President's Message 24 October 2019

MAKING WASTE A PRODUCT NOT A PROBLEM – Recycling will continue to be a big focus for us in the coming year following the launch of the At the Crossroads: The State of Waste and Recycling in NSW report and the continuation of our Save Our Recycling campaign. We are calling upon the NSW Government to work with councils to invest in regional-scale waste and recycling plans, education to help restore ailing recycling services, and to help create new markets for recycled products. You can help by downloading the new recycling support pack containing logos, banners, website buttons, posters and a mayoral minute your council can use to officially endorse the campaign’s goals.

URGING A NEW WAY FORWARD FOR ORGANIC WASTE – NSW councils are calling upon the NSW Government to create a new vision for the future of organic re-use following a ban on the recycling of mixed waste organic materials. We support the Environment Protection Authority’s decision to ban the material (once used to improve soil) after it was found to contain unacceptable contaminants. But while the recycling industry has been given $6.5m to compensate for the ban, councils have not been offered any financial help to deal with the waste they collect. Twenty-eight councils in NSW pay extra to process red bin waste through alternative waste treatment plants (creating mixed waste organic material) and these contracts still have some years to run. We’re urging the government to work with councils to find a positive way forward. To discuss further contact LGNSW Environment Strategy manager Susy Cenedese
MAPPING ECONOMIC DISADVANTAGE IN NSW – I am honoured to continue fighting alongside you for our state’s most vulnerable communities. I joined the NSW Council of Social Services on Wednesday to release the ‘Mapping Economic Disadvantage in NSW’ research by the National Centre for Social and Economic Modelling. This report, and its accompanying maps, show a geographical representation of where poverty and disadvantage is concentrated and those that are most affected. We had several resolutions at last week’s annual conference in support of vulnerable people, including a motion submitted by Lismore Council to lobby for increases to Newstart and Youth Allowance. I encourage councils to use the maps to better target disadvantage in their local government areas. To discuss further contact LGNSW Senior Policy Officer Elizabeth Robertson

UPCOMING MINISTERIAL MEETINGS – We will meet with NSW Attorney General Mark Speakman at the beginning of November to discuss the Redress Scheme. If you have any issues you would like us to raise on your behalf, please contact LGNSW Director Advocacy Kylie Yates.

EXTENSION OF THE RATES PATH PROTECTION FOR NEW COUNCILS – The NSW Office of Local Government has issued a circular announcing that new councils under the rates path extension will maintain rates paths until mid-2021. Any new council planning to apply for a variation is encouraged to contact the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal as soon as possible. To raise any concerns contact LGNSW Executive Manager Industrial Relations and Legal Jessica Wood.
Photo: LGNSW President Linda Scott, NCOSS CEO Joanna Quilty and St Vincent de Paul Volunteer Sister Carmel Hanson.