Illawarra Greens. Social justice, environmental sustainability, peace and non-violence and grassroots democracy.

Our successes on Wollongong Council


Your Greens councillors have shown the people of Wollongong what they care about, that they are have a clear vision and that they are effective. They have been able to work collaboratively and constructively with other Wollongong City Councillors across the political spectrum. Many of the things that matter locally do not have to made into party political issues.

One of the jobs of your Greens councillors is to make proposals to council. These are some of the proposals from one of your Greens councillors, Mithra Cox and Cath Blakey, that have been agreed to by council.

Lobby NSW government for opal-activated bike sheds at train stations – 31 July 2023
Greens Councillors Cath Blakey won unanimous council support to lobby the NSW Transport Minister for opal-card activated bike sheds at Wollongong train stations, to include train station bike sheds in the under-development integrated transport strategy, and promote BikeVAULT for simpler theft reporting and better recovery of stolen bikes.

Procurement of Electricity from Renewable Sources - 28 June 2021
At Council meeting 28th June Greens Councillors Mithra Cox and Cath Blakey succeeded in adding words to ensure the energy purchased by Wollongong City Council is 100% renewable from the start of the contract - not waiting until 2030, nor building up to it gradually. The motion adopted reads: "Council enter the Binding Agreement for Tender and Resultant contract with Procurement Australia for a NSW Renewable Power Purchase Agreement"

Object to the use of nets as part of the NSW Shark Management Strategy - 19 April 2021
Councillor Cath Blakey moved that  Council make a submission to the NSW Government’s review of the Shark Management Strategy, which currently supports the phasing out of the current shark meshing program and asks that it be replaced it with a combination of alternative shark mitigation strategies (such as drone surveillance, personal shark deterrents, education and SMART drumlines) that more effectively protect beach users without damaging marine wildlife. All councillors agreed.

Object the the Expansion of Russell Vale Mine under the water catchment, 26 October 2020
Councillor Cath Blakey moved that the council should write to the Independent Planning Commission to object to the Russell Vale Underground Expansion Project on the basis of community concerns of increased heavy vehicle traffic, dust, noise, threat to the drinking water catchment. All councillors agreed.

Implement a FOGO scheme across Wollongong, 20 July 2020
Councillor Cath Blakey (29 October 2018) initiated a trial to collect food organics and garden organics and make good quality compost from them. It was a great success and the report presented to council recommended it be rolled out across Wollongong. All councillors agreed.

Draft Climate Change Mitigation Plan to go on public display, 29 June 2020
This plan is part of Wollongong's commitment to do what it can to mitigate climate change. Greens councillors have put a series of proposal forward over the years to advance this (the most recent being on 16 March 2020). The motion to put the plan on display was proposed by Greens Councillor Cox and seconded by Labor Councillor Martin. All councillors agreed.

Draft Cycling Strategy 2030, 29 June 2020
Greens councillors have been calling for better facilities for cyclists for many years. This Draft Strategy shows how it could be done. The motion to put the plan on display was proposed by Greens Councillor Cox and seconded by Liberal Councillor Colacino. All councillors agreed.

Fund live music as part of COVID-19 recovery 11 May 2020
Cr Cox proposed an amendment to the draft budget to ensure that some funds 'City Centre Reactivation Fund'  should be used to stimulate life music and the night time economy. Council agreed.

Call for a national standard for recycling labelling 6 April 2020
We had success in getting Wollongong Council to calls on state and federal government to adopt a national standard for recycling labelling, with a variation (3e) accepted to "collaborate with other states and the federal government towards a mandatory national standard of the Australian Recycling label". Some of the other decisions are linked to Greens initiatives in previous meetings.

Get local action on climate change 16 March 2020
Greens Councillors moved an important motion at Council, pledging tangible actions that Council will take to tackle climate change. The motion was unanimously supported, and these initiatives will be embedded in Council operations. This is one of the proposals that gave rise to the Draft Climate Change Mitigation Plan, that went on public display after the council meeting of 20 July 2020.

Make rain gardens 3 February 2020
Councillor Mithra Cox proposed that Wollongong should develop technical guidelines for the development of rain gardens in Wollongong to be used in addition to existing stormwater treatments. Council agreed unanimously.

Thank ABC radio and its staff for their work in the bushfire crisis. 3 February 2020
Councillor Cox proposed an amendment to a Lord Mayoral Minute. The minute expressed appreciation for work in the bushfire crisis. The Lord Mayor agreed to add ABC radio.

Councillor Mithra Cox proposed that the Council welcome the Federal Government's support for funding for the recycling industy. She further proposed that Council write to the Prime Minister and the Federal Minister for Industry, Science and Technology to express an interest in Wollongong being the site of a new Australian recycling plant. Council agreed unanimously.

Councillor Mithra Cox proposed the adoption of net zero emissions reductions targets for Council's operations by 2030 and city-wide by 2050 (with a 5 year review). This includes joining the Climate Council's Cities Power Partnership. It builds on the work of previous Greens Councillors George Takacs and Jill Merrin who persuaded Wollongong to join Council to the Global Covenant of Mayors on Climate and Energy in 2017. Council agreed unanimously.

Improve the management of styrofoam waffle pods on building sites 2 September 2019.
Councillor Cath Blakey proposed that council inform the NSW Minister for Better Regulation and the Environment Minister of serious pollution problems caused by inadequate management of styrofoam waffle pads especially in high winds. Council agreed unanimously.

Investigating making new buildings energy positive. 2 September 2019
Councillor Mithra Cox moved that council staff provide a report or briefing to councillors, outlining ways to ensure that all new buildings in the city are energy positive. And council agreed unanimously.

Declaring a Climate Emergency 12 August 2019
Greens councillors, Cath Blakey and Mithra Cox, worked with other councillors to cause Wollongong Council to declare a Climate Emergency. Mithra Cox seconded Labor Councillor Ann Martin's motion.

Policy to allow verge gardens 27 May 2019
Greens Councillor Cath Blakey proposed a motion that council recognise that verge gardens can help to beautify streets and develop Verge Garden Guidelines. Passed  unanimously.

Supporting the bid for Wollongong to be a venue for 2023 Women's World Cup football games 18 February 2019
Councillor Mithra Cox brought a motion to support Destination Wollongong in their bid. Council agreed unanimously.

Councillor Mithra Cox submitted a motion that Council develop a strategy to encourage food truck to contribute to a vibrant night life in Wollongong.

Councillor Mithra Cox succeeded in an updating of our street names policy to ensure cultural and gender diversity in new street names.

Investigate allowing people to put food waste into the green bin: 29 October 2018
Councillor Cath Blakey proposed a motion that the Council investigate developing a FOGO (Food Organics Garden Organics) service. This was resolved unanimously. And a trial started in three areas in August 2019! The trial was succesful, and on 20 July 2020 council unanimously agreed to roll it out across Wollongong.

The Greens councillors have been instrumental in establishing a tree register, where  all trees removed by council are publicly listed, and a reason is given.

Give a great welcome to refugees: 13 August 2018
Councillor Mithra Cox tabled a motion that the Council affirm that Wollongong is a community that welcomes refugees, that the council should support an expanded and improved Community Sponsorship Program (CSP). All councillors supported this

Extra train carriages for South Coast Line - 23 July 2018
Councillor Cath Blakey presented a motion calling on the state government to upgrade the South Coast rail service, instead of spending extending the F6 motorway. The motion was amended (see minutes, page 6)  by the Labor Councillors to match motorway funding. Extra train carriages for the over-crowded 4 carriage afternoon services were announced on 27th September 2018.

Not supporting a jail at West Dapto 23 July 2018
Councillor Cath Blakey was one of 6 councillors to table a motion that the council should oppose the State Parliament's suggestion that a jail be built at West Dapto. It was passed unanimously.

Getting novelty races back in School Carnivals 25 June 2018
Councillor Mithra Cox's suggestion that novelty races should once again be allowed in school carnivals was unanimously supported by council

Delivering more money for the Green Strategy
We made sure that the amount of money to be spent on the Urban Greening Strategy from $45,000 to $500,000. This budget was ratified on 25 June 2018.

Strengthening compliance for runoff in Lake Illawarra catchment: 3 April 2018
The risk of excessive sediment being released from construction sites was raised from medium to high, which means there will be more inspection.

Find out what can be done to address the housing affordability crisis in Wollongong 3 April 2018
It's urgent to find out what council to do to enable people to afford homes. Councillor Mithra Cox proposed that we look into it. Every member of council agreed that we should.

Find out what Wollongong Coal are doing on council land at Russell Vale 11 December 2017
Council should be briefed on the land use agreement between Wollongong Coal and Wollongong Council at Russell Vale. Are environmental controls in place? Could the Council have liabilities for site remediation if Wollongong Coal went bankrupt? Council agreed that we need to know.

Fly the Rainbow Flag 30 October 2017
The postal survey votes were in, but had not been counted. Councillor Mithra Cox proposed  that the Council should fly the rainbow flag until the results were out. Council agreed (8 to 4), and the flag flew.