MINUTES OF COMMITTEE
Date: 8 July 2008
Location: Home of Robert Brierley
Present: Robert Brierley (president),
Eleanor Stephenson, Bob Strickland Chris Walta, Barrie Gallacher, Jim
Apologies: Rosemary Buchanan
Robert welcomed those present.
3. BUSINESS OF THE MEETING
Robert outlined recent events and the recent discussions with Melbourne Water and Boroondara Council.
Melbourne Water had become aware of plans for some Wattle Park Primary School students to plant in designated areas in Back Creek during Arbour Day Week.
Melbourne Water had arbitrarily decided that the slope where we had recently prepared by using jute matting was unsuitable for school children, and had requested Boroondara Council to erect barriers.
Robert rejected the use of barriers, and arranged an urgent meeting of representatives with Melbourne Water and Boroondara Council.
This meeting was held at Back Creek few days before Arbour Day.
Present were: Robert B, Bob S, Jim B Barrie G, and Eleanor S (FOBC);
Anthony Stevens and Anna plus another from Melbourne Water;
David Crowe and Adrian Hotchin (Boroondara Council).
Also present was the principal of Wattle
Park Primary School (Vicky Phillips).
Melbourne Water representatives clarified its role - namely total management of Melbourne's waterways including the beds and banks. They indicated that they have prepared a plan for future work in Back Creek which would be discussed with the Council.
They then commented on our upcoming intentions
and insisted that all subsequent work by FOBC in Back Creek be approved
in writing by Melbourne Water and Boroondara Council using a "Risk
Assessment Form" (JSA).
Robert pointed out that Melbourne Water had granted funding for most of the substantial amount of work FOBC had performed since its inception without any JSA and without any injuries or problems.
Wattle Park Primary School students had previously planted in Back Creek (often in sloped areas) without any complaints.
FOBC required all volunteers to sign an indemnity form, and had Public Liability Insurance.
Robert explained that this new requirement
to approve all future work in advance would severely curtail FOBC's
activities, and we would have to carefully consider whether FOBC had
any future role in the improvement of Back Creek.
Our involvement in the upcoming Tree Day may have to be scrapped in the light of restrictions now placed on us by Melbourne Water, and also the upcoming Arbour Day activities by Wattle Park Primary School students.
Eventually it was agreed at that meeting that the Arbour Day activities should proceed, but not at the slope they considered unsuitable.
Arbour Day activities did take place successfully over two half days with some Wattle Park Primary School students. Robert supervised the planting with Adrian also helping. Level areas along the path were planted and a lot of the planting was along the Lynden Park pathway.
The Arbour Day activities were funded
via Wattle Park Primary School.
A good deal of discussion took place at our committee meeting concerning the implications of Melbourne Water's new requirements.
One suggestion was to contact the local
papers advising of our threat to call off our involvement in Tree Day,
due to objections by Melbourne Water.
Eventually the FOBC Committee accepted
on July 8th that we should proceed with Tree Day.
We should also attempt to finalise our
partially used existing Grants. Unused Grants should either be
returned to Melbourne Water or preferably offered to Boroondara Council
for them to use.
It was essential that a meeting be arranged
between them and the Council to discuss their plans for Back Creek.
Perhaps Bob Stensholt could facilitate such a meeting at his office.
Our immediate plans were summarised as
As previously discussed, Eleanor has
prepared about 21 small paintings which she will be donating to raise
funds for FOBC. They can be exhibited over a weekend at the Through
Road Child-minding Centre. Extensive marketing/advertising will
be required to maximise this generous fund raising activity, which will
now be on hold until the Melbourne Water situation has been sorted out.
The suggestion is that the painting proceeds could be used for nesting
Council has recently installed a sign to deter dog droppings.
The Treasurer provided a Balance Sheet and an Income Statement for the year to date.
Cash and near cash amounted to $10,771.33, of which $9,000 is reserve for future planting.
Approx. $1,700 will be spent shortly for Tree Day, and $2,100 is yet to be used for the Riversdale Road section of Quinton Road. The Council can do this.
$5,000 is the most recent Grant, which
can either be returned or passed on to the Council.
Several receipts had been issued recently for memberships plus $200 from 'Craig' (the owner of the new house at the bend of Quinton Road) for a small quantity of plant along his fence line.
Robert is hopeful that Adrian could plant
these using his mechanical post hole digger.
The date for the next meeting was not
discussed, but has previously scheduled for August 12 at 8.00pm at the
home of Bob Strickland - 160 Through Road. See you all there Bob