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NEWS DESK History feedback RESIDENTS have been invited to comment on Mornington Peninsula Shire’s draft local history development plan, which is on display until Monday 19 August. History includes stories and memories, many preserved and retained by historical societies, museums, landmarks and buildings. The draft plan aims to preserve the peninsula’s history and develop such opportunities as heritage tourism. This encourages people to visit places, see artefacts and partake in activities that authentically represent the stories and people of the past. A key element of the plan is to create better online access to the peninsula’s history by digitising and cataloguing information to be published on a new dedicated local history website. Provide feedback online at or pick up a hard copy at a customer service office.

Surf Mermaid

Garden and rural setting for top design A “UNDERSTATED and simplistic” house in rural Dromana has been awarded the building design of the Year. Moat’s Corner was praised by the judges for its understated and simplistic design as well as its emphasis on ensuring views of the manicured gardens and natural vegetation can be seen from every angle. Results of the annual Building Design Awards - formerly known as the Building Designers Association of Victoria (BDAV) Building Design Awards - were announced on Saturday

27 July at the National Gallery of Victoria. Designed by the Vibe Design Group, Moat's Corner is described as acting as a centrepiece within two hectares of manicured gardens on the 21.4ha property at the corner of White Hill and Dunns Creek roads. The house has “clean lines, a soft colour palette, and natural materials”. Award judges said they were impressed by the “understated simplicity of the design and its innovative use of space and superior finishes”. "Moat's Corner is an outstanding

example of how thoughtful design can create a visually bold result, while crafting a functional home for a growing family,” panel member Ingrid Hornung said. "Its elevated structure and floorto-ceiling windows offer exceptional views of the natural surrounds; it is a sleek and contemporary home, built to last." Vibe’s lead designer Michael O'Sullivan said the home's slim line roof, raised floor and entry on the west side offered a “transparent and pic-

turesque outlook of the pool and surrounding gardens from every angle”. "The site's gardens are close to 100 years old, so it was important our design embraced the views and brought these into the home,” he said. "The design for Moat's Corner is all about bringing a sense of ease and effortlessness - that modernist ethos - which we believe can change how people live, and that's what we are all about." All of the 2019 Building Design Award winners are at designmatters. Keith Platt

A CHARITY screening of the film Surf Mermaid will be shown at Sorrento Cinemas, Friday 16 August. The documentary tells the story of how environmental activist Josie Jones became a local warrior for change on the Mornington Peninsula. It tells the inspirational story of how she overcame adversity to create a legacy. Directed by Charlotte Rowson the fully licensed and catered event opens at 6pm for a 7pm screening with question-andanswer session afterwards. It is being presented by Steve Bastoni. Tickets at Eventbrite.

Councillors clear to share their opinions Keith Platt ALTHOUGH the mayor is Mornington Peninsula Shire’s “lead spokesperson”, councillors have been cleared to “express their own independent views” in the media. The new media policy adopted by councillors earlier this year came nearly two years after they rejected moves by senior management to limit the release of information about the shire to three people, the mayor, CEO and the media and events manager (“Revolt over shire ‘muzzle’

bid” The News 19/6/19). The CEO at that time, Carl Cowie and the media and events manager, Mark Kestigian, are no longer with the shire. The media policy now followed by the shire allows councillors to air their views, but cautions that they “make it clear that any unofficial comment … may not represent the position of council as a whole”. Councillors are also asked to tell the mayor and shire communications department of any comments made to the media “to ensure the team are across specific and/or developing issues”. The policy acknowledges that the media is

entitled to “receive all information that is public information”. The communications team will seek approval for comments attributed to individual councillors before news releases are distributed to the media. The media policy says the turn around time for requests by the media for comment or information should be 24 hours “or sooner if possible”. When the previous media suggested policy was dropped in June 2017, the then mayor Cr Bev Colomb described it as “a very early mockup and [councillors] decided they wanted to create a media and communications policy from

the ground up”. The then deputy mayor Cr Bryan Payne said the proposed media policy “treated councillors as employees” and failed to give them the “respect” deserved by elected representatives. He said the proposed policy inhibited the ability of the mayor Cr Colomb to speak with the media without first approaching communications manager Mr Kestigian or CEO Carl Cowie. Cr Payne said the shire’s public relations at that time was being handled “extremely poorly”. “And you don’t do it by handcuffing your [elected] people.”

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Southern Peninsula News 6 August 2019