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Current location: Home > eNews > Clover's Enews 537

Clover's eNews – Issue 537 – Friday, 11 March 2011

| Help Keep Sydney Independent | Go Beyond the Hour for Earth Hour 2011 | Housing for All | Supporting Cultural Vitality | City Supporting Women | Early Voting |

Help Keep Sydney Independent

I invite you to help keep Sydney Independent by volunteering with my campaign team for the 2011 State election, just two weeks away.

We need your help to staff pre-polling venues, put up posters and work at a polling place on election day, Saturday 26 March. One easy way to show your support is to put a poster in a visible position on the front of your home.

Joining in is an opportunity to make new friends, work with like minded people and help keep Sydney independent. Unlike the major parties, I don't accept donations from sources that might compromise my independence. I rely on people from the community for support.

If you can help, please email campaign2011@clovermoore.com, phone the campaign office on 9211 3476, fax 8212 8948, or drop in at 65 Foveaux Street, Surry Hills.

Related information: | Clover Moore, Independent Member of NSW Parliament 1988-2008 | Moore for Sydney | Why Independent? | eNews |

Go Beyond the Hour for Earth Hour 2011

Earth hour 2011 at 8.30pm on Saturday 26 March is a call to action not only for one night, but permanently, with a call to "Go Beyond the Hour". I urge you to join the global movement.

The first Earth Hour was held with City of Sydney support in March 2007, when approximately 2.2 million people turned off their lights to take a stand against global warming. The event is now a global movement, with 128 countries and territories taking part in 2010.

This year, the City again supports Earth Hour and will turn off lights in Council properties, joining over 4400 cities throughout the world. Iconic global landmarks such as the Sydney Harbour Bridge, CN Tower in Toronto, Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, and Rome's Colosseum will take part in this important people-led campaign.

I encourage you to switch off your lights during Earth Hour, 8.30pm to 9.30pm on 26 March-and then "Go Beyond the Hour" by making a small but enduring change that will benefit the planet. Actions could include walking or cycling more, taking reusable bags for shopping, choosing fair trade products or composting your food scraps.

The City is working hard to "Go beyond the Hour" by achieving our ambitious goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 70 percent by 2030. We are developing projects to reduce our dependence on coal-fired electricity, increase local renewable energy, reduce potable water use by 25 per cent and ensure that 66 per cent of waste is reused, recycled or recovered.

To mark its fifth year, Earth Hour is introducing the WWF Earth Hour Awards to recognise and celebrate those who are leading by example and inspiring others to take action.


  Earth Hour Australian website: www.earthhour.org.au

  Earth Hour international website: www.earthhour.org

  Earth Hour Awards: www.earthour.org.au/wwf-earth-hour-awards.

  City's Live Green website with tips on how to "Go Beyond the Hour": www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/Environment/LiveGreen/Default.asp

Related information: | Environment | Informing and Involving | eNews |

Housing for All

The inner city housing affordability crisis requires urgent state planning reform, innovative models and financial incentives to help people on lower incomes afford a home. Two new projects at Glebe and Green Square for more than 500 affordable housing units is important progress, but just a fraction of the housing needed.

A mix of housing is needed to ensure people from all walks of life can afford to live and work in the city. There is an enduring shortage of housing for low income workers, social housing for our most disadvantaged residents, and supported accommodation for people overcoming homelessness.

City of Sydney research for Sustainable Sydney 2030 identified a need to maintain social housing, while housing for low to moderate income households must increase from less than one per cent now to 7.5 per cent of all dwellings.

The City's sale of part of the former South Sydney Hospital site to City West Housing to provide over 300 affordable housing units is one innovative project that will help achieve these targets.

Council also recently approved the first stage of work for new social and affordable housing in Glebe, at the Elger Street Housing NSW site. The project will turn 134 old public housing units into more 153 new public housing, 83 affordable housing and 250 privately-owned dwellings.

The project will preserve existing public housing levels and increase the level of affordable housing for workers and others on low incomes - a housing type Sustainable Sydney 2030 indentified was particularly undersupplied. The new properties will also improve Housing NSW's ability to meet tenant needs, through designs that increase accessibility for seniors and people with a disability.

I promote compassionate support for people experiencing homelessness, particularly help to move into and retain secure permanent housing. The City's Homelessness Unit, the only agency of its kind established by a local Council, provides information, advice, accommodation and practical support to thousands of people facing homelessness or sleeping rough across Sydney and NSW.

We also facilitate the Homeless Persons Information Centre (HPIC), a telephone information and referral service providing services to people homeless or at risk of homelessness.

Our Council jointly funds, with state and federal government, the Assertive Outreach services program. Last year we donated $600,000 to the program so staff can better understand the individual needs of people and help them individually to get the help and services they need.

The City conducts street counts of people who are sleeping rough in summer and winter. These counts help ensure our services meet people's needs and provide us with information so we can lobby for additional resources to overcome homelessness.

Other innovative programs include the Woolloomooloo Integrated Service Hub and Homeless Connect at Town Hall, which bring together essential services such as Centrelink and housing providers, at one place and at one time. The 'My Place, My Face' photography exhibition helped tell the stories of people sleeping rough, promoting better understanding.


  City of Sydney Homelessness Services: www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/Community/HomelessnessServices/Default.asp

Related information: | Community Services | Planning & Development | eNews |

Supporting Cultural Vitality

At Sydney Town Hall this week, Sydney Theatre Company Artistic Directors Cate Blanchett and Andrew Upton pointed to Sydney's world-class venues and performers, and explored what we need to do to promote our cultural strengths and strengthen our cultural vitality.

Our latest CityTalk focused on the links between action on global warming and Sydney's cultural life, particularly the Sydney Theatre Company's 'Greening the Wharf' project, which is creating a unique green cultural precinct at Walsh Bay.

In this era of climate change, the creative impulse must be our greatest ally. As we map out the challenge confronting us, creative minds will suggest solutions, imagine new ways of doing things and offer alternatives. Creativity can help us secure a sustainable future and it is no surprise that our creative communities are among the first in finding new green solutions.

Cate and Andrew told a packed audience that Walsh Bay had the potential to be the world's first green arts precinct. The Sydney Theatre Company has installed the nation's second largest roof-top solar energy system so that Pier 4/5 now gets most of its energy from renewable sources. A rainwater harvesting system is being installed to provide all of the building's non-potable water.

It was a provocative presentation, based on the optimistic premise that Sydney has an exciting, unique and distinctive cultural offering, with many of the basic building blocks in place, but an enduring failure to celebrate and effectively develop our achievements.

Cate and Andrew, strongly supported by the audience, repeatedly stressed that for Walsh Bay to deliver on its potential, it needs improved transport, revitalised nooks and crannies, and more opportunities for people to linger and soak up the atmosphere.

At an earlier CityTalk in 2007, Belvoir Street Theatre Director Neil Armfield spoke about the need to maintain the "seedbeds" of culture-places where artists and performers are nurtured. Authentic culture must grow organically, but there is much we can do to fertilise and stimulate that growth.

Neil described opportunities provided to young musos and visual artists by the Melbourne small bar scene. It was then I resolved to move a private members bill to introduce small bars into NSW licensing laws and we now have 36 small bars providing new options at in Sydney at night.

I have worked to expand affordable working space for artists, so that Sydney's high costs don't force artists out of the inner city. Council encouraged Frasers to develop the Kensington Street studios on the former CUB site and has established other artists' studios in a former Council depot at Woolloomooloo-with more ideas being developed.

Promoting creativity and innovation, Council has also recently funded the Sydney Film Festival for a further three years; the 10th anniversary of information technology trade event Cebit Australia; the Rosemount Sydney Fashion Festival; and the Sydney season of the musical Mary Poppins.

Since its modest beginnings in 1954, the Sydney Film Festival has grown to be one of the world's most respected film festivals and a major fixture during Sydney's winter months. In recent years the Festival has responded to the City's request that it increase access for people on low incomes and it now hosts a community screening during the Festival each year.

Council's support of the Rosemount Sydney Fashion Festival is largely value-in-kind, including use of Sydney Town Hall. The Festival helps promote Sydney as a major fashion centre and its use of Town Hall helps promote the venue for major events. The 2011 Fashion Festival includes over 50 satellite events across the city and in our villages.

The City's in-kind support for Mary Poppins reflects our wider strategy to attract major premieres to Sydney, which recently secured the premiere season of Dr Zhivago and the Australian premiere of Legally Blonde in 2012. Such shows can draw more than 2,500 extra visitors to Sydney every week, spending money in our restaurants, cafes, shops, hotels and visiting our other attractions.

Around 35,000 interstate and international visitors will attend the Cebit trade event from 27 May to 2 June, providing significant economic benefits. The City will provide sponsorship of $20,000 for the event, which includes a one day Sustainability Industry Conference in Sydney Town Hall.


  Video of City Talk presentations and panel discussions available for download at: www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/podcasts/citytalks/default

  Officers' Reports on the Sydney Film Festival and Cebit Australia: www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/Council/MeetingsAndCom...

  Officers' Reports on the Rosemount Sydney Fashion Festival and Mary Poppins: www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/Council/MeetingsAndCom...

Related information: | Arts & Culture | Environment | Informing and Involving | eNews |

City Supporting Women

The City is proving successful in achieving the aims of International Women's Day which celebrated its 100th anniversary last Tuesday, 8 March 2011.

Women occupy key leadership positions on Council and within the organisation. Half the elected Councillors are women; along with 36 percent of Directors and 37 percent of senior managers.

Other achievements in the last year include:

  paid parental leave, including 18 weeks maternity leave;

  the opening of the Chippendale Child Care Centre;

  creation of a Parents' Room at Town Hall House for breastfeeding mothers; and,

  launch of the Parents' Page, an online service for City staff which provides comprehensive information on parenting provisions.

The City has also operated a 'Women in Leadership' program to enable and support women taking leadership position in the organisation. An external evaluation found that there were significant outcomes for women who had participated over the last three years, with 63 percent either gaining a promotion or have other opportunities to gain wider experience.

Related information: | Community Services | eNews |

Early Voting

If you are unable to vote on election day, you can make a postal vote, or pre-poll in person from Monday 14 March.

Pre-poll voting is at the Marconi Room Sydney Town Hall from 8am-6pm Monday 14 to Friday 18 March; 9am-5pm Saturday 19 March; 8am-6pm Monday 21 to Wednesday 23 March; 8am-8pm Thursday 24 March; and 8am-6pm Friday 25 March.

You can also vote at the Electoral Commission Office Level 21, 201 Kent Street Sydney from 9am-5pm Monday 14 to Friday 18 March, and Monday 21 to Friday 25 March, however this office is not fully accessible.

You can also request a postal vote if you will be away on election day. Submit an online application or call my Electorate Office for an application form. The Electoral Commission will send out voting papers from next week.


  Online postal vote: https://opva.elections.nsw.gov.au

  Voting questions: phone 1300 135 736 or web www.votensw.info

Related information: | Informing and Involving | eNews |