resolved to give public notice of a proposal to abolish all Wards in Mosman and to reduce the number of Councillors to six plus the popularly elected Mayor. Pending the outcome of this consultation Council has put on hold the North and South Ward proposal for which it previously sought public comment earlier this year. There are 152 Councils in NSW, of which 62 are divided into Wards. In introducing recent legislative changes to Parliament the Minister for Local Government noted, “Many of those Councils work effectively and efficiently and are regarded as proven leaders in community engagement and service delivery. However, the functioning of other Councils may be impeded or even compromised because their governance structure is not appropriate”. Councillors are elected to represent the whole area – one Mosman – and Council’s current proposal would allow for all residents to vote for candidates across the area who present themselves for election in 2012. Obviously there are pros and cons for both the abolition of Wards, and a reduction in Councillor numbers. A Yes/No case is detailed on Page 3, and is also available on the Council's website where submissions can be made via our community consultation portal. Public notice has been given of Council's intention to make application to the Minister for Local Government to reduce the number of Councillors to six plus the popularly elected Mayor, and to abolish all Wards. Submissions in relation to the proposals will be received up until 30 September 2011.
Margaret Olley judging the 2009 Mosman Art Prize.
Local Artist Wins Kerrie Lester has won the $30,000 first prize in the Mosman Art Prize which is on at the Mosman Art Gallery until 4 September. Kerrie is the first local female artist to win the prize in 50 years (Nancy Borlase 1961), and is also the first female artist to win the prize in over a decade (Lucy Culliton 2000). Women artists have long had an association with the Prize as entrants, winners and judges. This year the Prize holds a special significance with the passing of the first Mosman Art Prize winner of 1947, the renowned Australian artist Margaret Olley. The Mosman Art Gallery was honoured to have Margaret Olley as judge of the Mosman Art Prize in 2009 and she later attended the opening of the 60 year retrospective of the Mosman Art Prize, the Controversy and Acclaim exhibition in November that year. For more on the 2011 Mosman Art Prize Exhibition and other upcoming events, please visit the Gallery website at www.mosmanartgallery.org.au
Mosman Mayoral History Since 1893 Mayors of Mosman have been elected annually by their fellow Councillors and this will all change from September 2012. Residents are invited to the final election under the present system to be held at 7pm on Tuesday 13 September 2011 in the Council Chambers. Invitations have also been extended to former Mayors of the Municipality to attend this historic event.
Mosman Rider – Your Views Over 66,000 passengers have used the Mosman Rider since its first trip in December 2009 and people wanting to hail the bus can now use a web-based or a mobile phone tracking service to find out where it is. Mosman Council receives ongoing feedback about the Rider but would like more in preparation for its review of the service later this year. In September, passengers will be able to complete a survey during their trip, but we would also like to hear from people who don't use the bus. A survey will also be placed on our website next month and we invite you to share your views. www.mosman.nsw.gov.au
Your ideas for making Mosman a better place... Start up a conversation for others to join in. Comment on the ideas already put forward. We’ll make sure these ideas continue to be shared and considered by Council in future planning. ideas.mosman.nsw.gov.au
Children and Families Survey
This year’s Festival of Mosman features a new, vibrant, creative, and engaging program of events for all ages to enjoy, across 10 days from Friday 28 October to Sunday 6 November. The Festival aims to bring visitors and locals together to celebrate the exceptional characteristics of Mosman – its stunning beaches, scenery and lookouts, its harbour lifestyle including fine dining and shopping, its vibrant arts experiences and its easy access to National Parks and other natural wonders. The Festival is an opportunity to showcase Mosman’s many attractions and bring innovative cultural and musical events to the area. Lovers of the visual arts, music, art and craft, good food and wine, and the outdoors will certainly be spoilt for choice. Some highlights include: The Balnaves Collection exhibition at the Mosman Art Gallery featuring 16 Australian Impressionist and early twentieth century artworks significant to the Mosman area; an Open Day with activities including Concert in the Park, Pets Day Out and Mosman’s Big Lunch; performances of Golden Summers, a new musical exhibition based on the art of Impressionist School painters; In Situ: Mosman Festival of Sculpture and Installation, a sculpture exhibition featuring traditional sculptural works and contemporary installations or 3D works in sites and shops located along the Military Road corridor from Spit Junction to Mosman Junction; and a variety of self guided and walking tours around Mosman, even underwater! Mosman Council is inviting all residents and visitors to take part in the Festival and experience Mosman. Take a look at our new festival website and stay current on everything festival-related at www.festivalofmosman.net.
Council is reviewing services and facilities for children and families within our area. Council currently delivers a range of services and facilities, and advocates for or supports others. As an existing or potential user of children’s services we would appreciate your input into Council’s current children’s services survey. All responses will be treated with the strictest confidence. By completing this online questionnaire, you will be helping us plan for the future well-being of our children and families in Mosman. To complete the survey follow the links on Council’s website. Any questions can be directed to Dianne Page on 9978 4125.
Residents love the Library Mosman Library is not only seen by many as the hub of the community, but it is also one of the busiest libraries in New South Wales. For the past 5 years it has been in the top five libraries for loans per capita. Each week more than 5,000 people visit the Library, and they borrow more than 7,800 items – books, magazines, DVDs, CDs, audiobooks and and eBooks. From August 2011, borrowers will have the option of checking out their own items using new self-checkout kiosks. This will reduce queuing and enable staff to spend more time doing what they do best – assisting customers to find just the right book or that perfect piece of information. Of course the staff will still be available to check out items if customers prefer. The Library offers an exciting program of events and activities for all ages including author events, book groups, exhibitions and fantastic programs for teens and children. Library members can also ‘visit’ the Library from the comfort of their homes through online resources such as the online Reading Lounge and free, full text databases that are great for students and researchers. And there’s more! A Mosman Library card enables members to borrow from all five Shorelink libraries – Mosman, Manly, Lane Cove, Stanton (North Sydney) and Chatswood, with access to more than 800,000 items. www.mosman.nsw.gov.au/library
CCTV Cameras There has recently been comments and misinformation circulating regarding CCTV systems installed to protect Council property. We wish to assure residents that it is not Council’s intent to invade privacy. Recordings are only viewed following an incident by authorised personnel as the systems are housed in secure areas and access is limited through designated security access codes. Recordings are not transmitted to online monitoring centres, so ‘big brother’ is not watching and they are overwritten automatically as the respective systems need additional recording space.
Contrary to what has been written and said, no-one is watching people showering or children at play. If however there is any incident and the Police require access to a recording to assist in their investigations, prior to doing so they are required to make a formal written application. A copy of Council’s CCTV Operating Procedures can be viewed online at http://www.mosman.nsw.gov.au/council/community-safety/cctv.
Through the eyes of an artist Council has added another interpretive sign along the route of the Curlew Camp Artists’ Walk to celebrate Mosman’s unique cultural heritage in this area. The walk runs from Musgrave Street ferry wharf, through Sirius Park and on to Taronga Zoo wharf. The new sign frames a scene of ocean, rocks and bush. The scene itself was painted in 1892 by one of the camp's residents, and notable Australian impressionist artist, Arthur Streeton. The original painting is reproduced along with a photograph of Streeton sketching on the beach.
Pretty as a picture is the new installation at Sirius Cove
Bronwyn Watson in the August 2011 Art Gallery NSW Look magazine writes: “artists like Arthur Streeton and Tom Roberts ... were so inspired by the scenery of Sydney Harbour that they pitched tents in the bush along the foreshore so they could capture its beauty en plein air. This practice of painting outdoors was fashionable and artists’ camps sprung up at Edwards Beach, Balmoral and Little Sirius Cove”, where they remained until the early twentieth century. The frame sign is located in the far eastern corner of Sirius Cove Reserve. An official launch will take place during the Mosman Festival 2011 in conjunction with other cultural events.
Over 50 Mosman residents randomly selected by an independent market research firm recently attended a ‘21st century town meeting’ in the Mosman Art Galley, as part of the Council’s continuing consultation process on its Military Road streetscape improvement project.
Listening to Residents
Council is always looking at ways to improve its community engagement and this was the first occasion real-time electronic voting was used to record resident opinion. The streetscape improvement program is a major and costly project responding directly to community input and a comprehensive progress report will be submitted to Council in September.
Abolition of Wards/Reduction in Councillor Numbers
§With no Wards, every elector gets to vote
§Reduced number of Councillors and no Wards
from a field of all candidates, which is more democratic. §With no Wards, all Councillors need to be fully aware of all matters before them instead of just within their own Ward making them more confident to support or argue on all topics, resulting in more informed decisions. §With no Wards, where a Councillor or a number of Councillors are absent for any reason, residents are not left unrepresented in a particular Ward as Councillors represent the whole area. §With no Wards, all Councillors are answerable to all the people all the time. They are less likely to shunt problems from one Ward to the next. §No Wards gives electors the opportunity to vote for their preferred candidates from across all of Council rather than from within their Ward providing an opportunity for balanced and varied views from different interest groups and more candidates. §Reduction in number of Councillors may lead to greater cohesion and improved decision making. §Reduction in number of Councillors will provide ongoing cost saving for the Council. §A Councillor has an obligation to provide civic leadership for the area, ie Mosman. §Introduction of independent DA Panel (MDAP) has reduced Councillors' workload, making it easier to cope with larger area than Ward arrangement.
will result in each Councillor's workload increasing therefore making it harder for Councillors to represent their residents' needs.
What’s on at the Art Gallery? Be the first to know what’s happening at Mosman Art Gallery, with news, history and a comprehensive run down of our exhibitions, educational events and everything else that’s taking place. Come and have a look!
§Eliminating Wards increases the area in which
candidates need to campaign which means more resources and a larger area to doorknock and greater expense.
§Without Wards, it is possible most Councillors
could be elected from one locality as opposed to a more equal distribution across the whole local government area.
§With no Wards, a by-election requires a 'whole
of Council' election resulting in additional costs to Council and the candidates.
§Reduced numbers of Councillors may mean
that electors may feel that they are not adequately represented if they don't have an affinity with any of the elected members.
§A perception that access to Councillors is
reduced as they may live further away or the majority may represent a particular group or interest rather than a local area.
§With no Wards, having to vote for more
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candidates may put off voters at elections resulting in informal and exhausted votes.
§The smaller number of Councillors would make
it more difficult for lesser known candidates to be elected.
Authorised for publication by [ VHR May , General Manager ] PSM
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Men’s Shed Made to Measure Late in July approval was received from the Sydney Harbour Federation Trust to build an extension to the amenities block at George's Heights Oval, to house the Mosman Men's Shed. The idea of a Men’s Shed was first mooted at Mosman Council in 2005. Men's Sheds are an Australian initiative aimed at providing opportunities for men to connect with other men in their communities. Members, or ‘Shedders’, are usually older men, often retired or unemployed or just looking for an outlet for their creative skills and social needs. Sheds become meeting places, working places, places to share stories and experiences and places to learn. The Mosman Shed will be built over the coming months and then handed over to its members to complete the fitout. Potential members and people able to offer donations of tools and equipment are invited to telephone Ryan Mouthaan on 9978 4216 for more information. General information about Sheds in Australia is available at www.mensshed.org
Nature in Focus
We are constantly amazed by the beautiful images shared through our Flickr page, one such standout photographer and digiscoper is Bob Thompson. Digiscoping is a relatively new technique that involves using a camera to take photographs through the eyepiece of a spotting scope. The results are often dramatic, memorable closeup images of wildlife, as highlighted by Bob’s Birds of Balmoral – pictured.
Bob, now 68, grew up in Mosman but moved to Hong Kong in 1974 where he founded a successful film production business. He says “a large percentage of our work has been for the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department”, with much of his work on nature winning awards at the prestigious US International Film and Video Festival. With a sister still living at Balmoral, Bob enjoys getting back to the area as often as possible, and says, “The beach would be what I miss most of Mosman, its pure white, soft sand. It has to be one of the finest harbour beaches in the world. Hong Kong has a lot of beaches but they just don’t compare to Balmoral”. He has also commended Council on it’s environmental initiatives, saying, “Mosman’s aggressive environmental policies are providing an ideal situation for wildlife, which previously were seldom seen, to return to the Municipality” You can view Bob’s inspiring photos at http://www.flickr.com/photos/jingbar/ Photographs at right all copyright Bob Thompson. Do you have photos to share? Join our Living Mosman photo group on Flickr. Together we can showcase our unique environment and encourage positive action towards a sustainable future. www.flickr.com/groups/eco-mosman/
Protect our native wildlife in Mosman In the period July 2010–June 2011, over 32 fatalities of native wildlife were recorded on our local roads. For an area of only 8.7km2, that's an average of 3 possums killled every sq km, at the rate of 1 killed per fortnight. You can help reduce this toll by installing a habitat box in your garden (DIY workshop coming soon), and watching out for wildlife on our roads, particularly at dawn and dusk. Also keep your cats and dogs indoors at these times, and avoid leaving pet food out. For more information on what to do if you see injured wildlife, go to: www.mosman.nsw.gov.au/environment/bushland/injured-wildlife
Rat run ... who’s running the show?! The celebrations in relation to the Government's announcement that the ‘rat runs’ through Beauty Point would be closed were short-lived. Within days of Council being advised by the Member for North Shore that the Minister for Roads had told her that Pearl Bay Avenue in the AM peak would
Mosman Municipal Council Civic Centre, Mosman Square Mosman NSW 2088
be closed, the RTA seems to have overruled its own Minister. There has been much publicity in the local press and residents can be assured that Council is working closely with Mrs Skinner to achieve our joint objective of removing, not re-locating, through traffic in the residential streets of Mosman.
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©2011 Mosman Municipal Council. All information correct at time of printing.
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