2014 candidate for Alexandrina Council.
Heritage survey responses.
What do you think Council's role is in protecting and conserving heritage?
Council’s primary role is to identify and protect places and sites of significant local historical and heritage value.
What measures and incentives do you support to protect and conserve local heritage?
At a minimum, measures would consist of statutory protection of significant local heritage sites and adequate development controls to ensure ongoing protection. Incentives are generally required to influence a desired outcome. Incentives should be viewed as temporary measures until popular perception and common practice makes them unnecessary. Incentives I support include; • Assistance with state government heritage grant applications • Provision of free expert heritage advice • Waiving of council development application fees • Discount heritage paint scheme • Videos to assist people to understand what heritage is about • Colour schemes and construction principles for historic places • Heritage awards held to promote conservation of historic heritage places • Fast tracking procedure for minor heritage applications • Free heritage information kits
What is the most important heritage protection issue in your local government area?
The continuing protection and sensitivity to the heritage character of Strathalbyn, Goolwa and Port Elliot and environmentally the Coorong, Lower Lakes and the Murray Mouth, along with the Ramsar Wetland which is of International Importance. The Ngarrindjeri have a strong spiritual and cultural connection to the land and are the traditional owners and it’s very important to protect the many traditional and archaeological sites in the area.
What policies and programs will you advocate to protect and conserve heritage in your local area?
The Burra Charter underpins Australia’s local, state/territory and national heritage management systems and legislative frameworks. Local planning policies and decisions should be consistent with The Burra Charter principles. In addition to the Burra Charter I would support policies and programs that; • Encumber state government to show leadership and best practice in heritage. • Show a corporate commitment to heritage. • Provide free advice to heritage owners, developers and the wider community through provision of a heritage advisory service. • Provide plain English resources on heritage protection and management • Embrace a wide definition of heritage to achieve a comprehensive heritage list and provide statutory protection for those identified places. • Undertake heritage promotion and education, and promote heritage tourism. • Recognise and reward volunteer participation and positive outcomes for heritage places
Do you support local Councils retaining development approval powers for projects over $3m in value?
Yes, Councils should remain the principal authority for local planning assessment and decisions. The creation of Regional Development Assessment Panels (RDAPs) will mean local community representation will be lost.
Do you have any other thoughts about the protection of heritage in your Council area?
On 18 February 2013, the Minister for Planning, John Rau MP announced a Planning Reform project led by an independent Expert Panel. A final report is expected to be released by the panel in December 2014. The language used by the Expert panel is weak and lily livered, and was set up to counter the outrage over the Mount Barker Development Amendment Plan, where over 500 submissions made opposing the development were summarily ignored. About 3 years ago the Barnett government in WA ushered in highly controversial and undemocratic new planning bodies called Development Assessment Panels (DAPs). Under this system “…if developments proposals are over $3M developers can request a state DAP decision by a panel of five consisting of 2 from the local council and 3 state appointed "experts", rather than go through the comparatively transparent local government planning process. Once the process has gone through the initial "transparent" stages and the community has had its chance to have its say, the process goes behind closed doors…… Then only the developer has the right to appeal on decisions which the panel has reached..... In WA DAP’s have considerable powers over local communities, residents need to be aware and alarmed if they value their local input into their communities. “ Source; http://handsoffcountry.blogspot.com.au/2013/04/hosting-burden-of-shadow-population-dap.html The RDAP’s being proposed in South Australia are beasts from the same gene pool with a slightly longer name. The SA Development Act 1993 is written to allow the powerful e.g. Ministers of either political party to ignore public opinion. Section 22(10) is particularly egregious as it takes the word consultation and empties it of its meaning and anoints ministers with the power of kings to dismiss the rumblings of the peasants with the stroke of the pen. It states: No action can be brought on the basis— (a) that a Development Plan, or an amendment to a Development Plan, approved under this Act is inconsistent with the Planning Strategy; Scrapping this section of the Act would have allowed Mount Barker community to mount a legal challenge to the rezoning of 1300 hectares of farmland as it breached the State’s planning strategy for South Australia as proscribed in the 30 Year Greater Adelaide Plan.