My name is Dick Gross and I am standing for the next election for the City of Port Phillip in this ward. The election is on Saturday, 27th October 2012.
I’m afraid that voting is compulsory.
I am the only candidate the Port Phillip Council elections with Mayoral experience. After a 4 year break, I wish to return to a Council depleted by extensive retirements. I am the only candidate in Victoria who has served on both boards of the peak local government bodies. I was President of the Municipal Association of Victoria and was awarded an Order of Australia for service to the MAV and the environment. I have served on a number of State policy committees on the areas of waste (several boards and committees), drugs (Penington) and debt reform. I will be a steady (albeit occasionally colourful) hand on the tiller in challenging times.
Vote 1 Dick Gross
PROTECTING ST KILDA ROAD FROM SUFFOCATING TOWERS
In a candid confession last week, the Green councillor for Junction Ward admitted that St Kilda Junction and St Kilda Road had missed out on the strategic planning work that might have saved them from the more excessive interventions of the Minster for Planning. This candour, whilst refreshing, does not forgive his lack of attention and competence. He virtually declared he has been asleep at the wheel. This neglect is a betrayal of the residents of St Kilda Junction and adjacent streets.
He then sought to steal my suggestions to get some planning protection in place. Who would you trust to implement this process? Surely not the current Green who has been asleep for four years and only awakes to steal the ideas of others at one minute to midnight before the election?
The best way for a council to wrest control back from VCAT and the Minister is to create a Structure Plan. Structure Planning is the process of developing a integrated framework (please forgive the ugly planning speak) for the future development and management of an activity centre. A Structure Plan influences changes in land use activity, the design of new buildings and public spaces, and how people get to and move around the centre – whether it be by car, bike, on foot or by public transport.
Activity Centres are places for business, shopping, working and leisure. We need to get a Structure Plan for St Kilda Rd up as soon as possible to give teeth to the residents’ concerns about over-development. While there will always be some height on St Kilda Rd, currently the process is out of control.
I commit to getting the right planning rules to protect St Kilda from the Minister, VCAT and huge towers!