Monthly Archives: December 2014

Redlands’ selfless volunteers honoured


Several hundred Redlands volunteers attended a special Redlands Volunteers’ Christmas Celebration on Saturday to recognise their vital contribution to the city.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said the brunch and entertainment event at the award winning Redlands IndigiScapes Centre marked thousands of volunteer contributions across a wide diversity of roles.

“We have volunteers contributing to our city’s sporting activities, marine rescue and lifesaving, emergency and rural fire services; aged, youth and disability support; museums and galleries and wildlife rescue and bushcare just to name a few,” she said.

“Without their selflessness, motivation and passion our city would certainly be the poorer.”

The late June Craven was among the special tributes at the festive brunch.

June, who passed away earlier this year, was commemorated for her tireless years of fund raising for the Cancer Council, an effort that is continuing through volunteer fund raising efforts across the city.

Former Redland Museum president Ross Bower, who this year received the Greg Cook Volunteer Recognition Award, was also given special mention for his unwavering commitment, tireless dedication and outstanding leadership.

Cr Williams said the city was also particularly lucky to boast the best SES unit in the Region for the sixth year in a row.

“Our local SES unit received the accolade for going above and beyond during the North Stradbroke Island bushfires in December and January this year,” she said

“This follows a similar extraordinary effort the previous year when ex-tropical cyclone Oswald hit the city.

“Our city and community rely heavily on our thousands of volunteers, and they always respond selflessly to this need.

“Christmas is also a time when many of them shine through their support for the less fortunate in the community

“On behalf of all the Redlands community, it is a special delight to be able to say thank you to all our volunteers and wish them all the blessings of Christmas and the festive season.”

ANZAC Centenary memorial approved


An ANZAC Centenary memorial in Kinsail Court Park Cleveland has been given the go ahead following endorsement by Redland City Council and the State and Federal Governments’.
 
Council’s General meeting today approved the proposed design and location of the memorial to be constructed in time for the special 2015 ANZAC Day Centenary commemorations around Australia and overseas.
 
Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said the memorial would be an important and appropriate focus for the centenary commemoration of the ANZAC campaigns.
 
“The Redland community has one of the largest ANZAC day attendances in Queensland and the Redland RSL Sub-Branch has strong member and community support for their proposal to commemorate our ANZAC sacrifices”, Cr Williams said.
 
“The memorial design records seventy major battles and campaigns centred around an ANZAC soldier with ‘reversed arms at rest’ and will be an emotional tribute to those who made the ultimate sacrifice.”
 
Alan Harcourt, Redlands RSL Sub-Branch President said the branch has received confirmation of a $60,000 Federal Government ANZAC centenary Grant and $50,000 Local Government Major Infrastructure Grant for the memorial, with the balance of the memorial funding to be provided by the RSL.
 
“The memorial approval, after almost 12 months of negotiations and alterations, will be a great relief to our members and the many people who support the idea of a new Memorial.
 
“The Redlands has great Cenotaphs which honour our fallen, but this Memorial will be a monument to all the ANZACs who served, not just in the so called Great War, but for World War 2 and the major battles and conflicts since.”

Today’s report to Council acknowledged community representations on the new plans drafted with the help of Council. The new plans followed the rejection of earlier RSL plans for a large memorial wall at the site.
 
While formal written submissions on the new memorial proposal were divided with a small majority for the plans, a large number of informal comments were also received during the plans advertised public exhibition and the distribution of over 450 explanatory flyers.
 
Community comments were acknowledged in the Land Management Plan prepared by Council at the request of the State Government and approved without amendment. 
 
On a key point, the report to Council made it clear the park will not be used for vehicle parking during the popular ANZAC celebration which will be tightly managed through Event Traffic Management Plans as happens for every Anzac day.
 
The Land Management Plan also noted that the proposed low profile memorial (including pathway, platform and retaining walls) will cover only 3 percent of the 15,080m2 Kinsail Court Park land parcel.
 
The proposed memorial use is consistent with the park’s zoning as ‘Open Space’ recreation, with additional public open space available within nearby Linear-Rotary Park, GJ Walter Park, Raby Bay Foreshore Park and a number of other parks in close proximity to Kinsail Court Park.

Redland City mapping for a strong environmental future


Redland City Council has completed a two-year program to map key corridors and priority conservation areas across the City.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said Council could now make more informed decisions about conservation and the environment.

“Now that we know where our key habitats and connections are, our chances of achieving positive conservation and environmental outcomes will be dramatically improved,” Cr Williams said.

Council’s environmental spokesperson Cr Lance Hewlett said the mapping showed Council what areas of the city are used by koalas and other wildlife and provided a clear direction about where we need to focus our efforts to achieve the best outcomes.

“This will allow us to mount a far more coordinated effort that – most importantly – will be based on accurate data,” he said.

“This mapping data will be a valuable resource that can be used by Council, environmental groups, other levels of government and researchers.”

Cr Williams said the mapping identified crucial connections between local habitat to support biodiversity and strong local wildlife populations.

“Redland City Council has spent millions of dollars trying to protect koalas in recent years yet the koala population has continued to decline,” she said.

“We can’t hope to save the koala tree by tree and it’s time we had the debate about what can work.

“If we are to protect our koalas and other native animals we need a different approach, based on science rather than emotion.

“I have already started the conversation with scientists and hope to be in a position to make announce further scientific initiatives in the New Year.

“While the corridor mapping and other work Council is doing gives us a great start, Council can’t succeed on our own. It has to be a collaborative effort between all levels of government, the community, scientists and business.

“That’s the only way we have a real chance of success.

“In the meantime, every community member can play a role by slowing down and driving carefully, restraining dogs, replanting koala habitat trees and contributing to research into diseases that kill koalas.”

For more information on environmental planning and wildlife in the Redlands visit http://www.redland.qld.gov.au/EnvironmentWaste/EnvironmentPlans/Pages/default.aspx

Historic pine at risk of collapse


An historic Cook Island pine tree recently removed from a Wellington Point property would have been prone to “unpredictable collapse’’ within two to three years, an analysis of the tree has revealed.

A report by Redland City Council’s arboriculture technical advisor has found one section of the 45m tree was 90 per cent decayed, with only a thin section of structurally supportive sound wood remaining.

The decay, photographed below, was at a height of about 10m and extended well towards the tree’s apex.

“The presence of an active white-rot fungus was evident in all of the decayed dissections of the trunk analysed. In some samples the fungi infection was almost through to the outer bark layer,’’ the report says.

“The cavity contained rain water that had penetrated through the opening in the trunk caused by an old lightning strike. This moisture had contributed to the rapid rot of the heartwood within the columnar cavity.

“It was estimated that the fungi infection would have breached to the bark layer in some areas of the trunk within two to three years, based on the known spread-rate of this type of fungi. This would have rendered the tree extremely unstable and prone to unpredictable collapse.’’

The report says the health and visual appearance of the tree did not give an indication as to the level of deterioration inside the trunk.

“It is normal for a tree of this vintage to contain extensive decay within the heartwood and, providing sufficient sound-wood is present, the tree will remain structurally sound and visually healthy. It is the presence of the white-rot fungus that consumes and weakens sound-wood and cambium, predisposing the tree to inevitable collapse,’’ it reports.

The tree had been protected under a Vegetation Protection Order but Council voted to allow its removal after an independent arborist found it was riddled with white rot.

tree-2

A section of the pine tree with rotted heartwood removed, showing the remaining sound wood.

 

tree-3

The same section of the pine tree before the rotted core was removed. The dark area shows the extent of the fungus.

 

NSI Economic Transition Group Media Release


Community, business leaders attend inaugural NSI Economic Transition Group meeting

The inaugural meeting of the North Stradbroke Island (NSI) Economic Transition Group, established to chart the island’s transition from sand mining to an alternative economy, was held yesterday, the same day that Sibelco announced it would close one of its mines next year.

The group comprises elected representatives, community and business leaders, and academics who will work towards the common goal of a sustainable future for the island and its people as mining is wound back.

The NSI Economic Transition Group comprises:

  • State Member for Cleveland Mark Robinson (co-chair)
  • Mayor, Redland City Karen Williams (co-chair)
  • Federal Member for Bowman Andrew Laming
  • Quandamooka Yoolooburrabee Aboriginal Corporation CEO Cameron Costello
  • Straddie Chamber of Commerce President Dave Thomson
  • Executive Dean, Faculty of Business, Economics and Law, University of Queensland Professor Iain Watson
  • Sibelco Australia External Relations Manager Paul Smith
  • Department of State Development, Infrastructure and Planning Deputy Director-General Kathy Schaefer
  • Department of State Development, Infrastructure and Planning Regional Director Gary Krishna (Secretariat)

Co-Chair Mark Robinson said the first meeting saw the establishment of a Terms of Reference for the Group, which includes at least quarterly meetings and membership until 1 December 2015, when a review will be undertaken.

“The group also started work on a consultation plan, including establishment of a website which will be completed this month,” he said.

The Transition Straddie website will provide up-to-date information about the transition, as well as publish minutes from the meetings, membership of the group and the Terms of Reference. The website will be available at www.transitionstraddie.org.au. There will also be links to the new website from Council’s website www.redland.qld.gov.au and Mark Robinson’s website www.markrobinsonmp.com

Co-chair Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said the group had also started the process of reviewing the work of the 2011 Economic Transition Taskforce.

“Analysis of that work will be valuable. We will also use it to consider what new data is required to ensure jobs for the island’s residents into the future.”

Sibelco announced yesterday it would close its Yarraman Mine on North Stradbroke Island in August 2015, bringing forward the scheduled closure date of December 2015. The company’s Enterprise Mine on the island is scheduled to stay open until 2035, while its Vance silica mine on the island will continue operating until 2025.

The next NSI Economic Transition Group meeting will be held in February 2015.

Media information: Office of Mark Robinson on 3286 2726 and Office of the Mayor of Redland City on 3829 8624.

Redlanders to get weather station


Redlanders will finally get real-time weather information with a local Bureau of Meteorology observation station due to begin operating late next year.

The weather station will be funded through a $150,000 grant from the State Government’s Natural Disaster Mitigation Program after Redland City Mayor Karen Williams lobbied for the funding.

“At the moment real-time weather information to Redland City is not available and information is delivered from the Brisbane Airport and ‘approximated’ for Redlands,’’ Cr Williams said.

“I thank the State for responding to our requests for this service and our local Members of Parliament for supporting our submission for funding.

“I have no doubt that timely and accurate weather information will greatly assist us in being prepared for the worst nature can throw at us and, therefore, help make us a more resilient City.

“Having local real-time information will not only be of great help the residents and those planning to visit our beautiful part of the world but will also provide contemporary information to the broader Southern Moreton Bay area, Southern Brisbane, Logan and Ipswich.”

“There can now be no excuse for the Redlands not being on the weather map.”

Cr Williams said the benefit of being recognised at a national level in weather forecasting and broadcasting could not be overstated as the Redland tourism industry grew.
 
“I also suspect it will show what locals have long known – that the Redlands does indeed have the best weather in Queensland,’’ she said.
 
Cr Williams, who is also chair of the Local Disaster Management Group, said Council would provide suitable land for the station, likely to be on or around the Cleveland Waste Water Treatment Plant.

“Redland City Council will directly partner with the Bureau of Meteorology, who will build the station,’’ she said. “It is planned to be fully operational in time for next summer.’’

Redland Snapshot – 3 December


Council Christmas closures

All non-essential Council services will be closed from Christmas Day to reopen 5 January 2015. This includes Council Customer Service Centres, art galleries, mainland libraries and Redland Performing Arts Centre (RPAC).

For island library closures visit our website.

RPAC tickets can be purchased online during the closure.

Emergency contacts:
For road repairs and fallen tree or water supply emergencies over the closure 3829 8999.

Specific closures and other information:

Home Assist will be closed to clients from 4pm Tuesday 23 December 2014, to reopen 8am Monday 5 January 2015.

Redlands IndigiScapes and Visitor Information Centre (including Tea Garden cafe) – Closed Christmas Day. From Friday 26 December to Friday 2 January the cafe will operate with a limited menu and reduced staff so no large bookings or group functions will be taken.

Waste transfer stations – Closed Christmas Day only. Waste collection services will continue as usual.

Animal shelter – Closed Christmas Day, Sunday 28 December and Sunday 4 January. Limited hours apply for other days throughout this period.

For more details on specific Council closures visit our website.

 

Our Redlands out now!

Get your copy at Council customer service centres or mainland libraries if you missed it in last week’s Redland City Bulletin – or view the digital version.

 

Buzz in the park

Join in some free family fun including interactive art, music, kid’s entertainment and lots more.

When: Saturday 6 December, 10am – 1pm
Where: Bloomfield Park, Cleveland

Supported by Redland City Council’s Creative Arts Unit.

 

Christmas by Starlight

Saturday 6 December 2014

Don’t miss Christmas by Starlight on Saturday 6 December at Capalaba Regional Park, Pittwin Road, Capalaba.

The free family-friendly event includes an animal zoo, jumping castles, rock climbing and a visit from Santa plus plenty of food stalls from 4pm and a children’s show at 5.45pm. Traditional twilight carols will follow from 6.15pm, ending with a spectacular fireworks finale!

For more information about free buses and car parking visit our website.

 

Hazardous Waste Surrender Day

Free for all Redland residents!

When: Sunday 7 December, 9am – 1pm
Where: Redlands Performing Arts Centre car park, 2- 16 Middle Street, Cleveland

Bring your household hazardous waste to a collection day for safe free disposal. Bring proof of residence (e.g. drivers licence).

Do not bring commercial waste. For full details of accepted waste, volume limits and other conditions visit our website or phone 3829 8999.

 

Open meetings

General Meeting … Wednesday 10 December, 9.30am

Get the facts: State Act dictates development fees


A social media report suggesting that Redland City Council has granted a developer a 96 per cent fee “discount” is grossly misleading and ignores significant facts, including Council’s obligations under the Local Government Act.

It ignores the fact that Council’s ability to charge fees is prescribed under Section 97 the Local Government Act 2009, which stipulates that the fees it charges must be for cost recovery only.

The $175,520 amount charged to the applicants for the Redland Bay Shoreline project was dictated by this legally binding objective. It also is not the only fee applicable.

Council’s schedule for cost recovery is appropriate for most applications but the scale and nature of the Shoreline proposal and assumptions made about future uses led to a notional and grossly excessive figure of $4.6 million, which would not have complied with the Local Government Act.

Section 3 of Council’s adopted fees and charges schedule makes provision for such circumstances by stating that: “Requests to determine an appropriate fee or reduce the application fee when a strict application of the scheduled fee is considered unreasonable or inappropriate considering the work required to carry out the assessment of the application, or where an appropriate fee has not been set, may be approved upon application.”

Council was obliged to use the $4.6 million figure on its fee reduction memorandum under the provisions of its fee schedule. That figure was the result of assumptions made about potential future uses in line with the scope of this development. It is, however, substantially disproportionate to the actual workload for Council and therefore not compliant with the Local Government Act, triggering Section 3 of Council’s fees schedule.

It should be made clear that any future uses on this site will be subject to separate development applications and will still be subject to fees in accordance with Council’s fees and charges schedule, again to recover the cost of their assessment.

On this basis, and in order to comply with the Local Government Act, officers calculated an appropriate cost-recovery fee by estimating the workload to assess the application, the time required for officers to undertake their assessment and the subsequent cost to Council. This resulted in a fee of $175,520 being levied to the applicant.

To give some context, the employee costs budget for the whole City Planning and Assessment group is $6.8 million. To levy one development alone $4.6 million for what would be a fraction of their annual workload would be clearly indefensible.

It should also be pointed out that Council has also entered into a legal agreement with the applicant for them to cover the costs associated with external consultants should they be required.

Incidentally, the $175,520 fee is higher than that which would have been charged by either Gold Coast City Council or Ipswich City Council for such a development.

Water update – Mount Cotton


UPDATE at 1.45PM: Further to our update below, the routine maintenance that caused the water outage at Mt Cotton was undertaken by SEQWater without prior notification to Redland City Council. Our Redland Water crews have been on site since early this morning working on restoring the water supply.

Due to routine maintenance being undertaken residents in the Mount Cotton area may experience dirty water issues for the remainder of today.

Please check the cleanliness of the water before operating washing machines or filling kettles.

If your water is discoloured run a cold water tap until it clears – this may take a few minutes.

Run each tap for a short time to remove any trapped air.

Bloomfield Street Park set to buzz


Bloomfield Street Park, Cleveland will be buzzing with exciting performances and art installations on Saturday 6 December 2014.

Buzz in the Park, organised by Curated Spaces, will be happening from 10am – 1pm in the heart of Cleveland at Bloomfield Street Park and will combine art and music displays.

Mayor Karen Williams said this free event would also be a perfect opportunity for people to view the final plans to the upgrade of this community park.

“We’ve listened to the community, come up with a great design and welcome people coming along on Saturday to see what we have planned,” Cr Williams said.

“Construction is set to begin in early 2015, and by mid-next year we will have a flexible, family-friendly, multifunctional space that will invigorate Cleveland Central Business District and attract new people and events to this great part of our City.” 

Divisional Councillor Craig Ogilvie the new park would have improved seating and lighting, free WiFi, new trees, a performance stage, power in key locations for events, open grass spaces and refurbished toilets.
 
“Bloomfield Street is one step closer to becoming a vibrant centre of community events and activities, and Buzz in the Park is a great example of its potential,” he said.

“Events like this will have a better and brighter home when the Bloomfield Street Park Transformation Project is completed next year.”

Performances and displays at Buzz in the Park will include Redlands Ladies Drum Corps, interactive sand art with Craig Tapp and weaving at Carly Kotynski’s ‘The Making Place’ installation.

For more details on Buzz in the Park contact Tricia Dobson:

• P: 3409 1796
• www.facebook.com/ClevelandBuzz