The Greens in Pittwater Main Campaign Issues are:
- Putting Community First
- Local Voices for Local Government
- A Clean Council – Reduce Carbon Emissions and a War on Waste
- Preserving our Bushland and Beaches
- Sustainable Development and Affordable Housing
1. Putting Community First
The Greens in Pittwater will put the needs of the community first – rather than developers or big business. Given the rapid social changes over the last generation – and extent of mental health problems among young people, the Greens will also place a high priority on supporting families, as well as maintaining and building new connections across the community.
The Greens will advocate on council to:
- retain Mona Vale Hospital’s Emergency, Obstetric, Surgical and Intensive Care wards and keep the hospital in public hands
- for the B-line bus to terminate at Mona Vale, for regular express services from Palm Beach to the city to be bolstered, and all services to remain in public hands
- for Mona Vale to remain a low-rise town centre and to preserve its green space
- for Crown Land – including golf courses – to be retained as open space and new places be bought for playing fields.
- establish and fund mentoring and community learning centres to provide life skills for young people and opportunities to connect with others. These could include creative hubs and other workshops known as “making centres” for young people
- for an arts hub with gallery to be developed in Avalon
- for a 50m heated public pool in Pittwater.
2. Local Voices for Local Government
The Greens candidates all live in Pittwater and want local government open to the people it serves. We will listen to the voices of ordinary people and all of our hard-working community and environment groups rather than provide tokenistic consultation. As a Green, Miranda would hold regular meetings where residents could come along and have a chat about anything concerning them.
3. A Clean Council
The Greens believe we can have a big impact on climate change at a local level so we should work towards a clean council. We would sign up to the Climate Council’s “City Power Partnership” to reduce carbon emissions, which would involve measures such as:
- Promoting and purchasing renewable energy
- Improving energy efficiency of council buildings
- Setting higher standards of sustainability for new developments and retrofits
- Divesting council funds from fossil fuels.
We will also provide incentives and work with local businesses to eliminate single use plastic bags and join the war on waste, including single use plastics.
4. Preserving Our Bushland and Beaches
The Greens are well-known for our commitment to environmental protection. So it goes without saying that at a time when the state government is behind an unprecedented push for development – with planning carried out by the Greater Sydney Commission – we will stand united with the community to protect our bushland (with its many threatened species), beaches, low-rise villages and overall character of Pittwater.
5. Sustainable development and affordable housing
The Greens will oppose high-rise in Pittwater and want new developments, such as at Ingleside, to meet the highest standards of sustainable design. With 10 per cent of houses (over 9,000) unoccupied across the Northern Beaches, we could raise funds for affordable housing with a levy on unoccupied property (but not regularly occupied holiday homes). We will also ensure that new developments include at least 10 per cent affordable housing and support some medium density housing – designed for young and old as well as those with special needs who do not want large backyards to care for – built close to town centres or transport.
A final word: Greens vs Independents
Greens in NSW do not accept corporate or union donations and we fund our campaigns from membership fees and small individual donations – so we are not tied to any organization in decision-making. In fact, Greens’ local government policy binds us to consulting with the community on council decisions.
The Greens’ core principles for councils also align with the values of many in Pittwater: ecological sustainability, social justice and grassroots democracy.
If we are to maintain the low-rise character of Mona Vale – and indeed across Pittwater – at a time when the state government is pushing an unprecedented level of development – we will need councillors prepared to unite, to advocate for the community and stand up to the government and developers.
Against this background, the community would also benefit from councillors who have the support and advice of the Greens’ talented state parliamentarians, with whom we could actively pursue better outcomes for Pittwater.