Author Archives: Susie

Have your say on Beth Boyd Park upgrades


Redland City Council is inviting the Redlands Coast community to have a say on the upgrade of Thorneside’s Beth Boyd Park.

Mayor Karen Williams said Beth Boyd Park was a special area that had been enjoyed by generations of locals and visitors alike.

“This coastal park has been popular with many people for a long time and is now set to become even better,” she said.

“Before detailed design starts we want to hear what park upgrade works are important to the community.

“Perhaps it’s increased seating, pathways or shade, or a special foreshore experience or something else.

“This is the time for the community to also tell us what play theme, equipment and experiences they would like to see in the upgrades, and I encourage everyone to have their say.”

Division 10 Councillor Paul Bishop said he looked forward to hearing what the community would like to enjoy at their park.

“This much-loved community park is in a sensitive natural area that is loved by people and supports significant native plants, birds and wildlife,” he said.

“Some park play elements are likely to remain, such as renewal of the hill slide and pedal swing, while other elements will be completely new.

“The upgrade will provide the whole community with new ways to interact with the foreshore.”

The boat needs to be removed due to poor structural integrity and its position within a road reserve, erosion-prone coastal protection area and high storm tide inundation area.

Cr Williams said Beth Boyd Park was part of a broader precinct that included Queens Esplanade and Aquatic Paradise Park West.

“The natural foreshore areas of this precinct are important to Redlands Coast, with responsibility for different parts of it falling under local, state and federal government jurisdictions,” she said.

“In addition to the Beth Boyd Park upgrades, new bike racks were recently installed at Aquatic Paradise Park West, and future plans include foreshore protection works along Queens Esplanade.

“Council invites community members to also tell us what they value about the precinct to help inform future planning for the broader area.”

For more information about the Thorneside precinct, or to have your say on what play experiences and improvements you think should be prioritised at Beth Boyd Park, visit yoursay.redland.qld.gov.au

Charlie Buckler Sportsfield car park upgrade underway


Redland City Council has commenced construction on an $800,000 upgrade to the car park at Charlie Buckler Sportsfield on Boundary Road, Redland Bay.

Mayor Karen Williams said work started at the beginning of July and would include resurfacing as well as the installation of stormwater pipes, kerb and channelling, 14 street lights, footpaths and landscaping.

“The project supports Council’s $31 million budget commitment to enhancing and maintaining the city’s naturally wonderful parks, conservation areas and sports areas this financial year,” Cr Williams said.

Division 6 Councillor, Julie Talty said the Charlie Buckler Sportsfield car park was low lying and subject to flooding during and after heavy rain.

“The upgrade will go a long way to mitigating flooding and improving safety, and will be welcomed by the clubs that use and call the sports field home,” she said.

“This work is expected to be completed by the end of September, weather permitting, and is just the first of what is expected to be a multi-stage project, subject to future Council budgets.”

Council to speak up at 124th LGAQ Conference


Redland City Council will use October’s Local Government Association of Queensland (LGAQ) conference to advocate for several key issues on behalf of the community, including encouraging more respectful debate in parliament, clearer planning outcomes and regional recognition for local islands.

Mayor Karen Williams said the full list of motions, which were supported unanimously at today’s general meeting, to be tabled at the LGAQ’s 124th annual conference on the Gold Coast from October 19-21, 2020 were:
• Local Governments’ Powers to Conduct Elections
• Regulated Dog Management Review
• More Respectful Debate in Parliament
• Asset Sustainability Ratio
• Prescriptive Planning
• Regional Funding

“While the community expects political debate to be robust, they also expect it to be respectful, which is why we will use this year’s LGAQ conference to advocate for more respectful debate in State and Federal Parliament,” Cr Williams said.

“We will also be again advocating for a less complex and more easily understood State Government planning system that is easier for the community to understand and meets their expectations.

“Council has long argued that the current performance-based planning system allows too much flexibility in how the overall outcomes of relevant codes are achieved, creating uncertainty within the community.

“To provide the certainty the community has been crying out for and in response to concerns about small lots, Council previously tried to cap minimum lot sizes through our 2018 city plan, but were advised by the State Government that we can’t under the current planning regime.

“This is a perfect example of how the current State Government planning legislation is letting down the community. Residents have the right to know what will be built in their neighbourhoods and so we are calling on the State Government to provide that clarity.”

Cr Williams said Redland City Council also supported continued local government efforts to lobby the State Government to review the Animal Management (Cats and Dogs) Act 2008.

“The current Act has limitations and inefficient processes for reviewing regulated dog declarations and destruction orders, particularly in instances following a serious dog attack,” Cr Williams said.

“In recognition of the significant community safety risks, Council seeks to strengthen the conditions around keeping a regulated dog, establish offence categories for dog attacks, ensure victims are supported and provide clarity on enclosure guidelines.”

Redland City Council will also present a case to the LGAQ Conference for better recognition and financial support for regional challenges.

“Council has long advocated for our island communities to be considered regional under State Government funding allocations – in recognition of their unique social, economic and isolation issues compared with the rest of the city,” Cr Williams said.

“As at the 2016 Census, the Southern Moreton Bay Islands (SMBI) had an unemployment rate of 16.5% compared with the Queensland average of 7.2%. In addition, the SMBI youth unemployment rate was 32.2%, compared with 13.9% statewide.

“Recent figures also show a large number of JobSeeker and JobKeeper applications from the Redlands Coast islands, which also topped the list for employment vulnerability according to research from the University of Newcastle in New South Wales.”

Cr Williams said that 13.5% of SMBI residents required assistance due to a severe or profound disability, compared with a state total of 5.2%. A quarter of SMBI residents were aged between 60 and 69, while across Queensland the total was 10.7%.

“The State Government has a number of regional funding programs designed to support regional Local Government Areas,” Cr Williams said.

“However, these programs exclude south-east Queensland councils, such as Redlands.”

Cr Williams said Council would also move a motion to amend the Local Government Electoral Act 2011 to give local governments the discretion to conduct elections either in-house or engage a suitable contractor.

“Consensus of opinion and evidence supports the motion that local returning officers provided a better service to the community than the Electoral Commission of Queensland (ECQ), which has been conducting all local government elections since 2008,” Cr Williams said.

“Election costs under the ECQ have more than doubled, however ECQ has had significant performance failures, instances of administrative errors and considerable delays in declaring results.

“A change to the Act would enable local governments to save costs where practical, while having greater control over service delivery, transparency, probity and timely release of results to the community.

“Additionally, many local government areas – including Redlands – cover rural sectors, remote areas or islands. The Act should be amended to provide local governments with the discretion to choose the most appropriate polling method for their area, including postal ballot.”

Cr Williams and Division 7 Councillor Rowanne McKenzie will be Council’s official delegates at the LGAQ Conference, which will bring together delegates from all tiers of government, external stakeholders and the media to consider the challenges facing local governments and their communities.

Other Councillors are able to attend as observers.

Russell Island botanical garden a step closer


Russell Island residents are a step closer to having their own botanical garden after Redland City Council today resolved to enter into a three-year trustee lease with the State Government over about three hectares of Kings Road land.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said Council was progressing the arrangement after receiving advice from the State Government that there were no plans for a high school on the site, which is owned by the Department of Education.

“In December 2019, I wrote to the Education Minister on behalf of the community to ask if the State Government had any plans to use the site for a school,” Cr Williams said.

“The Minister confirmed they had no plans for a school on the site.

“So Council will now lease the land from the Department of Education and sign a three year licence to occupy with Bay Islands Conservation Inc (BICI), which will manage the botanic gardens.

“BICI first raised the idea of a botanical garden on the site in 2018 and has since worked hard to progress the plan, including engaging with the community to ensure it would deliver significant benefit.

“The BICI vision is to create a central community hub alongside the Bay Island Sport and Resilience Hub.

“BICI will partner with other local organisations to manage the botanical gardens and provide free access to the community.

“The additional native plantings and weeding planned by BICI will enhance the property’s existing vegetation and benefit local wildlife.”

Council invites expressions of interest for eco-friendly tourism opportunity


Redland City Council is inviting expressions of interest for the development and operation of a high quality tourist park on the former Department of Agriculture and Fisheries land in MacArthur Street, Alexandra Hills.

Council purchased the land in 2018 after many years of negotiation with consecutive state governments.

Mayor Karen Williams said the land had important environmental and heritage values, and Council was making it available for eco-friendly tourism opportunities and community facilities.

“We’re encouraging proposals that demonstrate the preservation of the site’s values while providing a range of accommodation types, including recreational vehicle spaces, camping and glamping,” she said.

“Redlands Coast has an abundance of natural wonders from bay to bush, including approximately 335 kilometres of coastline, the world’s second largest sand island, multiple smaller islands to explore, wetlands and conservation areas, native botanic gardens, national parks, vast tracts of unspoiled bushland, Moreton Bay’s aquatic recreation opportunities and so much more.

“This is a great opportunity for an experienced tourist park operator to expand their business into this beautiful part of south-east Queensland and Council looks forward to receiving expressions of interest, from which a shortlist of applicants will likely be invited to tender.”

Division 7 Councillor Rowanne McKenzie said expressions of interest were invited from parties who already had experience in developing and operating tourist parks, or similar.

“Ideally, Council would like to see an operator willing to invest in infrastructure that would also benefit the broader community, such as a water park and connections to nearby recreational trails,” she said.

For more information about the Redlands Coast Tourist Park and Community Destination expressions of interest process, visit the project page on Council’s Your Say site.

Planned burns scheduled – Tuesday 4 to Friday 7 August 2020


Redland City Council – in consultation with the Quandamooka Yoollooburrabee Aboriginal Corporation (QYAC) Rangers, QFES and QRFS – will undertake multiple hazard reduction burns on North Stradbroke Island this week (dependent on ongoing weather conditions).

The burns are planned for Tramican Street and George Nothling Drive Conservation Areas at Point Lookout. See the areas highlighted in yellow on the map.

Site preparations have included clearing around significant logs and habitat trees.

It is appreciated that these burns may cause some inconvenience, however all attempts will be
made to limit any smoke hazards from the work.

The planned burns are necessary to reduce the volume of forest litter fuel, which will assist with hazard reduction. Planned burns also provide conditions essential for native bushland regeneration.

For more information visit redland.qld.gov.au/PlannedBurns or phone Council’s Conservation Fire Management Team on 3829 8999.

Apply for a RADF grant today


Redland City Council is now accepting round one applications for 2020-2021 Regional Arts Development Fund (RADF) grants.

Mayor Karen Williams invited professional and emerging Redlands Coast artists to apply for funding from the RADF, a partnership between the Queensland Government and Redland City Council.

“Like so many things, the RADF schedule has seen pandemic-related disruption this year, but we’re back in business with submissions for round one grants being accepted until 31 August 2020,” Cr Williams said.

RADF Assessment Panel Co-chairs Cr Paul Bishop and Cr Lance Hewlett said the focus for this round was ‘People and Place’.

“We are looking for applications that creatively explore stories of people and place in Redlands Coast,” Cr Bishop said.

“Our stories have the power to teach, entertain and inspire and we are keen to see projects expressed through a range of media; including song, visual arts, dance, music, craft, writing, theatre and design.”

Cr Hewlett said the RADF provided opportunities for local communities to participate in arts and cultural activities, with funding of up to $10,000 per project available.

“I urge all Redlands Coast creatives to visit Council’s website for information about categories of funding, eligibility criteria and how to apply,” he said.

“Check out our videos of previous RADF grant recipients at www.redland.qld.gov.au/radf for some extra inspiration.”

Young koalas stepping out into the world


A new generation of Redlands Coast koalas is stepping out into the world with the annual dispersal of young that precedes koala breeding season each year.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said residents and motorists should be on the lookout for smaller koalas, which were likely to pop up in the most unexpected spots.

“Often mistaken for lost joeys, these young koalas are usually about 18 months old and leaving their mothers’ territories is search of their own,” Cr Williams said.

A youngster recently spotted at Cleveland State School.

“As they make their way in the world, they will travel through bushland, backyards and across roads; exploring the terrain on foot and using all sorts of trees, not just Eucalypts.”

“To help young koalas travel safely, I encourage residents to keep their distance and confine or restrain their dogs at night; and motorists are urged to slow down and be alert for koala movement.”

How you can help young dispersing koalas:
• Let them continue on their way without interference, as your “help” can confuse them and lead to unexpected danger.
• Keep your distance and confine or restrain you dogs at night to allow safe movement.
• Make your backyard more koala friendly by putting a wooden pole or ladder against your fence so they can continue on through and a floating water aid in your pool so they can climb out if they fall in.
• When driving, slow down and be alert to wildlife movement from road sides.
• If you are worried about the health or welfare of any koala phone the Redlands 24-hour Wildlife Rescue Service on 3833 4031.

For more information on our local koalas, including how to spot a sick or injured koala, visit Council’s koala webpage

Wellington Point Reserve northern boat ramp closes for urgent repairs


Queensland Department of Transport and Main Roads is scheduled to commence maintenance works on the northern boat ramp at Wellington Point Reserve on Monday 27 July 2020.

Works will involve reconstructing the boat ramp and are expected to last until October 2020.
The boat ramp and up to six nearby car trailer unit spaces will be closed for public use during the maintenance period, however, the southern boat ramp will still be accessible to the community during this time.

For more information, please email metropolitanregion@tmr.qld.gov.au or call 3066 4338 during business hours.

Council delivers a helping hand for Redlands Coast businesses and community groups


Redlands Coast businesses and community groups have received a $370,000 helping hand to get back on their feet following COVID-19 restrictions.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said Council had awarded grants to 16 community groups and 81 businesses as part of its $2 million social and economic package to support residents, businesses and community groups through the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.

“Funding worth $111,594 was made available through grants of up to $10,000 to local community groups to provide support and relief to the Redlands Coast community,” Cr Williams said.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams with Salads Made Fresh owners Jeff McEvoy and Darlene Clemenkowff

Love and Hope Redlands provides healthy and nutritious meals for families and others in need. The group was inundated with requests as the financial impact of job losses hit.

With a grant to buy commercial fridges and freezers, group founder Adriana Kuhn said Love and Hope was now able to put food on the table for more families.

“We can keep more in stock and will be able to help everyone who needs it, when they need it,” Mrs Kuhn said.

U3A Redlands president Debra Barker said dealing with social isolation had been a major challenge, particularly when libraries, community centres and retail venues were forced to close during the COVID-19 lockdown.

The group accessed a grant to expand its use of cloud-based video conferencing to deliver courses such as German language and ukulele lessons to older residents.

“It’s been very important to stay in contact with our members and this grant has also provided us with new ways to bring together groups and those unable to travel,” Mrs Barker said.

“The grant has also been an amazing help for us to keep in contact with members who don’t have internet access or a computer. We were able to use some funds to cover paper and postage costs so we could keep our hardcopy newsletters flowing and keep people informed during the pandemic.”

Assistance for 32 local businesses, worth a total of $31,494, through Council’s COVID-19 Business Support Grant included up to $1,000 for professional advice services such as accounting or human resources.

Innovation grants of up to $5,000, worth a total of $228,055, were awarded to 49 businesses seeking to restructure their operations to ensure viability and continued operations.

The full list of community organisations that received a grant is provided below.

Redlands Coast Chamber of Commerce president Rebecca Young praised Council’s swift response and active support for local businesses.

“I’m across what other councils have done and they were nowhere near as supportive of businesses as Redland City Council has been during COVID-19,” she said.

“The Chamber has received very good feedback about the grants. This will help keep the doors open and it has allowed a number of businesses to invest and shape their longer-term futures.”

She said Redlands Coast businesses were resilient and had received strong support from the local community.

“There is some concern that what’s happening in Victoria could happen here,” Ms Young said.

“However, businesses are feeling optimistic and have shown how resilient they are. Grants like these really help.”

Victoria Point’s Salads Made Fresh went above and beyond during COVID-19, teaming up with other local traders including Pattemores Meats at Alexandra Hills, and Banjo’s Bakery at Cleveland, to home deliver food and essential supplies.

As primarily a wholesaler of fresh, pre-prepared salads, owners Jeff McEvoy and Darlene Clemenkowff saw an opportunity to expand their home delivery market.

With assistance through Council’s innovation grant Salads Made Fresh is implementing an end-to-end business automation and inventory management system that will significantly improve efficiency.

“This support puts us in a good position to kickstart something and give us the capability of holding on to the new business we are winning,” Mr McEvoy said.

Community organisation support grant recipients were:
• STAR Community Services
• Running Wild… Youth Conservation Culture Inc.
• Love and Hope Redlands Inc.
• Bay Islands Community Services Inc.
• University of the Third Age (U3A) Redlands District Inc.
• CPL – Choice, Passion, Life
• Donald Simpson Community Centre
• Victoria Point Redland Bay Meals on Wheels Inc.
• Redland Community Centre Inc.
• The Rock Family and Community Support Inc.
• St Vincent de Paul Society Qld
• Queensland Police-Citizens Youth Welfare Association – Redlands Branch (Redlands PCYC)
• Young Life Australia – Redlands Area
• Redlands Fellowship Property Ltd
• Jobs Association Inc.
• Cleveland Uniting Church