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Blue Mountains City Council Election - 10th Sept.
The Blue Mountains Conservation Society presents everything you need to know about the 2016 Council Election from an environmental perspective.
Questionnaire Response - Ward 1

There are 5 "lead" candidates in Ward 1 plus 2 "ungrouped" Independents.

Of these 7 candidates, only Jim Carothers (Independent) didn't respond.

The candidates' full response to our questionnaire is listed below. Candidates are listed in the order they will appear on the ballot paper.

Preface

What follows is a tabulation of the candidate's responses to the questionnaire to allow a comparison.

Each question, except Question 13 and “Personal conservation goals”, has an implicit preface of  "As a BMCC Councillor I will".

Candidates were asked to answer each question with a "yes" or "no" - there being no assumed answer if left blank.

The last item on the questionnaire - a statement of personal conservation values - is provided first.

Personal conservation values
If elected, what will you do for the environment? Outline one or more projects/issues that you intend to work on ? – limit 100 words.
Kerry Brown  (The Greens)
I will work on the Carbon Abatement Action Plan using $2m Council accrued from the ‘carbon tax’. My focus will include: full-scale composting, recycling and educational centre in the Mountains; recycling bins in all town centres; public events waste management officer; support for BM Renewable Energy Co-op initiatives including a Council rates loan scheme for businesses to put solar panels on their roof at no cost to them or the building owners.

I will vigorously oppose moves to intensify development such as SP3 zoning for large tourism development and legislation for medium density as ‘complying development’ in our major residential zones

I will have the full support of my party in opposing the second airport and campaigning for high speed rail.
Don McGregor  (Labor)
BM RENEW came to council with a plan for assisting landlords to install roof top solar on commercial and industrial buildings.
I have called for a briefing with Zero Emissions Australia with a view to making Blue Mountains a Zero Emissions City.
I am keen to see how our strategic alliance with Penrith and Hawkesbury Councils can assist in lowering regional greenhouse gas emissions.
I believe that all levels of government can, and must respond to the threats climate change in represent to all communities.
I will continue to do all I can to protect our pristine environment from the effects of urban runoff and improve the quality of water and aquatic life in our streams.
Sam Parker-Davies  (Independent)
Once elected I would love to work on effective strategies for environmental management with the Conservation Society through open to the public policy planning.
At least once a month the community will have the opportunity to help create the most effective and holistic solutions possible. With a variety of backgrounds present the solutions will be in cooperation with the council’s budget, the interests of concerned (and opposing) citizens and environmentalist groups.
(A focus I would strongly like to make prevalent for these groups is the issue of renewable energy.)
Michael Begg  (Independent)
The answers to the above questions show my personal interest in the protection of our environment.
Twice I have asked council to review the fees we charge for large events that impact our bushland areas and trails. I will pursue this matter again if I have support.
I would like to see more paid parking for tourist cars and buses around tourist hot spots to help fund environmental conservation works.
Kevin Schreiber  (Liberal)
Oppose high rise above 3 stories.
We need to look after our ageing population with over 55's style villas.
Improve our litter clearing in our village shopping areas.
We need tourism for jobs for our youth and members of our community.
Tony Robinson  (Independent)
Encourage the reduction of carbon footprint.
Encourage native animal protected breeding zones.
Natural areas - Bushland protection and restoration
1. Support Council's current funding to Bushcare and Bush regeneration activities:
a) being maintained
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborYes
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalYes
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes
b) being increased
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLabor
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalYes
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes
Postamble:  The 2016-17 budget for bushcare funds 1 full time and 6 part time positions and the bush regeneration budget supports 6 full time positions.

2. Support an increase in the Noxious Weeds program by extending the number of catchments targeted each year, and by providing more private property weed education and advice.
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborYes
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalYes
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes

3. Support Council maintaining its budget for bushwalking track maintenance and development, using Nature Based Recreation Licence Fees for additional work and actively pursuing opportunities for additional Commonwealth and State funding.
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborYes
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalYes
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes
Enforcement of Environmental Regulations
4. Support Council taking a strong and consistent approach to enforcement of breaches of environmental regulations:
a) by taking legal action against illegal clearing of natural bushland
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborYes
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalYes
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes
b) by initiating the establishment of a specialist environmental enforcement unit of suitably trained staff
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLabor
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalYes
Tony RobinsonInd.?

5. Support the development and implementation of a Council Land Encroachment Policy to address degradation of bushland reserves caused by the use of this land by neighbouring private landholders.
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborYes
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalYes
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes - depending on situation
Postamble:  Currently there are issues of residents degrading Council bushland reserves adjacent to their properties by using the land to park vehicles, stockpile materials, locate trampolines, dispose of garden waste, or mowing etc.
Waste
6. Support
a) the introduction of a financial incentive for residents to compost their own waste
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborNo
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalNo
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes

b) the re-introduction of Council educational programs to encourage a range of waste minimisation practices
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborYes
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalYes
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes

7. Promote change to the waste collection systems for businesses in order to encourage reuse and re-cycling.
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborYes
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalYes
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes
Postamble:  Commercial properties are not provided with the same recycling services as residents, and there is no incentive for businesses to recycle waste.
Planning and development
8. Support ensuring all the existing environmental protection measures currently included in the Blue Mountains Local Environmental Plan 2015 (LEP 2015) are not undermined or removed in future amendments, including retaining:
a) all existing provisions aimed at minimising environmental impacts of new development
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborYes
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalYes
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes
b) all areas currently mapped as Protected Areas.
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborYes
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalYes
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes
c) all areas currently zoned environmental protection (E2).
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborYes
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalYes
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes
Postamble:  The LEP 2015 governs how and where new development can proceed, and what environmental standards new developments must meet. This LEP must be reviewed and updated in the next few years.)

9. Oppose the State Government imposing a new housing target on the Blue Mountains, designed to increase the housing stock in order to accommodate Sydney’s growing population.
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborYes
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalYes
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes

10. Oppose any future re-zoning of land aimed at increasing the areas available for medium density housing development.
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborYes
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalYes?
Tony RobinsonInd.No, depending on situation
Postamble:  Some submissions during the development of LEP 2015, mainly from developers, advocated extending the medium density housing zone, R3, by rezoning land adjacent to the village centres. This is despite the Council Residential Strategy 2010 concluding that there is adequate vacant residential lots to meet expected population forecasts, and that current opportunities for medium density development are under-utilised.)

11. Protect the built heritage and large garden and bushland lots of the Blue Mountains townships by supporting the village precinct objectives and proposed R6 Residential Character Conservation Zone in LEP 2015.
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborYes
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalYes
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes
Postamble:  The Blue Mountains towns are famous for their large lot residential areas featuring older character housing, 'leafy green streets' and display gardens as well as natural bushland. Some submissions during the development of LEP 2015 opposed the introduction of R6.)

12. Oppose the introduction of the SP3 Tourism Zone which will increase the opportunities for large-scale, resort-style tourism development
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborYes
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberal?Yes
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes
Postamble:  Tourism in the Blue Mountains is currently characterised by locally owned and operated small-scale accommodation and nature and heritage-based activities. This ensures that visual and natural amenity, environmental protection and World Heritage values are preserved, and that the tourist dollar stays in the local community.

Will you publicly and strongly support Council’s current position opposing:
13.
a) Coal Seam Gas exploration and extraction in the Local Government Area.
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborYes
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalYes
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes
b) The transport of nuclear waste through the Blue Mountains.
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborYes
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberalYes
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes
c) The building of an airport at Badgerys Creek in Western Sydney.
Candidate Party Response
Kerry BrownGreensYes
Don McGregorLaborYes
Sam Parker-DaviesInd.Yes
Michael BeggInd.Yes
Kevin SchreiberLiberal?Yes
Tony RobinsonInd.Yes


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