Councillor’s Corner

CouncillorsCorner-HelenCarstens_2016

Dear Residents

I am happy to report that the Bothasig CDC, formerly Bothasig Clinic, is moving along at full speed.  I am grateful for all the positive feedback received and am very happy that so many are now able to access a variety of services on their doorstep.

As we look to the end of another year, we also look to the promise of a new year and there are indeed exciting things the City has planned.  The first would be the Organisational Development Plan that will among others, see a new level of service delivery rolled out.  Due to roll out in January, we will see service delivery being localised and brought closer to the community.  The localised elementary service delivery will attend to among others, water leaks, electricity faults, potholes and other residential service issues.  This is a new approach that is sure to bring about a faster response time and I am indeed looking forward to this.

As we wind down at this time of year, it is usually the time that dumping and littering increases, and I urge residents to do so within the ambient of the law.  It is very easy to use one of the City’s green bins but be mindful that it will look full and untidy for a number of days until it is emptied.  Likewise, dumping on our open fields will also leave the area untidy.

I would further like to remind residents of the City’s Give Responsibly drive.  Especially at this time of year, our hearts go out to those less fortunate than ourselves.  It is worthwhile to bear in mind that when we give handouts to one and all, we are encouraging and enabling them.  It is not helping or uplifting.  What this does, is keeps them in this situation with no need or motivation to improve as their needs are met in their current situation.  There are many shelters and organisations that assist and help, and places like hospices that will come to you and fetch what you have.

Recycling is also a key aspect that we really need to take more seriously.  There are so many options available in our area, even the option of collection from our homes.

Another aspect that has previously been mentioned is that of house numbers.  At this time of year when an emergency can easily happen, it is important that emergency services are able to easily locate your house.

I would like to stress to residents to be extra vigilant at this time of year when crime generally increases.  Please report anything suspicious to the SAPS and do become involved in your neighbourhood watch.

Please adhere to the water restrictions and let us all do our bit to save. Any water transgressions can be mailed to water.restrictions@capetown.gov.za or send an SMS to 31373.

I would like to take this opportunity to wish one and all a very Blessed Christmas that offers you the opportunity to wind down and spend some quality time with your family and friends.  I wish you a wonderful New Year that is filled with peace and happiness.

Regards
Helen Carstens, Ward 5 Councillor 

Councillor’s Corner

CouncillorsCorner-HelenCarstens_2016

Dear Residents

As we head to the end of another year, I must say it has been a very busy few months since the Local Government Elections. We have had the unfortunate incident with the City-wide mowing tender that finally was managed to be attended to; we had the transfer of the Bothasig Clinic to that of a Community Day Care facility offering full curative care and much more under the Western Province Health Department; the new electricity complex has started construction in Steenhoven Street in Bothasig and I have had numerous meetings with traffic officials with regard to the constant transgressions of traffic laws as well as the horrific congestion in early morning traffic on exiting the area.

This is indeed a challenge and the fact of the matter is that there will never be enough roads for the amount of cars but still, a solution needs to be looked at.  I am motivating for an upgrade to the intersection, for pointsmen to be in attendance in the mornings to assist with the flow of traffic and for more traffic presence in the morning as well as during the day in the area to attend to the constant transgressions. Read more

Councillor’s Corner

CouncillorsCorner-HelenCarstens_2016

Dear Residents

I would like to assure residents that the untidy state of the parks and verges will be attended to.  The contractor has taken the City to court and unfortunately the court case is taking long, and until the court makes it ruling, the City is unable to appoint another contractor.  This is an unfortunate situation that is affecting us City-wide.  We ask that you please be patient and as soon as the Parks Department gets the go-ahead, a contractor will be on-site to start working on our parks and verges.

One of the best announcements that I have been privileged to deliver is most certainly this one.  The Bothasig Clinic has come under much scrutiny and much negative publicity and it has been something that I have been working on for the past two years.  The facility as it stands provided primary health care through the City of Cape Town.  The need for an expanded range of services has been the plea for many years, especially the appointment of a Doctor and a Pharmacist at the facility.

On 3 February this year, a public meeting was held where we announced that the Western Province Health Department agreed to take over the Bothasig Clinic.  It was at this meeting that we said that the wheels were now in motion and that it would take some time to iron out all the processes that had to be done.

It now gives me great pleasure to announce that this has all been done and from Monday 3 October, the Western Province Health Department will be operating from the facility which we know as the Bothasig Clinic with their full complement of staff.

This means that there will be a resident Doctor and Pharmacist on the premises every day and that the full curative package will be available.  All chronic patients who are currently filed at Goodwood Day Clinic will be transferred to Bothasig and all medication will be available at Bothasig as well as the Doctor and Pharmacy.

The facility will be available for a wide range of services, from a splinter in your finger to chronic diagnosis and will benefit many in the community.  As with all changes, there are bound to be one or two hiccups so please bear this in mind.

I would like to advise residents that the IDP – Integrated Development Plan – is open for suggestions.  This is the 5-year plan that the City works off with respect to what is needed and must be done over the next 5 years.  This is the time that residents have the opportunity to make suggestions.  It is very important to place your suggestions on the IDP.  These suggestions are for what would be needed to improve on the ward in general, as opposed to what you would want in front of your house.  To access this you can visit www.MyCapeTownNeeds.co.za or dial *134*633# and leave a voice message.

Regards
Helen Carstens, Ward 5 Councillor

Councillor’s Corner

CouncillorsCorner-HelenCarstens_2016

Dear Residents

Here we are, fresh out of elections and at the start of a new term of Council.  It is indeed very exciting with processes being put into place.

To this end it is welcoming that at our Council meeting in August, the Mayor announced a new level of service delivery for the City of Cape Town.  This was adopted at Council and is in the process of being instituted.  I am indeed excited about this as it proposes to bring a higher level of service delivery to each area.

In essence, it is the decentralization of services.  Instead of having various departments attending to a request – which results in a slow process – there will be a team allocated to each Sub Council that will comprise of all the necessary.  To further explain this, let me illustrate as follows:  There is a burst pipe – water department come and fix the leak – they leave the road open – weeks later roads come and repair the road. Now, this will happen all at the same time as there will be a team of multiple workmen.  This team will work 24 hours a day on a shift basis and there will be a 24-hour response time.  The team will service all the wards allocated to the Sub Council which makes their area smaller as now they currently service a whole district.

Due to the restructuring required, this system is scheduled to be in place by January 2017.  It is certainly a welcome change to look forward to and will assist in improving service delivery which seems to be lacking at times.

Currently there are a number of ways to report a service request and I urge residents to make use of these as this will assist in keeping the area neat and tidy.  When reported, there is a tracking number assigned and this allows for a follow up to be carried out and keeps processes answerable and accountable.  If no success is achieved through any of the reporting processes, then an email can be sent to myself with the reference number which I will then follow up on.

I would like to provide feedback on the Bothasig Clinic.  This is still currently under the City of Cape Town, providing primary health care.  The process of transferring to Province is happening.  There are many variables and processes that have to be adhered to in this process and it is rather a lengthy process at that.  Rest assured my finger is on the pulse at all times and at no point will I allow this to alter or change in any way.  I have had meetings with the relevant role-players and I can confirm that the Western Province Health Department are ready to take up the reigns as soon as the process has been completed.

I have also contacted City Health and requested that they continue to maintain the grounds at the Clinic until the process is complete, as it is unacceptable for the grounds to be left to develop into a forest.

Regards Helen Carstens, Ward 5 Councillor 

Councillor’s Corner

CouncillorsCorner-HelenCarstens_2016

Dear Residents

It is with much gratitude and a humble heart that I thank you for the trust placed in the Democratic Alliance and me to serve as your Ward Councillor for the coming term.  I am indeed excited to be given the opportunity to serve a full term of office, and I intend to do this to the best of my ability.  I would like to thank every one of the voters that made their way to the polls on 3 August and I will confidently move forward with your mandate.

My first order of business will be the transition of the Bothasig Clinic from a City-run facility to that of the Western Province Health Department.  You will recall that this has been a long haul for me and I will be most pleased to announce the transition of this facility to one that renders a full curative package that will benefit every resident in Ward 5 and further.

Another issue that I would like to look into is that of the various lanes in the ward, especially the very troublesome ones that we have in Bothasig.  It is a difficult one to deal with given that many of these lanes were designed to provide access to the main roads.  Unfortunately, over the years, they have been turned into dumping grounds. 

I intend to seek the advice from the various departments and officials as to how we can better maintain these lanes and perhaps look at alternative ways in order to better utilize and upkeep them.

I also intend to liaise with the Roads department in connection with the state of our roads and the constant problem we experience with pot holes.  It is unacceptable to have a pothole fixed and then for it to disintegrate a few weeks later.

Following on from all the door-to-door canvassing and the beautiful gardens I saw in Ward 5, I would like to complement the many residents that have managed to maintain them so beautifully.  It is because of this that I would like to invite residents to take part in a Garden Competition.  Send me your name, address and contact number via Email with the subject Garden Competition to enter.  The winner will be announced in December.  I look forward to receiving many entries as I know there are a number of beautiful gardens out there.

Regards
Helen Carstens, Ward 5 Councillor 

Councillor’s Corner

CouncillorsCorner-HelenCarstens_2016

Dear Residents

We are practically on the eve of the Local Government Elections and most, if not all of my time over the last month has been taken up with campaigning.  It is the one time of a year we have the opportunity to focus on our political activity.  With Council being in recess this allows us to focus on our political side.

As the Candidate for the Democratic Alliance in the elections next month, I would like to urge everyone to make the effort on 3 August to cast your vote.  The Democratic Alliance has a sure plan to take the country forward ward by ward.  The ANC has done everything to take us backwards and now is the time to put a stop to this and focus on the future.  The Democratic Alliance has a proven track record of governing and is ready to govern wider than just the Western Province.

We are fortunate here but sometimes we forget what it is like to be under an ANC government, as it was about 10 years ago that the ANC governed here.  There is a vast difference to the level of government delivered by that of the ANC and of the Democratic Alliance.  Let us combine and keep our ward DA, our city DA, our province DA and more wards in our country DA.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for their wonderful support, their words of encouragement, the emails, phone calls, sms’s and whatsapps.  Every word of thanks and encouragement means the world to me and I value each and every one.  It has been an absolute privilege and an honor to serve as your Ward Councillor for the past year and a half and I hope you will lend me your vote to continue as your Ward Councillor.

There is much that still can be done, improved on and built on, and I truly look forward to doig this in a full term.  We can only do this by keeping our ward DA.  I know that Ward 5 is blue so I ask that you come out on 3 August, rain or sun and show just how blue you are.

The country is at a crossroads and therefore I ask that you make the effort.  This is bigger than you and me, and it is something that is needed in fullness.  The general elections are around the corner in 2019 and the Democratic Alliance will grow now in these upcoming local government elections and be in a better position come the 2019 general elections.  There is hope for South Africa and it is the Democratic Alliance that offers that hope, not only to our community but to the whole country.  I know we can do it!

Some quick feedback on the Bothasig Clinic is that it has been served before Sub Council and it will now be served before full council in August and then the transfer will be imminent.  So very soon there will be expanded services offered.  However, I will certainly keep everyone informed of the exact date.

I look forward to seeing you all on 3 August.  Once again, many thanks for all the support.

Regards, Helen Carstens, Ward 5 Councillor 

Councillor’s Corner

CouncillorsCorner-HelenCarstens_2016

Dear Residents

We are already half way through the year and less than two months away from the Local Government Elections.  As the Voter’s Roll has been closed now, I thank the thousands of residents who made the effort to check and register/re-register.

The first half of the year has been extremely busy and this will continue for the next half of the year, with the many commitments of Council as well as those of the Democratic Alliance.

Bosmansdam Road verge has unfortunately become somewhat of a track where people are racing their quad bikes and suchlike.  This is causing damage to the verge and it will soon become unsightly to passing motorist.  In order to prevent this, I have had a signboard erected prohibiting this type of activity.

Speeding on our roads has become a common occurrence and the only way to curb this is by a permanent show of traffic enforcement. I do continuously write to the Traffic authorities asking that they regularly clamp down on the lawlessness of motorists ignoring traffic rules and turning our residential streets into racetracks.

This however is not possible due to their limited staffing, but I do constantly request their intervention.  I was quite shocked at the report provided for the month of April where 88 motorists were fined in Bothasig for exceeding the 60km/h speed limit on De Grendel Avenue.  Some were caught doing speeds as excessive as that of 120km/h.  On Vryburger Avenue in Bothasig, 185 motorists drove 103km/h and 72 motorists at 150km/h, in a 60km zone.  This blatant disregard is alarming and I urge motorists to look out for each other and their community where at any point in time a child or an elderly person can venture onto any road and become another statistic. Read more

Councillor’s Corner

CouncillorsCorner-HelenCarstens_2016

Dear Residents

BOTHASIG CLINIC

Important feedback on the Bothasig Clinic is that the process of the transfer from a City-run facility to a full curative Provincial-run facility is on track.  There are a number of processes that must take place before actual services can be rendered, not least the property and the staff.  I can confirm that this process is underway and as soon as all legal processes are in place, services will be rendered.  We are waiting for the all current legislative processes to comply and once this is the case, change will take place.  I can advise that all processes for legal compliance have been lodged and are currently awaiting approval.

I will certainly stay on top of this and keep you informed all the way until the doors to the upgraded facility open.

CITY’S COMPLAINTS REPORTING SYSTEM – C3 NOTIFICATIONS

I would like to remind residents that there are various ways to report service request matters to the City.  You can either sms a complaint to 31373 or 31220 (no more than 160 characters) or you can phone the call centre on 0860 10 30 89 or email contactUS@capetown.gov.za or even better you can report a complaint on-line on the City’s website.   On the website, under the heading Service Requests there is a 1-pager that must be filled in. This is called a C3 notification.  The C3 system is quite easy to use and it goes directly through to the correct department for action.  Once created you will receive a dedicated reference number which you can follow up yourself to keep track of progress.  You will also receive a report when the item has been dealt with and from this point I receive a report each month at the Subcouncil meeting from which I can monitor and chase up outstanding matters.  I certainly wish to encourage as many residents as possible to make use of the C3 logging system.

I would like to further remind residents that there is a page of useful contact numbers for various departments and emergency numbers at the back of the telephone directory.

LOCAL GOVERNMENT ELECTIONS

It is with a deep gratitude and indeed an honor for me to announce that I have been appointed by the Democratic Alliance as the candidate for Ward 5 in the upcoming Local Government Election on 3 August.  I am deeply honored and privileged.  My current term has been a short one, but one that I have focused all my attention on a few key developments in the area.  Not least of these is the Bothasig Clinic transfer to Province, the play apparatus and gym apparatus as well as the soon-to-be installed disability apparatus on our parks, the upgrades to both the Edgemead and the Bothasig Community Halls, the upgrade to the skate park which is due to take place, the fencing in of the cricket fields, upgrades at the Abe Sher Sports Fields,  the disability parking at the Edgemead Shopping Centre, funding to the Edgemead and Bothasig Libraries, traffic congestion relief for Adam Tas and De Grendel Avenues, the painting of street names, the street sweeping and litter picking, the Rent-a-Cop as well as the two-way radios for the Neighbourhood Watch.

YOUR STREET CAMPAIGN

The YOUR STREET campaign is all about taking back your street, your community.  This initiative I started last month where I met with a number of residents in different streets and we set up the YOUR STREET campaign.  I would like to roll this out to as many streets as possible so that bit by bit we can stand together against unwanted behaviour and action and bring back a pride and camaraderie in our communities.  If you are interested in having YOUR street participate, please contact me via my email address above.

Regards
Helen Carstens, Ward 5 Councillor