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Advocacy

Advocating to other levels of government in the interests of our community is an essential role of local government.

Through our advocacy we are the voice of our community, working to deliver infrastructure and policy in partnership with other levels of government to meet current and long-term needs.

Council is focusing on three key themes for advocacy on behalf of our community. These themes support the aspirations of the Bayside community as expressed in the Bayside 2050 Community Vision and Council's priorities as expressed in the Council Plan 2021-2025.

 

Our Planet

Climate change represents significant challenges for Bayside, now and into the future. Our advocacy includes initiatives targeting climate mitigation as well as adaption.

Key initiative - Elsternwick Park Nature Reserve

The transformation of Elsternwick Park Nature Reserve represents a once in a lifetime opportunity to create an extraordinary natural space in an urban setting. It also has significant potential benefits for improving water quality in Port Phillip Bay via nitrogen capture as well as flood management, biodiversity and urban cooling benefits. 

Council has adopted a masterplan to realise the vision for the reserve as an oasis for both people and nature. The Australian Government has committed $6 million to the implementation of the masterplan to complement Council's $9 million investment. The Australian Labor Party has pledged $11.7 million towards the Elsternwick Park Nature Reserve and Elster Creek if elected to government in the upcoming federal election.

We continue to engage with the Victorian Government on opportunities to partner on this exciting project including working with Melbourne Water on the technical elements of the expanded wetland system.

Find out more about Elsternwick Park Nature Reserve

Key initiative - Recycled Water Pipeline

Bayside is supporting South East Water’s proposal to construct a water pipeline from the Eastern water treatment plant to transport Class A recycled water which can be used for irrigation including locally in Bayside parks and gardens. This will help to save 300 mega litres of precious drinking water.

Other advocacy initiatives

We are also seeking action on:

Our Place

We are advocating to the Victorian Government for improved public transport services in Bayside, particularly in the southern part of our municipality.

Key initiative - Suburban Rail Loop

The Victorian Government’s Suburban Rail Loop is a city-shaping project that will transform Melbourne’s public transport system, connecting suburbs and creating opportunities in great places. 

The selection of Sir William Fry Reserve in Cheltenham as a station location represents an opportunity to improve sustainable, efficient, and connected public transport across and onward from Bayside. Initial works for Stage One are expected to commence in 2022 with commissioning of the railway expected by 2035.

Council is providing strong input to the Suburban Rail Loop Authority to advocate on behalf of the Bayside community to minimise impacts from the construction of the new station and maximise long term benefit from the new transport infrastructure.

Find out more about the Suburban Rail Loop.

Other advocacy initiatives

We are also seeking action on:

  • expanded commuter parking at Bayside railway stations
  • the removal of Highett Road and Wickham Road railway level crossings
  • enhanced safety on pedestrian railway crossings across Bayside including at New/Dendy Street in Brighton.

Our People

We are seeking policy reform and funding to ensure that all Bayside residents are celebrated, included and feel they can actively participate in community life.

Key initiative - Improved affordable and social housing

Significant population growth and a strong property market is creating pressure on housing affordability and access in Bayside, particularly for low income residents and key workers. In addition, much of Bayside’s social housing stock is ageing and in many cases, no longer fit for purpose.

Council has adopted an Affordable Housing Strategy to guide how we can assist the increase in supply of appropriate and accessible affordable housing in Bayside over the next four years. The strategy includes advocating to the Australian and Victorian Governments for initiatives to increase the supply of affordable and social housing in Bayside and across the broader south eastern region.

Bayside welcomes the Victorian Government’s Big Housing Build program to upgrade and expand social housing including at New Street in Brighton and Hampton East. We are advocating for further improvements at other social housing sites across Bayside.

Key initiative - Warm Water Pool

There are many proven benefits of regular warm water exercise for all ages, but particularly for older people and people with a disability. 

Bayside’s population is aging, with an increasing percentage of older residents and those with a disability, obesity, or health conditions. High participation in sport and rehabilitation after injury; as well as strong demand for younger children’s swimming lessons supports the need for a local warm water pool.

Bayside is seeking a contribution from the Australian Government to complement Council’s proposed investment in a new warm water pool. The Liberal/National Party has pledged $5million towards the project if elected to government at the upcoming federal election.

We recently completed community feedback on the proposal to build a warm water pool at Brighton Golf Course. Find out more

Other advocacy initiatives

We are also seeking action on:

  • support to help our residents navigate upcoming changes to aged care assessments and the provision of in-home aged care services
  • support for residents experiencing homelessness through our participation in the Homelessness and Social Housing Group
Red Bluff Cliffs in Black Rock.