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Blue Mountains City Council Election - 10th Septemper 2016

The Blue Mountains Conservation Society presents everything you need to know
about the 2016 Council Election from an environmental perspective.

The candidates in sequence of election are:
Ward 1
Don McGregor Labor
Kerry Brown The Greens
Kevin Schreiber Liberal
Ward 2
Romola Hollywood Labor
Chris Van der Kley Liberal
Brent Hoare The Greens

 

Ward 3
Mick Fell Labor
Daniel Myles Liberal
Shae Foenander Independent
Ward 4
Mark Greenhill Labor
Brendan Christie Liberal
Darryl Bowling Labor

 

Lead* Candidates
in ballot paper order (* first candidate in group)
Ward 1
Kerry Brown The Greens
Don McGregor Labor
Sam Parker-Davies Independent
Michael Begg Independent
Kevin Schreiber Liberal
Jim Carothers Independent+
Tony Robinson Independent+
+ - ungrouped

Ward 2
Brent Hoare The Greens
Rob Thompson Independent
Romola Hollywood Labor
Chris Van der Kley Liberal

Ward 3
Joel MacRae The Greens
Shae Foenander Independent
Mick Fell Labor
Daniel Myles Liberal

Ward 4
Brendan Christie Liberal
Matt Hodgson Australia First
Kate McConville The Greens
Mark Greenhill Labor

Note:
  • 3 councillors to be elected in each ward.
  • Nominations - full details.
  • Kate McConville appears as Kate Mathews-McConville on the ballot paper.

 

The Questionnaire

We have produced a Questionnaire that asks candidates where they stand on 20 key Blue Mountains environmental issues. The Questionnaire was sent to all "lead" candidates and we now share their response with you.

The candidates' response are provided for each ward - so an easy comparison can be made for that ward's candidates.

       Ward 1  -  Ward 2  -  Ward 3  -  Ward 4

We have also provided a SUMMARY with our comments.
The Society does not recommend who to vote for.

 

Report Card
How's the Council performed (environmentally) over the past 4 years?

We have assessed their performance based on our questionnaire from the last election.

Here's our REPORT CARD

 

BMCC Map and Wards
The Blue Mountains City Council area is divided into 4 wards. 
Each ward is represented by 3 Councillors. 

Ward 1:  Mt Victoria to Leura 
Ward 2:  Wentworth Falls - West Faulconbridge 
Ward 3:  Faulconbridge to Valley Heights 
Ward 4:  Warrimoo to Lapstone (incl. Mt Riverview) 

Here's a map of the wards.
You can check your enrolment here.
For more information, go to the Council website.


 

Questionnaire Response - SUMMARY

We asked the 19 lead* candidates across the 4 wards, 20 questions on key Blue Mountains environmental issues. 
[* first candidate in group] We also asked them to provide a statement of their personal conservation values.

The Questionnaire we sent can be found here.

 

THE RESPONSES

A collation of the responses has been compiled for each ward with a link to each candidate's response. The responses are not interpreted in these collations.

       Ward 1  -  Ward 2  -  Ward 3  -  Ward 4

The combined details of all responses can be found HERE.

 

OUR COMMENTS

The overwhelming positive responses to the questions asked indicate a high level of support among candidates for environmental issues. As a City within a World Heritage Area we need an environmentally responsible and proactive local Council.

  • 18 of the 19 candidates responded.
  • Only Jim Carothers (Ward 1 - Independent) didn't respond.
  • One of the highlights is the candidate's brief statement of their "personal conservation values".
  • Only Brendan Christie (Ward 4 - Liberal) didn't provide their "personal conservation values"
  • In total, 94% of responses to a question was "Yes".
  • While only 3% of responses to a question was "No".

 

(Q.12) - Opposing the SP3 Special Tourist Zone

  • 13 candidates oppose the SP3 Special Tourist Zone, with a further 2 providing qualified opposition.
  • The Liberal candidates in Wards 2, 3 and 4 support the SP3 Special Tourist Zone.

Note: The Society is opposed to the introduction of the SP3 Special Tourism Zone in the Mountains, as current intensive tourism sites such as Scenic World are operating successfully under existing zonings and the zone is not appropriate in the Blue Mountains.

The Society is strongly opposed to the zone being applied to areas where small scale tourism is currently occurring, such as the Blackheath Caravan Park, as recently proposed by Council.

For more information on the Society's position on the SP3 Special Tourist Zone, see the article in the May 2016 Hut News.

(Q.6) - Dealing with waste

There are differing views among candidates about to how to deal with waste into the future. The idea of introducing financial incentives to encourage residents to compost is not supported by any Liberal candidates and some Labor (Don McGregor).

(Q.1) - Funding of Bushcare and Bush regeneration

  • While maintaining the existing budget to support volunteer Bushcare was supported,
  • not all Liberal and Labor candidates supported an increase in the Bushcare budget.

(Q.8) - Ensure all the existing environmental protection measures currently included in the Blue Mountains Local Environmental Plan 2015 (LEP 2015) are not undermined or removed in future amendments.

  • All candidates supported this.

(Q.9) - Oppose the State Government imposing a new housing target on the Blue Mountains

  • All candidates oppose the State Government imposing a new housing target on the Blue Mountains.

(Q.11) - Protect the built heritage and large garden and bushland lots of the Blue Mountains townships by supporting the village precinct objectives and proposed R6 Residential Character Conservation Zone in LEP 2015.

  • All but one candidate supported the R6 Residential Character Conservation Zone in LEP 2015.
  • Ward 2 Independent Rob Thompson says that the State Government has made it clear that they will simply will not allow BMCC to have a non standard R6 zone. So we need to support village precinct objectives being enshrined in existing Development Control Plans.

(Q.13) - Opposing Coal Seam Gas, Nuclear Waste and Badgerys Creek Airport
To the question prefaced with "Will you publicly and strongly support Council’s current position opposing -"

  • All candidates oppose Coal Seam Gas exploration and extraction in the Local Government Area.
  • All candidates oppose the transport of nuclear waste through the Blue Mountains.
  • All but one candidate opposes the building of an airport at Badgerys Creek.
  • Ward 2 Independent Rob Thompson believes efforts at opposing the airport would be better directed at lobbying for a high speed east coast rail link.