Looking back 12 months, so much has changed. We had just got through one of the worst bushfire periods and one of the driest summers, with some of the worst drought conditions, when we began to learn the seriousness of the COVID-19 pandemic and took precautions across the Shire. Moving forward to 2021 our playing fields are green and enriched and ready for the winter playing season, and COVID restrictions have been relaxed, however precautions are still in place and Council is ready to implement changes in line with the NSW Public Health recommendations.
Our 53-year-old Waves pool was closed and decommissioned and the first sod of soil was turned for the new Aquatic Centre. Construction is now well and truly advanced which will deliver an Olympic Standard pool with disability access constructed alongside an additional 25 metre pool, new learn to swim, large gymnasium and indoor and outdoor recreation and meeting areas. Good news is that we are tracking well and we will have a state of the art complex delivered on time and on budget. This major piece of infrastructure will be an asset to the residents of The Hills for many years to come. I am excited and look forward to this project being completed.
The war on shopping trolleys continues. Most of you are aware that I have mounted a campaign to rid our Shire of abandoned shopping trolleys. I am working closely with Council to ensure that trolleys littering our Shire are removed from our streets, bus stops, Metro Stations and waterways. Council put in a submission last year to changes to the Impounding Act 1993 from a review from the NSW State Government. This submission not only addressed the issue of abandoned trolleys but also boat trailers, share bikes, e-scooters, abandoned cars, wandering livestock and illegal signage. The submission aimed to move liability to the owner or retailer, to prevent this illegal littering appearing in our Shire. As we await the outcome of this review I will continue to represent you in ridding our Shire of abandoned shopping trolleys, illegal signage and other items.
The Hills is blessed with an army of volunteers and there is always room for more people to join helping at these special events. I would like to thank all of our volunteers and in particular the SES and RFS who do amazing work in our community.
In May two important events will take place that I love being involved in, The Hills Relay for Life and the Red Shield Appeal, for which I am the Area Chairman. With COVID it is hard to predict how these events will be conducted as it greatly impacted the fundraising efforts last year. I encourage you all to participate and give generously. In the interim please continue to stay safe as we continue to live through these unprecedented times.