Notice of Meeting

 

 

 

 

 

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Belongil Catchment Advisory Committee Meeting

 

 

A Belongil Catchment Advisory Committee Meeting of Byron Shire Council will be held as follows:

 

Venue

Cavanbah Centre, Ewingsdale Road, Byron Bay

Date

Monday, 18 April 2016

Time

9.00am

 

 

 


 

Phillip Holloway

Director Infrastructure Services                                                                                           I2016/380

                                                                                                                                    Distributed 14/04/16

 

 


CONFLICT OF INTERESTS

What is a “Conflict of Interests” - A conflict of interests can be of two types:

Pecuniary - an interest that a person has in a matter because of a reasonable likelihood or expectation of appreciable financial gain or loss to the person or another person with whom the person is associated.

Non-pecuniary – a private or personal interest that a Council official has that does not amount to a pecuniary interest as defined in the Local Government Act (eg. A friendship, membership of an association, society or trade union or involvement or interest in an activity and may include an interest of a financial nature).

Remoteness – a person does not have a pecuniary interest in a matter if the interest is so remote or insignificant that it could not reasonably be regarded as likely to influence any decision the person might make in relation to a matter or if the interest is of a kind specified in Section 448 of the Local Government Act.

Who has a Pecuniary Interest? - a person has a pecuniary interest in a matter if the pecuniary interest is the interest of the person, or another person with whom the person is associated (see below).

Relatives, Partners - a person is taken to have a pecuniary interest in a matter if:

§  The person’s spouse or de facto partner or a relative of the person has a pecuniary interest in the matter, or

§  The person, or a nominee, partners or employer of the person, is a member of a company or other body that has a pecuniary interest in the matter.

N.B. “Relative”, in relation to a person means any of the following:

(a)   the parent, grandparent, brother, sister, uncle, aunt, nephew, niece, lineal descends or adopted child of the person or of the person’s spouse;

(b)   the spouse or de facto partners of the person or of a person referred to in paragraph (a)

No Interest in the Matter - however, a person is not taken to have a pecuniary interest in a matter:

§  If the person is unaware of the relevant pecuniary interest of the spouse, de facto partner, relative or company or other body, or

§  Just because the person is a member of, or is employed by, the Council.

§  Just because the person is a member of, or a delegate of the Council to, a company or other body that has a pecuniary interest in the matter provided that the person has no beneficial interest in any shares of the company or body.

Disclosure and participation in meetings

§  A Councillor or a member of a Council Committee who has a pecuniary interest in any matter with which the Council is concerned and who is present at a meeting of the Council or Committee at which the matter is being considered must disclose the nature of the interest to the meeting as soon as practicable.

§  The Councillor or member must not be present at, or in sight of, the meeting of the Council or Committee:

(a)   at any time during which the matter is being considered or discussed by the Council or Committee, or

(b)   at any time during which the Council or Committee is voting on any question in relation to  the matter.

No Knowledge - a person does not breach this Clause if the person did not know and could not reasonably be expected to have known that the matter under consideration at the meeting was a matter in which he or she had a pecuniary interest.

Participation in Meetings Despite Pecuniary Interest (S 452 Act)

A Councillor is not prevented from taking part in the consideration or discussion of, or from voting on, any of the matters/questions detailed in Section 452 of the Local Government Act.

Non-pecuniary Interests - Must be disclosed in meetings.

There are a broad range of options available for managing conflicts & the option chosen will depend on an assessment of the circumstances of the matter, the nature of the interest and the significance of the issue being dealt with.  Non-pecuniary conflicts of interests must be dealt with in at least one of the following ways:

§  It may be appropriate that no action be taken where the potential for conflict is minimal.  However, Councillors should consider providing an explanation of why they consider a conflict does not exist.

§  Limit involvement if practical (eg. Participate in discussion but not in decision making or vice-versa).  Care needs to be taken when exercising this option.

§  Remove the source of the conflict (eg. Relinquishing or divesting the personal interest that creates the conflict)

§  Have no involvement by absenting yourself from and not taking part in any debate or voting on the issue as if the provisions in S451 of the Local Government Act apply (particularly if you have a significant non-pecuniary interest)

RECORDING OF VOTING ON PLANNING MATTERS

Clause 375A of the Local Government Act 1993 – Recording of voting on planning matters

(1)   In this section, planning decision means a decision made in the exercise of a function of a council under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979:

(a)   including a decision relating to a development application, an environmental planning instrument, a development control plan or a development contribution plan under that Act, but

(b)   not including the making of an order under Division 2A of Part 6 of that Act.

(2)   The general manager is required to keep a register containing, for each planning decision made at a meeting of the council or a council committee, the names of the councillors who supported the decision and the names of any councillors who opposed (or are taken to have opposed) the decision.

(3)   For the purpose of maintaining the register, a division is required to be called whenever a motion for a planning decision is put at a meeting of the council or a council committee.

(4)   Each decision recorded in the register is to be described in the register or identified in a manner that enables the description to be obtained from another publicly available document, and is to include the information required by the regulations.

(5)   This section extends to a meeting that is closed to the public.

 


BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL

Belongil Catchment Advisory Committee Meeting

 

 

BUSINESS OF MEETING

 

1.    Apologies

2.    Declarations of Interest – Pecuniary and Non-Pecuniary

3.    Adoption of Minutes from Previous Meetings

3.1       Belongil Catchment Advisory Commmittee Meeting held on 8 March 2016

4.    Business Arising From Previous Minutes

5.    Staff Reports

Infrastructure Services

5.1       Belongil Creek Fate of the Effluent Alternative Flowpath Projec Rev 2........................... 4

5.2       Belongil Catchment Management Plan Review of Actions............................................ 22

5.3       Legal Advice on Drainage Union..................................................................................... 46   

 

 


BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL

Staff Reports - Infrastructure Services                                                                   5.1

 

 

Staff Reports - Infrastructure Services

 

Report No. 5.1             Belongil Creek Fate of the Effluent Alternative Flowpath Projec Rev 2

Directorate:                 Infrastructure Services

Report Author:           Peter Rees, Manager Utilities

File No:                        I2016/367

Theme:                         Community Infrastructure

                                      Sewerage Services

 

 

Summary:

 

The attached discussion paper is the paper presented to the Committee meeting held on 8 March 2016. It presents a summary of the information gathered over the past 12 months of investigation of water flows from the STP effluent.  It contains recommended project objectives and project plan.

 

Attached are comments received from Cr Dey; Tony Flick and Mary Gardner.

 

The discussion paper and the comments are presented for discussion and finalisation of the project plan.

 

  

 

RECOMMENDATION:

That The Committee review the attached project discussion paper and comments from the various committee members and provide input into the project.

 

 

 

Attachments:

 

1        Fate of the Effluent Alternative Flowpaths Discussion Paper, E2016/13752 , page 6  

2        M Gardner comments on Discussion Paper, E2016/23853 , page 13  

3        M Gardner Attachment CATCHMENT REHAB PRINCIPLES, E2016/23785 , page 16  

4        Cr Dey Comments 1 April 2016 Alternative Flowpath Discussion Paper, E2016/22824 , page 17  

5        Tony Flick Comments 10 April 2016 Alernative Flowpath Project Discussion Paper, E2016/22825 , page 20  

 

 


 

Report

 

Refer attached discussion paper and attachments.

 

Financial Implications

 

Section 64 funding of $350,000 has been allocated to this project by Council Resolution 15-674.

 

It should be noted Section 64 funds have been allocated to this project as identification or otherwise of alternative flowpaths is critical to making a decision on any expanded sewage treatment plant project.

 

Statutory and Policy Compliance Implications

 

Nil

 


BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL

Staff Reports - Infrastructure Services                                          5.1 - Attachment 1

Belongil Catchment Advisory Committee

 

Byron STP Alternative Flow Path

Overview

Byron Shire Council (Council) has identified the need to implement a major project to investigate future flow paths for treated effluent discharge from the Byron STP. The Byron STP treats wastewater from the Byron Bay / Suffolk Park area and discharges a high quality tertiary treated effluent into the:

q Byron Bay Urban Recycled Water Scheme (BBURWS); or

q Byron Bay Integrated Wetlands Management Reserve (BBIWMR) where the water flows through a series of constructed wetlands prior to environmental release

 

With the augmentation of the West Byron STP in 2005, an increased volume of treated effluent has been released from the BBIWMR into the Belongil Creek Catchment via a farm drainage system. The local landholders have raised concerns that the increased flow in the drain has impacted on the local hydrology, with respect to increasing the height of local groundwater levels.

Currently the Byron STP is operating at 72% capacity (approx. 5 ML/day) with the design capacity of 6.95 ML /day to be reached by 2025. Based on Councils current land use strategies, it is estimated that the Byron STP will need to be upgraded to a capacity of 10 ML/day to continue servicing the area beyond 2025.

As the volume of STP discharge is set to increase, Council would like to determine the sustainable capacity for increased flows in the Belongil Creek Catchment, in regards to both the ecological health of the catchment and localised hydrological impacts.

The table below shows current release and the approximate volumes discharged from the Byron STP.

STP Release

Approx. Discharge

Byron Bay Urban Recycled Water Scheme (BBURWS)

Treated effluent is filtered and chlorinated for irrigation purposes and public toilet use

1 ML/day

Byron Bay Integrated Wetland Management Reserve (BBIWMR)

Treated effluent is irrigated through the 25ha Melaleuca wetland

1 ML/ day *

Treated effluent is released into the upper catchment of the Belongil Creek via a series of open drains

3 ML/day

Note: * taken up in the wetlands through evapotranspiration


BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL

Staff Reports - Infrastructure Services                                          5.1 - Attachment 1

Project Status

Council installed data loggers on 25 March 2015 to investigate the behaviour of the standing water levels of the shallow groundwater system within the three adjoining landowner’s properties. The results to date indicate that the main factor influencing groundwater levels is rainfall in the catchment [Technical Memorandums: Assessment of Water Levels within Union Drain and Morans Hill Drain, Byron Bay (AWC, April 2015; August 2015; November 2015)] (see Attachment A).

The analysis of flow data to date has not shown a correlation between the environmental release from the BBIWMR and the water levels in the farm drainage system - high effluent release does not correspond with high drain water levels. Council is continuing to monitor groundwater levels and investigate the behaviour of STP discharge in relation to local groundwater levels.

To investigate the future requirements of the Byron STP, Council commissioned an investigation to review the capacity of the Byron STP in line with Councils population projections [Byron STP Capacity Review – Final Report (GHD, August 2015)]. The review found that Byron STP will require augmentation to cater for development beyond 2025. An STP capacity of 10 ML/day will be prerequisite for the delivery of sewage services up to 2050. [Byron STP Capacity Review – Final Report (GHD, August 2015)].

In response to the Landowners concerns and a possible increase in future STP environmental release, Council has undertaken a preliminary study on alternative flow paths [West Byron STP Preliminary Review of Alternative Effluent Release Locations (AWC, April 2015)]. The study identified six alternative flow paths for the discharge of treated effluent (See Attachment B).

Council has formed the Belongil Catchment Advisory Committee (Committee) to steer the project as part of the community consultation process. In considering STP environmental release beyond 2025, it is necessary to ensure current and future flow paths enhance the environmental aspects of the catchment as a whole.

At the Byron Shire Council Meeting held on the 10 Dec 2015, Council resolved [Resolution 15-674]:

1.     The Council commence an investigation into the Belongil Fate of Effluent Flow Path and consult with the newly formed Belongil Catchment Advisory Committee and Water, Waste and Sewer Advisory Committee on the aims and scope of the project

2.     That the project be reported regularly to that Committee and to the Water, Waste and Sewer Advisory Committee

3.     That Council allocate $350,000 from the Sewer Fund section 64 reserves to undertake the Belongil Fate of the Effluent Flow Path project over 12 months from early 2016


 

In Summary:

Council position

§ The evidence to date indicates the current flow path has not negatively impacted on the hydrology  Belongil Creek Catchment

§ The increase in STP flows since augmentation of the Byron STP has increased the frequency of the Belongil mouth opening indicating that the water is effectively flowing through the Belongil Creek Catchment.

§ The Byron STP and Wetlands have delivered environmental benefits to the whole community by enhancing the environmental aspects of the upper catchment

Nevertheless:

§ Council has identified that the design capacity of 6.95 ML/day will be reached by 2025 and that the current planning strategy indicates an augmentation of the STP will be required in the next 10 years

§ Environmental release from the Byron STP will increase by approx.:

2 ML /day by 2025

5 ML /day by 2050

§ Council would like to ensure neighbouring landholders are not negatively impacted by the current or future hydraulic loading of STP discharge

§ Council would like to investigate the sustainable capacity of the Belongil Creek Catchment for future release strategies

Adjoining landowner’s position

§ Landowners believe the current effluent flow path has increased the height of the water table and is contributing to water logging parts of their low lying land  

§ Landowners claim the original agreement was for a 1 ML /day discharge with the augmentation of the West Byron STP

Regulators position

§ EPA confirms Council is managing the current discharge and irrigation of effluent in accordance with EPA requirements

§ EPA has further advised that modifying the Byron STP discharge arrangements requires investigation of options along with comprehensive environmental assessment.

§ DPI Water confirm that provided the water is flowing through the drainage network unimpeded (NO Ponding) there should be little impact on the height of the water table

 

 

 

 

 


BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL

Staff Reports - Infrastructure Services                                          5.1 - Attachment 1

Project Plan Proposal

The following Project Plan outline is provided for Committee review and input.

Project Objectives

The objectives of the Committee are to:

q Determine the sustainable capacity for increased flows in the Belongil Creek

q Identify alternative flow path/s for Byron STP treated effluent discharge 

q Enhance environmental and scenic values (beautification) of the Belongil Catchment

q …… [to further develop with Council / Committee]

Scope of Works

Task

Completed By

1

Engage consultant to undertake a review of the sustainable capacity for increased flows in the Belongil Creek

April 2016

2

Engage consultant to undertake a Detailed Review of Byron STP Alternative Flow Paths including:

§ Assess the potential options of treated effluent release, including a mix of options

§ Model potential scenarios for STP discharge with consideration to

the relative contribution to the flows from the STP discharges and rainfall

the impacts of discharges with the Belongil estuary open and closed

§ Assessment and understanding of project risks

§ Determine all regulatory and formal requirements

§ Provide recommended option/s to Council

June 2016

 

3

Report preferred option/s to relevant various Council committees

September 2016

4

Council Resolution of the preferred option/s

October 2016

5

Engage consultant/s to undertake the required detailed Environmental and Engineering studies – this could include REF, EIS, Flora and Fauna Studies, Hydraulic studies

November 2016

 


 

Studies, Plans and Reports

The following Council documents are available on the Belongil Creek Catchment:

q 3 x Technical Memorandums: Assessment of Water Levels within Union Drain and Morans Hill Drain, Byron Bay (AWC, April 2015; August 2015 and November 2015)

q 3 – Union Drain WL Assessment (???, October 2015)

q Byron STP Capacity Review – Final Report (GHD, August 2015)

q West Byron STP Preliminary Review of Alternative Effluent Release Locations (AWC, April 2015)

q Belongil Creek Floodplain Risk Management Study and Plan (BMT WBM, March 2015)

q Belongil Creek Flood Study (SMEC, November 2009)


BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL

Staff Reports - Infrastructure Services                                          5.1 - Attachment 1

Appendix A

1) Technical Memorandum: Assessment of Water Levels within Union Drain and Morans Hill Drain, Byron Bay (AWC, April 2015)

2) Technical Memorandum: Assessment of Water Levels within Union Drain and Morans Hill Drain, Byron Bay (AWC, August 2015)

3) Technical Memorandum: Assessment of Water Levels within Union Drain and Morans Hill Drain, Byron Bay (AWC, November 2015)

 

 

 

 

 


BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL

Staff Reports - Infrastructure Services                                          5.1 - Attachment 1

 

 

Appendix B

West Byron STP Preliminary Review of Alternative Effluent Release Locations (AWC, April 2015)


BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL

Staff Reports - Infrastructure Services                                                     5.1 - Attachment 2


 


 


BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL

Staff Reports - Infrastructure Services                                                                               5.1 - Attachment 3

CATCHMENT REHAB PRINCIPLES for both Belongil  & Tallow (which may have important overlapping areas) DRAFT (M Gardner)

Our four interrelated water cycles and pathways (simplified indicative diagramme)

Current problems:

1.     Too much rain becomes stormwater, stormwater moves too quickly to ICOLLs and coastal sea

2.     Expensive import used too freely, then thrown away as waste

3.     Rain received by diminished areas of drained wetlands where farming emphasises grazing cattle

4.     ICOLLs overwhelmed by role as default holders of stormwater & effluent

5.     Little scope to meet extremes such as drought and flooding,

quality of water to ICOLLS and sea: weak fish food/strong pollutant

Rehabilitation principles (with i.e. sample applications)

1.     SLOW the RAINWATER: i.e. Strong conservation programme: i.e. rain tanks, rehab & water sensitive urban design wetlands

at Depot, Sandhills, Butler St & parklets/channels throughout town, water permeable pavements/drives & swales

2.     CLOSE CYCLE FOR VALUABLE RESOURCE: i.e. Strong conservation/education/purple tap programme: identify flows, quantities and trends,

        use less in residences, make better use of effluent as resource for grey water uses esp in comm place, giveaway for tank truck to

dry places in and outside Shire

3.     REHAB drains as CHANNELS and PONDS expanding WETLANDS i.e.  producing plant and animal products for  Australian cuisine market/conservation

4.     REHAB flow to and from ICOLLs: i.e. increase ratio of rainwater to effluent, revive coastal marine life: start w/ecological engineers & housekeepers in each habitat


BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL

Staff Reports - Infrastructure Services                                                     5.1 - Attachment 4


 


 


BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL

Staff Reports - Infrastructure Services                                                     5.1 - Attachment 5


 


BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL

Staff Reports - Infrastructure Services                                                                   5.2

 

 

Report No. 5.2             Belongil Catchment Management Plan Review of Actions

Directorate:                 Infrastructure Services

Report Author:           Peter Rees, Manager Utilities

File No:                        I2016/369

Theme:                         Community Infrastructure

                                      Sewerage Services

 

 

Summary:

 

Staff have been reviewing 8 major plans and strategies encompassing the Belongil Catchment over the past 3 weeks.  In these documents 155 actions have been identified in the catchment. Of these, 10 have been confirmed as completed; 30 as current or ongoing and 115 as not determined or not done.

 

The recent restructure which has combined water, sewer and urban stormwater into the one department provides a unique opportunity to allocate resources to immediately undertake 28 of the 115 incomplete actions centred on water quality and education.  These activities are listed in Attachment 3 and are spread across all the plans.  In particular, actions can be summarised into 4 recommendations.

 

1.   Develop and implement a water quality programme in the Belongil Catchment.

2.   Employment of an Education Officer on a 5 year term position encompassing the Water, Sewer, Stormwater and Catchment functions.

3.   Prepare a design for a natural channel drain for the Butler Street drain incorporating a wetlands filter system.

4.   Prepare a project plan for the Butler Street drainage upgrade for work to coincide with the Byron Bay Bypass project.

 

These actions can essentially be paid for from the savings accruing to the water, sewer and stormwater operational funds from the recent restructure.

 

  

 

RECOMMENDATION:

That Council approve

 

1.   Development and implementation of a water quality programme in the Belongil Catchment.

 

2.   Employment of an Education Officer on a 5 year term position encompassing the Water, Sewer and Stormwater functions.

 

3.   Prepare a design for a natural channel drain for the Butler Street drain incorporating a wetlands filter system.

 

4.   Prepare a project plan for the Butler Street drainage upgrade for work to coincide with the Byron Bay Bypass project.

 

Attachments:

 

1        Attachment 1 - Belongil Catchment Management Plan Review Rev E, E2016/23918 , page 26  

2        Attachment 2 - B2033 Belongil Catchment Plan Actions Review_Rev2, E2016/23917 , page 31  

3        Attachment 3 - Belongil Catchment Plans Recommended Actions, E2016/23919 , page 44  

 

 


 

Report

 

The key management plans and strategies encompassing the Belongil Catchment are:

 

Table 1

Document Name

Author (date)

Belongil Estuary Study and Management Plan

Peter Packer Environmental Consultants and Dave Pont (2001)

Byron Bay Drainage Maintenance Plan 2014 - 15

Byron Shire Council (2014)

Belongil Creek Floodplain Risk Management Plan

BMT WBM (2015)

Belongil Creek Floodplain Risk Management Plan Summary

BMT WBM (2015)

Restoration Strategy Belongil – Cumbebin Wetland Complex

Australian Wetlands and Wetland Care Australia (2005)

Plan of Management Cumbebin Swamp Nature Reserve

National Parks and Wildlife Service (2012)

Byron Shire Council Urban Stormwater Management Plan

BSC (Revised 2010 Draft)

Byron Bay Drainage Strategy

SMEC (2010)

 

Of the 8 plans, the National Parks and Wildlife Service has carriage of one (Plan of Management Cumbebin Swamp Nature Reserve) with Council responsible for the remaining seven. A synopsis of each plan is contained in Attachment 1.

 

Over the past 3 weeks Council has extracted the actions from the seven plans and attempted to categorise by status, category and priority as stated in the relevant plan. The categories used by Council staff in this analysis are:

 

Table 2

Category

No.

Cultural

7

Education

18

Environmental

24

Hydrology

33

Planning

40

Water Quality

30

Total

155

 

A complete list of the actions is contained in Attachment 2 – Management Plan Action Listing. Of the 155 extracted actions, 10 have been confirmed as complete; 30 as current or ongoing; 87 not determined or not done; and 28 identified as recommended to implement as a result of this analysis. A list of the recommended actions is contained in Attachment 3 – Recommended Management Plan Actions for Implementation.

 

The recent Council restructure has combined into one department (in Infrastructure Services) the functions of water supply; sewerage collection and treatment; and urban stormwater maintenance. This provides a unique opportunity to implement actions across functions/assets. The categories where this can be most effectively realised with the Belongil Plans and Strategies is in the areas of Water Quality and Education.

 

The Sewer Fund needs to implement a water quality monitoring programme for both the Alternative Flowpath and the possible future STP Upgrade projects.  The General Fund (Stormwater) has actions that require water quality monitoring to determine the effectiveness of stormwater programmes and sources of pollution.

 

Between these two drivers it will be possible to develop and implement a water quality monitoring programme that will provide data for current and future actions across the entire Belongil Catchment.  It is estimated a water quality monitoring programme encompassing 10 sites throughout the catchment would cost approximately $60,000 per annum with a breakup of 80% Sewer Fund and 20% General Fund (Stormwater).

 

In the area of education, all 3 funds of Water, Sewer and General (Stormwater) have requirements for education resources. These are

 

-      The Water Fund has ongoing need for demand management; rainwater tanks; water saving devices; water meters and water losses.

-      The Sewer Fund for source control (trade waste/ grease traps; wipes in pipes) and recycled water.

-      Stormwater operations are also clear in an education requirement for the community on stormwater source control.

-      In addition to this there are numerous actions in all the Belongil plans calling for education of the community on catchment issues.

 

As all of these education requirements are related, it would be efficient to combine all activities in the one functional area in the Utilities Department which has carriage of water, sewer and urban stormwater.  This could be implemented through the development of a 5 year term Educational Position within the Utilities structure paid for by the 3 funds in the proportion of Water (40%); Sewer (40%) and Stormwater (20%).

 

As a result of this review it is recommended therefore that Council immediately

 

1.   Develop and implement a water quality programme in the Belongil Catchment

2.   Employment of an Education Officer on a 5 year term position encompassing the Water, Sewer and Stormwater functions.

 

In conjunction with this there is a key stormwater action to clean up the Butler Street Drain in the vicinity of the railway line where it crosses Butler Street.  Part of this action is to install a wetland filter in the drain.  With the expertise developed in Sewer Operations in operating the wetlands at both Byron Bay and Ocean Shores; the imminent Byron Bay Bypass project and the Sewer personnel now undertaking stormwater maintenance; it would an opportune time to prepare a project plan to implement this recommended task.

 

It is therefore also recommended to

 

3.   Prepare a design for a natural channel drain for the Butler Street drain incorporating a wetlands filter system

4.   Prepare a project plan for the Butler Street drainage upgrade for work to coincide with the Byron Bay Bypass project.

 

It is envisaged the project implementation will be funded through a combination of operational budget savings and grants.

 

 

Financial Implications

 

The costs for each recommendation are detailed below.

 

Recommendation

Total Cost

Water

Sewer

Stormwater

Recommendation 1 – Water Quality Testing

$60,000 pa

0%

80%

S64 Sewer

20%

Reserves

Recommendation 2 – Education Officer

$80,000 pa

40% (Reserves)

40% (Reserves)

20%

(Reserves)

Recommendation 3 – Prepare drainage design Butler Street

In house staff

0

0

0

Recommendation 4 – Prepare a Project Plan for Butler Street Drain

In house

0

0

0

 

The savings that will accrue in the stormwater budget as a result of the sewer maintenance staff undertaking stormwater maintenance can be applied to the water quality testing programme and the Education Officer.  Similarly, the savings accruing to the sewer budget as a result of the same initiative can similarly be applied to the Education Officer.

 

The Water Fund has been generating operational savings through various efficiency measures and is well placed to contribute to these recommendations.  It should also be noted that Rous Water has scaled back the regional demand management role which will require Byron Shire to become more active in this area. 

 

Statutory and Policy Compliance Implications

 

Nil

 


BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL

Staff Reports - Infrastructure Services                                                     5.2 - Attachment 1


 


 


 


 


 


BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL

Staff Reports - Infrastructure Services                                                                               5.2 - Attachment 2


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL

Staff Reports - Infrastructure Services                                                                               5.2 - Attachment 3


 


BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL

Staff Reports - Infrastructure Services                                                                   5.3

 

 

Report No. 5.3             Legal Advice on Drainage Union

Directorate:                 Infrastructure Services

Report Author:           Peter Rees, Manager Utilities

File No:                        I2016/370

Theme:                         Community Infrastructure

                                      Sewerage Services

 

 

Summary:

 

The Belongil Swamp Drainage Board pre-exists the current Water Management Act 2000 (WMA). 

 

The Board is now subject to the WMA.

 

Under the WMA, dissolution of a board is at the Governor’s prerogative (WMA section 216).  The Governor’s decision to dissolve the Board depends on them being presented with a petition from at least one third of the land holders in the Board’s district.

 

Council therefore has no role to play in the termination or otherwise of the drain management other than as a landholder in the Belongil Swamp Drainage Union catchment.

  

 

RECOMMENDATION:

That Council write to all land owners within the Belongil Swamp Drainage Union catchment to gauge support for either re establishing the drainage board or petitioning the Governor of NSW to dissolve the union.

 

 

Attachments:

 

1        Confidential - Legal Advice Drainage Union, E2016/23920  

2        Legislative obligations and proper governance of Drainage Unions - DPI Office of Water, E2016/15181 , page 48  

 

 


 

Report

 

At the Committee meeting held on the 8 March, the Committee recommended

 

That a report be brought to the next Belongil Catchment Advisory Committee Meeting outlining possible Union Drain management options including:

1.      Council supporting drain management by the Drainage Union, which may include the Union operating in a more conforming manner (DPI letter of 10 February 2015 E2016/15181)

 

2.      Dissolving the existing Drainage Union management and Council establishing a new body

 

3.      Dissolving the existing Union management and Council taking over management responsibilities

 

Confidential Attachment 1 contains the legal advice provided by Council’s legal services team. Attachment 2 provides the letter from the DPI presented at the last Committee meeting. From these documents it can be surmised:

 

·    Council cannot support the existing Drain Management unless governance processes are followed and properly documented. It can be assumed there have been no adequate governance processes for at least the last 10 years.

·    Correct governance requires elections and meetings to be held and documented; as well as a proper accounting for Union expenditure..

·    Council has no role to play in the termination or otherwise of the drain management other than as a landholder in the Belongil Swamp Drainage Union catchment.

 

The course of action therefore would be for Council to write to all landholders in the union drain catchment and recommend a meeting be held to discuss the options of

 

·    Re establishing the drainage board

·    Petitioning the Governor to dissolve the Board

 

Financial Implications

 

Nil

 

Statutory and Policy Compliance Implications

 

Water Management Act 2000.

 


BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL

Staff Reports - Infrastructure Services                                                     5.3 - Attachment 2