Charging up at council meeting

ABOVE: File pic of an electric car.

Susanna Freymark

There was plenty up for discussion at the Kyogle Council monthly meeting on February 13.

There was the heated debate about councillors talking to ministers.

That followed Councillor Danielle Mulholland’s report on issues she raised with the Deputy Premier Paul Toole.

Her report was followed by a stir among some councillors at the meeting.

There was discussion about the increase in graffiti across the LGA.

Going electric

Electric cars are coming and with them charging stations in Kyogle, Tabulam, Bonalbo and Woodenbong funded in part by the NSW Treasury’s Office of Energy and Climate Change.

Councillor Tom Cooper said he was really excited about the charging stations.

“You can only do something in the future now,” Mr Cooper said.

“Electric vehicles are coming.”

Mr Cooper’s concern was about the location of the charging stations which were chosen as ‘destination’ stations.

If we have a charging station near the museum, people have got something to do while they are charging, he said.

“This will energise our communities and businesses.”

The problem for Bonalbo, he said, was that the electric vehicle charging station was going to be located at Norman Johnston Park.

“It’s away from the town centre,” he said.

Mr Cooper brought up the issue of blackouts west of the range.

“There is a big generator at the hall,” he said.

Council general manager Graham Kennett said the location of the charging stations was based on set criteria for the specific grant conditions.

The locations had to be destination locations. All charging stations would have two 22kW chargers.

The charging sites are:

Kyogle Museum, 19 Bloore St, Kyogle

Norman Johnston Park, Woodenbong Rd, Bonalbo

Tabulam Sports Ground, Clarence St, Tabulam

Woodenbong Recreation Reserve, Unumgar St, Woodenbong

The cost for each site is up to $7200.

Mayor Kylie Thomas did not support the co-funding grant.

“This is a very restrictive grant,” Ms Thomas said.

“We applied for 150 (charging stations) and they only gave us a measly 28.

“The lion’s share comes back on us.”

Ms Thomas said a better program for electric charging stations was likely to come along.

Planning for resilience

The council’s draft Resilience Plan is on public exhibition for 28 days.

The plan looks at how the LGA responds to disasters. According to the Australian National Disaster Resilience Index, Kyogle LGA is assessed as having a low capacity for disaster resilience.

For instance, the Kyogle LGA Natural Disaster Resilience Index is 0.4316. By comparison Lismore LGA has a high capacity at 0.6745.

The Resilience Plan aims to build the way the community copes and adapts to disasters.

The whole plan is worth a read. It looks at volunteers and volunteer burnout and at the impact of mobile blackspots. There is a lot to give feedback on to the council.

Listen to the podcast of the meeting here.

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