Organisation restructure on Council agenda

Redland City Council

Changes to organisational structure are on the agenda for the next Redland City Council meeting on Wednesday 9 August

Redland City Council will discuss two industrially sensitive issues in closed session at its next meeting on Wednesday 9 August:

  • Provision of Council services
  • Proposed changes to the organisational structure for Redland City Council

The only other matters on the agenda are routine reports, for noting.

At the previous meeting on 26 July Council discussed fire management and a contract for waste management.

Political donations and rubbish

Who will take the trash out?

At the previous meeting on 26 July, in closed session, Council discussed a contract for collection of waste, green waste and recyclables and resolved to delegate to the CEO authority to enter into a contract which could be worth about $10 million per year.

Mayor Karen Williams and Cr Lance Hewlett both declared perceived conflicts of interest due to receiving donations from waste collection providers.

Cleveland based rubbish collector JJ Richards and Sons is a major donor to the Queensland LNP and the Federal Liberal Party.

Mayor Karen Williams received $10,000 from JJ Richards and Sons on 4 March 2016 – a couple of weeks before the 2016 elections.

Cr Hewlett has also declared donations from JJ Richards: $1,000 received in 2015 and two donations totalling $3,500 in 2012.

Redland City Council’s common practice of not making decisions about contracts in general meetings but delegating this decision to the CEO has the effect of reducing transparency.

Fire report sparks heated discussion

Also on 26 July, Council received a report on fire management which was commissioned from Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) following wildfires on Macleay and Russell Islands in 2016. The report dealt with fire risks on the southern Moreton Bay islands (SMBI) and mainland Redland City, but not North Stradbroke Island.

The QFES report made 56 recommendations covering the following issues:

  1. Reducing illegal dumping and hoarding
  2. Improving the resilience and disaster preparedness of residents
  3. Ensuring emergency response capacity across multiple agencies
  4. Reviewing maintenance plans and access trails
  5. Looking at Local Laws and legislation
  6. Providing local access to water and fire hydrants.

The QFES Report did not recommend formation of a Rural Fire Service for mainland Redland City which resulted in some heated discussion involving Crs Julie Talty and Lance Hewlett.

QFES has previously advised Redland City Council that there is no justification for having a Rural Fire Service in an area which is well served by QFES stations.

The Council says it has already acted on some of the recommendations.

Council resolved that the CEO is to report within three months to outline a full response and progress on the recommendations.

Some of the issues raised in the QFES report require community engagement – particularly where there are choices and trade offs to be discussed.

More information about the Redland City Council Fire Management Plan Review Report 2017, including a link to the Report,  is available on the Council website.

Redland City Council meeting minutes and video

Here is a link to the Council webpage where you can download the 26 July meeting minutes.

You can also watch a video recording of the meeting, except for the closed session.

 

Redlands2030 – 4 August 2017

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3 thoughts on “Organisation restructure on Council agenda

  1. Recently some of you attended a book launch called the Game of Mates and some of us purchased this book because it was only about $20. The main author told us it was no use trying to stop the game of mates, where money changes hands in return for favours. It is like trying to stop corruption. It simply takes another path. But we need to recognize it and limit the damage. I am a biologist, not an economist and not pushing any political barrow. In fact it appears that both major political parties and our local Council are playing this game and some hefty donations are involved, as we all know. Pollies and some councillors will argue that these donations are not illegal and they need the money for their election campaigns. That is a valid point but some of these donations going to well paid public servants are between $4,000 and $10,000 each so the donors want value for money. They are getting value for money at the expense of the residents of the Redlands, who are completely ignored. Many residents fork out their life savings and go into massive debt to buy properties near the Bay with a great lifestyle and abundant wildlife. We are not stupid. We can see that lifestyle being eroded in front of our eyes and as a biologist, I am concerned about the impact on our wildlife that depends on habitat for survival. Then we have this latest Toondah Harbour proposal, which was supposed to address parking problems and very shallow water for turning ferries. It does neither but it does line some pockets of both developers and anyone they choose for donations. Is it no wonder that so far both the LNP and Labor are supporting an environmentally damaging plan that will not boost jobs beyond the few people required to dredge the fore-shore and erect 3,600 units? We have been continually mislead by artists’ impressions that do not show all these multi-storey unit blocks and irreversible damage to our coastal region. Time for us to wake up, have a drive around the Redlands and see what is really going on.

  2. Redlands mayor going on overseas junkets to Asian countries at ratepayers expense….would it be to hire more Chinese workers as done on first visit to China with Council of Mayors on helping organise workers then MP Michael Choi, Capalaba, recommended? While still holding Capalaba MP’s seat, Chinese workers built house in Birkdale, provided with interpreter at IGA store in Wellington Point where, as I understand it, Mr Choi went on to own the shopping complex.
    Will Redland ratepayers be provided with details of how Redland City community will prosper on mayor’s return…or are we, the people of Redlands, not having a need to know?

    As regards political donations. The incumbent mayor has the best chance of keeping his/her seat when thousands of dollars are thrust into waiting hands from many areas….aged care homes, business managers, waste disposal companies (how generous of JJ Richards to hand over $10,000 for starters) wealthy developers with deep pockets donating thousands as they have much to gain, former pollies, etc. etc. The average person with good intentions doesn’t stand a chance of being elected as the incumbent has no problem buying people to carry out….for example, signage disappearing from roadsides/fences as during last local council election, when people in Capalaba, Birkdale, Wellington Pt were asking me who was running against the Redlands mayor having no idea of what this person looked like. At Windemere Rd Alex Hills entry to voters, several signs of mayor were highly visible, along with photos on t-shirts of numerous helpers, while not one sign was seen of any other candidate at this particular location… the sign of a poorly run campaign by a mayoral hopeful.

  3. I know that Senator Sam Dastyari may not be the best person to give advice on donations to politicians or to Councillors but he has one very crucial point. All these people are well paid to do their jobs without a “conflict of interest” so what are they doing accepting large donations from developers and companies like JJ Richards when the reason for the donations is obvious. One other point. Why has the RCC Mayor gone on so many ratepayer funded overseas trips when her Tourism Section does not support small business in the Redlands and the Infrastructure for Tourism on North Stradbroke Island (eg toilets, bus parking) is very poor?