Minutes of meeting Sep 2010

When: Thursday 16 September 2010 at 6pm

Where:Mountains Community Resource Network Meeting Room, Lawson

Present: Allan Murray (Glenbrook Lagoon), Margaret & Warwick Tafe (Mt Riverview), Paul Vale (Popes Glen), Karen Hising (Valley of the Waters), Mike Purtell (Else Mitchell & Deanei), Clive Heywood Barker (BMCS), Lachlan Garland (Braeside, Valley of the Waters), Lyndal Sullivan (BMCC)

Apologies: Barbara Harley (Tree Fern Gully, Lindeman Road Leura), Christina Day (Braeside), Erst Carmichael (Sth Lawson), Elizabeth Mitchell (Birdwood Gully), Shirley Brown (Minne HaHa, Katoomba Creek, Brahma Kumaris etc), Xuela Sledge (NPWS) Rob Agars (Deanei), Annette Coulter (Pitt Park)

Facilitator: Margaret Tafe

Acceptance of Previous Minutes (May 10) moved Allan Murray/ Warwick Tafe

Matters Arising from Previous Minutes

  1. Integral vegetation clearance work program

    Allan reported that he had a telephone response from Mal Fletcher from Integral who stated that:

    • weed trees could be removed if he was present to identify them for field crews
    • protocols to avoid the spread of phytopthera are being followed where it has been suspected or identified
    • in fire sensitive zones, it is policy to use aerial bundled or vertical cables
    • the works program is supplied to BMCC. Lyndal reported that the Bushcare section has obtained some programs but that it is meaningless as BMCC is not supplied with a map to interpret the location codes. No response to the letter to Council has been received.

    Action: the Network to write again to Council asking whether Integral’s Work Plans for vegetation clearance works are received in a form that affected reserves can be identified, and if so, how far in advance of works being performed. Also requesting if council does receive this information, whether there could be a procedure to notify the bushcare team. (Allan Murray)

  2. Bushcare promotion

    Lyndal reported on the progress made on the design of the A frames promotional on site signs. Following consultation with an experienced communications person in Council it was decided to have minimal text with a plain background on board, with leaflets providing more detailed messages.

    Permanent message on boards to have:

    • Council logo/Bushcare Landcare/Bushcare logo,
    • space in centre for magnetic strips and pamphlet holders on plain colour background
    • contact details
    • a line of Geckos down one side

    Magnetic strips: would provide the name of each group and a range of changeable signs (e.g. ‘Planting day’, ‘Please take one’, etc.)

    Magnetic Brochure holders would allow for the general bushcare leaflet, plus specific ones for group or local area leaflet, recruiting postcards with slogans, etc.

    These ideas were supported by the meeting.

    Annette’s ideas re participation in community events were deferred until later in meeting when Annette was expected.

  3. Weed Trees – fee exemption from Tree Preservation Order

    Lyndal reported back that Council staff had advised that due to the cost and time of inspections and processing applications, it would be more feasible to have a list of weeds trees which were exempt from the TPO rather than be required to make application and exempt for fees. The current practice was to exempt a list of weed trees from the TPO, however this was not accurately reflected in the relevant LEPs which is its legal basis.

    It was agreed that the current practice of exempting 19 weed species was good, but should be extended to other species listed in Schedule 7 of the Better Living DCP. Also that Bushcare Network should seek amendments to clause 54(2) of LEP 2005 and clause 10.11 of LEP 91 to make all weed trees listed in Schedule 7 of the Better Living DCP exempt from any requirements to make application for the removal of these species (under the TPO).

    Action: Clive to write to Council requesting amendments to clause 54(2) of LEP 2005 and clause 10.11 of LEP 91 to make all weed trees listed in Schedule 7 of the Better Living DCP exempt from any requirements to make application for the removal of these species.

  4. BMCC Weed Management Strategy

    Lyndal reported back from Council officers involved in the Strategy that the Network’s submission was appreciated, with most comments agreed to. Detailed responses would be sent.

    Responses to the issue of capping the Bushcare program raised in the draft were noted, and the whole model of support for bushcare groups would be debated next year, as part of a Council Natural Areas Volunteer policy. Bushcare involvement would be valued during this detailed consultation.

    The amended Strategy is expected to go to the Council meeting on 23 November with the report available in the business paper from 17th Nov.

    Weeds list: the value in having a list in an official policy document was agreed as essential if Council and the community were to seek the support of nurseries and market holders in not selling weeds. It was agreed that the DCP list of weeds in Schedule 7 needed to be revised and the reference point should be the ‘Flora of NSW’.

    Action: that Clive refine his draft list of weed tree species by including only those species that would be weeds wherever they occur across the whole of the LGA, and bring this list back to the next meeting for discussion.

    Action: that a tentative date be made for a special meeting to discuss the revised BMCC Weed Management Strategy be made and held if members wish to meet after reading the report. Tentative date Friday 19 November at 6pm. Decision to be made by email on Thursday 18.

  5. Downhill Bicycle Tracks in Bushland

    Margaret and Warwick Tafe reported on the rehabilitation of the illegal tracks works at Mt Riverview. Also of two successful restoration days with the residents and Bushcare Group, weeding was done around the vicinity and some potential new members were attracted to the event. A social BBQ lunch after provide a good opportunity for discussion between council staff and residents, and some closure for the stressful time it had been for residents.

  6. Street Tree Master Plan

    The Plan was passed on 10 August with some minor amendments, and now is on the website.

    Some of the improvements noted were the removal of planned exotics adjacent to bushland in Sinclair Avenue and Pitt Park, Wentworth Falls. Other concerns remained and could be raised again when there is to be a report back to Council in 12 months, ‘assessing any weed infestation’.

  7. Election of co-convenor for Bushcare Network

    As there were no volunteers for this position it was deferred

General Business

  1. Volunteer registration forms incorporating Volunteer/Council agreement

    The value in having some agreement between volunteers and Council was agreed and some minor changes made to the draft.

    Action: all to discuss the attached draft with their groups and bring back comments to next meeting.

  2. Business for next meeting

    NPWS volunteer program (Xuela Sledge)

Next Meeting: Wednesday 1st December 6pm, Mountains Community Resource Network Meeting Room, Lawson

Attachments to this meeting may be accessed by downloading the PDF of the meeting here: Minutes of the Bushcare Network, Sep 2010