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(From May Meeting)
Allowances recommendation passed:
1. That the Councillors' allowance be $3,000.00 per annum, paid monthly
in arrears on the last working day of that month; and
That the Deputy Mayor's allowance be $4,000.00 per annum, paid
monthly in arrears on the last working day of that month; and
That the Mayor's allowance be $12,000.00 per annum, paid monthly in
advance on the last working day of that month, plus a vehicle and
Mobil fuel card
2. That the above allowances be paid on a monthly basis up to the
conclusion of the 2006 periodic election.
Motor Club Rate Rebate Request
Cr Rapaic speaking for his motion said that the Motor Club only has twelve
meetings a year and does a good job involving the community in a positive
way. The rebate was to be a 'one-off' rebate.
Backhoe Purchase for Water Supply
It was resolved that in the next budget
deliberations strong consideration would be given to the purchase of a
backhoe to assist Water Supply Manager Les Hoad in the replacement of the
town water pipes.
He said he wouldn't retire until the job was
Then he said he didn't say that.
Issues and actions undertaken by Keith Simmonds, Environmental Health
Letters were written to all owners of premises inspected advising of
results of inspection. The standard of premises
were very good to unsatisfactory. One premise
inspected was a follow up on a business that is currently undergoing upgrades.
Work is of an excellent standard.
One premise was a follow up as a result of an unsatisfactory standards
report from the previous inspection that resulted in a
letter being written requesting work be
undertaken otherwise an "Improvement Notice" under the Food
Act would be issued. This matter has now been resolved.
One premise inspected has recently opened as a new food business and is
operating at an excellent standard.
One premise inspected has unsatisfactory hygiene practices resulting in a
letter being written requesting work be undertaken
otherwise an "Improvement Notice" will
be issued and a joint inspection conducted with the
Liquor Licensing Authority.
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District Council of Coober Pedy - Unique
Completely surrounded by Crown Land, Coober Pedy township has evolved from
a remote opal mining community in 1915 to a District Council with a Mayor and
eight councillors. The council administers the "three R's" - roads,
rates and rubbish - just like other councils.
But that's where the similarity
to other councils ends. Electricity generation was until recently done by the
council. Now only distribution and billing is handled.
The council also
operates water desalination, reticulation and billing, and sewerage
collection, treatment and reticulation to grassed playing fields.
also has the responsibility of maintaining roads to mining areas on land
controlled by State Government Primary Industries department.
Within the council area is another council - Umoona Aboriginal Council, a
situation requiring added expertise.
Last but not least is the extensive amount of Crown Land within the council
boundaries, on which people can have an annual 'Occupation Lease' costing
around $200 per year, administered by State Government Environment and Heritage department, which is not
surveyed, to which the council supplies utilities. However, even though water
and electricity are supplied by the council to this kind of land tenure, the
council does not have the responsibility of supplying and maintaining access
to these leases. It is up to the lessee. This may on first appearance appear
to be unfair, as the council still charges rates on these properties. But as
the State Government only allows annual renewal of a lease, there is no
guarantee that a lessee will renew the lease. If it did lapse the land reverts
back to the Crown and any access put in by the council across Crown Land from
a gazetted road to the lease would be wasted if the lease lapsed. In contrast,
privately owned land has as part of its conditions a surveyed road providing
access, which is the council's responsibility to supply and maintain.
The council makes time available (8 pm) at the monthly meeting for anyone
to address the elected members: five minutes per person, with no previous
notice required. This month a ratepayer took advantage of this and expressed
in 'colourful' language, getting louder as he went on, dis-satisfaction with the council's treatment of a
certain situation, remonstrating with a clenched fist, in which a piece of
paper was having a hard time. When asked to calm down, he shouted,
"This is how I'll calm down!", and released his grip on the piece of
paper, which travelled a short distance towards the Mayor and the CEO before
fluttering down to the floor, by which time the ratepayer had stormed out of
In Maria Crisa's garden
Above: Goldfish pond
Below: Passionfruit as big as cricket balls
COOBER PEDY COMMUNITY PETITION
Natalie Slovachevsky, Paul Athanasiadis, and Kathryn
Micka are the members of the Working Group. The petition is available around
town until May 31. The organisers are confident of obtaining 1000 signatures
"TO : LOCAL / STATE / FEDERAL GOVT
WE THE UNDERSIGNED COMMUNITY MEMBERS ARE ASKING FOR YOUR
DIRECT SUPPORT IN ADDRESSING THE FOLLOWING ISSUES WHICH ARE CAUSING MAJOR PROBLEMS IN OUR TOWN. THESE
ISSUES STEM FROM THE LACK OF ADEQUATE LEGISLATION FOR THE DRY ZONE
WHICH WAS ESTABLISHED IN AUGUST 1996. THIS THEN CAUSES CONSIDERABLE ANTI-SOCIAL
BEHAVIOUR AND FLOW ON EFFECTS SUCH AS CRIME AND
IMPACTS ON TOURISM. OUR TOWN CAN NO LONGER COPE WITH THE VAST INFLUX OF TRANSIENT
PEOPLE AND THEIR DOGS WHO GATHER PRIMARILY IN
THE MAIN STREET. OUR HOSPITAL AND HEALTH SERVICES CAN’T
COPE. WE NEED MORE RESOURCES, BOTH FACILITIES AND STAFF.
FUNDING IS A KEY
WE NEED HELP AND WE NEED IT NOW !"
Family First Senator Steve
Fielding says that,
"BANKS ROB CUSTOMERS IN PROFIT
Banks are robbing customers with
exorbitant penalty fees in a ruthless profit. FAMILY FIRST wants penalty fees
abolished. They should be for cost recovery only,
not an excuse for banks to reap even more millions. We must stop banks fleecing
Australians with high fees totally out of proportion to the cost on the bank.
FAMILY FIRST calls on the Government
Give the Australian Competition and
Consumer Commission (ACCC) the power to abolish outrageous penalty fees. At
the moment, it only has the power monitor fees;
Order banks to ensure fees appear on
ATM screens before transactions
processed, so people know exactly
how much they are being slugged.
A 2004 report by the Consumer Law
Centre of Victoria estimated banks could be reaping "hundreds of millions
of dollars in profit each year from penalty fees".
As if banks don’t already make
The report also found "cheque
and direct debit dishonour fees charged by Australian banks
are out of all proportion … with the cost incurred by banks in processing
cheque and direct debit
dishonours." It revealed penalties for a dishonoured up to 16 times the
cost to the bank, while some banks seized 92 times the cost of processing a
dishonoured direct debit transaction. Fees
of $35 to $50 are just robbery. Make
a mistake at an ATM, like entering the wrong PIN number, and some will charge
you $2. Withdraw money from another bank’s ATM and it’s another $2, while
an over the counter transaction costs up to $3. Be a day late for even the
smallest minimum credit card payment and
the average penalty is $29.
The Australian Consumers
Association's Dr Nick Coates says hidden bank fees "provide
a striking example of how the complex network of interchange fees is passed on
to consumers in an unfair and unjust manner."
The Coober Pedy
News is ranked number
on Google for 'coober pedy'.
COOBER PEDY’S BIG AFTERNOON TEA
Coober Pedy’s Big Afternoon Tea, to raise funds for cancer
research, will once again be held in the TAFE SA & PIRSA building on
Saturday 27th May.
The Coober Pedy Big Afternoon Tea is sponsored
by the Cancer Council of Australia and the District Council of Coober Pedy, and
is aimed at raising funds to fight against a disease that affects one in three
Australians. It is a chance to relax, catch up and chat whilst raising
funds that will benefit cancer patients and their families, of whom there are a
number in Coober Pedy and the surrounding area.
If you have any items you wish to
donate to the “Monster Auction” please contact one of the people below to
Lynn Freeman – 86725298 or 86725848
Kate McLeod – 86789000 or 86725406
Miriam Kammermann – 86725009 or 86725460
Chris Durdin will be along again with another interesting and
informative presentation on Social Support.
Works Manager Darren Zechner reported that nine dogs had been
destroyed in the previous month. He said it is very difficult to catch the smart
dogs. Councillors began discussing ways of getting rid of the large number of
dogs wandering in the main street. Someone suggested a bounty system whereby
people were paid for dogs handed over to the council. This was at first thought
to be a really good idea. Then they started to think it out a bit and the
possibility of people breeding dogs and bringing them in for the bounty, and of
people from outside Coober Pedy bringing in dogs for the bounty dawned.
Consequently there was 'Mutiny on the Bounty'. Mayor Baines said he'd had enough
of dogs for the night and said he'd be happy if the meeting would move on to