A quick report on tonight’s marathon council meeting:

  • Development applications went according to officer recommendations
  • Hard copy again different to online agenda in terms of the in camera item – more monumental stuff ups regarding potential purchase of open space with no explanation or apology offered
  • Amendments C147/8 on interim height limits were passed with Magee and Lobo voting against on the basis that everything should be mandatory. Arguments (if they could be called that!) put up by Lipshutz, Hyams, Esakoff, and Pilling, were once more based on ‘trust us, we know what we are doing because if we went for all mandatory, then the Minister would be likely to make it all discretionary’.
  • Caulfield Racecourse another monumental ‘let’s wait for the Minister to act, rather than have council reps resign now’ because there is a danger here in what the MRC could do!
  • Public question time reminiscent of kindergarten playtime, where the CEO asked questioners to put up their hands if they were present in the gallery. By this stage, after 2 hours of councillor waffle and woeful debate, most people had left and who could blame them given the fact that most of these councillors simply like the sound of their own voices and the quality of ‘debate’ is totally underwhelming! Please remember that if the questioner was not present then the question nor answer was read out and neither will this appear in the minutes. Thus the wider community has no way of knowing what the issues are, nor council’s responses. This is called open, accountable and transparent government – for which we’ve got Lipshutz, Hyams, Esakoff, Pilling, Ho to thank!
  • Magee being Magee – a useless request for a report on the Claire St VCAT decision. Asking what recourse council has – ie whether an appeal to the Supreme Court has any merit? No doubt the eventual report will come back and state that there is no grounding in law for an appeal and that it would cost hundreds of thousands. We suggest that the cheaper and quicker remedy would be to change the zones, which after all is what the community has been demanding for ages!

Full reports in the coming days.