Council Welcomes Auditor General’s Findings on LIVING CITY

Council Welcomes Auditor General’s Findings on LIVING CITY

MEDIA RELEASE
19 September 2019

The Tasmanian Auditor-General has today released the long-awaited report on his examination of the governance and procurement of goods and services by Devonport City Council in relation to its LIVING CITY project.
“There has been significant public interest in LIVING CITY and Council welcomes the findings of the Auditor-General’s independent review following what has been an extensive 18-month examination of the project dating back to 2013” Mayor Annette Rockliff said.
The Report confirms that the Council (with one exception relating to reporting of one contract in Council’s 2015 Annual Report) had complied with all of its statutory reporting requirements under the Local Government Act 1993 and Regulations.
The Report acknowledges that prior to entering into its contract with P+I Group, Council had considered issues around the commerciality of the agreement, however it is identified this could have been better documented.
“Council accepts there is a need to improve its documenting of any value or reasonableness assessment in the future when a contract is entered into based on the extenuating circumstances provision of the Local Government Act” Mayor Rockliff said.
The Auditor-General’s Report concluded the approach taken by Council regarding the sale of land on the waterfront for the hotel development to Fairbrother Pty Ltd, met all legislative requirements and expectations. “With construction about to commence in the Waterfront Precinct, it is reassuring that Council can move forward with the confidence that due process was followed” Mayor Rockliff said.
The Report highlights the extensive cost control and program reporting measures which Council applied throughout the construction of Stage 1 of LIVING CITY. “In part, it was these measures which contributed to the project being completed around $1 million under budget” Mayor Rockliff said.
A thorough examination of the lease arrangements relating to Providore Place was considered as part of the Auditor-General’s review. The Report found there were some short comings in relation to the development of the original lease agreement between Council and Providore Place (Devonport) Pty Ltd.
“Although at the time of entering into the lease there was a desire by Council and the Lessee for a non-traditional cooperative shared arrangement, this has proven to be ineffectual and has created a significant amount of angst between the parties and I acknowledge this has reflected badly on Council within parts of the community” Mayor Rockliff said.
“I accept the findings in the Report that Council did not fully meet good governance expectations in relation to the Providore Place lease, and I commit to ensuring the recommendations provided by the Auditor-General are fully implemented”.
The Report contains eight (8) recommendations in total. Of these, three (3) are for the Government to consider relating to potential changes for inclusion in the Local Government Act with the other five (5) specifically for Devonport City Council’s consideration. “I am committed to seeing all recommendations fully implemented” Mayor Rockliff said.
Council appreciates the detailed review the Auditor-General has undertaken of the LIVING CITY project. “Whilst there are certain aspects that could have been better managed, particularly relating to the Providore Place lease, the Report acknowledges that Council in the main met its statutory and reporting obligations under the Local Government Act” Mayor Rockliff said.
“I hope now the thorough independent examination by the Auditor-General of the LIVING CITY project has been completed, and the Report publicly released, we can all move on and look to a bright and positive future for our City”.

ENDS
Media Contact
Kym Peebles |Executive Manager Organisational Performance |Devonport City Council
03 6424 0597| 0477 296 059 |kpeebles@devonport.tas.gov.au

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Good Luck Devonport Magpies

GOOD LUCK DEVONPORT MAGPIES

The Devonport Magpies will have the backing of Devonport Mayor Annette Rockliff as they take on the Burnie Dockers in the clash of the Cities at Latrobe on Saturday for the
NWFL Grand Final.
“I am sure I speak on behalf of all Devonport residents when I say “Go Magpies” and we look forward to their victory over the team from that ‘smaller City’ down the road in
Burnie” Mayor Rockliff said.
In fact, the Magpies will be hoping to make it two wins on the day, as they are also in the Under 18 Grand Final up against Wynyard.

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Indie School to Open in Devonport

MEDIA RELEASE

New Indie School to open in Devonport 17 September 2019

The Devonport City Council has confirmed that, subject to approval from the Minister for Education and Training, there will be a second alternative education Indie School in Tasmania.

It will operate from the former Devonport Library, in Oldaker Street, from the beginning of the 2020 school year.

Council has worked closely with the Indie School, which began in Albury-Wodonga in 2006, for several months.

Indie Schools aim to help teenagers considered educationally at risk, offering an alternative senior-secondary option to help them through years 9 to 12.

Indie School is a registered non-government school which provides an alternative education for young people aged 15-19, with campuses located in Tasmania, New South Wales and Victoria.

Their programs are based on individualised support and strengths-based learning to reengage students into education by increasing their self-esteem, confidence and academic achievement. Class sizes are kept small, with individual learning plans being the cornerstone agreement to re-engage vulnerable students.

Indie Schools have higher ratios of welfare support, use life experienced teachers/coaches and offer flexible modes of study.

“Generally, our students would be those who are disengaged from the mainstream education process, and they may not have been attending school for some time,” the Deputy Principal of Indie Schools, David Pickett, said.

Indie School has appointed Mr. Nic Page, former Program Manager of Space Devonport and Burnie to lead Indie School Devonport. Mr Page has taken up his position and has commenced his liaison with local school, community service agencies and youth groups.
The Mayor Cr Annette Rockliff said Council had negotiated a commercial lease of the former Library to Indie Schools.

She said it and hoped to work closely with the School to also encourage a greater level of assistance to young people in Devonport.
“It is acknowledged that children learn in different ways and some thrive better in a less traditional school environment,” she said.
“I am confident that this school will meet a definite need in the community and Council is pleased that it has been able to assist bring the concept to the city.”

The leasing of the former library to the Indie School, enables the use of the site for an important community service provider in the short to medium term, whilst providing Council with flexibility to redevelop the site in accordance with the LIVING CITY Masterplan in the future.

ENDS
Media Contact David Pickett |Deputy Principal| Indie Schools 0428 895 030

Kym Peebles |Executive Manager Organisational Performance |Devonport City Council 03 6424 0597| 0477 296 059 |kpeebles@devonport.tas.gov.au

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Mayor’s Message – 17 September 2019

It was great to hear last week that the Devonport Chess Club has been officially revived.

The club will meet on the second and fourth Tuesday each month during school term at the East Devonport Community House, 106 David Street, East Devonport, from 6 p.m.

Regular attendees will be registered with the Tasmanian Chess Association and the cost will be $3 per evening for senior players and $2 for juniors.

The funds will be used to support community outreach programmes organised by the Community House.

The first session will be held on 22 October and after that on 12 and 26 November and 10 December.

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Don’t forget, the Hungry Jack’s NBL Blitz is coming to Devonport on Friday night with South East Melbourne Phoenix taking on the Sydney Kings at the Devonport Basketball Stadium.

Doors will open at 6.30 p.m. with the tip-off at 7.30.

Tickets are available online through the NBL.

I hope that basketball fans will get out and support this game to show how popular the sport is in Devonport and hopefully lead to more NBL games coming to the region in the future.

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Seniors Week will be held 14-20 October and the Devonport City Council is once again celebrating Seniors Week within the Devonport region with the largest calendar of events produced for the weeklong celebration.

Council is working with several organisations to provide a broad range of activities and events to suit all seniors within the Devonport community.

The calendar is jam-packed with over 50 events for seniors to attend. Some events do require booking in advance and payment while others are drop in on the day and free.

The program has been designed specifically to be low cost and offers a wide range of activities to cater for all seniors within the community.

The full program of events can be downloaded from Council’s website or Facebook page.

For further information please contact, Community Services at Devonport City Council on 6424 0511.

Cr Annette Rockliff
MAYOR 

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Expressions of Interest sought for Julie Burgess
Copyright Greg Close

Expressions of Interest sought for Julie Burgess

The Devonport City Council invites Expressions of Interest to sell or gift the Julie Burgess to a suitable operator, or to enter into a partnership agreement with a suitable operator.

Council would prefer a suitable operator undertake activity in Devonport, however Council is open to receiving an application from any interested party who would preserve the integrity of the vessel.

Council would consider a suitable operator to include any party interested in operating the vessel as a public/private enterprise, visitor attraction, training vessel or similar.

Council will consider offers to purchase the vessel for private or personal use.

You can view the EOI document here

Image Credit: Greg Close

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Devonport Food and Wine program launched

Devonport Food and Wine – a month-long celebration of food and community – was officially launched this morning.

The festivities include over 80 food and wine events throughout October, in more than 35 different venues in and around Devonport.

Festival highlights include special sessions for Seniors’ Week, food trails, tastings of gin, wine, beer and cider, cooking demonstrations, producer tours, barbecues, school holiday events, gourmet classes, and the Spring Fling – a fun day out for the whole family.

Festival Coordinator Maree Brodzinski said the Devonport Food and Wine Festival provided an opportunity for locals and visitors to discover something new and to learn more about growing, cooking and enjoying food.

“There is something for all ages and all wages with unique activities and culinary delights,” Ms Brodzinski said.

“If you’re ready for some gastronomic adventures, if you’re eager to enjoy gourmet delights by a host of talented culinary artists, or you’re wanting to learn how to do it yourself, get yourself to Devonport Food & Wine this October.”

“It will be a real showcase of the different food experiences available in our region.”

Full program details can be found on the Devonport Food & Wine website, www.devonportfoodandwine.com.au

A printed festival schedule will be available from next week in participating outlets or from the Visitor Information Centre.

ENDS

Media Contact

Maree Brodzinski |Events Officer |Devonport City Council

03 6424 0510 | 0408 079 805 |mbrodzinski@devonport.tas.gov.au

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Little Gallery Emerging Artist Program – Applications now open for 2020

Applications for the Devonport Regional Gallery’s Little Gallery Project Space are now open.

The Little Gallery Project Space Program is open to emerging Tasmanian artists whose projects are innovative and thought-provoking.

Projects must also address the Gallery’s mission to be the leading regional gallery of contemporary Tasmanian art, and inspire creativity and ideas through the arts.

Exhibitions will be displayed in the Little Gallery space of the paranaple arts centre in 2020 and will run for between four and six weeks. Applications are open to both individuals and groups.

The Little Gallery is named in honour of Jean Thomas. Jean’s vision for the Gallery was as a centre for community arts and activities which promoted the work of emerging and established Tasmanian artists alongside national and international artists.

Applications close on Sunday 20 October 2019 and can be downloaded from the Devonport Regional Gallery’s website at www.devonportgallery.com

Image: The Little Gallery, Devonport Regional Gallery, paranaple arts centre.

ENDS

 

Media Contact:

Geoff Dobson

Director

E: gdobson@devonport.tas.gov.au

P.  6424 0577 M. 0419 505 838

 

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New lease deal for Providore Place

The Devonport City Council and Providore Place Devonport Pty Ltd have entered a new head lease for tenancy space within the food pavilion.

It replaces the original agreement signed in 2016 and brings to an end a long-running dispute between the two parties.

The initial agreement was an operating partnership between Council and PPD Pty Ltd, while the new lease is purely a commercial arrangement.

The original agreement did not take into consideration the level of effort and time required to establish a number of new businesses within Providore Place.

The new lease rental payments have been structured to recognise the time and effort required to establish these new businesses and as such PPD Pty Ltd will pay Council $230,000 (plus GST) for the period until October 2021 with renewal options potentially extending the lease period by a further eight years. In addition to the rent all operating costs and outgoings are the responsibility of PPD Pty Ltd.

At the time of the end of the first option to renew the lease, the income achieved will be equal to the amount PPD Pty Ltd was to pay annually under the terms of the original lease.

Council is yet to determine its approach to the current unpaid rent associated with the original lease.

The Drysdale cooking school space on the mezzanine level, whilst part of the original lease, does not form part of the new lease.  TasTAFE has entered into a lease with Council directly for the space at a starting rent of $40,000 per annum.

The Mayor, Councillor Annette Rockliff said that Council is better positioned to realise the outcomes intended for Providore Place with a commercial lease that minimises risk to Council and positions the tenant to scale the business for ongoing success.

“It means that both parties are now able to concentrate on moving forward in making Providore Place a key destination within the region with an accent on the Coast’s wonderful produce,” she said.

She said the new lease ensured that the vision for Providore Place would continue with a lessee in place who is taking on the costs associated with running the facility and paying rent to Council.

All current tenants will also remain in place and the lessee will continue to manage the space.

 

ENDS

Media Contact

Nigel Tapp |Media & Communications Officer |Devonport City Council

03 6424 0562 | 0427 132 972 |ntapp@devonport.tas.gov.au

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Devonport to Light Up Orange for Mental Health Week

Businesses and residents from all over Devonport are invited to participate in a simple way of raising awareness and challenging stigma around mental health.

By the simple act of installing orange light globe(s) in places where the public can see them, you’ll be sending a message that your workplace is supportive of people looking after their mental health.

Mental Health Week is part of a national mental health promotion campaign held in October each year, and incorporates World Mental Health Day, held globally on 10 October. The purpose of this awareness week is to engage communities in activities that promote mental health and wellbeing and also raise awareness and understanding about mental illness, and how it impacts on the lives of people in our community.

Mental Health Week 2019 runs from 6-13 October  with a theme of ‘We all have a role to play’ and by the simple act changing a light globe, you can play your role too. With the top floor of the paranaple centre set to light up in orange we’d love to see as much orange around town as possible.

This activity is part of a week-long program of events happening at Devonport’s paranaple centre which are being coordinated by Devonport City Council, Devonport Online Access Centre, Relationships Tasmania and YFCC. These activities are supported with funding from the Mental Health Council of Tasmania.

If your business is interested but cost is a prohibitive factor, please register your intent with nancy@yfcc.com.au

Media Enquiries:

Damian Collins

Team Leader – Alcohol, Tobacco & other Drugs (YFCC)

damian@yfcc.com.au 0407 528 354

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Mayor’s Message – 10 September 2019

Residents are reminded that they only have until this afternoon to provide their comments on the revised Dog Management Policy.

The policy outlines Council’s approach and responsibilities for dog management and control.

Council is committed to promoting responsible dog ownership.

Dog ownership has many important benefits to the community through companionship, health promotion, general well-being as well as their use as working dogs.

But all dog owners have a legal and ethical responsibility to their dogs and to the wider community.   Irresponsible dog ownership can affect the physical and social environment of other residents.

The Dog Management Policy is provided to assist dog owners to minimise any negative impacts on the community.

It is also designed to provide information on responsible dog ownership, identify areas within the municipal area which are available for exercising dogs and areas where dogs are restricted or prohibited.

The policy also outlines Council’s approach and responsibilities for dog management and control.

A copy of the policy can be found at the Have your Say tab on Council’s website at www.devonport.tas.gov.au

 The comment period will close at 4 p.m.

Written responses can also be emailed to council@devonport.tas.gov.au

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Seniors Week will be held 14-20 October and the Devonport City Council is once again celebrating Seniors Week within the Devonport region with the largest calendar of events produced for the weeklong celebration.

Council is working with several organisations to provide a broad range of activities and events to suit all seniors within the Devonport community.

The calendar is jam-packed with over 50 events for seniors to attend. Some events do require booking in advance and payment while others are drop in on the day and free.

The program has been designed specifically to be low cost and offers a wide range of activities to cater for all seniors within the community.

The full program of events can be downloaded from Council’s website or Facebook page.

For further information please contact, Community Services at Devonport City Council on 6424 0511.

Cr Annette Rockliff
MAYOR 

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