In 2012 prior to being elected as the City of Darwin’s 9th Lord Mayor I talked about five items.
1) City parking
2) Tourism as an industry
3) Single date pet registrations
4) Public amenities
5) Antisocial behaviour in our public places.
I also pledged to serve as a full time Lord Mayor.
What have I done about the five items I talked about?
You have a right to hold me accountable. So let’s revisit these five items
Parking in the CBD was a big issues in 2012.
One of the first items of business when I became Lord Mayor was the introduction of free parking in the CBD on Saturdays.
And to keep people moving (as requested by city traders), we kept timed parking in the high use zones but removed the pay and display.
This has been a very effective measure.
The Council also adopted the Darwin CBD Car Parking Strategy which is a long term plan for the management of city parking. You can see the strategy here.
In my view it continues to be a key industry for the whole city. I will continue to consult with the industry through our Vibrant City committee.
I am also actively working to ensure we maximise the opportunities for traders, our community and visitors to Darwin.
One initiative I’m proud of is the work we did to bring about the pop up boutique markets. I worked with the Mindil Beach Market committee to help develop the pop up markets – a project aimed at helping activate the CBD.
Single Date Pet Registrations
I introduced the single date pet registration date. You now need to register your pet by the 1st of July every year.
This has been a great initiative as it allows us to have a concentrated information campaign and also to very effectively tie it up with the Territory Day messaging.
During the campaign many people voiced concerns about the availability of public toilets, their cleanliness and safety.
The Council conducted a public toilet mapping exercise, identifying where they were and what work might be needed on them.
Just this year we opened a new 24 hour accessible public toilet in Civic Park in response to the need for more public toilets and increased signage to identify where the loos are.
Anti Social Behaviour
During the last five years I have driven an agenda in the Council to do as much as we can to address this problem. This complex issue requires all levels of government and the community to work together on solutions.
I have hosted two alcohol impacts forums to identify the problems and established the Safer Vibrant Darwin Plan.
The plan focusses on Assertive Outreach; Community Safety advice; Supply Control Advocacy and Co-ordination of Services through the Public Places Co-ordination Group. We have funded this work to the tune of $500,000.
The problem still persists and I will continue to echo the community’s concerns and work with the other levels of government to deliver the most humanitarian and effective response to what is, after all, a very human problem.
You may like to check out my post on homelessness.
There are, of course, many other issues of concern which are the responsibility of local government. Many of you have raised them with me and I am always keen to hear from you on anything you’d like to discuss.
I’ll continue to listen to you and continue to work hard on possible, practical solutions.