|Councillor Ben Shaw in a scene from his mayoral message.|
THIS is the text of a video message from Derwent Valley mayor Ben Shaw that was posted on the council’s Facebook page on Friday.
“G’day everybody and welcome to this month’s mayor’s message. It’s been a while since we’ve had just the mayor’s message, but down here at the Esplanade today and in front of the fantastic new rowing club building and it looks like works are progressing fantastically and it looks like they’re not far away from finishing.
“And whilst it probably won’t be open any time soon due to Covid restrictions, it seems that it is coming along quite nicely and it will be a great one for the community for you know into the future, another hundred years so that’s really good.
“Disappointingly down at the Esplanade as well I just want to have a bit of a quick chat about vandalism on council property on the weekend. The new toilets and changing facilities down at the Escalade were damaged. Somebody tried to set them alight and smashed off the paper dispensers, and also at Arthur Square, somebody’s recently smashed off the soap dispenser.
“So I just really want to highlight and say, if people are seeing that, make sure you report it. Make sure dob the people in because it really is an extra cost on the council. And we want to provide these facilities and these services but if this sort of thing keeps happening, it makes it very difficult for us. We also do have cameras, CCTV cameras, down here at the Esplanade now so hopefully those people will be caught and brought to justice, but just a little bit of a downer there.
“Look, from the Covid stuff, I’d like to say to the community, you’ve done a fantastic job recently where we’re starting to ease out of our restrictions, which is really great. So thank you very much for that and keep up the good work, keep up our social distancing now, and our hygiene, which is fantastic.
“So, on to the council meeting for this month. Just a couple little things that I want to highlight is the hardship policy was approved so it’s a Covid-19 hardship policy and the video’s on our council website now so you can just have a bit of a look about how that sort of affects you. But essentially, if you’re in sort of financial hardship, you certainly apply for some help there through the council. So I just have a look at our website, call the office and get the details around that as well.
“Also, we’ve had a decision on the Valley Children’s Centre, and the Valley Children’s Centre will now officially be managed by the Derwent Valley Council again – first time for a few years. The service provider who was managing that facility recently has decided to not undertake that role any more, so council was taken it back under the DVC arm and we’ll be managing that so that’s just to give the continuity of service to our community that we really need, make sure we’re providing the best service we can for the kids and families of the Valley. So that’s another really good one that we’re excited about. That’s pretty much it from the main council meeting last month.
“A few things I want to touch base on is that council has jumped on board with the Salvos Digital Doorknock. So if you normally donate to the Salvos and help the Salvos out, which we’re going to need them here into the future as we recover from Covid, they’re going find it hard in terms of, you know, rattling the tins and standing on the street corners and getting money. “So go to council’s Facebook page and website and the Salvos as well and have a look at their Digital Doorknock and please donate online as well because that’s fantastic.
“As regarding, again, restrictions, easing as of Monday from local council facilities, we’ve made the decision that the council office, whilst we still need to make sure that we’re keeping everybody safe, the community and the staff, we’ll have measures in place as of Monday next week. We will have restricted hours for the opening of the main office of council. So for essential businesses and essential jobs that you need to speak to council about, the office will be open from 10 til 2 and we’ll do a review of that again in June.
“We’re going to put something to the June council meeting in terms of reviewing those office hours, but just make sure that we’re practising that good social distancing, four people in the office at any one time and you have that 1.5m distance. We’ll have all the guidelines and the markings on the floor and everything there as well, but just letting everybody know that will be open.
“As of Monday as well, sporting will resume on our open spaces and our parks. So if you have junior sport or senior sport and you and you’re waiting to get back to training, Monday will be the day that you’ll be allowed back on the oval. So that’s really exciting, getting people back out. But again, the clubs will have to abide by their social distancing rules and their Covid plans and each association should be handing those down as well, so to keep everybody safe.
“So that’s another really exciting thing because we’re starting to ease out of these restrictions. So that’s really good. And in terms of everything else, we’ll just keep you updated as we move forward. There’s some more easing of restrictions on the 15th of June, but we’ll keep you updated a little bit more about what that means for us here in the Derwent Valley from then on.
“And that’s about it for me. Apart from the Valley Children’s Centre, the Covid restrictions will remain in place as they have been over the last month or so. We’ll let the parents know if anything changes there.
“Also, there’s some climate related community grants available and you can find the details about those on council’s website. So that’s it for me from this month. Thanks for listening. Hope you’re all enjoying the beautiful autumn weather here in the Derwent Valley. It’s a magical time of the year. See you next time. Cheers.”