Council 2015-16 Budget helps to green the Redlands

The Redlands’ natural environment will be enhanced by more than $30 million in spending in today’s Council budget.

The allocations include a total of $11.65 million for a variety of ongoing environmental operations, as well as $20 million in water, waste water and waste upgrades which will help boost the quality of water which flows into Moreton Bay.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said Council recognised the community’s strong affinity with the natural environment through a range of important fauna and flora programs.

“These range from revegetation and erosion-control projects to restore areas of the Redlands to their former glory to clean-ups, fire management and the great work of our environmental centre crew at IndigiScapes,’’ Cr Williams said.

“Through these programs we are continuing to protect and manage large tracts of bushland and nurture our local flora and fauna, particularly koalas.

“This financial year we will plant another 60,000 trees, many of them koala favourites, adding to the 38,000 koala food trees we have planted in the past five years.

“Council also recently completed koala corridor mapping to ensure koala trees are planted in the right locations and is actively supporting the work of Professor Peter Timms, who is currently testing a chlamydia vaccine on koalas in the Redlands.

“Council has also agreed to an immediate review of the requirements for dog owners in koala areas under the provisions of our Local Laws.”

Cr Williams said Council was very appreciative of the involvement of the community in supporting the environment.

“With Council’s commitment, the efforts of our Bushcare volunteers and residents through programs such as our Land for Wildlife, Voluntary Conservation and Koala Conservation agreements, as well as the Waterways Extension and Your Backyard Garden programs are making a real difference,’’ she said.

“We recognise that the demands of a growing city brings with it environmental issues which need to be addressed and we do not shy away from that, and that includes properly resourcing the care and control of our public conservation estate which now covers close to 10,000 hectares.

“We remain committed to protecting pristine bushland and restoring other priority areas, as well as working with our many passionate and enthusiastic landholders to improve land management and conservation.

“That also extends to striving for best practice within our water and waste operations to ensure their impact is minimal.  The budget invests in upgrading waste water treatment operations at Point Lookout and Thorneside, as well as a $1.2 million upgrade at Birkdale transfer station.’’

Cr Williams said Council had also budgeted almost $300,000 for track and trail maintenance across the City’s conservation estate.

“This  includes vehicular tracks, mountain bike tracks, horse trails,  pedestrian tracks and boardwalks  so residents and visitors can enjoy walking and riding in the wild,’’ Cr Williams said.

Visit Council’s website for a full Budget breakdown.

To see what the Budget means for residents go to our Budget Highlights Info graphics