Monthly Archives: September 2013

Mayor’s message to China – we want strong relationships and have marine expertise to share

An indigenous message stick was the gift and the message was loud and clear from Redland City Mayor Karen Williams to Chinese government officials this week – Redlands wants to strengthen relationships.

Cr Williams said discussions with government officials from our sister city, Qinhuangdao, provided a timely opportunity for her to highlight our willingness to share Redland marine expertise in development slated for the Chinese seaside city.

These discussions were made possible through a special ceremony where Cr Williams presented new Qinhuangdao Mayor Shang Liguang with an Aboriginal message stick and silk sarong handmade by Redlands’ traditional custodians, the Quandamooka.

Cr Williams said: “Qinhuangdao is an export port, and like the Redlands, a seaside city, and a tourist destination.

“Situated between the capital Beijing and the Tianjin metropolis, it is the destination of choice for 20 million visitors a year. In fact, our sister city is known as the summer capital of China,” Cr Williams said.

“They are developing marine parks, canal estates and marina facilities and are seriously interested in our experience in such areas. It is an area Redland organisations and businesses know a lot about.”

Cr Williams has been extending invitations to government officials in China and Taiwan to visit the Redlands and expects Qinhuangdao Mayor Shang Liguang to touch down on our red soil soon.
During her visit to Redlands’ sister city, Cr Williams also met with Qinhuangdao’s planning bureau chief Guo Aimin, planning bureau deputy director Ms Liu Jianxin, Vice Mayor Feng Zhiyong and from the Bureau of Education.

“The residents of our sister city of 3 million people are aspirational for their children, wanting them to study in Australia, mix with Australians and enjoy beautiful and safe locations like the Redlands,” Cr Williams said.

“This is another opportunity for our city that could further develop the Redland economy as we have world-class middle and high school education.

“I am encouraged by Qinhuangdao officials’ commitment to strengthening educational ties and cementing opportunities for students of both cities.”

Cr Williams said that in China the forward planning for employment was outstanding, making it easy for businesses to establish themselves and delivering more certainty for future communities.

“In fact, there is an entire building dedicated to showing off 3D and 4D plans for the city of Qinhuangdao,” she said.

Cr Williams has been in China and Taiwan spruiking opportunities for investment and trade with the Redlands and will visit Japan next week.

She has delivered presentations to more than 2000 international delegates, spoken separately with more than 40 key contacts and given out more than 100 Redlands’ prospectus documents that had been translated into Chinese.

“There are many opportunities available to the Redlands that come from developing strong cultural and business ties within Asia.”

Mayor Karen Willians with Qinhuangdao Mayor Shang Liguang.

Mayor Karen Willians with Qinhuangdao Mayor Shang Liguang.

New koala habitat for the Redlands

Koalas in the Redlands have every reason to feel safer in their city habitat, thanks to the declaration of a 4.6 hectare site as a koala reserve.

Not only is September Save the Koala Month – dedicated to protecting our iconic creatures – but Redland City Council has been blessed with an additional parcel of land at Alexandra Hills for koala conservation.

Redlands Deputy Mayor Alan Beard said the Dawson Road Nature Refuge had been gifted to Council by the Queensland Department of Environment and Heritage Protection, and was a fantastic wildlife preservation bonus for the city.

“As you know we have a significant urban population of koalas, and we’d like to keep it that way,” he said.

“The availability of more dedicated land is very important for the Redlands to help secure our koala population.”

Council environmental spokesperson Cr Paul Gleeson said the site would enhance the city’s koala conservation program.

“We have 1,300 koalas in the Redlands and are working hard to protect and manage their preferred habitat so we can always enjoy these solitary creatures” he said.

The land will be maintained with fire breaks, weed control and slashing as part of general council operations.

Macleay Island Boat Ramp and foreshore redevelopment

A recent media item has wrongly reported that Council has ruled out a community based proposal for the capping to the low water mark of asbestos contaminated land at 14-22 Russell Terrace, Macleay Island for parking.

Council has not ruled out the proposal and the community based option (Community LAT Plan) is expected to be one of the options to be formally presented in a report to Council next month.

State funding of $600,000 was allocated to the previous Redland City Council towards the construction of a recreational boat ramp to the west of the current commercial ferry facility and adjacent to the land in question.

State funding is based on the existing ramp location proposal and the drawdown of funding for construction by 2014-15 financial year.

Council’s 2013-14 capital budget has also allocated funds for the design of the boat ramp (Stage 1) and car park (stage 2) under existing proposals.

Council is unable undertake foreshore works without State approval.

State approval is pending for the construction of the sea wall to the high water mark. Any proposal for the extension of these works to the low water mark would require a new application and the likelihood of the State’s support is unknown.

At this stage, the Department of Agriculture Fisheries & Forestry has only provided in-principle support for a works application to be submitted for the selective filling of the asbestos affected land within the mangrove area to highest astronomical tide.

Council expects to consider all the issues when the officer’s report is formally presented to Council, along with any budgetary impacts of the various options.

Re-opening of Bay Island pool

The Bay Island pool on Russell Island is open at the following times:

Public opening hours

School Terms:

Monday/Wednesday/Friday: 7am – 10am & 3pm – 6pm
Saturday/Sunday: 10am – 5pm
Public holidays: 10am – 4pm

School Holidays:

Monday to Friday: 7am – 6pm
Saturday/Sunday: 10am – 5pm
Public holidays: 10am – 4pm

 Admission charges

Individual Admission (Adults and Children) $3.50 (all day pass)
Family Pass (2 x adults, 2 x children) $13.00
10 Visit Pass $34.00
20 Visit Pass $65.00
Spectator $1.00

Redland City celebrates with QLD’s largest citizenship ceremony

Redland City will welcome almost 200 new citizens tonight in the largest National Citizenship Day ceremony in Queensland.

The new Australian citizens from 21 countries will take the Citizenship Pledge at the Redland Performing Arts Centre, in what will be the second largest Citizenship Day ceremony in Australia.

Deputy Mayor Cr Alan Beard will preside over the ceremony with families, couples and individuals from China, Hong Kong, the former Czechoslovakia, Fiji, France, Germany, India, Malaysia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland, the Philippines, Scotland, South Africa, Republic of Suriname, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, the United Kingdom and Zimbabwe.

“There have already been more than 600 new residents welcomed to the Redlands so far this year and there are already 70 people on the waiting list for Council’s next citizenship ceremony,” Cr Beard said.

“Who can blame new citizens for wanting to call the Redlands home; this truly is the best place to live, play and do business.

“Migrants come from far and wide to settle in Redland City, drawn by our great amenities and beautiful bush, beach and bay environment.”

With Oktoberfest just around the corner entertainment at the Citizenship Ceremony will fittingly include German Bell Ringers; as well as local group Vocal Manoeuvres.

Key Citizenship facts:
– In 2012 Redland City welcomed 677 new citizens; already 2013 has seen more than 600 new citizens with a further 70 already on the waiting list for the December ceremony
– From 2007 to 2012 Redland City welcomed nearly 4000 new citizens as part of regular citizenship ceremonies.
– Australian Citizenship Day was introduced in 2001 as a day for everyone to reflect on and celebrate the gift of being Australian and the role Australian citizens have played in shaping the nation.
– The citizenship test has 20 general knowledge questions; a practice test is available here

Redlands in frame as pre-commonwealth games base

Six countries from across the Caribbean and Africa attending the 2018 Commonwealth Games are interested in visiting the Redlands in the lead-up to the Gold Coast event.

And more nations are expected to accept the city’s offer of a convenient rest, relaxation and potential training zone as part of their visit to Queensland.

The early overture was the brainchild of Redlands’ Division 5 Councillor Mark Edwards, who wrote a personal invitation to the organising committees of other Commonwealth states, offering hospitality and support to athletes, coaches and officials.

“The idea is to help lessen the financial burden involved in bringing overseas teams to the games, to provide appropriate training facilities and accommodation and strengthen the bonds between countries,” he said.

“It started as a notion to showcase the southern Moreton Bay Islands and put the area on the global radar, but has now grown into a potential for the whole of the Redlands, given our great facilities, natural environment and close proximity to the Gold Coast.”

Cr Edwards was delighted that several countries had already responded positively to his hospitality scheme.

“They are very interested in free billeted accommodation and sports ground access, as well as transport, community support and cultural events – not to mention the chance to relax in a beautiful natural paradise,” he said.

“Not only are they keen to use our facilities, but they want to be involved in the community and get together with local sports people.

“Other countries have also shown interest and will follow up what we can do for them after the 2014 Glasgow Games.”

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said the initiative had the full support of Council, and had the potential to involve adjoining Councils.

“This is such an exciting opportunity for a real community focus and a chance to share some synergies with our neighboring councils with specialist sporting facilities,” she said.

“Better still, the relationships can start long before 2018, with Redlands acting as a host city for delegations from these countries visiting between now and the games.

“The hope is that this could be the beginning of long lasting relationships that will enable us to showcase the beautiful Redlands leading up to and beyond 2018.”

Council telecommunications issue resolved

Redland City Council experienced technical difficulties with its phone system this morning following a Telstra Network Outage (Monday 16 September). The phone system is now operational.

We apologise for any inconvenience caused by this outage.

Snapshot – Tuesday 17 September 2013

Paid traineeships available

Earn and learn with a 12-month Redland City Council traineeship, commencing this December. Business Administration, Horticulture and Water Operations traineeships are on offer across varying Council departments. Successful applicants will gain a nationally recognised qualification while learning on-the-job. Applications for Redland City Council’s traineeships are open until Friday 4 October with a selection process to follow. Find more information on our website or by phoning Learning and Development on 3829 8875.


Possible traffic delays – Sturgeon/Old Cleveland Rd East, Ormiston

Residents are advised there may be traffic delays while tree pruning works are undertaken on Sturgeon/Old Cleveland Road East, Ormiston, during the September/October school holidays. All efforts will be made to minimise disruptions to motorists, but for short periods of time both lanes may be closed to allow workers to safely trim vegetation. During peak hours 7am-9am and 3pm-5pm, works will be carried out off the road between the path and bollard line of Fellmonger Park to reduce traffic impacts. For more information, contact 3829 8641.


School holiday activities

Are you looking for some holiday fun? Redland Libraries have a great school holiday program to keep kids happy and entertained. From fluttering fingerbugs to crafty stories and learning how to program robots, there’s a great mix of targeted activities to suit younger and older children. All activities are free, though some require bookings. For all the details, and information on how to book, visit our website.


Garage Sale Trail

Saturday 26 October 2013
Now’s the time to sign-up for the Garage Sale Trail, happening on Saturday 26 October 2013 across the Redlands. Part of a national day of garage sales, it will be one big day of buying, selling, social networking and reducing landfill. Registration is free and open to everyone –
households, schools, community groups and businesses! Sellers who register by Saturday 5 October can also get a free information pack with fun apps to help you sell your items.
Register at or follow the links through our website.


Unregistered vehicles

Safety issue on public roads
It is unsafe and illegal to drive and park unregistered vehicles on public roads on the mainland and islands. In response to community concern, Council is stepping up enforcement. Fines of $220 can be issued where unregistered vehicles are not removed from the road following a Council directive. Under Local Law (21) Council also has the power to seize these vehicles for public safety. Please do the right thing and only drive registered vehicles on our roads. For more information, please call 3829 8999.


Open meetings

Wednesday 18 September – General Meeting (incorporating Coordination Committee Meeting) 10.30am

Wednesday 9 October – General Meeting (incorporating Coordination Committee Meeting) 10.30am

Dunwich Hall work applauded

Redland City Council has been commended by the Queensland Heritage Council for its sensitive conservation work on Dunwich Hall on North Stradbroke Island.

The high commendation in the 2013 Queensland Heritage Awards is very timely for the popular community hall in its hundredth year.

Division 2 Councillor for Cleveland and Stradbroke Island Cr Craig Ogilvie is delighted the work has been recognised.

“European and aboriginal heritage is a Redlands treasure and the hall is one of the places that tells a great story of how the two came together,” he said.

“The roof, wall and veranda restoration and painting work has been cited by the Heritage Council both to recognise the building and acknowledge the careful and timely conservation work we have undertaken to make sure Dunwich Public Hall will continue to serve the local community into the future and retain its heritage significance.”

Council engaged specialist architects Converge Heritage and Community to plan the project and tradespeople experienced in traditional construction techniques worked on the building, which is listed on the National Trust of Queensland Heritage Register and Redlands’ Local Heritage Register.

Cr Ogilvie said the hall had seen a lot of history, having started life as the Men’s Mess Hall at the former Dunwich Benevolent Asylum, the institution offering care for Queensland’s aged, infirm and destitute from 1865 until the 1940s.

“Most of the asylum buildings were relocated or demolished after it was moved to Sandgate in 1946 but the mess hall survived and has been well used as a public hall ever since,” he said.

“It’s a lovely old brick and timber building, big enough for 150 people, so it’s regularly used for local functions and church services and has been a significant gathering place for social and cultural events and meetings.”

Cr Craig Ogilvy receives the high commendation award for Dunwich Hall from Queensland Heritage Council Chair Professor Peter Coaldrake.

Cr Craig Ogilvie receives the high commendation award for Dunwich Hall from Queensland Heritage Council Chair Professor Peter Coaldrake.

Council traineeships offer real world experiences

When Laura Denmeade applied for a Redland City Council traineeship last year, she never expected her role description would include feeding live crickets to frogs.

But after working at Redland City Council’s IndigiScapes centre as a trainee business administration officer, the 17-year-old knows a council traineeship can include all sorts of unexpected fun activities.

“It has been great. I have done things I never would have expected, like help set up weddings and other events,” she said.

“I really enjoy feeding the frogs at IndigiScapes live crickets and mealworms; at first it was a bit scary but now I love it.

“I am also undertaking elective courses in Aboriginal culture and tourism and I have had the opportunity to go over to North Stradbroke Island to learn about tourism and also be involved in Aboriginal events and activities to learn more about the culture.”

Laura was part of Council’s 2013 trainee intake, which placed 12 people in a variety of positions within Council.

Redland City Deputy Mayor Alan Beard said the Council traineeship program was a great way for people to learn while on the job.

“The program offers the opportunity to earn money while learning new skills and combines practical on the job experience and training,” Cr Beard said.

“The program is open to students as well as mature aged applicants and offers positions across a variety of departments, including horticulture, water operations and administration.”

Applications for Redland City Council’s traineeship are open from Monday 16 September until Friday 4 October with a selection process to then follow.  Successful applicants will begin in December with traineeships lasting 12 months.

After more than seven months as a trainee, Laura would encourage others to take up the challenge.

“It has been great. I have learnt so much working at Council and have matured and grown so much. I would definitely recommend it to anyone.” she said.

For more information visit Council’s website or phone 3829 8875.

Laura Denmeade, Redland City Council trainee.

Laura Denmeade, Redland City Council trainee.