The Council meeting on June 25th had two planning matters that were ultimately passed.  Agenda item 4.1 Jetty Road, Bicheno required a short adjournment for some procedural advice as the motion was lost which under planning laws means that Council had not made a decision in relation to the development application.  Statutory timeframes require a decision to be made when Council is acting as a planning authority.

Council’s Audit Panel have spent some time in recent months working through a new Charter which was presented to this meeting and accepted by Council with thanks for the work the Panel Chair had undertaken on the matter.  We are in the fortunate position to have two independent members of the Audit Panel with a wealth of knowledge in this governance area.

A request from a landowner for approval for buildings within a covenanted area in Orford was deferred to enable more information to be provided to Council.

The Officers’ reports included detail on a proposed Swanwick Community Garden and staff will continue to work with the community on that project.

The statutory reports presented each meeting provide a snapshot of the volume of work undertaken by our staff in any given month. If you haven’t done so, I encourage you to look up the agenda on the website and have and look at the reports.   I have said it before, but we are incredibly fortunate to have such committed and capable staff both indoor and outdoor.

Detailed discussions continue between staff and elected members in relation to the budget and rates resolution.  The impact of the recent new valuations by the Office of the Valuer General has caused significant concern within the ratepaying community.  A telling observation from the GSBC Audit Panel is that ‘revaluation of properties in this local government area will result in considerable variations for individual ratepayers unrelated to action by the Council’.  Whilst Council has no control over the re-valuations, the elected members and staff have been mindful of the impact the current cost of living crisis, coupled with the revaluations, will have on rates when formulating our 2024/25 budget.

As always, please raise any matters with Councillors in your local area or to capture all of us via email to

Stay safe and warm

Cheryl Arnol



The Council meeting on May 28th had no planning authority matters.  We are currently in budget discussions and approved the Fees and Charges for 2024 ahead of the rates resolution that we are planning to bring to the June meeting.  We received some staff reports that are always a source of good information of the amount of work that is undertaken by each department.  I know I have said it before but as a Council we are incredibly lucky to have such committed staff to undertake the myriad of tasks that come our way each month.

Elected members and staff have been working hard in workshops on the budget deliberations.  Have you received your latest land valuation notice?  My husband and I did and nearly fell over with the increase in our AAV!  The good news is that staff are formulating the budget to ensure that the increase in AAV across the municipal area does not impact too much on the rates this year.  As I said last month, Council is mindful of the current cost-of-living pressures and will do everything we can to minimise rate increases whilst still providing the services that are expected by the community.

By the time you read this, the next round of Town Structure Plans community consultation will have been conducted by ERA Planning.  If you participated in any part of the consultation process, thank you for taking the time to do that.  It is important that we hear from everyone moving forward.

I was fortunate to have the opportunity to address the senior classes at Triabunna District School in April about what our towns mean to us and the tourists who come to visit.  As a result, I met with a group of senior students and discussed their ideas. The Grade 6 class provided some input through their teacher by email.    The students are our future ratepayers and we have given them an undertaking that we will consult with them on plans for the spaces where they gather.


As always, please raise any matters with Councillors in your local area or via email to


Stay safe and warm as we head into winter.


Cheryl Arnol




Apologies that this report is a week late.  Council met on Tuesday 24th April and with Anzac Day and a couple of other matters later in the short week, the Mayoral Moment slipped under the radar!

With one planning matter to be dealt with and a few other statutory matters, the Council meeting agenda was quite light.  We did deal with the draft town structure plans that will be coming out for community consultation in coming weeks.  I would encourage everyone to have a look at the plans and provide feedback.

The Climate Change Adaptation plan was approved at the meeting. It is fact of life that the risks associated with climate change are escalating almost daily so this plan will form a basis to improve Council’s capability to manage those risks.


The Lions Park provides a focal point for many community activities in Bicheno and Council has worked with the local community to develop a plan for the park.  This has been a collaboration between various stakeholder groups and a plan developed that will serve the local area well.  It was driven by members of the Bicheno Food and Wine Festival Committee and the BCDA.


As we head into budget discussions, Council is mindful of the cost-of-living pressures that we are all facing now.  It is not going to be easy but as a group of elected members, we will work closely with staff on this important aspect of Council’s operations.


Don’t forget if you have anything that you wish to raise with Council, an email to with catch all of us.  Our individual email addresses are available on Council’s website Alternatively if you would like to put a question on notice to a Council meeting, please submit them at least 7 days before the Council meeting to the General Manager  Just a reminder that we meet on the fourth Tuesday of each month at 2.00 pm and whilst our meetings are live-streamed through our YouTube channel, we welcome visitors to the gallery.

Till next time, take care and stay safe.

Cheryl Arnol





Welcome to the Mayoral Moment for March.

The Council meeting held on March 26th dealt with the usual statutory matters as well as leave of absence for two councillors.  One of the statutory matters was the Determination of a Code of Conduct that had been lodged against me in relation to a planning matter that we dealt with almost a year ago.  I have accepted the Panel’s determination, but moving forward I welcome the Office of Local Government’s review of the Code of Conduct provisions that hopefully will provide some clarity around the declaration of a conflict that is non-pecuniary in the context of Councillors involvement in community groups.

The questions on notice section provided some interesting reading, particularly in relation to the question around the costs of planning appeals held over from the February meeting.  Council welcomes questions from the public and encourages people to lodge them as ‘on notice’ so that a response can be provided in the agenda.

Council was pleased to support some event funding for Bicheno Beams and the Van Dieman’s Band as well as a community small grant for the Spring Bay Maritime and Discovery Centre.  It is becoming a very popular experience in Triabunna for locals and visitors alike.

The Swansea Court House Management Committee provided their annual report to Council.  This group has done an amazing job caring for what is one of our most precious historical buildings.

Have you caught up with the surveys from Council in recent times.  The surveys are very important in that they provide us with a snapshot of the community and your expectations.  There is considerable value in the surveys as we move into the budget discussions for the coming financial year.   Council has had some early discussions around potential rates increases.  I would like to assure you that we have listened to your concerns about the current economic climate and as we head into the last quarter of this financial year, we will work closely with staff on budget matters.

In recent weeks I have had conversations with various stakeholders about the need for a Food Hub in Orford/Triabunna.  It had been identified by a concerned Triabunna resident that some members of that community have been travelling to the Brighton Food Hub.  Have you experienced times when you have had difficulty providing a meal?  Have you accessed a food hub or other charity? Do you have concerns about feeding your pet?  There will be an anonymous survey done during April both electronically and paper based to gather the data to establish the need.  It is not intended that the food hub would be Council run but rather a collaboration amongst the wonderful volunteer organisations, charities, and churches in our area.  Some of those groups are already providing some food relief but have offered their support to what has become known for want of a title as ‘The Mayor’s Food Hub Project’.    It maybe you or your neighbour or the person down the road that needs assistance so please reach out confidentially to me at if you would rather not speak in person to one of the other stakeholders when the survey is released.

Till next time, take care and stay safe.

Cheryl Arnol



Welcome to the Mayoral Moment for February.

The Council meeting held on February 27th dealt with the usual statutory matters as well as leave of absence for two councillors.  Councillor Young was on pre-approved leave of absence and so it meant that we only just had a quorum for the meeting.

Council welcomed Councillor Kenneth Gregson to the Chamber for his first meeting.  He told me afterwards that he found it to be an enjoyable time and he was looking forward to continuing to learn the protocols and processes of life in local government.  From where I sat as chair of the meeting he did very well, and I offer congratulations to him for his obvious dedication to reading his first Council agenda.

Two planning matters and two requests for grant funding were approved.  Clr Gregson accepted a nomination to be Council representative on the Cranbrook Hall Committee and we thank him for being willing to undertake that role so soon into his tenure as a Councillor.

One of the statutory matters we dealt with was a review of Council’s strategic plan.  As noted in the report, the strategic plan informs and guides Council’s annual Operating Plan and Budgets that are set and scrutinised by Council and which will provide residents, ratepayers and businesses with a clear sense of what Council is doing and why.  With a change of Council in late 2022, it was important to update the strategic plan to reflect the current councillors and reaffirm our commitments. With the Future of Local Government Review in play, it was prudent for the review to be done in-house rather than involving a costly consultancy. Staff are to be congratulated on the manner in which they undertook this very important process.


Council’s Delegation Register is another important legislated document that must be maintained.  At the February meeting, the Delegations Register was updated to reflect some changes in several Acts of Parliament.  Whilst Council is governed by the Local Government Act 1993, there is a multitude of other legislation that must be abided by, and the Delegations Register provides operational authority to the General Manager and his team.


With the recent review of Crown Land leases and licences, it became apparent that the Mobile Food Vans, Pop Up Stalls and Kerbside Vending Policy was no longer fit for purpose, and it was rescinded effective from this meeting.  Staff will over coming months and during the negotiations with the Crown on the leases and licences, undertake a review for a new policy.


Have you checked out the Director of Works and Infrastructure reports in our agenda?  It really does give a snapshot of the enormous workload that our small and very dedicated team undertake.  We are so lucky to have such a wonderful, committed group of people in our various teams.


I know I have said it before, but time just seems to rocket by me these days!  I hardly seem to have had time to get over Christmas and Easter is fast approaching.  As always, please stay safe especially as we move towards another busy holiday season.

Till next time,

Cheryl Arnol



Welcome to 2024!  It is shaping up to be a very busy year for Glamorgan Spring Bay Council with the Future of Local Government Review process and our full agendas, both in workshops and Council meetings.

The first Council meeting for 2024 had no planning matters.  There continues to be a steady flow of development applications across the municipal area that continues to highlight the importance of our area for permanent residents as well as businesses.

The matters dealt with were mostly regulatory in nature or reports from officers. Recent applications for event funding highlighted the need for Council to improve our assessment processes.  We recognise that events do bring enormous economic benefit to the municipal area, and it is vital that we support as many events as possible within our limited events budget.  Staff will be working through that process over coming weeks to ensure a level playing field for all organisers.

It was with regret that the General Manager accepted the resignation of Clr Richard Parker.  You may recall Clr Parker returned to Council following the resignation of then Clr Greg Luck.  Clr Parker and his wife have sold their home and will move to Sorell in the next few weeks to be closer to family.  We wish them well for the future and thank Clr Parker for his support during his recent tenure.

2023 proved to be a busy time for Councillors and I am sure it will be the case in 2024. Council and senior staff are committed to achieving the best outcome for our area in the upcoming Future of Local Government Review.  Budget workshops will be starting in a few weeks to ensure that Councillors have the opportunity to discuss our financial requirements with senior staff and are fully informed prior to the rates resolution.

Don’t forget that Councillors are always open to receiving communication from ratepayers and can be reached by email on Councillors individual contact details are available on the website

Till next time,

Clr Cheryl Arnol




Welcome to the Mayoral Moment following the Ordinary Meeting of Council on the 24th October.

This month’s agenda dealt with several administrative matters as well as a request for community small grant support for the Triabunna Christmas Crew.  Council was pleased to support this initiative by a very enthusiastic group of people to make Triabunna ‘Christmasy’ again and reinstate the float parade that used to be a fixture of the silly season a few years ago.

One of the administrative matters was acknowledging the recent declaration of office by Richard Parker who won the recount.  It was my pleasure to welcome Clr Parker back to the Council Chamber after an absence of some years.

There will be advertisements placed shortly for land that Council can see no future use for.  Any funds generated will be far better utilised in much needed infrastructure than retaining some under-utilised land.  There is a process that allows members of the public to lodge representations if you feel that this is not the right outcome.

As always, acting as a planning authority was a difficult and at times emotive part of the Council meeting.   I think it is fair to say that all four development applications had a degree of community concern, some more than others. All four applications were passed albeit reluctantly in some cases by the planning authority.

The proposed Bicheno Ambulance Station has been the subject of much discussion in the community and a request was made by Council planning staff to the developer to defer the matter to enable more robust community consultation to be undertaken.  That request was denied and due to legislated planning timeframes, Council had little choice but to debate the matter at this meeting.   I understand that the new Minister for Health may have stepped in and asked his department to defer processing the development application to enable further discussion with interested stakeholders. As the planning authority, we have obligations to meet under the Tasmanian Planning Scheme and staff put a compelling argument to approve it under the provisions of the Scheme.  It does not mean that Council endorsed the project on the proposed site.

There has been some conjecture about the large Eucalyptus Globulus tree at the back of Morris’ store and how the new development may impact on it.  Some concern has been raised that Council did not take the tree into consideration when officers assessed the application.  Investigations have been undertaken and the tree is on the crown reserve and therefore not part of this development application as the development is all within the developer’s own boundary.   If the developer wanted to take any action in relation to the tree, then they would require a number of permissions.  My own investigation with staff indicates it would be unlikely for Crown or Council to give any permission, unless it was declared a dangerous tree by a suitably qualified person.

On other matters, we are hopeful that the Local Government Board Reform paper will be released at the end of October.    Will we be ‘boundary adjusted’?  Who knows!  If you have an interest in this matter, keep an eye out for the paper.   Personally, I am not convinced that GSBC won’t be targeted for boundary adjustment.

Of greater concern is the Draft Fire and Emergency Services Bill currently before State Parliament.

In summary the key points of the Bill reform are;

  • Tasmania Fire Service TFS and State Emergency Service SES will combine under a single entity Tasmania Fire and Emergency Service TFES.
  • The newly formed TFES will be headed by a Commissioner reporting directly to the Minister for Police and Emergency Services.
  • The authorities legislated for the current State Fire Commission will be transferred to the new Commissioner.
  • A State Fire and Emergency Service Committee will be ministerially appointed.

Council shares the concern of the broader local government sector that this will mean the current residential fire levy will likely double under either option.  The impact on businesses is worse.  The short timeframe for submissions on the Bill was a major concern for the sector.  We received some welcome news that the submission deadline has been extended to 1st December.  Please remember that this fire levy is only collected by Council for the State Government through the rates process.  If you are of a mind to review the Bill, please consider putting in a submission.  You will find it at What is changing – Tasmania Fire Service

Now the good news, it is only about 60 days to Christmas!  I think I have blinked and missed a large portion of this year.  Time goes by so fast these days.

Until next time, stay safe



 At the Council meeting on Tuesday 26th September there were two s.40K planning reports that were debated and motions passed to send the matters to the Tasmanian Planning Commission for determination.

Several Council policies were due for review under the corporate calendar as well as a review of the Delegations Register.  The Delegations Register is an important part of the overall operations of Council and requires regular review to ensure that we are providing transparency and procedural fairness in all aspects of our business.  If there is a complaint to a higher authority, the first stop is the Delegations Register to ensure that the officer(s) involved had the appropriate delegation to deal with the matter.

Council is fortunate that we have some very passionate volunteers across the municipal area.  The Bicheno Hall Committee, Marine Infrastructure Committee and Triabunna Recreation Ground Committee all provided reports for this meeting, and we thank their committee members for their continued support.

Landcare is running their State Conference in Triabunna and Council was pleased to support some event funding for them.  The conference is a significant event not only in showcasing Triabunna but also our wider East Coast and Tasmania as a whole.

The Triabunna Tivoli Theatre was supported in the community small grant program.  This will see a welcome return of cinema to our area.

The Draft Natural Resource and Climate Resilience Strategy was accepted by Council.  This is a wonderful body of work compiled by Landscape Recovery Tasmania and the East Coast Catchments Steering Committee.  The document will provide guidance for many stakeholders for managing natural resources.  It is a comprehensive document that offers the opportunity for all to get involved to help build resilience within the community and this magnificent area we call home.

The Director Works and Infrastructure and Director Planning and Development both presented comprehensive reports on the various aspect of the operational arm of Council they deal with.  In addition, we receive monthly financial reports from the Director Corporate and Community.

I was very pleased to welcome Councillor-Elect Richard Parker to the Chamber gallery for the Ordinary Council Meeting and to advise that he will be inducted on Tuesday 10th October.  Like everything in life, there is some paperwork that must be received and completed before he can take his seat at the table!

I would like to thank Greg Luck for sitting as a Councillor for almost a year.  I take this opportunity to thank Mrs. Annie Browning and Mr. Kenneth Gregson for demonstrating their commitment to our communities and agreeing to be part of the recount for the vacancy.

On other matters not specific to the meeting, it is pleasing to note that cohealth (no, it doesn’t have a capital C!) will be taking over the East Coast Health arm of Council’s operations in mid-October.  It was not connected to that change of management, and it was with much regret that Council accepted Dr. Ashton Kelly’s resignation.  Dr. Kelly has been a valuable member of our medical practice in Bicheno, and we wish him well for the future as he joins his family overseas. East Coast Health Bicheno has some strategies in place to ensure a smooth transition and continuity of care for Dr. Kelly’s patients.

Council has completed the slashing and mulching of fire breaks at Coles Bay on the Brooker Street reserve (behind the community hall), the Rita & Doris reserve and behind houses on Freycinet Drive, Jetty Road and Percy Street. This is in line with the council reserve management plan and had been planned for some weeks.  Staff are pleased that the fire breaks have come up very well and will convey this information to the local volunteer fire members. The fire breaks have now made a clear access track for some of the emergency services equipment if needed.

Dealing with the media is always a bit harrowing and even more so when there is a fire emergency, but those calls were quickly forgotten with the ones I received from far and wide about the Friendly Beaches fire, including from the East Gippsland (Victoria) Mayor.  We had the most amazing support from our wonderful volunteers in the Coles Bay area, Federal and State Ministers and politicians, the local government sector and community members from Coles Bay and further afield.    Everyone was concerned for the welfare of the area and offered assistance or comforting words if they were too far away to come and help.   Council staff were kept busy in a variety of roles in line with the Municipal Emergency Management Plan.  There is no doubt that some lessons could be learnt from this fire and concerns will be discussed and debated with the stakeholders.  The Minister for Police, Fire and Emergency Services Felix Ellis is very keen to see debriefs with all stakeholders that gives better outcomes for not only Coles Bay but every community that could face a bushfire risk.

Thank you does not even come close to the gratitude we feel for the wonderful work of all involved during the fire event.  No-one expected a fire of this magnitude in September, and it is probably a lesson to be learnt that we should all have a bush-fire plan in place.


Till next time, stay safe.

Cheryl Arnol



Welcome to August Mayoral Moment

At the Council meeting on Tuesday 22nd August the usual statutory matters appeared on the agenda as well as two planning matters dealt with under the planning authority section.

Councillors were pleased to support the Freycinet Challenge for 2023.  The Freycinet Challenge has traditionally provided significant financial injection to the Coles Bay Community and by all reports this year will be bigger than ever.  Council wishes the organisers and community every success for the 2023 Freycinet Challenge.

Council is always pleased to support our volunteer groups and this month provided funds to the Freycinet Volunteer Marine Rescue Association to enable them to have their Stormy Seas Lifejackets serviced.  This group provides a valuable service to our boating community and their equipment must be certified periodically as complying with current water safety regulations.

The Director of Works and Infrastructure always provides comprehensive reports of the many projects happening across the municipal area.  It was particularly pleasing for me to see that the Bicheno Skatepark is finally coming to fruition.  This has been a project in the making for more than 20 years and the Bicheno community is to be congratulated for their tenacity and the enormous amount of work done by such a dedicated group of people to get the project to this point.

Outside of the Council meeting, on Wednesday 23rd August and again on Friday 25th August I attended the Book Week festivities at both Orford and Triabunna schools and presented some copies of Jane Teniswood’s book ‘Triabunna by the Sea’ for their library.

On Wednesday morning, I was presiding officer for the Federal Government and conferred Australian Citizenship on seven members of our community.  Council held a ceremony in the Triabunna Hall that saw conferees from our jurisdiction area receive their Citizenship Certificate in front of family and friends. As well as organising gifts for the conferees and setting up the hall in a very Australian theme, Eliza and Jazmine from the Council office had organised a lovely morning tea complete with Tim Tams and lamingtons!  I was assisted in the ceremony by the General Manager Greg Ingham who very ably announced each conferee’s name.

Did you see the media release by the State Government about a proposed East Coast Regional Partnership that will cover from Orford to St Helens?  It follows on from one that is being progressed on the West Coast. The Government see this as an opportunity to support Council, our communities, industry and other stakeholders in a collaborative manner that supports the needs and wants of future generations.  I very flippantly suggested to the member of the Premier’s staff who rang to tell me about the announcement that it looked rather like a new Greater East Coast Council that has been proposed by some.  I was categorically assured that it has absolutely nothing to do with local government reform!

By the time this paper is printed, Council will have appeared before the Future of Local Government Reform South-East Hearing.  The process still has some way to go before the Board’s final recommendations are published in October.  Council is committed to remaining in the process but have made it clear that we will require some solid evidence to put to our communities to enable an informed vote to be done by residents and ratepayers if there is to be any reform of Glamorgan Spring Bay Council.

Till next time, stay safe and enjoy the East Coast sunshine.

Cheryl Arnol




The budget presented to the June Council meeting is the result of robust discussions during our budget sessions or individually with staff over the past few weeks. It has been a collaborative coming together of minds that have had the best interests of the community at heart especially in the light of CPI running at just under 7% and the never-ending cost of living pressures we are all facing.

One of the issues identified in the budget is the proposed reduction in mowing service that raised concerns in the elected member group and the broader community.

It is not clear in the agenda papers that this service reduction will be undertaken as part of a one-year trial.  It will be subjected to intense scrutiny by the Director Works and Infrastructure through the number of complaints received and/or requests for assistance from our less abled community members or reports from outside work staff. Council has a robust complaint logging system that will inform staff and councillors as we go forward.  The community can be assured that the matter will be reviewed once we have sufficient data to analyse.

There was further robust debate in the council meeting around issues in relation to potential insurance problems as well as ability for people to mow verges. As part of an amended motion, staff will review the questions asked by councillors in relation to risks in insurance and other matters relating to the trial reduction of verges mowing.

A more positive note in relation to the budget is the recommended increase in rates. Council and the community will remember that the Long-Term Financial Management Plan forecast a 12.5% increase in this coming financial year.  This budget recommends an average increase of 9%.  It is very close to the local government rate increase index of 8.5% and approximately 2% above CPI.  Coupled with this is a budget that will see our asset renewal move to 100% in accordance with the various asset renewal plans.  It is a move towards ensuring our assets are renewed within their predicted life span.

Council recognises that there are cost of living pressures affecting everyone including those sitting in this Chamber and we have been mindful of that when setting this budget and the rates resolution.  I believe it is a responsible budget in the current economic climate for the future sustainability of this Council.

One matter we dealt with was the submission of a representation to the Tasmanian Planning Commission in relation to the planning policies.  As a Council we have a responsibility to protect our unique area. We need to be sure we have taken every available opportunity to ensure the future of GSBC under planning provisions and give our communities local representation as well as the opportunity to grow.  The planning policies should not be implemented without professional comment from this planning authority.

Council was pleased to support the Lunch with Mates program run by an amazing group of volunteers out of the Spring Bay RSL rooms.  It is a vital program that enables those who may be alone or isolated to enjoy a meal and a chat.

Whilst not dealt with at the council meeting, what about council amalgamations. No, that’s right we are not being amalgamated.  We may be boundary adjusted which really is only a nice way to say forced amalgamation.  What are your thoughts?  I’m hearing that some people have contacted our neighbouring councils to the north and south urging boundary adjustment, but I’ve had no contact from anyone!   As a council we need to know do you want to see this Council split. One scenario put forward is that Bicheno would go to a northeast council and the balance to the southeast.  Does that include Coles Bay? The map is unclear in those community catchment papers. We’ve been through several attempted amalgamations over the years that have all failed mostly because there have been no identified benefits to the residents and ratepayers. Has that landscape changed?  We haven’t had any consultation yet with the community because put simply we don’t know what to tell you in relation to potential benefits in a larger or so-called super council.  It would be helpful for our submission if you feel really strongly about it to get in touch.  Please email

Until next time,

Cheryl Arnol



Message from Mayor Cheryl Arnol – May 2023 

From the Mayor’s desk…..

It is really worrying how quickly time is going these days.  It hardly seems possible that a month has gone by since the last Mayoral Moment.  Is it because I am ageing or that we all lead such busy lives these days?  Perhaps a combination of both.

The Council meeting held on Tuesday 23rd May dealt with the usual statutory matters and Officer reports.  Dog Management and Environmental Health Fees and Charges were a separate agenda item this month due to the statutory obligations to have those set to enable licence renewal forms to be developed and distributed.  The balance of the fees and charges will be included on the next agenda with the rates resolution and other budgetary matters.

There was only one planning matter on the agenda and Council supported the recommendation of the planner to refuse the development.  Council is generally supportive of development across the whole of the municipal area but being part of the State-wide Planning Scheme imposes certain criteria that is not always able to be met even by the most well-intentioned developers.

The Community Small Grant program attracted an interesting application from Families Tasmania to provide Baby and Child First Aid Sessions in the municipal area.  One of Council’s key foundations is Our Community’s Health and Wellbeing and elected members had no hesitation in supporting this application for what will be valuable First Aid for Infants and Toddler information sessions to build confidence in parenting of the precious younger members of our community.

Aside from the Council meeting, Councillors have been heavily involved in budget workshops and developing the rates resolution.  Both staff and elected members are mindful of the community’s capacity to pay and the ever increasing cost of living pressures we are all under so robust discussions have been held in workshops.

The one issue that is still at the forefront of our minds is the poor treatment of Glamorgan Spring Bay by the State Grants Commission (SGC) in the base grant. Below is the breakdown of the grants received by similar councils to us.  It is sobering reading and has been going on for years because of the methodology used by the SGC.  Our conservative estimate is that we have missed out on untied grants of around $7.5million in the last 5 years alone.  What is an ‘untied grant’?  Basically it means that Council can use it for whatever they require to fund, operational or infrastructure.  I did tell someone recently (tongue in cheek) that it could be used to pay a bonus to staff or buy the Mayor a Ferrari!  Any opportunity that you get to speak to a politician (State or Federal) then please mention it.  People power just might win the day.


Until next time, stay safe and enjoy this wonderful part of Tasmania that we call home.

Cheryl Arnol





Message from Mayor Cheryl Arnol – April 2023 

There’s not a lot to report from the April Council meeting held a week early because of Anzac Day falling on our regular meeting day.

There were two development applications dealt with including a change of use to visitor accommodation in Bicheno and change of use of the Buckland Church to a function centre as well as the draft amendment under the Local Provisions Schedule for the Dolphin Sands Particular Purpose Zone.

There was only one request for event support and Council was very pleased to support the application from the Bicheno Beams committee.

The Deputy Mayor’s Notice of Motion to open discussions with the State Government on the location of the proposed new ambulance station in Bicheno was supported by Council.  As a Council we are fully committed to getting a new ambulance station in Bicheno but we have some concerns around the Government’s proposed location.

All other matters were statutory or information reports.

As it is the first time for many years that we have had a Premier visit the Council Chambers, we were delighted when the Premier Jeremy Rockliff, Deputy Premier Michael Ferguson and the Member for Prosser Jane Howlett agreed to come for a ‘meet and greet’ of Councillors and staff in the Chambers on 19th April.  We thank Sea Forest and Spring Bay Mill for agreeing to host our guests for their morning visit to our area.

The latest report from the Local Government Board is out for review.  To read the report, go to At the time of writing, I have not had the opportunity to read the whole document but a quick scan highlights some interesting concepts for the future of local government in Tasmania.

As always, if you have any matters that you wish to discuss or raise, please get in touch via email

Until next time

Cheryl Arnol




Message from Mayor Cheryl Arnol – March 2023 

Firstly, apologies for not submitting a Mayoral Moment column immediately after the March meeting.  Council has been very busy in the past couple of weeks with Community Connect sessions and meetings with residents and community organisations and then Easter break.  My time management skills seem to have taken quite a hit recently!  

At the March meeting, Council dealt with the usual requests for event support and community grants.  We were very pleased to support the ECHO Festival.  By all reports, the Festival was an amazing success and is a credit to the organisers.   

It was particularly pleasing to see the ‘Great East Coast Clean Up’ program has been kicked off this year by the Landscape Recovery Foundation (LRF) and will be happening in May.   I know the LRF would welcome the assistance of community groups from right across the municipal area in making this a success.  You can join a group or register your activity at: Clean Up Australia : Great East Coast Tasmania Clean Up ( 

The Future of Local Government Review is continuing with a report by the Local Government Board (the Board) recently presented to the Minister for Local Government on the Stage 2 options.  I understand that the report will be publicly released on about the 19th April and there will be opportunity for further community engagement with the Board before the final report is released in June or July. 

Whilst there is generally only one or two development applications (DA’s) on meeting agendas as was the case in March, Council staff acting as the Planning Authority continue to deal with a large number of DA’s from right across the municipal area.  We only have a very small team in the planning department but they are a very experienced group who deal with DA’s as quickly as possible to ensure we meet our legislated time-frames.  Having said that, it is sometimes incredibly hard for both Council and developers alike to jump over the hurdles that are created by the Tasmanian Planning Scheme.   Of course, discussions can become heated from time to time and the rules are frustrating for both parties.   I am grateful that developers of often larger projects are always mindful of that when dealing with our team. 

If your area missed out on a community connect session recently or you were unable to attend any one of the four held, please remember the elected members have all indicated a willingness to meet with ratepayers and residents.  Councillors can’t solve all the problems but we will listen and provide as much feedback as possible and escalate any matter to operational level for you if necessary.  As Councillors, we are elected to represent the whole of the municipal area so our individual contact details are available on the council website or you will reach all of us by email  

Further to the community connect opportunities, Council was delighted that 452 residents (about 9% of our population) took the time to complete the Community Budget Survey.  The response far exceeded our expectations and will inform our upcoming budget sessions. 

The next Council meeting will be held on 18th April due to Anzac Day falling on our regular meeting day of the 4th Tuesday in each month.  I now have a reminder set in my calendar to do the Mayoral Moment! 

Until next time, stay safe 

Clr Cheryl Arnol