What's Happening?

KEEPING MY PROMISES

Since being elected by you in 2009 I have worked on many, many different issues for you. Some major achievements have included

* Brought the Basin Concert Back – Working with a local promoter we have re established the Basin Concert after an absence of 14 years. The iconic concert brings revenue into the city as well as creates a major event in a magnificent atmosphere.

* Re established the free hard rubbish collection service for large and difficult to shift items.

* Successfully instigated a council motion that will focus on green waste bins for green rubbish disposal.

* Successfully instigated a council motion that saw the faster rollout of 40km signs around local schools keeping them safer for children and families.

* Introduced and led the campaign to keep the Australia Post express next day service in Launceston and for Launceston. I gathered 10,000 signatures and we kept the service!

* Successfully instigated a council motion that brought the Christmas tree back into the city after years of no tree and minimal Christmas decoration in the CBD.

* Worked with a huge number of individual ratepayers on issues like CBD Issues, parking issues, tree removal, footpath repair, street and road issues, building approvals, rate and local government issues and so on.

* Been a part of a council and a strong voice on the clean up of the Tamar River that has successfully seen the removal of thousands of tonnes of silt from the Tamar River as I promised I would do when elected.

* Been a part of a council and a strong voice on the maintenance of AFL Matches in Launceston and the V8 Supercars in Northern Tasmania both of which bring millions of dollars into our local economy as well as top class sport to our city and region as I promised I would do when elected. I have also been active in pushing for a 5th AFL match for Hawthorn against a Victorian team to be played in Launceston.

I love living in Launceston and want our city to be a strong and vibrant place and will continue to do all I can to make that happen. We have challenges in front of us and I want to continue to be part of the team that solves these

PREMIER AND CABINET IN LAUNCESTON APRIL 18TH 2011

At our meeting with Premier Lara Giddings and her cabinet I will be actively pursuing the promised $6.6 million of State Government funding for the clean up of silt from the Tamar River.This was a firm commitment from the State Government in the 2011 State Election and, to the best of my knowledge and a lack of confirmation from the Government otherwise, NOT ONE CENT has been spent on this promise to remove silt from the Tamar River.I will be doing all I can to hold this government to account for this money which was promised, no strings attached, to clean up the silt from the Tamar River.

TOUGHER LAWS FOR THOSE WHO COMMIT CRIMES AGAINST CHILDREN

International public relations director Amanda Johnstone and Launceston City Council Alderman Rob Soward (both Tasmanian residents) have joined forces to lead the fight to stand up against child prostitution in Australia. Both were disgusted about the short length of jail sentence handed out to Gary John Devine and started a Facebook group that aims to raise the profile of stopping child prostitution in Australia, and to also ensure that politicians make stricter laws around this type of behavior. The group is in no way a hate group and was designed to give people an avenue to voice their opinion as well as providing information to them.

In strategically setting up the group, both stressed that the site was designed at providing information to people through its information section in terms of contact points such as contacting the Glenorchy Police, Commissioner for Children and the Attorney General to register community concern about the issue. The group will lobby to increase the perpetrators jail time as well as raising the issue of sentencing for such crimes.

In personal communication with a number of members that have joined the group, Alderman Soward said there were two distinct ways forward on this issue –“The Australian community are sending a message that they want our politicians to legislate stricter and longer sentences for people who perpetrate crimes like this. Secondly a way to solve this sort of situation is for our politicians of all political persuasions to ensure there is much more funding for health and community services, mental health services, child and family services, police and education to do all they can to help those in need, to prevent such situations happening again and to provide assistance to those who have serious issues that can lead to the crimes being committed.”

The group has celebrities, journalists from the biggest publications and media networks in Australia, mothers, fathers, board members of charities, teachers, youth workers and community members from all works of life in it, many who have left comments in a ‘letter to the editor’ type comment.
All content is moderated, any names that are not already in the media are removed within minutes, and any criminal information is forwarded to the Glenorchy Police.

“This page is fair, is legally correct in the information the administrators provide and is for community resource purposes only. Some of the comments on the page are disgusting, however that shows the community is disgusted”- mentions Johnstone, who works with some of Australia’s leading youth charities in gaining them media and celebrity support such as Oasis (she sits on the committee), Reach, National Youth Week and Waverly Action for Youth Services, and began her career as Youth Development Officer at the West Tamar Council. “I am glad that the momentum and sheer anger of our community is giving this issue more media exposure – now is the time for our politicians to stand up and listen to the noise”.
“Family members of the victim have also been in touch, very thankful that we have been able to pass on crucial information to the Police. At the time of this media release, we have 11000 people who have joined our group in just three days. Providing them with encouragement and information of the correct people to contact is our priority. As a publicist I have worked with some of the biggest brands, celebrities and charities in Australia, I know this is my duty to give this injustice the media exposure it needs to create change and potential law reform.”
Both Johnstone and Soward will be forwarding all the comments to relevant community ambassadors, and will continue to press forward with their fight for justice in Child Prostitution in Australia.

STATE ELECTION 2010

With the State Election almost upon us it is vital that we get the political parties to be clear in their funding promises for Launceston.As you know I am a strong advocate for cleaning up the Tamar River and our council has said that the clean up of the river is a state government responsibility.All parties accept that; given that very little of the Tamar River catchment is actually in our council area.The State governemnt controls all issues relating to water so it is only logical that they assume control and fund the clean up.

The GHD Study clearly states the challenges ahead for us as we move forward on this issue and be rest assured I will be publicly putting pressure on all parties to adequately fund the clean up of the Tamar River in the short term- we have waited too long for this one.

ARCHIVED NEWS 2009

Rob was elected as Launceston City Council Alderman when the Electoral commission confirmed Rob's election at 7.15 pm Thursday October 29th ; Rob is now the youngest Alderman on the Launceston City Council after polling strongly on first preference votes behind the mayoral candidates.!

Rob was sworn in as Launceston's newest Alderman at the Official Ceremony on Tuesday November 3rd.

Robs first council meeting was on Monday November 16th.