Thursday, July 21, 2016

Tip voucher value doubled


Domestic Waste Disposal Coupons

21 July 2016

A new domestic waste disposal coupon system for the Derwent Valley municipal area commenced on Monday 18 July 2016, following the distribution of the coupons to the owners of rateable properties in conjunction with with their rate notices.

“The Peppermint Hill Waste facility has been operating since the 1950s," Mayor Martyn Evans said. "We are obliged to operate the facility in accordance with the Environmental Protection Notice, a licence issued by a State Government agency. We want to ensure it can be responsibly managed into the future also,” said Mayor Evans.

The previous system of a "free weekend" each month had meant some residents were unable to receive this benefit due to employment or other commitments. There were also concerns about being able to safely manage the volumes delivered over such a concentrated period, as well as traffic management issues due to the popularity of the offer.

The new arrangement - replacing 12 "free" weekends with 12 vouchers - means the Council can move forward with greater certainty in planning for both the extension of the life of the facility and preparing for the eventual closure and rehabilitation responsibilities.

General Manager Greg Winton confirmed that the coupons could also be redeemed at the National Park Waste Transfer Station. “Regrettably, we overlooked that matter in the printing the coupons; a lesson learnt” said Mr Winton.

Mayor Evans also advised that following feedback received during the first week of operation, steps had been taken to ensure the new system was more equitable, confirming each coupon would now equate to one cubic metre of waste. The gate price is $10 per cubic metre. 12 coupons have been issued for each property.

The mayor acknowledged that whilst some property owners might not use some or all of their vouchers this year, the Council had taken the necessary long term view in structuring the new system. “Perhaps those property owners who won't use all of their allotted coupons this year could offer them to a local charity or community group. Some might also choose to barter their value,” said Mayor Evans. "Council also strongly encourages rental property owners to ensure the vouchers they receive are passed on to the tenant."

“Waste is an expensive business these days. No longer can we as a society simply bury rubbish and walk away. We are planning for our future” said Mayor Evans.

"An evaluation of neighbouring council areas shows that waste disposal in the Derwent Valley remains the among most inexpensive in the region. It is also worth noting that even with a modest increase to $10 per cubic metre for the gate price, this is still about half of the actual cost to the council."

Authorised for general media distribution by Mayor Martyn Evans, Derwent Valley Council on 21 July 2016

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Westerway-Maydena rubbish collection

A SPECIAL household rubbish collection will be carried out this Wednesday for those whose service was cancelled due to last week's flooding at Westerway. This service will cover the area from the Gordon River Rd turnoff at Westerway, though to National Park and Maydena. See the council website for more information.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Dog registration discount extended



Alteration to Animal Control Fees

15 July 2016

The Derwent Valley Council will be amending the due date for payment of dog registration fees, together with permitting one additional domestic dog to be registered at a 50% discounted fee for eligible pensioners.

Mayor Martyn Evans indicated that the Councillors had decided to make the change recognising the impost of a relatively short time period to pay the registration costs.

"The General Manager has confirmed with me today that the necessary administrative arrangements can be put in place effective from Monday 18 July. What this means is that the date for registrations at a reduced price has been extended until 31 August 2016," said Mayor Evans.

"The reduced price each year as an incentive for early registration. It supports our desire as a Council to ensure we have accurate up to date contact details, so that in the event a pet is found it can be readily returned."

Mayor Evans also indicated that Councillors had agreed to allow the discount for pensioners domestic pets to be extended to two dogs, rather than one. While there are relatively few people seeking to claim the discount in thie circumstance, Councillors considered it appropriate to make the change formal as it aligned with past practices."

For some 40 eligible pensioners who have already paid fees for their two domestic dogs, Council Officers will be arranging a reimbursement to occur in the coming month indicated General Manager Greg Winton.

Authorised for general media distribution by Greg Winton, General Manager, Derwent Valley Council on 15 July 2016

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Waste Management Charge


Waste Management Charge - frequently asked questions 

What is the Waste Management Charge? 
The Waste Management Charge is a charge that has been introduced by the Council which applies to all rateable land under Section 93 and Section 94 of the Local Government Act 1993. The Waste Management Charge of $51.50 is in addition to charge for the wheelie bin service. 

Why has the Waste Management Charge been introduced?
The Council has considered it necessary to introduce a waste utility charge which goes some way to covering the costs involved in the disposal of waste. Previously some waste expenses were not readily identifiable, but due to the increasing cost burden it was deemed appropriate to highlight the fact. 

As a ratepayer, do I receive anything for this charge?
Yes, every rateable property will receive twelve (12) Tip Vouchers attached to their annual rates notice. To redeem a Tip Voucher it must be presented to the tollbooth operator on entry to the site. The Vouchers are valid until the 31st of July 2017.

If I don’t use the tip, why do I have to contribute towards it? 
Given that most residents may need the use of waste facilities at some time, it is considered equitable that the charge apply to all properties. Some vacant land owners and urban residents may not utilise this service, but without the contribution of every ratepayer waste services would not be able to be maintained and this would impact on the whole of the municipality. 

How many Tip Vouchers will I need when I go to the tip? 
This will depend on what you are taking to the tip. 12 vouchers entitles you to dispose of six (6) cubic metres of domestic waste. 

Will there still be free weekends? 
No, free weekends will cease on Sunday 7th of August 2016. Congestion and site management issues were recognised by the Council.

I am a tenant, can I have vouchers too? 
Vouchers are provided to the property owner (who pays the rates). Tenants wishing to enquire about Tip Vouchers should contact the managing agent or landlord.

I am a tenant and the real estate/owner of property won't give me the vouchers they received. Providing Tip Vouchers to tenants is at the discretion of property owner/agent and not something that the Council can assist with. This will need to be discussed with them. 

I am concerned with the increases this year that I will not be able to pay my rates. 
If you have concerns about paying your rates on or before the due date, you may wish to apply for a payment arrangement with the Council. Payment Arrangement application forms are available from the Council Customer Service Desk or Council’s website.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Meeting early this month

THIS month's council meeting will be held a week early due to the absence of several councillors at the Local Government Association conference next week.

The meeting will be held at the New Norfolk Courthouse in Circle St this Thursday night, starting at 6.30pm and you are very welcome to join us.

If you would like any assistance or information about the meeting, please do get in touch. The meeting agenda is available online and in hardcopy from the council chambers.

Dog registration Q&A

Dog Registration 2016/17 - frequently asked questions
Why have the prices changed?
The Council reviews all fees and charges associated with Council services annually. The fees for annual dog registration is part of this review. The Council takes into consideration a number of factors including; the ongoing cost to manage animal control, the number of dogs within the municipality, animal complaints as well as improvements to service delivery. The change in pricing structure and registration classifications this year has been the result of a number of these factors. 
Why do pensioners get a 50% discount on a domestic dog only?
Council's Dog Management Policy recognises the importance of providing a financial reduction to pensioners keeping companion animals. Therefore the reduction was set by the Council when it adopted its fees and charges for 2016/2017.
Why are all pensioners not charged the same amount?
Pensioners, like most owners decide whether to sterilise their dog or not. The difference between what pensioners are charged is based on whether the dog is sterilised. This is intended to provide fairness for pensioners.
Why do pensioners receive a 50% discount on 1 domestic dog per household only?
Council's policy regarding discounts to pensioners has always been applicable to one (1) dog. This year Council has further clarified this due to requests from the public regarding previous confusion.
Why has the responsible ownership incentive been removed?
Council has revised its Dog Management policy. The removal of the financial incentive for ‘responsible dog owners’ is part of this review and the Councils recognition that all dog owners should be responsible.  A financial reduction is provided to those dogs that are registered prior to the July 31.
Why has the registration price for Purebred dogs and Greyhounds increased?
The pricing for all classifications of dogs has changed as part of the Councils review of the fees and charges for 2016/17.  
Why does the Council need the information it’s requested?
Council is currently updating its system. The information that you provide will help to reunite dogs with owners if they stray from your property. Information including the owner’s details, dog breed, microchip number and proof of sterilisation are requirements under the Dog Control Act 2000. The information that you provide to the Council is managed in accordance with Personal Information Protection Act 2004.

It’s important to update your details with the Council regularly. It is also a requirement under the Dog Control Act 2000 that the Council is notified of your dog’s death, loss, removal or transfer to another municipal area with 14 days.

Friday, July 1, 2016

Council budget for 2016-17


2016/2017 Annual Plan and Budget Estimates
1 July 2016

At the Council meeting held on 30 June 2016, the Derwent Valley Council considered the adoption of the 2016-2017 Annual Plan and Budget Estimates.

Mayor Martyn Evans said “The Council Budget provides for a general rate increase of 1.89%. The Council has also considered it necessary to introduce a waste utility charge which goes some way to covering the costs involved in the disposal of waste. Previously some waste expenses were not readily identifiable, but due to the increasing cost burden, it was deemed appropriate to highlight the fact. With the charge of $51.50 for each property, the Council will also be reintroducing a coupon system, providing 12 coupons.”

The Council has also committed to continued improvement in areas such as asset management, risk and human resource practices, which supports the Council’s strategic aims by being innovative and sustainable.

Major expenditure items listed in the Budget included:-
  • Implementation of a stormwater management plan
  • Refuse disposal area environmental protection measures
  • New Norfolk swimming pool heating conservation measures
  • Additional maintenance funding for Council owned buildings
  • Funds for supervisory and community engagement roles
  • Allocation of monies for preparatory roadworks design.

General Manager Greg Winton said Rates Notices would likely be sent out early July, with instalment dates for payments as follows:-
  • 1st Instalment On or before the 30th day after the issue of the rates notice or the 12th
    August 2016 (whichever is the later).
  • 2nd Instalment 28th October 2016
  • 3rd Instalment 27th January 2017
  • 4th Instalment 31st March 2017

“Council is very mindful of the current economic climate and the capacity to pay. Should a ratepayer be unable to meet a payment date, consideration will be given to special arrangements provided the application is received prior to the due date” said Mr Winton.