Panel Discussion 

The Role of Local government in Landcare Tasmania


Join us for an insightful 40 min panel discussion and Q&A on The Role of Local government in Landcare.

  • How do we get the best support from our local Council ?   
  • What do you see as the main benefit when it comes to the relationship between local government, Landcare Tasmania and Landcare groups and volunteers?
  • What are some of the most effective ways you have been able to support volunteers on ground?

With panel speakers:

Sonya Stallbaum, NRM Officer, Central Coast Council. Currently at her 3rd Tasmanian Council, Sonya has been involved in land management for 17 years, most of it involving the facilitation of on-ground works by Landcare groups. The way she sees it is that anyone who loves our environment and wants to help it thrive is the best kind of person.

Mel Kelly, Glamorgan Spring Bay Council. Manager for Natural Resources at GSBC. Mel has been involved in Landcare for well over 20 years and her role supports Landcare groups and activities across the Glamorgan municipality and beyond. She was even at the first Tas Community Landcare conference in 1997. Her more recent involvement in reviving the Puchella nursery as a community driven local native plant nursery and forming several new groups around the Triabunnaarea show a continued commitment to the land and its carers as well as her passionate involvement in utilizing the skills of Fonzie her best friend and sniffer dog extraordinaire. 

Phil Watson, Clarence City Council, one of the instigators of the Landcare movement in Tasmania and he continues to be intimately involved in the care and management of natural places across Tasmania. He uses his reservoir of knowledge and experience acquired from decades of natural resource strategic planning and management in Clarence City Council, tertiary college lecturing in natural resource management (NRM) and his revealing Churchill Fellowship to communicate and inspire those around him. As Council’s NRM planner he has successfully developed and implemented an extensive series of new natural area strategies and management plans that conserve Clarence’s biodiversity and ensure best practice is achieved.

Rene Raichert, NRM Project Officer, Kingborough Council. 
I relocated from NSW in 2008 and was fortunate enough to work in some really diverse places in Tasmania with the Greening Australia team. I then took up a role with Kingborough Council in 2010 and have been employed in various roles with them since, my current position being Project Officer - a role with built in diversity. I manage the strategic weed program for the municipality and supervise the on ground staff involved, co-ordinate the Council’s Landcare program, project work in coastal spaces and bushland areas, manage external contractors – It’s the ‘jack of all trades’ role.  I really enjoy working in local government and being able to bring about change and seeing that change every day within the environment that I work and live in.

Facilitator Gill Basnett. Working as a Program Coordinator for Tamar NRM in Northern Tasmania running programs around sustainable agriculture, sustainable living, biodiversity conservation, feral cats and weeds. She has worked in the environmental conservation sector in government agencies, not for profit organisations and her own business throughout ACT, NSW, WA, SA and now Tasmania for the past 20 years. Gill has a strong ecological and landcare background, particularly in wildlife assessment, fire ecology and biodiversity conservation on private property. She enjoys sharing her knowledge and passion for the environment with others through community engagement projects, education walks and talks with school students and community groups, workshops, environmental tours and camps. Gill has increased peoples understanding of the environment and ecological processes and inspired changes in the way they act and manage land that will benefit all.