What happened at Blayney Council Ordinary Meeting June 24

Jake Ryan and Ruby Green have been congratulated by Cr David Kingham and the council for their performances at a recent scholarship certificate concert at the Mitchell Conservatorium.

Cr Reynolds has opened the door for work at Newbridge railway station to begin after the success of the Newbridge Winter Solstice Festival. Discussions have been had with the CEO of Sydney Trains Howard Collins regarding the station after the success of the works at Blayney and Millthorpe Station.

Time to discuss the Delivery Program and Operational Plan, otherwise known as the budget, with Cr Somervaille first to discuss a claimed inequity within the rating structure.

A public submission against the 19/20 rate increases is claiming that land holders with lower property values will incur a rate increase above the 2.7% rate peg, while those with higher property values will receive an increase below the rate peg. They also claim that this is true for all rating categories with the exception of mining and Millthorpe. The outcome for Millthorpe they say is the pinnacle of inequity with reductions between 6.94 per cent for a lower value property and for higher value properties, 19.72 per cent.

Cr Somervaille doesn't agree that the plan is inequitable and that council has spent the past five years or so slowly bringing the rating structure to a more equitable structure.

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Finance director Anton Franze has confirmed that BSC is prohibited from exceeding the rate cap and that no breaches have been made with the 2019/20 rate structure.

Cr Reynolds believes that the rate structure is equitable and rural residential are probably paying more than others at the moment.

Cr Reynolds has put forward 5 amendments to the operational plan including

  1. KGO remove funding of $959,546 from 2021/22 as it appears to e a duplication of 2019/20 however the total funding is indeed around $1.9 million and it's been withdrawn as an amendment.
  2. Maintain $750,000 for Carcoar Road bridge until a report is brought forward for necessary road upgrades. Councillors agrees that a scope of work needs to completed to upgrade the road on either side of new bridge. Particular attention needed near dairy and railway crossing as they have been identified as the parts of the road most in need of repair. Cr Newstead asks if John Holland will be responsible for the crossing. Cr Ferguson is concerned about the state of the road and increase in traffic when bridge opens.
  3. Deferral of footpath work on Gowan Place and Napier streets, Carcoar street duplication and Blake street in Millthorpe until council approves an appropriate repair, construction and renewals program in consultation with the access committees and BSC active movement strategy. Cr Reynold's not calling for a stop, simply a diversion to footpaths particularly in front of school's. Dir of Infrastructure Services Grant Baker has acknowledged that Carcoar street is not a duplication, more of an upgrade to dual purpose. Cr Kingham has acknowledged the work of footpaths in the shire around Lyndhurst and Belubula River. Cr Somervaille is requesting that a workshop be held to prioritise the list of footpaths to be repaired. An amendment to the amendment is going to occur.
  4. Carry forward all unused spot renewal footpath funds from the 18/19 financial year into 19/20 to be used in the footpath renewal and construction program for 2019/20.
  5. Carry forward unused storm water renewals funds from 2018/19 The project Cr Reynolds has in mind is the area around Millthorpe Police Station and RFS. Cr Ferguson's makes the point of not identifying specific projects during this meeting is not the best process. Cr Somervaille is uncomfortable with approving specific projects without staff input. Cr Reynolds agrees to withdraw this amendment and bundle into one bigger amendment that will see the projects identified through workshops.

So amendment 1 was withdrawn, Amendment 2 is still under discussion and amendments 3,4 and 5 have been bundled into one amendment that will see workshops been held to prioritise both footpath and storm water projects.

The financial decision regarding the Carcoar bridge is back for discussion (Amendment 2) as it is a new loan and without the scope of work that details the cost of roadworks there is the possibility that there will be a bridge without a decent road running up to it. Grant baker has pointed out that a high quality road will come at a high cost.

The big issue is that once the bridge is fixed traffic will surely increase and sections of the road, particularly around the northern edge near the dairy, are not suitable for an increase in traffic and is currently only really a single lane.

A workshop will now be held to discuss the bridge and road costs and Amendment 2 has been withdrawn.

Cr Kingham has brought up the issue of waste collection services to empty blocks of land.

After one hour and 11 minutes of discussion the operational plan has been passed with just one amendment, that being the storm water and footpaths will be workshopped and a new priority list will be created.

Next we have the Infrastructure services report and Cr Reynolds is questioning why Cabonne council can fix potholes in three weeks and Blayney takes too long. Grant Baker explains that a new patching truck is under repair due to noises. He also explains that BSC routinely travel along roads patching holes as they see them.

Cr Reynolds would like to see some better line-marking on Forest Reefs road and Millthorpe underpass.

Cr Reynolds wondering about rumours that trees on Victoria Street are to be removed and Mr Baker said that no plans are in place and all there has been are discussions with the Millthorpe Village Committee regarding the trees.

There are a number of land acquisitions regarding the Errowanbang road and all have been passed without debate.

Sports council was next with Cr Newstead requesting information on broken seats at KGO as sports council meetings is discussed. Cr Ferguson said a $1.9 million grant would fix all those problems.

Traffic report is next and Cr Reynolds has discussed the problem of speeding on Mandurama road to Neville and also pedestrian access on Hobby's Yard road to the skate park.

Cr Kingham would like to see a proposal for no stopping signs in Mandurama on the northern side of Gold Street amended until the intersection has been improved. Cr Ferguson sees this as an opportunity to lobby for funding from RMS to have traffic calming devices put in place similar to the intersection at the corner of Adelaide Street and Ogilvy Street in Blayney.

Cr Somervaille has noticed that it is possible to place traffic control within 10 metres of the corner if requested by traffic committee. The traffic committee is going to to be asked to reconsider the placing of no-stopping signs. Cr Reynolds has observed other intersections in Orange and Bathurst that have 5 metre no stopping areas, however they have blisters that protect the cars from damage.

Two hours later the meeting has gone into closed committee. m