Showing posts from 2020

Cheap power & water in Unley

  I was staggered to read in The Advertiser online that an Unley Shopping centre is taking Unley Council to the Supreme Court to recoup over $1m for illegal use of power and water over the past decade(s). The power and water was used in the adjoining memorial garden. It’s staggering that this went on for so long, undetected by both parties. Hopefully this will be amicably settled with the slate wiped clean and it won’t be a $1m+ hit to our rates in 2021. Given that the shopping centre is a ratepayer, that probably won’t be the outcome.

Must retain Unley Gatehouse

  I’m annoyed that the SA Government won’t try to relocate the heritage gatehouse (built in 1890) on the corner of Cross Road and Fullarton Road, as part of the road widening project. It should not be demolished. That should not be the only solution. Engineers say that it can be moved. So, why not try. Yes, it will cost a bit, but it is worthwhile. Some Liberal MPs support the relocation. I call upon David Pisoni, Liberal MP for Unley to support the local demand that this historic gatehouse be retained or moved. David should put his ministerial obligations aside and support the local push to relocate the gatehouse.

More on Life Care

  I’ve been asked ‘so what happens now’? My understanding is that the matter needs to be referred to ICAC and it will likely be investigated by the Ombudsman. Unley Council is obliged to self report it to ICAC.

High-Rise at Everard Park 😡

  High-Rise Everard Park Yesterday I attended a gathering of Everard Park and Black Forest residents organised by local Badcoe MP Jayne Stinson. There were about 150 people in attendance. The meeting was to review concerns about the proposed 4 storey aged care facility on the Life Care site, bounded by Norman Terrace, Fourth Avenue and Ross Street, Everard Park. So many concerns. The same as what was voiced at the public meeting held by Unley Council. Unley Council dismissed the voice of the residents and approved the development. It has now been approved by the State Minister for Planning. A final step (and probably just a formality) is consideration by a parliamentary committee. Jayne will be addressing that committee and presenting the residents’ concerns. Now, back to yesterday’s gathering in the park ... Unley Mayor Michael Hewitson (who had voted for the high-rise) was there. However after 20 minutes he must have figured that he was not welcome and he hopped on his bicycle and pe

Aglianico wine - Wow! 🍷

  Aglianico wine Enjoyed a bottle of  Aglianico  wine, from ‘Bittern by the Grape’, Mornington Peninsula. Never heard of it before. I don’t normally enjoy the lighter style wines, but this Italian wine was superb. Very easy drinking. A dusky brown and brick dust coloured beauty. Excellent with an oozy Brie cheese. I was given it some years back by a local who was visiting Victoria; back in the days when you could (or would want to) visit Victoria. Keep an eye out for it and treat yourself  🍷 Read about Aglianico

Unley must tighten its belt

  Unley Council needs to take a fiscal reality check about spending $6.1m on a second stage redevelopment of an Unley Oval Grandstand. The project may have merit, but it is irresponsible to add huge debt just after spending $15.5m on upgrading King William Road. Ratepayers will bear this new debt by future rate rises. I urge Unley Council to postpone the project for a few years until the growing debt is reduced. It’s simply time to tighten the belt ✅ It’s time for Unley to recalibrate its fiscal strategy ✅

Decanting red wine 🍷

 I get lots of emails from wineries spruiking their wines 🍷 don’t we all? Anyway, the latest was from a Coonawarra winemaker who explained that his 2019 Shiraz was a bit ‘tight’. He gave a great tip on how to loosen it, rather than decant it. A great tip for when you open a red ... see the winemaker’s comments below 🍷 While this vintage is tighter than Kylie's gold hotpants - all is not lost. A tight wine usually refers to young wine, and it can be applied to a wine's aromas, flavours or structure. Being tight isn't always a bad thing. In fact, it's kind of a backhanded compliment.  So how do you loosen up a tight wine? Pour a single glass for starters. Whack the lid back on and 'shake it like a polaroid picture' Alternatively, if Outkast is not your thing you can just gently roll the bottle on its side which creates a greater surface area for the wine, allowing it to breath. Consider this a cheeky wine saving way of decanting in the bottle. Tannins bind toget

Fullarton Road high-rise ❌

  I am dismayed by the proposed 4 storey high density 46-dwelling apartment complex on Fullarton Road, Fullarton; 295 Fullarton Road, on the site of the old FuIlarton Private Hospital. Despite an Unley Council recommendation for approval, it was refused by the independent Council Assessment Panel due to height, setback and insufficient car parks. However, the developer has said it will submit an amended plan. I’m sure that it come back as 4 storey with a few more car parks. They always seem to have a plan B in case of refusal. Given that back in 2018 residents had strongly objected to another inappropriate high density development further south on Fullarton Road, I am staggered that Unley Council did not urgently pursue rezoning this main road. And without trying, there’s no point saying the Minister for Planning would not approve it. The character and amenity of Fullarton Road and the adjacent streets will be destroyed by the current development plan that allows inappropriate high-ris

Parkside election forecast

It looks like there will be quite a few candidates for the position of councillor, in Parkside Ward, Unley Council. It will be difficult to replace the calibre of Mike Hudson who has retired. He had a track record of speaking his mind and not being swayed by a faction. I met one of the candidates the other day and had a bit of a chat. My prediction is that due to Covid-19 there will be a lower % of residents voting. I reckon that those voting will be less than 20%.

Unley SALA 2020

SALA 2020 is almost here. It’s a strange year with Covid-19. I feel like I’ve already done #SALA. Two weeks ago I attended the #Unley launch of a pre-SALA event, hosted by an acclaimed local artist. Her works were stunning. My name is on the sold sticker on 3 of the paintings. I can’t wait until SALA is over and the paintings come home  ❤️

TikTok alert

So many people have embraced TikTok - a ‘fun’ video app owned by Beijing-based company ByteDance. There are 1.6 million Australian users and more than 800 million global users. If you’ve downloaded it, you’re mad with no regard to your privacy and cyber security. All of your personal details are siphoned up and hosted on Chinese servers. There are global cyber security alerts about the danger of TikTok. Do yourself a favour and delete the app now! The Australian Government won’t block it (Chinese style) but it does highlight the extreme cyber risk of using the app.

Fake news

I’m annoyed with myself and others  😡  at being the target of fake news delivered by a supposedly credible source. In the future I will make more effort to verify the information before posting it  😷

Beanie Bob

Onkaparinga Council hosts and supports many affordable arts and cultural events. It does it well and at a modest cost. I went down to Port Noarlunga yesterday to see the Beanies and Berets (and felting) exhibition. Secretly I was determined to buy a beanie that is just a bit different. I’m so pleased with what I brought home. A nice warm alpaca beanie; and just a bit different. For details about the exhibition, follow this  link Pop down and buy one and support local artists.

Silent Unley

I was speaking with a resident who tuned in to listen to a recent #Unley Council meeting when the new tree planting plan was approved. The resident was annoyed that many elected members commented that so few residents had responded to the plan. That got her really mad. She commented that these days (and over the past year) the residents received little communication from Unley Council. The Messenger has gone (and you can only access it online via a subscription). The Council magazine Unley Life has disappeared. Haven’t seen one for a couple of years. If it is delivered then it’s lost in amongst the junk mail. There have been no newsletters from the councillors or mayor. Actually there was one recently delivered to some streets asking people to respond to the Tree Plan, but it was delivered after the close date for submissions. Residents are not happy with the lack of communication from Council. It’s just not good enough. Especially during Covid-19, council should have made a c

Fantastic first footy 😷

What a great NRL match last night with the Eels thrashing the Broncos in Brisbane. A great release after so so long without any footy. A fast and furious game. It’s a pity that one of the 3 major sponsors (Hisense TVs) with their logo splashed across the ‘oval’ was a foreign company (China). I would have preferred to see only Aussie companies sponsoring the match. I enjoyed the game, but I won’t be buying a Hisense  😷

Creek sign

A week ago Unley Mayor Mike Hewitson said that he would get a sign up on Third Avenue, Everard Park to explain what was happening with the creek excavation works between Anzac Highway and Third Avenue. Still no sign and many locals don’t fully understand what is happening. Lots of chatter about the extent of the work eg. will it continue up the creek towards the swimming pool and will the Third Avenue bridge be replaced. How hard is it to print a sign, laminate it and erect it near the bridge on Third Avenue. It is just common courtesy to keep the locals informed about local works .

Third Avenue, Everard Park 🌴

Works are in progress in Keswick Creek, between Third Avenue and Anzac Highway. I was told by a worker that at the upstream entrance to the culvert under Anzac Highway there was ‘a big fat palm tree in the creek that would have slowed the flow’. It is believed that this was a major cause of annual flooding in Third Avenue over the years. Due to the dense vegetation along this privately owned section of the creek, it had been difficult to identify a blockage at Anzac Highway. Anyway, it’s a good outcome and hopefully when the current works are complete in June 2020 there will be a reduced likelihood of the annual flooding in Third Avenue.

New Forestville murals

Some fantastic murals have appeared in and near the Forestville railway underpass. Walk past and have a look. They certainly tart up this neglected area.

Wilberforce 'Creek' works

At last residents near Wilberforce Walk in Everard Park have received an update on what is happening to the creek between Third Avenue and Anzac Highway. Here's a link to detailed information. Wilberforce Creek works Bugger it, the link doesn't work. If you want a copy, contact Unley Council. It's a good document and the design looks good. The shared pathway will make easy access to Anzac Highway. It's just a pity that the information wasn't circulated a couple of weeks before the creek works commenced. It's not good enough to simply leave us all in the dark. Why didn't #Unley Mayor Michael Hewitson (or perhaps the 2 local councillors) walk the area and explain what was happening.

Unley land acquisitions near creek

See today’s Tiser, pages 52-53. There are 8 Public Notices about land acquisition by Unley Council. I suspect it is for the land (the creek section) along Wilberforce Walk, from Third Avenue to Leah Street. I just hope that with the planned flood mitigation works along Wilberforce Walk that the old pre-settlement aged gum tree is saved. We must fight to save this magnificent tree  ✅ What is it about public notices. They don’t have detail re the location of the affected land. Why not add a bit of plain English text describing the general location eg. adjacent to Wilberforce Walk from Third Avenue to Leah Street!!? People in the locality want to know, wherever it is. Just poor communication from #Unley Mayor Michael Hewitson.

Covid-19 Anzac Day

What a great way to observe Anzac Day, with a candle at the end of our driveway at 6am. Good to see other people and lights along the street. Wonderful to hear the bugle which seemed to coming from the NE, maybe Forestville or was it from Keswick Army Barracks. Actually I heard 2 bugles in the area. This might become the new way to observe Anzac Day; from our driveway. By my estimate, this year there was a far greater attendance (in the driveway or on the balcony) than at the formal events at war memorials; by a factor of 3-4-5+ times. It would have to be the biggest Anzac Day ‘ attendance’; ever. I suspect (and would like) that this catches on. In the future, attendance will be down at the formal events. People will continue observing the day at 6am in their driveways and out on the street. Next year I will be in my driveway, joining the neighbours on the street, listening to local bugles and then later watching the formal events on TV. I think that this will be the new

Unley Mayor Hewitson upsets locals ❌

The residents of Everard Park (and some in Black Forest) are still furious with #Unley Council’s recent decision to approve the high rise development at Life Care aged care, bordered by Norman Terrace, Fourth Avenue and Ross Street. Unley Council simply ignored the wishes of the locals. It’s hell bent on high rise provided a few trees will be planted. After the decision, the Mayor (Michael Hewitson) sent an email to the residents. It basically said we listened to your objections, but for the greater good of Unley we voted for the high rise. Given that the Mayor is the spokesperson for Council, it’s a shocking communication from Council. Here’s a copy of the Mayor’s email sent on 24 March 2020 ... Dear Concerned Residents Council voted unanimously this week to support an amended DPA for Norman Terrace. Councillors recognised that the decision would be unpopular but rather than seek political gain, they took the hard but necessary approach and voted for it. We be

Unley approves aged care high rise

Unley Council will tonight approve a high rise aged care facility in Everard Park. This is despite spending ~ $20,000 on public consultation and then ignoring the wishes of the local residents. People are asking ‘why did they ask us when they are now ignoring us’. At a committee meeting on 16 March 2020, there was a lacklustre debate on the matter. The motion to approve was moved by Cr Don Palmer and seconded by Cr Jennie Boisvert. The 2 councillors for the Goodwood area (Emma Wright and Nicole Sheehan) voted for the high rise. The Mayor Michael Hewitson voted for the high rise. He liked the idea that there would be a few trees. He also praised the work of Council to get the matter resolved. And then he blamed the Planning Minister (in advance) if there there is any height increase. A couple of other councillors spoke. The sad thing is that much of the debate mentioned councillors’ nanas (grandmas) and elderly relatives who had spent time in aged care facilities and high ris

Will Unley Council listen?

Tonight is decision day at Unley Council for the mega high rise aged care facility in Everard Park. Whispers from some councillors is that there will probably be approval for an upper limit of 4 storey instead of 5 storey. The only commonsense decision would be a limit of 3 storey on Norman Terrace and 1 storey on Fourth and Ross Streets  ✅ But will there be a commonsense decision? I suspect not!  ❌ Tonight’s decision who help me determine who to vote for at the next election  ✅ That’s how it works. The sad thing is that this huge development would not be allowed in central Unley or further east. But in the west it’s ok to muck up the area. Maybe I will be pleasantly surprised by the decision, but the whispers are strong. I really doubt that #Unley Council will do what the local residents have said in their feedback. The Council can not go against the wishes of the residents.

Unley Highrise in Everard Park

Unley Council has lost its way and understanding of the community in supporting a 5 storey development of Life Care aged facility on Norman Terrace, Everard Park. Mayor Michael Hewitson should not have supported this proposal to go ahead. It should have been reduced to 3 storey before going out for public consultation. Within days of the recent public meeting (attended by 100 residents) one family in Ross Street has put their home up for sale. They moved into a quiet street and don’t want to be confronted with a 2 storey building across the road, rising to 5 storey on Norman Terrace. Word on the street (and from a couple of councillors) is that #Unley will vote for the 5 storey on Norman, tapering down to 2 storey on Fourth and Ross. The only acceptable proposal is 3 storey on Norman and 1 storey on Fourth and Ross Street ✅ Will Unley Council truly listen to the locals and enact their wishes? I bet you a Bob that they don’t. It’s a bit of an irony that at the sam

Unley votes for TDU rate rise

Looks like there will be another Tour Down Start and Street Party on King William Road, Unley in January 2021. Trust me it will happen. And it will cost us hard hit ratepayers at least another 0.5% rate rise. Another rise well above CPI  ❌ At the Unley Council meeting on 28 Jan 2020, the following motion was    passed ... That: 1. The report be received. 2. An Expression of Interest for the City of Unley to be considered as an Official Host Council for the 2021 Tour Down Under Stage Start be lodged with Events SA. All Councillors voted for it  ❌ Essentially it was a vote to jack up the rates. We in the community should have been consulted before committing to a probable rate rise. The mayor Michael Hewitson should have stomped on this. But no, it’s party time again and up go the rates. Totally inappropriate given the huge rate rise last year. The Council will argue that it is only an expression of interest and not a firm commitment. Nonsense. This hap

Liberal Sam Duluk saga 😡

Premier Marshall must act now to end the destabilising saga of MP Sam Duluk. It’s unlikely that Mr Duluk will be re-elected at the next election. He needs to be encouraged to resign for the good of the party and the Parliament. Suggestions that he be moved sideways to sit as an Independent are stupid. He has blown any future career in politics. I urge Premier Marshall to act now. He should no longer stand behind his errant Liberal MP.

The last Gourmet Gala in Unley

Another great TDU in SA. And a reasonable crowd at the street party on King William Road, Unley. That party cost Unley Council $275,000 (or 0.5+% of the last rate rise for Unley residents). A great party, but at a huge cost to the rate payers. Soon we will hear from Council that the event brought in excess of $1million in revenue to the local businesses. After 20 years of funding by Council, maybe it's time for the local businesses to contribute more to fund the event. I feel that the street party has run its race and Unley Council should save money and perhaps fund a few smaller and more community themed events in our larger parks. Its time to change! Unley should give it up and let the event go to Kangaroo Island in 2021. Mayor Michael Hewitson is all smiles at the recent street party

False news in #Unley

I'm just staggered by how long it takes for the legal system and bureaucracy to act. Back on 30 October 2018 I posted the following ... There’s a nasty red coloured leaflet being circulated in Unley. It contains blatant lies and is whipping up hysteria about an 11 storey development to be built ‘next door to you’. It’s very amateurish and has a ‘how to vote’ showing a preference for Michael Hewitson. The gossip on the street is about who actually funded it. To me, it’s clear who funded it. Yesterday, whilst at the local pub, I was told that this matter was being investigated. It seems that someone must have reported the concern of false information being circulated during the local government election in #Unley (14 months ago). My source at the bar was unknown to me, but seemed to be quite knowledgeable about the matter. If this is true, it is just staggering how long it has taken to launch an investigation. To be fair, there might have been a bit of a back