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*NEWS

It’s ready, set and go for construction of City’s R94 million Gugulethu Infill housing project

The sod-turning ceremony which happened today, 1 April 2019, celebrated the start of construction for the Gugulethu Infill housing project on Erf 8448, which will provide 570 qualifying beneficiaries with State-subsidised homes. Approximately R94 million will be invested in this housing project, which will empower some of Cape Town’s most vulnerable residents as first-time property owners and create employment opportunities for the local community while construction is under way.

The City of Cape Town’s Human Settlements Directorate has commenced with the construction of 570 State-subsidised Breaking New Ground (BNG) homes as part of the Gugulethu Infill housing project.

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STATEMENT BY THE CITY’S MAYORAL COMMITTEE MEMBER FOR FINANCE AND EXECUTIVE DEPUTY MAYOR, ALDERMAN IAN NEILSON

The City’s public participation process on the 2019/2020 Draft Budget has started. A social assistance package for the most vulnerable residents in Cape Town, as well as senior citizens of approximately R2,9 billion, is proposed. Other proposals include a 22% reduction in property rates and increasing the no-rates-payable thresholds. Read more below:

The public participation process for the City of Cape Town’s 2019/2020 Draft Budget of R49 billion has started and members of the public are encouraged to comment until 24 April 2019.

Almost R1,7 billion has been proposed for indigent relief and R1,23 billion has been proposed to be budgeted for rates rebates. The Budget priorities include a focus on crime and grime and on the delivery of human settlements opportunities. Much work has also been done to ensure that rates and tariffs are as affordable as possible. Continue reading

The electricity supply to Gordon’s Bay will be interrupted between 06:00 and 18:00 on Wednesday 10 April 2019 or on Wednesday 17 April 2019 for necessary repairs to the City of Cape Town’s high voltage network. Read more below:

The City is giving notice of two dates in the event that bad weather prevents work from taking place on the first or second date that has been provided. Work will be done on only one of the two dates.

The supply could be restored at any time and customers must please treat all electrical installations as live for the full duration of the interruption.

Customers are encouraged to switch off appliances as a precaution.

The City apologises for any inconvenience caused and thanks residents for their cooperation and understanding.

Today, the Minister of Social Development, Albert Fritz, delivered the speech for budget vote 7 to the Western Cape Provincial Parliament. Increased allocations were announced for youth development projects including Youth Cafés and the Cape Youth @ Work internship programme, amongst other highlights.

This budget has allocated:

· 41% to social welfare which provides services to persons with disabilities, older persons, and social relief;

· 31% to the children and families, which includes Early Childhood Development Centres (ECDs) and child protection services including foster care and Child and Youth Care Centres (CYCCs); and

· 17% for restorative services which includes victim empowerment; substance abuse prevention and treatment, and crime prevention.

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STATEMENT BY THE CITY’S MAYORAL COMMITTEE MEMBER FOR SAFETY AND SECURITY, ALDERMAN JP SMITH

I have noted with concern, the response by the South African Police Service to my statement on Friday 22 March 2019 about two cases that were incorrectly handled by the Philippi SAPS. The response is not only incorrect on a number of material aspects, but it also fails to account for the inaction of the Investigating Officer.

For the record:

· The shooting incident occurred on Saturday 2 March 2019 and not the Friday as the SAPS statement indicates.

· The suspect was discharged from hospital on the same evening and transferred to the holding cells at Philippi SAPS. Continue reading

STATEMENT BY THE CITY’S MAYORAL COMMITTEE MEMBER FOR FINANCE AND EXECUTIVE DEPUTY MAYOR

It is unfortunate that statements from the Moody’s report pertaining to the City’s financial management are being misrepresented in the public domain. To clarify, the City did not make any profit from the water crisis. The R4,4 billion in water sales revenue derived for the 2017/18 financial year was the total income for the service, which does not equate to profit. All of this income has been spent in the supply of water to our residents.

This is clearly set out in the City’s own financial reports, which were scrutinised by the Auditor-General when drawing up the City’s Audit Report. It should be noted that the Auditor-General made no adverse findings with regards to the City’s management of its cash flow and gave the City its 15th consecutive unqualified audit opinion.

It is important to understand the context within which the decision was made to raise water and sanitation tariffs:

· At the beginning of 2018, we did not know what the rainfall for 2018 would be, but we did know that if it was the same as in 2017, we would be facing a big crisis which would have required considerable additional expenditure.
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The income that the City receives from rates and services enables the delivery of top quality municipal services. The City therefore continues its focus on those who are able to pay, but refuse to do so, while at the same time offering assistance to those who are experiencing financial difficulties. Read more below:

In the current financial year, the City of Cape Town made close to R3 billion available to provide rates rebates and indigent relief to qualifying residents. The proposed funding earmarked for social assistance in the next financial year is currently being discussed as part of the budget process.

‘It is really important that we all contribute our fair share for services. Those who are in financial difficulties must approach us for relief. Hoping that the debt will go away or ignoring the problem is not the answer, and there is help on offer. As a caring City, we make allowance for residents who are unable to pay for basic services to make representation to the City for relief, and for those who are struggling to pay their municipal accounts to enter into an agreed arrangement/instalment plan to pay off their arrears.

‘If those who have the means to pay refuse to pay for services that they use, it has a marked impact on the sustainability of the City. It is vital that we instil a culture of payment. Residents need to acknowledge that while we all have rights, we all have responsibilities too. If any resident’s water is restricted, electricity supply disconnected, prepaid electricity purchases limited or if legal action is instituted against them, this is done as a last resort. This only occurs if residents have ignored all the notices sent to them and they have not made any attempt to obtain assistance from the City. We must continue to focus on financial resilience in order to continue providing services,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Finance, Alderman Ian Neilson. Continue reading

STATEMENT BY THE CITY’S MAYORAL COMMITTEE MEMBER FOR ENERGY AND CLIMATE CHANGE, COUNCILLOR PHINDILE MAXITI

Contrary to what is being claimed in public, the suburb of Khayelitsha is not in utter darkness and the City has been working hard over the past years to provide appropriate public lighting in this suburb. Work is ongoing and lighting continues to be rolled out.

As at February 2019, the total number of installed conventional lights in Khayelitsha is 2 251 while the total number of installed high masts lights is 218. This is in accordance with the Khayelitsha Lighting Master Plan which was agreed to with the relevant subcouncil managers of Khayelitsha in November 2017.

The plan includes the installation of 33 additional high-mast lights in Khayelitsha. Conventional lighting is planned for the majority of primary arterial, residential collector roads (low-to-moderate capacity roads), secondary arterial and commercial roads which were identified for conventional streetlight installation.

The planned new street- and high-mast lighting installations for Khayelitsha as from the financial years between 2018/19 and 2022/23 are as follows (subject to finalisation, due process and engagements): Continue reading

The City of Cape Town’s Mayoral Committee Member for Urban Management, Alderman Grant Twigg hosted Mr Wolfgang Kubicke, the Vice-President of the German Parliament, in Khayelitsha last week. The City’s partnership with the German government dates back to 2005. The German government targets its funding to previously disadvantaged areas and it encourages a whole of society approach to make a difference in the life of the beneficiary community. Read more below:

The City’s partnership with the German government was made possible through the Violence Prevention through Urban Upgrading (VPUU) programme that aims to improve the quality of life of the most vulnerable residents.

Since the inception of the programme, the City has received a total investment of €15,5 million, or approximately R255,2 million. Additionally, the City has invested R154,2 million in public facilities and infrastructure in the precincts of Harare and Kuyasa as part of the contribution to this partnership.

‘Our visit to Khayelitsha was to see first-hand how these communities have benefited from the investment. It also showed us that the whole of society approach based on the concept of prevention, cohesion, detection and knowledge management does in fact benefit the community, when compared to a piece-meal, fragmented approach to a challenge,’ said Alderman Twigg. Continue reading

With a clear focus on meeting and exceeding its transformation objectives, Western Province Rugby has revised its coaching and team management structures.

These revisions will ensure that Western Province Rugby will make the best strategic use of their coaching resources while simultaneously establishing a clear succession plan in developing its coaching talent for the future.

“The simple objective of the revised structures are to ensure that we utilise our current resources in the most optimal way, developing and securing world-class coaching talent that aligns with our transformation goals,” said Western Province Rugby Group CEO, Paul Zacks.

With Director of Rugby Gert Smal set to leave at the end of March in order to take up a new opportunity with Toyota Verblitz in Japan, his roles and responsibilities will be collectively handled by the CEO, the Senior Professional Head Coach and the High Performance Manager.

The changes to the DHL Stormers management in 2019 have seen Riefaat Jappie (Strength and Conditioning Coach), Norman Laker (Defence Coach), and Dawie Snyman (Assistant Coach – Backs) come into the set-up. They join Head Coach Robbie Fleck, Russell Winter (Assistant Coach – Forwards), Human Kriek (Technical Analyst) and Team Manager Chippie Solomon in the DHL Stormers management for the 2019 Vodacom Super Rugby campaign.

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