Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Draft Community Strategic Plan

At the Council meeting of 31st March, 2009, Item 56 relates to the Draft Community Strategic Plan which is a plan prepared by the council to shape the future of the Hawkesbury area in the next 30 years. As we have been drawn together by our concerns over a proposed development which would impact detrimentally on our level of services and infrastructure plus alter the rural amenity of the North Richmond area, it is very important that we use this opportunity to tell the Council what levels and styles of development are sustainable and acceptable and to outline a vision for the future of our beautiful area.

Click here for the Item from the Business Paper - if the motion is passed at the meeting, it will be placed on public exhibition for a period of time in which time the public can comment in a variety of ways which will be included on the document itself. It is most important that people use this opportunity as this plan looks well into the future and it is the right of each and every one of us to have an opinion considered in the making of it.

This document can be commented on NOW and also in the future when it goes on public exhibition - Councillor email addresses are listed under 'Write to our Councillors' section of this blog if you want to send a message to the Council about what you want our area to be like in 5, 10, 15, 30 years time - do we want to retain the rural character? Do we want urban expansion? Do we need better public transport? Do we need to protect the vulnerable waterways and flora and fauna of the region? Do we want maximum community involvement in decisions being made about what happens where we live? These are just some concerns and issues which need to be considered.

If we want to shape our future then we need to let the Council know that we care about the directions and decisions being made on our behalf and therefore we need to contribute to the criteria which will be considered when applications for developments arise and when decisions are taken on what types of services and infrastructure are required.

So, please take the time to read the document which is attached and encourage your friends, neighbours and work colleagues to do the same. Write to councillors and tell them what we want and dont want, what we need and dont need! They are elected to represent us, not to implement their own personal idea of what the area will be like, so we need to make our voices and ideas heard.

At the next meeting of NRDCAA we will also hold discussions about preparing an group response to submit about this, but as many individuals should also try and let council know we are wanting to involve ourselves in our future - so please write if you can.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Council Meeting 6 April, 2009

The special Council meeting to discuss the development on 6 April, 2009 has been cancelled. When a new date is available we will post it to this site.

Wrtie to Hawkesbury City Councillors

If you have signed the petition regarding this development, that's great and thank you.

Better still, put your concerns in writing to ensure the Councillors are well informed. We elected the Councillors to represent us and they need to know the communities concerns. Below is a list of all the Councillors email addresses so you can email them all.

Click here to email all the Councillors

If you would like us to publish your letters on this blog please send them to Larna Ezzy

Friday, March 27, 2009

Hawkesbury Action Resource Consortium Concerned about Development

A letter has been sent to Hawkesbury City Council Councillors from community services who provide services in the Hawkesbury area. They have expressed their concerns from a community services perspective. To download the letter click here

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Letter of Support for Keyline Dam System

David Holmgren from Holmgren Design Services, the source of permaculture vision and innovation, has provided a letter of support of the Keyline Dam System click here to download the letter.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

YouTube Video

To find out about the Key Line Dam System and the proposed development you can view it on YouTube.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Join the Committee

If you would like to join the committee and help your committee have a voice for this development please complete the membership form which can be downloaded from here.

Petition 2009 - 108 Grose Vale Road North Richmond

We encourage you to speak with family and friends about this development and complete the petition if you say NO to this development. Please only sign the petition once. The petition can be downloaded from here.

Can you please forward the completed petitions by 12 March, 2009 to:

North Richmond and Districts Community Action Association
c/- PO Box 25
Kurrajong NSW 2758

Sunday, March 1, 2009



The community of North Richmond and surrounding areas of the Hawkesbury have major concerns about a proposed development at 108 Grose Vale Road, North Richmond. The proposal is for an initial Seniors Living development followed by land rezoning for residential use, effectively creating a residential precinct more than twice the size of the current township.

The North Richmond area currently suffers chronic inadequacy in terms of infrastructure and services. This proposal would add to our already congested roads, alter the rural character of the area and result in the loss of vital and heritage keyline dams and prime agricultural land. It would forever alter the beauty and scenic value of the area. There are also major concerns with stormwater runoff into the Hawkesbury River via Redbank Creek when the river’s health is already under great stress.

Surveys conducted in recent years by Hawkesbury City Council have overwhelmingly shown the major quality valued by people in the area is its rural character and people have relocated and built their lives based on indications that this was to be maintained.

The intention to locate seniors in an area reasonably isolated from retail and community facilities with a ten-seater mini-bus as transport provision could potentially lead to isolation for residents or a major increase in use of private transport on local and main roads already stretched to capacity with major congestion problems. It would also place a burden on existing community services and facilities operating at or near full capacity

The community elected a committee to seek further information about the proposal, as many questions and concerns remain unanswered in terms of the impacts this development could have on the people of North Richmond and the wider Hawkesbury community. The committee will be reporting its findings back to the community at a public meeting on February 27th, 2009 at North Richmond Panthers @ 7.30pm.

For further information please contact 0421 985162

Time to act – Issued on Behalf of the North Richmond & Districts Community Action Association.

North Richmond & Districts Community Action Association concerned about proposed development

Time to Save Yeomans' Keyline Farm

Yeomans' unique, world-class Keyline (landscape and dam) farming system is currently under major threat by a proposed housing development (at 108 Grose Vale Road) in North Richmond.

The recently formed ‘North Richmond and Districts Community Action Association' (NRDCAA) would like to inform our community, and beyond, that developers have applied (proposal DA0852/08) to build a Seniors Living Complex on medium density housing lots, on this unique property. They plan to bulldoze two of the original Keyline dams, which currently collect excess water (preventing flooding), and make it available for the maintenance of a healthy landscape and river system, and for local fire control and prevention.

Council were also briefed by the developer, which involves nearly 2,000 homes as the extended plan for the site in November 2008. This development would require the land to be rezoned; thereby destroying what should rightfully be conserved as a National Heritage site.

If we don't address this problem now by way of the HCC "Community Strategic Plan", this invaluable rural amenity could be lost forever. Let's not have another Pitt Town or Rouse Hill type over-development within our area. It would be a major catastrophe, not only for our municipality, but also for Australia and the world, if this proposal were to be approved.

Yobarnie, the site of Yeomans' [carbon] farming Keyline System, was established in the 1940s and ‘50s. At that time Yeomans led the world in designing landscapes that can capture carbon dioxide (more effectively than by planting trees - thereby effectively addressing the climate change challenge), prevent flooding and fire, create productive soils (much faster than had ever been achieved before: an inch of topsoil in three years; normally it takes over 1,000 years), and conserve biodiversity.

Australia, in having access to this working model of genuinely sustainable farm and landscape design and management, is in a more favourable position than the rest of the world, as we all face the challenges of climate change and water related crises. BUT, the value of this asset needs to be recognised, conserved, learned from, and the model further developed.

If this unique beacon of hope for the future is bulldozed and built over, Australia, and the rest of the world, will have lost its oldest and most important model of sustainable landscape and farm design and management.

Yeomans' Keyline System provided part of the inspiration and guidance for the subsequent development of Permaculture, which is increasingly being recognised as one of the most sustainable approaches to food and renewable energy production throughout the world.

More recently, Yeomans' discoveries have been tested favourably in Marin County by researchers at the University of California Berkeley (with the help of Darren Doherty from Victoria), in a project to capture carbon in ranch-land soils.

Given that Yeomans contributed more to solving our climate, water and fire problems than any other farmer, it would seem important to our national heritage that the farms on which he developed his Keyline system should be maintained as a National Heritage site for all present and future generations. If properly managed, this could also be expected to have huge tourism value, and the local environment will be able to continue to benefit from the environmental protection services provided by the property, including preventing pollutants seeping into the Hawkesbury River.

For further information please contact 0421 985 162

Time to act. Issued on Behalf of the North Richmond & District Community Action Association