2022 candidate for Alexandrina Council.
Heritage survey responses.
Do you think that Councils and community members need to have a greater voice in planning and development decisions affecting their local area?
Absolutely, especially the community with better community consultation and transparency surrounding decision-making. There needs to be more of a grass roots approach, by community members who know their area and what is best for their area. Often these decisions are being made by people or governments that have no idea or concept of the impact to a local area.
What role should Councils play in protecting local heritage places from demolition or inappropriate development?
Councils need to be more active and accountable for protecting local heritage as they should know and have a good understanding of the importance of what their very own distinct local heritage brings to their community.
How would you seek to improve protections for heritage places in your area?
Identification of all heritage places is crucially important. Better understanding of a what a heritage place means, advertising the importance of an area or built heritage via signage, more local history introduced into local schools, adding more heritage places to the heritage register via appropriate research and study.
We rarely see new places added to local heritage listings. Why do you think this is?
I think it's due to lack of understanding of the importance of heritage to communities. Also because some see it as a barrier to development. There seems to be a reluctance from some Councils to actively identify these assets.
How has the Planning and Design Code impacted on the heritage, amenity, and environment of your area? What changes would you seek to the Code?
The Minister’s power to intervene should still need to take into account local & state heritage listing guidance. It should not be reliant on only one or few decision makers, it should rely more on community involvement and open accountability.
What are the impacts of infill development in your area? What changes would you seek in the rules around infill development?
Infill is tricky. Infill does reduce pressure on developing farmland (for example) but it has to be done in sympathy with the surrounding area. We must protect heritage properties & only allow infill where it is not at the expense of heritage.
Construction of new housing typically uses 30% labour and 70% materials. Renovation of existing housing stock typically uses 70% labour and 30% materials. What policy changes would you like to see made to encourage people to renovate, rather than demolish and build anew?
We currently do not charge appropriately for demolition & dumping. There is no value given to the incumbent energy in an existing property of the CO2 released in either the demolition or the relationship of new houses. Similarly, in general, older houses made of double brick with large eaves have a better energy rating than newer "cookie cutter" homes. I would like to see proper honest and thorough assessment of a building or heritage asset as most can be repurposed, refurbished, renovated and saved.
How should the community be informed and involved in decisions about new developments?
The community needs to be made aware via publications, social media etc. The community needs to have more input into decisions being made with better and more transparent consultation over what the development is actually going to be.
Do you think there is adequate tree canopy across your local government area?
I think there is always room for more trees, bushes, and greenscape and what we already have must be protected. New developments must have higher specifications regarding greenscape & tree canopy.
How would you like to see significant and regulated trees in your area protected from removal?
Existing regulations are a good start but again departments such at DIT, seem to be able to circumnavigate these rules. Trees take a long time to grow and the bigger they are the more carbon they sequest. All developments need to take into account our trees especially the ones that are significant.
What involvement should Councils have in decisions about protecting or removing significant and regulated trees?
Again, Councils should know their area best & should be involved.
What actions would you advocate to slow or mitigate the impacts of climate change in your local government area?
Recent storm water & flooding studies clearly show what areas are at risk in the foreseeable future. Surely we should not allow any further construction in these zones. We know public transport can help. We knows trees absorb carbon. We know the reduce, reuse, recycle philosophy helps. We would be actioning all these & more.
What issues are there with traffic and parking in your area?
During busy holiday season parking can be quite the challenge. We do need more public transport, including to & from the towns of Victor Harbor, Port Elliot, Middleton, Goolwa, as well as to Adelaide. Also, speed is of concern at Goolwa Beach as well as Middleton & Port Elliot main streets during summer. Perhaps temporary speed restrictions - ie to 25 or 40km in the busy tourist areas of those towns might help.
How could transport options be improved in your area?
Provide additional funding for the Steam Ranger Train for more platforms along it's route, provide funding for upgrades to the Steam Ranger track, and bridges. More community buses with more bus stops.
What would your top three priorities be for improving planning policy and outcomes in your local government area?
Transparent, honest, genuine community consultation
A full review of the Alexandrina Council districts heritage assets to ensure they are all identified and subsequently protected.
Ensure building, built heritage, heritage assets and trees are better protected and included when it comes to development and planning.