Happy New Year to All
Hope that everyone has had a restful break ready to face another busy year with a Federal election in the offing, the State Government introducing horrendous planning policy and VCAT increasing fees making objections to inappropriate planning decisions impossible for ordinary folk.
The Environment Defenders Office is inviting submissions objecting to the increased VCAT fees. Subs due 15 February.
Submissions have been sent urging the Federal Governemnt to retain control of EPBC environment policy rather than hand this power over to State governments. Nina made submissions re Public Housing Development and support for a dog ban in our National Parks. A submission went to VEAC’s Marine Investigation referring to Rickett’s Point Marine Sanctuary and the Beaumaris fossil site. Judy has done sterling work by contacting a Museum of Victoria involved with research work at the Beaumaris fossil site. This could result in an exciting outcome. Discovery of patches of Plains Grassy Wetland EVC’s at Melbourne Water wetland site on the south bank of Mordialloc Creek and at the Dingley Bypass site. MW have postponed work ont he creek site until further studies have been undertaken. There will be a Preliminary Conference with VicRoads to discuss an optional route for the Bypass at Dingley.
On the south bank of Mordialloc Creek? MW plans for wetlands in industrial land on the north bank of Mordialloc creek include a bike path. MBCL has previously discussed a bike path on the south bank of the creek with Dandenong and Kingston Councils. This path would connect with paths linking Patterson River and city of Dandenong. Have also discussed this proposal with Kingston staff member involved with cycle tracks.. Cr Gledhill has been invited 6th Feb to discuss the Kingston section of the Round the Bay Trail.
Hon. Geoffrey Connard AM
Hon. Geoffrey Connard AM died 27 January. Notice states Geoffrey lived life to the full. He was passionate about his family, politics and serving the community. A love of travel took him to the four corners of the globe. Geoffrey was one of four Connard brothers who lived locally and cared about the local environment. He was a member of Parliament (and of MBCL!)
Friends of Bradshaw Park
Friends of Bradshaw Park enjoyed a visit to the Grange. Friends will ask Council to rename the Reserve Bradshaw Bushland Reserve to reflect its Land for Wildlife status. The Wedding Bush Festival in the Grange was a great success.
Friends of Mordialloc Creek
November working bee removed a river sheoke that doesn’t belong to the creek EVC. Have applied to Melbourne Water Grants for rehab of areas on north and south banks of the creek.
The James Report
The NRA commenced vegetation audits in November. Ecologists and city rangers are completing ecological surveys of the foreshore between Aspendale and Carrum in the fourth and final installment of a report on nature reserves in the municipality. Foreshore coordinator and consultant Dr Jeff Yugovich, carried out the survey over a three year period. Priority has been to identify remnant indigenous vegetation, sites of significant habitat value and assessment of the condition and conservation significance of native vegetation. Dr Yugovich’s reports and recommendations will be used to guide the council in managing its natural resources and improving biodiversity of natural areas. Consultation is underway for the 2013 tree planting season with the aim of planting 2400 park and street trees.
It is hoped that precedence will be given to locally indigenous trees since native trees are essential if the biodiversity of the Kingston area is to be sustained. Our native birds have developed in such a way as to be dependent for their principal sustenance on the native insects that breed only on native trees as well as the flowers and nectar’s in the flowers on those trees.
Parks (NRA and Horticulture) are undertaking a maintenance program and weed control of new plantings. Please note that Gazanias are flourishing on Mordialloc beach along the promenade wall. Regrettably, South African as well as other non-indigenous plants, have been planted around the Parkdale War Memorial.
Trapping Indian Minors
A campaign is underway in some quarters to trap these pests. Anyone interested? Also a group from Upwey has asked if we are interested in urging the government to collect bottles and cans to reduce littering. Wal is keen to hear from anyone interested.
Environmental Victoria is still enthusiastic about a publicity event in March however there is a problem with finding a venue located where there is passing traffic. If anyone has any ideas contact Bronwen or Mary.
Mundy Street Car Park
Disappointing to find now that the work is finished, that the fence is to high. It obstructs the view of the Bay when people are sitting in their cars. The disabled car park is situated behind high vegetation preventing any views of the Bay but worst of all is the large expanse of grey concrete connecting the granitic sand path to the car park. A large section of grey concrete has been placed next to Beach Road in front of the Parkdale War Memorial. Once again this is an unsympathetic impost on the foreshore environment. The Bay Trail in the City of Bayside has retained sand coloured shared paths and this was also used at Mordialloc for the bike path at the Scullin Reserve and Rennison Street car park. it is important that there is consultation with Friends groups before work commences at Antibes Street car park and more hard, unsympathetic materials are foisted on the foreshore. Why are Glade style boardwalks to be introduced at Dixon Street or Wimbourne Avenue?? We would like to see the plans for this section of the foreshore before work begins.
Mordialloc Creek Wetlands
It is hoped that a speaker from Melbourne Water will be available in the next month or two to explain how the wetlands will work with tidal salt water flowing along the south side of the wetland and fresh water from Settlement Drain occupying the north side of the wetland. Moridalloc Creek Reference Group will be meeting 26 February. Now that dredging has finished issues such as the Pompeii site may come up for discussion. At the moment one of the smaller sheds is being used by a group of artists, wood carvers and sculpters – a sort of mens’ shed. Any ideas?
Union of Australian Woman
Meeting 16 February 2pm at Mordialloc Neighbourhood House. Guest Speaker will be Jenny Mikakos MP, Shadow Minister for Youth Justice, for Ageing and Seniors.
Environmental Defenders Office
Environmental Defenders Office reports that VCAT has been examining the effect of overshadowing on solar panels – a bit late in the day but better late than never as long as they come up something that overcomes the problem because the cost of going to VCAT is likely to be from $322 to over $1000 to have the matter listed. Hearing fees are $370 then $1800 a day could be charged on top of that.