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Letter to the Editor: Australian Electoral Commission

Friday, May 18, 2018


The below submission to the Australian Electoral Commission was shared with NIPD management on 28 April 2018 by John Howard (son of the late Ed Howard - former Executive Member of the Norfolk Island Legislative Assembly) and his wife Rosemary Howard who together with their son Ben have always kept the Norfolk Island People close to their hearts.  
 
NIPD management considered that it so succinctly captured the essence of our objections in this matter that it should be made available for our wider membership and the general public to read.
 
“Dear Australian Electoral Commission,
 
We write to object to the inclusion of Norfolk Island in the proposed ACT Federal Redistribution, 2018,
 
In 1856, by Orders in Council, Queen Victoria declared "Norfolk Island shall be a distinct and separate settlement."  We believe that specific declaration has not been altered and holds to this day.
 
It is therefore not appropriate to include Norfolk Island as part of any mainland Australian electorate.
 
Until the legality of this contention is resolved, Norfolk Island must be treated as a separate entity.
 
In addition, the inclusion of Norfolk Island as part of a mainland electorate does not recognise that the economic, social, cultural and regional interests of the Island are entirely different from those of any Australian electorate, and that travel from Norfolk Island to Canberra is inconvenient, time consuming and costly. Further, the physical features of Norfolk Island are unique from any part of Australia. Being located on a ridge linking New Caledonia and New Zealand, Norfolk Island was formed by volcanic activity and has never been a part of the Australian continent. Norfolk island's flora, fauna and climate are entirely different from those of Canberra.
 
As an aside, we note that Norfolk Island residents have no representation in the Senate and are having laws of New South Wales imposed upon them despite having no voting rights in that State.
 
Yours sincerely
 
John and Rosemary Howard 

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DRAFT OPERATIONAL PLAN AND COMMUNITY MEETING

Friday, May 18, 2018



At the 16 May Ordinary Council Meeting the Draft Operational Plan 2018-2019 was presented and Council resolved to adopt the draft and place the Plan on public exhibition for 28 days.

Public submissions can be made until 4:30pm on 13 June 2018, a separate media release has been issued with full details.

A public meeting will be held at 5.30pm-7pm on 28 May 2018 at the Paradise Hotel to inform the community of the draft Operational Plan 2018-2019 before public submissions close, and for an opportunity to answer related questions.

Council’s annual operational program is contained within the Operational Plan that is developed each year in line with the requirements under the Local Government Act 1993 (NSW) (NI). The Operational Plan contains the activities to be carried out during the year, the revenue policy, rating structure, fees and charges and the annual budget.

This is the third Operational Plan that has been developed for the Norfolk Island Regional Council, and therefore the third year of the Delivery Program which is the project plan that was developed by the Councillors for their term in Council.

The key projects that were planned for in the first year, and tendered for in the second year, will be progressed and/or executed in the third year. These key projects are:

• Waste - project to ensure the discontinuation of burning and dumping of waste into the sea
• Airport – apron, taxiway and runway rehabilitation
• Sewer treatment – develop a strategy and determine best solution
• Telecommunication – 3G/4G project
• Electricity – progress the Energy Solution project

Each of these government business areas are delivered on the premise of “fee for services” and they have been budgeted to break even, or with the aim of a surplus budget (any surplus will in the future pay for the upgrade of related assets).

The Waste Management budget was the most challenging to balance due to the cost of bailing and shipping legacy waste, such as asbestos, off the island. Therefore, the deficit in this fund had to be off-set by savings in other areas, supported by the general fund that is offset by the financial assistance grant.

Council was successful in obtaining a 50% contribution to the Tourism Marketing fund with$385,320.00 from the Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Citieswhich means that Council can continue to deliver Tourism Marketing at the same levels asthe previous year. Tourism is the backbone of the Island’s economy and Council remainscommitted to supporting the industry. This commitment is further highlighted with theintroduction of negotiated rebates on the Regular Passenger Transport charges forcommencing air services on currently un-serviced routes.

The social and environmental areas of the Plan will address advocacy roles relating toeducation, training, health, and well-being; the completion of the Environment Strategy,and the focus on clean water and pests and noxious weed eradication. Heritage and Culturefeatures in its own chapter and governance and leadership includes the continuation of atransparent and accountable Local Government.

Council continues to focus on the objectives in the Community Strategic Plan with the aimto be the “Best Small Island in the World”.

Lotta Jackson
GENERAL MANAGER
18 May 2018

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OVERVIEW OF COUNCIL MEETING

Friday, May 18, 2018



The last Ordinary Council Meeting for 2018 was held on 16 May 2018, some of the matters discussed are detailed below.

The Draft Operational Plan 2018-2019 was presented to Council which includes the Rating Structure, Activities, Revenue Policy, the proposed fees and charges and the proposed budget for 2018-2019. For more information on the Plan, please see separate media release.

Council awarded the tender submission of the Unique Tourism Collection Pty Ltd for the contract as the Single Source supplier of Tourism/Marketing Services to Norfolk Island Regional Council for the period 1 July 2018 to 30 June 2021. Council also approved for Blue Arcus Technologies Incorporated, the preferred tenderer for the 3G/4G mobile phone system at a capital cost of $3.028 million, be contracted to provide 3G/4G services once funding for the project is finalised.
Council approved to write to Minister Dr John McVeigh to amend the Norfolk Island Standard Time Ordinance 2015, to include daylight saving time to commence on the first Sunday each October and end on the first Sunday 1 April.

The Quarterly Financial Review Report was presented (as at 31 March 2018) which shows an improvement in Councils projected financial performance to $1.396 million deficit from $1.996 million deficit year end 30 June 2018.

A Waste and Environment Status Report was provided, some of the items included were: The delivery of the multi-purpose baler has been further delayed and will be shipped together with the sorting line on 22 June 2018 unless there is a delay with the shipping schedule; Council has commenced inspections of sanitary facilities within the KAVHA catchment, approximately 30 properties have now been inspected. The data gathered from these inspections, and ongoing inspections in the KAVHA catchment, will feed into the Water Quality and Wastewater Management Strategy that will be prepared in the 2018-2019 year; Council has engaged SMEC Consulting to prepare an Environment Strategy for Norfolk Island. Work on the strategy is well underway. The SMEC team will be on island between 28 May and 4 June 2018, to conduct community consultation.

The Council Meeting Resolution Review and Quarterly Review of Activities were both presented to Council in full detail, the key activities being: The multiple tenders that have been progressed; the first value based rating models were created; Hindle Group progressed their Economic Development Activities and Professor Richard Bush presented on the Project Brief for the Green Economy Blueprint.

A Mayoral Minute regarding the introduction of the Australian Awards System and a Notice of Motion regarding a Community Strategic Plan - Preamble were submitted by the Mayor. For more information, be sure to check out the Mayor’s Update in this week’s media.

An Investment Report was provided and noted, with the interest accrued on investments during the month of April 2018 being $22,654.57 and the total deposits held being $13,976.951.

Three (3) Reports from Committees were presented:
• Minutes of the Tourism Advisory Committee Meeting held 3 May 2018
• Minutes of the Public Reserves Advisory Committee Meeting held 1 May 2018
• Minutes of the Heritage and Culture Advisory Committee Meeting held 27 April 2018.
This media release provides a brief overview of some of the matters that were addressed at the Council meeting. For full details visit Council’s website www.norfolkisland.gov.nf to view the meeting Agenda, Minutes or to listen to the recording of the meeting. Hardcopies are available to view at Customer Care or the Library.

Council’s values: Integrity, communication, accountability, respect and excellence

Lotta Jackson
GENERAL MANAGER
18 May 2018

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AMENDED RATING MODEL 2018-2019

Friday, May 18, 2018


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AMENDED RATING MODEL 2018-2019

Friday, May 18, 2018


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Norfolk Island power Design Project - Update from Hydro Tasmania

Friday, May 18, 2018


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News from the World of Norfolk

Friday, May 18, 2018



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MAYORS UPDATE KEEPING THE COMMUNITY INFORMED

Friday, May 18, 2018



“This week I am only reporting on the two matters that I brought to Council this week” Mayor Adams said. “Readers will recall that Council at its December 2017 meeting invited Minister McVeigh to commission an inquiry through the Australian Productivity Commission to determine –

a) The current financial capacity of the island; and
b) How to grow Norfolk Island economically, socially, culturally and environmentally, including building a diverse and vibrant business environment
In response Minister McVeigh has requested the Department of Infrastructure to advise him on how the reform process might be reviewed and monitored. Council supports the Minister’s suggestion. The below Mayoral Minute unanimously passed by Council on Wednesday expands on our earlier letter of support to the Minister”

‘Introduction of the Australian awards system under the fair work act 2009 (CTH) in its application to Norfolk island
“Council requests that the Mayor make Minister McVeigh aware of the many representations and serious concerns held by the Norfolk Island business community relating to the imminent introduction of the Australian Awards System under the Fair Work Act 2009 (CTH) in its application to Norfolk Island; and Council’s support for progression as a matter of urgency of the review and monitoring of the impact of Commonwealth reforms on Norfolk Island as foreshadowed by the Minister in his letter to the Mayor of 20 February 2018 and endorsed by Council at its March 2018 meeting.”

“The second motion unanimously agreed to is self-explanatory and I will provide details to the community in the coming weeks how the consultation process will be addressed” the Mayor said.

The Community Strategic Plan 2016-2026, objective 3 - advocate for preamble
Council by resolution of 19 July 2017 requested the Mayor in consultation with the General Manager and the President of the Council of Elders to report back to Council by December 2017 how best Council can fulfil its advocacy role under the Community Strategic Plan 2016-2026 for the re-instatement of a Preamble to the Norfolk Island Act that addresses the concerns of the Norfolk Island people.

At our meeting on 16 May Council unanimously agreed the following motion:
Council –
1. Notes –
a. the letter of 5 October 2017 from the Mayor to the President of the Council of Elders;
b. that the Mayor and the General Manager met on 22 November 2017 with the President and other representatives of the Council of Elders; and
c. the letter of response from the Council of Elders (attached) of 26 November 2017 in which the Council of Elders, quote, states –

“The Norfolk Island Council of Elders is yet to be satisfied with a response to the need to remove the Preamble from the Act when the Norfolk Island Act is still in force. And, until such time as a reasonable response is received and accepted; the full Council of Elders will maintain its ‘absolute position that OUR Preamble be reinstated verbatim and forthwith’.”

[NOTE: The letters referred to above can be accessed in the Council Business Agenda on www.norfolkisland.gov.nf under Your Council/Council Meetings]
2. Acknowledges the Mission at 2.2 in the Community Strategic Plan 2016-2026 (the Plan) that includes the statement that –

“We will protect and enhance our unique, culture, heritage, traditions and environment for the Norfolk Island People. We will do this through promoting a healthy and sustainable lifestyle, by looking after our community assets, and by fostering a prosperous economy”

3. To assist Council to further progress its advocacy role in respect of the reinstatement of the Preamble and to give further clarity on the Mission in the Plan, Council supports the Mayor undertaking a consultation process –

a. with the community that allows for lodgement of submissions; recorded public hearings with available Councillors; and a community meeting; and
b. also with the Commonwealth,
on how the unique culture, heritage, traditions and environment for the Norfolk Island People can be protected and enhanced as pledged in the core Mission of the Norfolk Island Community Strategic Plan 2016-2026.

Robin Adams JP
MAYOR

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UPDATE ON AUTOMATIC FIRE ALARMS

Friday, May 18, 2018



With the cooler weather approaching the community is reminded regarding the status of the Automatic Fire Alarms.

Following the lightning storm on 23 January 2018, the status of the island’s Fire Service pager system that notifies the Fire Service of an activated Automatic Fire Alarm on some island premises is still non-operational.

Therefore, all incidents that requires the Fire Service attendance please call 955 immediately. Do not rely on any automatic fire alarms.

Once Council has the problem rectified the community will be further advised.

Lotta Jackson
GENERAL MANAGER
18 May 2018

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Documents On Public Exhibition

Friday, May 18, 2018


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