Meeting with the Mayors and Former Mayors of the Central Activities Districts Councils

This morning a meeting was held to officially handover the alliance between the City of Melbourne and Central Activities District Councils to the newly elected Mayors. The meeting provided an opportunity to formally introduce the new mayors to the group and to discuss the activities that were undertaken over the past year.

The alliance has been officially endorsed by each participating Council and priorities include meeting with the new State Government to identify the transport, housing, employment and community priorities for each Central Activities District. I would like to thank the former Mayors of Frankston, Greater Dandenong, Whitehorse, Hume and Maribyrnong, as well as Robert Doyle, the Lord Mayor of Melbourne for their support of this alliance.

I am confident that the new Mayors, including Cr Tony DIb as the Mayor of Maroondah, will continue to support this alliance and ensure that all levels of government have a shared vision and implementation plan for Melbourne’s Central Activities Districts. A collective voice for Melbourne’s Central Activities Districts will help ensure that they become vibrant, accessible and sustainable urban centres.

Media Release: Fireworks and pets don’t mix

As Christmas cheer fills the air, family and friends gather to celebrate the festive and new year season. And no family celebration would be complete without our loyal family pets. However, while Christmas and New Year fireworks can be a popular attraction, unfortunately many family pets don’t enjoy the light and sound show the same way we do.

Maroondah Councillor Alex Makin said the loud noises made by fireworks can easily spook family pets, and particularly dogs, who may be left unattended or in unsecured backyards.

“Dogs have an acute sense of hearing, which intensifies the loud ‘bangs’ of the fireworks and causes them to panic and be frightened. At this time of the year it is best to ensure your dog is secure in your home or back garden, and most importantly, don’t take them to events which will have fireworks,” Cr Makin said.

“Many of the dogs collected by Council officers last year were, fortunately, registered and some were even microchipped. Making sure your pet is always wearing its Council registration tag can also help us return your pet to you promptly,” Cr Makin said.

“Missing a loved one during the festive season can quickly dampen the celebrations, so please double check the security of your yard and make sure your pet is not one of the ones that goes missing this year,” Cr Makin said.

Further information:

Every dog and cat over the age of three months must be registered. All newly registered dogs and cats must be microchipped.

Discounts apply for pets that are desexed and are permanently identified by microchip, With applicable discounts, most people will pay $29 to register their dog and $23 for their cat. Pensioner concessions also apply.

Owners of animals who are unregistered may be fined $239, and if found wandering at large by Council Rangers will be fined $179 during the daytime and $239 after dark.

For more information about registering and microchipping your pet, please contact Council’s Local Laws team on 1300 88 22 33 or visit Council’s website at

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Attendance Report: Social inclusion and Council alliances

One of the reforms undertaken during my year as Mayor was to extend delegate reports into attendance reports, to ensure that Councillors can confidently discuss the events and activities that they have undertaken. In addition, a new report, known as Ward Reports was also introduced which allows Councillors to discuss upcoming events.

On the 19th of November I attended Maroondah’s end of year function for crossing supervisors. The function provides an opportunity to thank crossing supervisors for the work they undertake in providing safety for students gaining access to and from schools. Several crossing supervisors are some of Maroondah’s longest serving employees and I would like to thank these dedicated members of staff for the service that they provide to the community.

On the 20th of November I attended the 10th anniversary of Maroondah Movement for Reconciliation. The group, which was formed in 2000 aimed to encourage reconciliation and promote an understanding and awareness of Indigenous culture. I would like to congratulate the group for its achievements, particularly in encouraging Council and the community to embrace Reconciliation.

On the 21st of November I attended the first annual general meeting of the Maroondah Inter-faith network. The network, which was established in November last year aims to encourage dialogue and understanding between faith based communities in Maroondah. The group has experienced a strong first year and I would like to thank the interim committee for their service and dedication, as well as congratulate the incoming committee, which is already planning events for the year ahead.

Lastly, on the 22nd of November I joined my then Mayoral counterparts of the Councils containing Central Activities Districts to sign a Memorandum of Understanding between these Councils and the Lord Mayor of the City of Melbourne. This alliance will ensure that the Councils that contain Central Activities Districts, namely Maroondah, Frankston, Greater Dandenong, Whitehorse, Hume and Maribyrnong will be able to collectively advocate for the needs of these urban centres.

A meeting is scheduled for the 20th of December where this alliance will be introduced to the newly elected Mayors and priorities established for the next twelve months. This alliance will having growing significance to Council over future years as it will ensure that Maroondah will be also work cooperatively with these other Councils to ensure a cohesive approach to Melbourne’s Central Activities Districts.

Maroondah City Council meeting

Maroondah City Council officially meets on a monthly basis from 7.30 pm at the Council Chambers at the Maroondah Civic Centre in Braeside Avenue, Ringwood.

The public is welcome to attend and there is an opportunity to submit a question to be answered at council meetings or to speak directly with councillors and council staff after the meeting.

The Mayor chairs the council proceedings and copies of the agenda are available from the Maroondah City Council website prior to the meeting.

If you wish to submit a formal question at a council meeting, please download the form for Public Question Time from the Maroondah City Council Website.

Ringwood Ballet Group – A Midsummer Night’s Dream

The Ringwood Ballet Group is a community based not-for-profit organisation that was formed in 1961. The group hold an annual performance at Karralyka and this year showcased a ballet version of Midsummer Night’s Dream, as well as several jazz and tap dance routines. Younger performers were also involved and it was great to see so many students being able to participate within the performance.

The Ringwood Ballet Group holds weekly classed at Bedford Road in Ringwood and includes a range of dance styles including classical ballet, jazz and tap. The Ringwood Ballet Group is one example of the range of art and cultural groups that exist within Maroondah. and I commend the many people involved in organising and participating within the Ringwood Ballet Group’s annual concert.

Tonight’s performance was excellent and I commend the many people involved in organising and participating in the Ringwood Ballet Group’s annual performance.

North Ringwood Community House 2010 End of Year Luncheon

North Ringwood Community House is located at 120 Oban Road in Ringwood North and provides a range of community based educational courses, as well as accredited training, including Certificates III and IV as a Registered Training Organisation.

This afternoon North Ringwood Community House held its end of year luncheon to thank students, staff, tutors and volunteers. North Ringwood Community House is currently operating at capacity and is the only community house in Maroondah that is not located on Council land making it difficult to expand the services that it offers.

This year Council approved the undertaking of Masterplan to assist in relocating North Ringwood Community House onto Council land at Quambee Reserve located at Wonga Road in Ringwood North. This location will complement the existing community facilities at Quambee Reserve and work on the Masterplan will commence from July next year through the 2011/2012 Council Budget.

North Ringwood Community House has continued to serve the Maroondah community and will be offering further programs in 2011 to provide new skills and opportunities. For further details please visit

Media Release: Youth support services still available

Council’s youth team will continue to support Maroondah’s young people and their families over the Christmas school holidays.

Maroondah Councillor Alex Makin said the last session of the EV’s Lounge drop-in program is on Friday 17 December, but youth workers are still available over the summer break.

“During the holidays our youth workers will be only be a phone call away for any young person 12-25 years old who is in need of assistance or referral to another support agency,” Cr Makin said.

“So if you or someone you know finds themselves in a position where they need support or help, then our youth workers can provide information on almost any issue, including school, finding a job, family issues, getting involved in the community, or if a young person is just having a hard time,” Cr Makin said.

“For those wanting information outside of business hours the Maroondah Youth Services website offers a range of information including activities on offer in Maroondah to keep young people entertained, contact details for other local support services, and other resources for young people and their families,” Cr Makin said.

“The Maroondah Youth Card is also a good source of information. The handy wallet-sized card provides a range of afterhours support numbers which can be used in times of need,” Cr Makin said.

“The card, which caters for people aged 12-25, also includes discounts for local businesses and recreational facilities which will definitely come in handy over the summer break,” Cr Makin said.

To get your hands on the card visit or pick one up at EV’s Youth Centre, 212 Mt Dandenong Road, Croydon or Council Service Centres.

For more information contact Council’s Youth Services team on 9294 5709, email or visit

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Maroondah Partners in Community Wellbeing Committee – December 2010 meeting

The final meeting for 2010 of the Maroondah Partners in Community Wellbeing Committee was held this morning to provide an update on Council’s Community Wellbeing Plan. The Committee, which includes health and education providers, as well as community and council representatives, is charged with overseeing the implementation and review of Council’s Community Wellbeing Plan.

Today’s meeting focused on the short-term priorities identified within the plan, including methods of surveying the community so that progress on the implementation of the plan can be measured against results. The Maroondah Partners in Community Wellbeing Committee will resume in 2011 to continue its function of improving community wellbeing within Maroondah.

Maroondah Leader: Maroondah and other CAD councils unite for action

The Maroondah Leader has reported on the newly formed alliance between Councils that include Central Activities Districts and the City of Melbourne. This alliance will ensure that Councils will be able to collectively advocate for the needs of these central activities districts, to ensure that they become vibrant, accessible and sustainable urban centres.

Former Maroondah mayor Alex Makin said the councils had identified common issues across the CADs: mainly the need for investment in transport interchanges and next-generation community facilities.

“With Melbourne quickly becoming a city of many cities, we want to ensure certainty for the respective CADs,” Cr Makin said.

The alliance will be focusing on three priorities, including transport, housing and employment opportunity for the Central Activities Districts and will be advocating for a shared vision between State and Federal Governments for funding to support the implementation of these urban centres. The alliance will continue to meet throughout 2011 and a meeting will be held on the 20th of December to officially hand over the group to the newly elected Mayors of each Council.

Conclusion of the 2010 Mayoral Year

This evening Maroondah City Council held its Statutory Meeting, whereby the Mayor is elected for the 2011 Council Year. While I have enjoyed the challenges experienced throughout this year I chose not to seek re-nomination as Mayor and Cr Tony Dib has been unanimously elected as Mayor for the oncoming Council year.

Maroondah is truly fortunate to have such a vibrant sense of community and I would like to thank the many community organisations and individuals that I have met throughout this year. While the volume of work undertaken as Mayor is immense it is also incredibly rewarding to meet the many people that are dedicated to their local community.

2010 has marked the year that Council delivered financial sustainability, ensuring that future Councils will be able to invest in community facilities and services. Maroondah City Council has finally reversed over 12 years of annual financial operating deficits to ensure that Council is able to meet future challenges. In addition, partnerships with neighbouring Councils have been strengthened and Maroondah is at the forefront of a newly formed alliance between the six Councils containing Central Activities Districts and the City of Melbourne.

Furthermore, Council has reaffirmed its commitment to Reconciliation through incorporating the Acknowledgement of Country at all Council events and Council meetings. Likewise, reforms to strengthen accountability and governance through encouraging debate and discussion were undertaken, including the rearrangement of the Council Chamber to ensure that Councillors are able to see members of the public present at Council meetings.

Council’s advocacy for an accessible, safe and integrated transit interchange for Ringwood proved successful and I congratulate the incoming State Government for their pledge to overhaul Ringwood Station.

Lastly, I would like to thank my colleagues for their support throughout this year, being Mayor is an incredible experience and I wish Cr Tony Dib all the best of success in the year ahead. I will be continuing as a Councillor for the Mullum Ward and I welcome feedback from residents and the community.