Fairfield City Council named state's most progressive council

Published Thursday, 25th October 2018

-	Fairfield City Mayor Frank Carbone and City Manager Alan Young receive the A R Bluett Memorial Award on Monday night.
- Fairfield City Mayor Frank Carbone and City Manager Alan Young receive the A R Bluett Memorial Award on Monday night.

Fairfield City Council has been named NSW’s most progressive council in the City and Regional Councils category of the A R Bluett Memorial Awards, announced at the LGNSW Annual Conference on Monday.

 The A R Bluett Memorial Award has been awarded annually since 1945 and is considered the pinnacle in local government awards. It is awarded to the Council judged to be the most progressive in NSW in the past 12 months and takes into consideration all aspects of Council’s operation.

Fairfield City Mayor Frank Carbone accepted the award, declaring: “This award is for the people of Fairfield City”.

“I’m really proud for Fairfield City. It really shows how hard we have been working to transform Fairfield to a better place, and deliver for the people of Fairfield City a place they can be proud to call home,” Mayor Carbone said.

“While this award takes into consideration Council’s progress over the past 12 months, in reality it has taken many years of hard work and planning to get to where we are today.

“We have achieved all of this while keeping our residential rates among the lowest in NSW, and recording a $9 million budget surplus for the financial year, which is a massive achievement.”

In the 2017/18 financial year, Council completed a number of major projects to enhance the lives of Fairfield City residents.

Council continued to grow its affordable family-friendly waterpark Aquatopia, which saw 60,000 people walk through the turnstiles last swimming season, with the installation of the Waverider.

This year, Council has installed a new attraction – the Fishpipe – and is hard at work constructing a slide tower with five new high-speed thrill slides for summer. Planning has also begun for a new wave pool.

In addition, Council also:

  • Developed Dutton Plaza and car park, which is bringing in $3 million in rental incomes;
  • Upgraded Cabravale Memorial Park and Emerson Park;
  • Revolutionised our libraries with educational support services, expanded operating hours, and introduced free wi-fi, Cloud Library for eBook access, and Press Reader;
  • Continued the rollout of Gyms in Parks with exercise equipment now installed in 16 parks.

However, the award also takes into consideration the exemplary work in delivering everyday services to the people of Fairfield City, including waste, roads and parks management; library services, sporting fields, leisure centres, the Fairfield City Museum & Gallery, free City Connect Community Bus.

In addition, Council remains the largest not-for-profit provider of early education services in the City, with 1,929 children attending each week. Council offers places for as little as $10 a day while still achieving a break-even cost. Council will add to this service with the addition of a new 40-place early learning centre at Bossley Park, expanding the existing service at Bossley Park by 20 places.

Council also proudly supports its diverse community through fun and inclusive events and festivals throughout the year, including Cabramatta Moon Festival, Icetopia, Lunar New Year, Bring It On! youth festival, Culinary Carnivale and Illuminate.

Council is currently working on a number of blue ribbon projects to enhance the lives of its residents.

First and foremost of these is the transformation of the Fairfield Showground into a Regional Multicultural and Sporting Centre of Excellence, including new playing fields, festival space, grandstand seating, amenities buildings, indoor sports centre, walking and cycling paths, playground, relaxation areas and exercise equipment.

Other projects include a new park for Villawood/Carramar, an upgrade of Smithfield Road to four lanes, a sound and video recording studio for Whitlam Library in Cabramatta, a new library for Fairfield and a new multi-storey car park for Hughes Street in Cabramatta.

“I am proud to be able to serve this community and deliver these critical and life-enhancing services and facilities to the people of Fairfield City,” Mayor Carbone said.

“These projects will be transformational for the people of Fairfield City. They will give our people places to come and make lifelong memories together, to build relationships, and to be fit and healthy and relax together,” Mayor Carbone said.

“There is still much to do and I promise you that we are getting on with the job with making Fairfield City the best council in NSW in which to live, work, and raise a family.”

Council last won the A R Bluett Memorial Award in 1987.

See Fairfied City Council's submission for the A R Bluett Memorial Award here.