Displaying items by tag: Hornsby Council
To help STEP members learn more about the environmental credentials of candidates in Hornsby and Ku-ring-gai we sent them a survey.
We contacted 49 candidates (all those who gave their email to the Electoral Commission) and we received ten responses (one from Hornsby and nine from Ku-ring-gai).
Click on the links below to see what the prospective councillors have to say, and click here to compare answers.
- Hornsby (Ward A) — Mick Marr (Group B)
- Ku-ring-gai (Comenarra) — Jayamala Gupte (Group D),
- Ku-ring-gai (Comenarra) — Trish Lynch (Group A),
- Ku-ring-gai (Comenarra) — Greg Taylor (Group F)
- Ku-ring-gai (Gordon) — Simon Lennon (Group B)
- Ku-ring-gai (Roseville) — Carmel Heffernan (Group D)
- Ku-ring-gai (Roseville) — Sam Ngai (Group B)
- Ku-ring-gai (Roseville) — Alec Taylor (Group A)
- Ku-ring-gai (St Ives) — Amanda Brien (Group D)
- Ku-ring-gai (Wahroonga) — Sheri Evans (Group F)
Questions we asked
- There are community concerns about urban heat, and the environmental and social impacts of the installation of synthetic turf on local ovals. What are your views on this?
- What’s your view on mountain bikers constructing their own new tracks through bushland?
- The NSW government wants to increase tree canopy cover in Greater Sydney from 16% to 40% by 2030. However, development as a result of population growth, subdivision, larger house footprints etc means that we continue to lose tree cover. Will you work to increase tree canopy?
- Do you support council’s environmental management policies, e.g. the biodiversity and water sensitive cities policies?
- Council does not have the financial resources to maintain effective firebreaks around all of the bushland boundaries of properties. Are you in favour of council developing a set of protocols so that qualified residents or their contractors are able to maintain their own boundaries?
- Some councils have resolved to dispose of surplus parcels of land behind closed doors. Will you undertake to make all such proposals transparent and invite community involvement?
- Some councils have not followed due process when asking for stakeholder feedback on a project. Would you take steps to ensure that all public consultation processes are carried out in an orderly and transparent manner?
- Do you think council should do more to encourage residents to reduce waste going into landfill?
- Council has resolved to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from its own operations and by the community to net zero by 2040 with an interim objective of a reduction of about 50% by 2030. Do you consider that enough action is being taken to achieve these goals?
- Is there anything you’d like to add?
There is a parcel of land at the end of Chestnut Road, Mt Colah that has been privately owned for years. It is just below a playing field that was built on a former landfill site. Pollutants have been leaching out of the tip into the creek below. Nevertheless, the land has some high quality bushland and borders on Berowra Valley National Park.
The landowner submitted a subdivision plan for the land that would have created 49 housing lots on the 4.4 ha sloping site. The process has been ongoing since 2017 as Hornsby Council has requested further documentation and an EPA investigation was required of gas from the former landfill site.
Hornsby Council recommended refusal mainly on the grounds that most trees would be cleared, and major landform modifications would be required. Over 100 objections have been submitted by local residents on the grounds of site contamination, overdevelopment, traffic, parking and safety impacts, tree loss, flora and fauna impacts, acoustic impacts and unacceptable impacts on the catchment of the Berowra Valley National Park.
In October the DA went before the Local Planning Panel. It is a great relief that the Panel unanimously decided on rejection because the proposal did not comply with many principles of the urban bushland policies and the Hornsby Development Control Plan.
What happens next is not clear. Could some or all of the land be added to Berowra Valley National Park?
Hornsby Council is undertaking a four-month review at a cost of $70,000 into potential rezoning and acquisition of land in Byles Creek Valley that is currently unprotected. Council has come to this conclusion in all reviews and reports in the past.
In 2014 Hornsby Council made a very comprehensive submission to the NSW government pushing for acquisition of Byles Creek Valley land in 2014. In this document council’s expert environmental team stated that:
The Byles Creek catchment has been identified as environmentally significant due to the unique environmental values of the area … The preservation of these lands provides connectivity between the significant vegetation corridor along Byles Creek and Lane Cove National Park. The connectivity of this corridor ensures the ability for species to disperse between reserves and the national park and for the transferral of genetic material. The conservation value of this corridor is further emphasised by its inclusion as a core area in the NSW Biodiversity Investment Opportunities Map as part of the NSW government’s Green Corridors Program.
The valley is noted for the high quality of the water in the Creek that flows into the Lane Cove River. It is used as a reference standard for water quality in the shire.
As a member of the Powerful Owl Coalition, STEP strongly supports the protection of the valley as it links with breeding habitat for the Powerful Owl.
Our thanks to the Byles Creek Valley Union for this information.