Yes, thank you, Madam Chair; I rise to speak on item A, which is the traffic improvements that this Council did outside Runcorn State School. Runcorn State School is a primary school. It doesn’t have a huge amount of students in the scheme of things. It’s sort of between 300 and 400 students, but it is on a major intersection, major road, on Beenleigh Road and Mains Road. Those of you who are familiar with the south side will know that those are both extremely busy roads. This school sits right on the corner of that. The other corner it has is Ardargie Street and Lampson Street, which also have its own challenges.
Some may remember some time ago myself putting in a petition for residents from Lampson Street wanting some restricted parking around there because they are close to a train station. They’ve also got the school, so there’s a lot going on in that space, so it’s great that the State Government have changed the rules to include dual carriageways to allow to have this treatment added to it.
We’re still continuing to work with the school. They’ve done their TMP with bits and pieces of other stuff around that school to try and deal with the school situation. Those who know me will know that I’m very passionate about schools, given my background, but I’m also very keen to make everyone aware where the responsibilities lie as far as State Government schools are concerned and where Council is in that space.
Hopefully a lot of Councillors in this place will know that when somebody suggests something to happen, suddenly we get a whole lot of residents that become traffic engineers and they know exactly what will and won’t work. A number of people came to me and were concerned that, you know, whose silly idea was this was the words that were used for me, and I said: well, look, let’s just wait and see, shall we?
I have to say I travel that way obviously to and from work, and while I understand Councillor SRI wanting some hours extended potentially for Brisbane High, I know particularly with the primary schools and you stick that hour to start at 7 o’clock in the morning and there’s no students to be seen, it can be a bit frustrating for the drivers, and again at 4 o’clock.
I’ve got one of these schools outside my ward office, a high school, and of course the kids meander along like Brown’s cows across the road, not on the pedestrian crossing like they should, but even then they’re pretty much all gone by 3.30. But we still have that extra half hour. So there’s a little bit of give and take as far as time zones go and things like that. But basically it’s Council trying to work with the best we can with the laws and the regulations that we need to work with.
I’m very pleased that this is a project that has gone ahead, and I know that the school and particularly the principal is very pleased, and I’m looking forward to finalising the work around that particular school as far as their TMP and other stuff with the petition in Lampson Street et cetera is concerned. So I thank Council officers and Councillor COOPER.
Yes, thank you, Madam Chair, and I rise to speak on the Committee presentation Revive. I was not able to attend last year, and I saw the photos that the Chair at the time, Councillor MATIC, and his wife had posted, and I was determined I wasn’t going to miss out again this year. So I made a point of making sure my diary was clear for at least an hour or two Friday afternoon, and I shot over there to have a look.
There were so many stalls and so many clothes, it was just amazing. I was blown away, not only by the stalls and the amount, but also the quality of what was on offer. In fact, the dress I’m wearing today is a show and tell that I bought at Revive on Friday. I am pleased to say it’s a Veronika Maine, if those in the know know what a Veronika Maine is; it’s very expensive. I got it for the grand total of $25, so I was extremely pleased with that. It was a great bargain.
I’m actually not going to tell you in the Chambers here, even though my husband doesn’t listen to Hansard nor read it. I don’t plan to tell you all how much I purchased and how many items and how much I spent, just in case anyone wants to use it against me. But, you know, as always, as women will know, when we walk into the house or we put something else on that he hasn’t potentially seen, we go, what, this old thing? So, I’ll be able to say that and not be lying, because it will be old. So I’m very happy about that.
There was a couple of other things I purchased. I don’t know if people are aware of Pandora, but they do a Christmas tree decoration every year, and I was able to pick up the 2011 decoration for a grand total of $18. I was very pleased about it. Like Councillor HOWARD, I also purchased another handbag, a little gold evening one.
I finally, finally—very remiss of me—got to see War on Waste on the ABC iView—actually it was a weekend. I had a half booked day off on the weekend, and I actually sat down with my husband to watch it. He was just as blown away as I was about the waste that we have, and in particular the clothing. They had a clothes line there on show at the Revive which showed a number of items pegged there, with a little note saying why they had been basically thrown away, and it was as simple as, you know a button missing or something like that. So that was another great initiative. So yes, I plan to be there again next year.
On the final note, I just want to mention I visited the Suited to Success stall, and can I give a shout out to them. They’ve got a bubbles and beauties evening on Wednesday 12 September right here in City Hall. There is a general admission and a VIP package as well, and all the funds on the night go to helping unemployed clients. So basically they help dress people who need clothing to be able to go for an interview and then, if they get a job, from that point on. So if anyone is interested in that, I do have one flyer that I am prepared to hand and show everybody and share that.
I just want to say again what a wonderful event this was, and if you didn’t go this year, you have to make sure you go next year, because there is men’s clothes as well. So thank you to everyone involved.
Yes, thank you, Mister Deputy Chairman. I rise to speak on item B, the park naming.
It is great delight that I was able to bring this petition to Chambers. Despite what's been alleged here on a number of occasion here in the Chambers today that the people in the Administration on this side of the Chambers don't listen to residents or take any notice of what they have to say, I'm here to dispute that by acknowledging that I sent out 65 letters to local residents around the area of Peppercorn and Tranquil Street, around that park.
It was a two-pronged approach; the first was about what they wanted as far as the upgrade of that park was concerned, and the second part was about a naming of the park that was there. I personally feel that once a park has been completed and upgraded it should have its own name. As those in this Chamber should know, parks are generically by default named after the street that they are located in. Sometimes that works and is satisfactory; sometimes it doesn't and it's always good to make sure that we get a naming that's suitable.
I might add that one of the consultations—even though, like I said, I sent out 65 letters. We got 11 responses. One of the responses was to cut down some of the trees, but you'll be glad to know that that response was not taken under advisement. We decided we'd ignore that particular response.
So after that we then—from those 65 letters sent out 11 people responded. Nine names were actually suggested and of those nine we narrowed them down to three main suggestions. I then sent out another lot of letters to those same 65 residents with those three main suggestions and we narrowed it down—22 responses and 20 came up with the name of Tranquil Park. So that's where the petition came from and I'm very pleased to support that here in the Chambers today. Thank you.
Thank you, Mister Deputy Chairman. I rise to speak on the ALGA conference that I was able to attend back in June of this year when we were in the budget session. And as everyone knows, it's a requirement of that commitment that we get up and speak on Chambers just a little bit about what happened at the convention. As always, there was a lot of motions that were debated, passed, opposed and discussed and, you know, it's all on their website for the particular ones that anyone is of particular interest on what sort of motions that were discussed. There was a lot of guest speakers.
One of the ones that I particularly was very keen to listen to was a lady by the name of Libby Chaplin. She's the Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Battery Recycling Initiative, and she works—splits her time between CEO of that and CEO of Arcadian Solutions, which is a small consultancy focused on operationalising sustainability in government and industry.
It's a new idea about disposing or recycling of batteries and it's something that I'm very keen to talk to Councillor HOWARD about in her role as Field Services and particularly with the recycling scenario, to see that that's something that we can get activated certainly here in Brisbane City Council. And, of course, Brisbane City Council being the largest council in Queensland, by sheer volume of numbers, we always go into the mobile muster awards and, of course, we always win it. So I was able to pick up that award as well on behalf of Brisbane City Council and the LORD MAYOR, so I'm happy to present that here to join with our other awards that we always receive.
Councillor MARX: Yes, thank you, Madam Chair.
I rise to speak about one of the events that's happening in my ward presently and that is, as the LORD MAYOR mentioned earlier this evening, as the month of Ramadan. Therefore it's led to many Iftar dinners that not only myself have attended but, as you will know, the LORD MAYOR when he held his annual one at SunPAC the other night, yourself, Madam Chair, attended, Councillor HUANG, Councillor RICHARDS, Councillor CUMMING and Councillor SRI all made the journey over to SunPAC and I thank you on behalf of the LORD MAYOR for making the effort to come and spend the evening with us.
It's always an interesting evening doing Iftar dinners. Timing is very important obviously. You've got to make sure that a call to prayer happens at the correct time so that the breaking of the fast can happen. Obviously they haven't eaten anything since sunrise in the morning but we did talk about a number of other countries where they actually, like Finland and all that, they actually experience sort of 18 to 19 hours of daylight during the day so their fasting is a lot longer. So 5-10 breaking of fast is actually quite good at the moment for us around Brisbane.
Another Iftar dinner I went to was the Ahmadiyya Muslim Association had one the other night and that was on a slightly different note where what they had was different representatives of different faiths. So we had Surendra Prasad for the Hindu faith, we had the Jewish faith, we had president From the Christian faith, otherwise known as the Mormons, Gurjeet Singh from the Sikh community and then the Imam Amjaneed from the Islamic faith.
They were all talking about fasting and their religion. I have to say I was very impressed. I wasn't aware that there was any other religion in the world other than Muslims that fasted. That's not the case. They actually all fast at some point or other. In Judaism, they actually have five dawn to dusk fast spread out throughout the year. The Mormon community have one Sunday every month where they fast and the money that they would traditionally have spent on that meal is then sent to charity and then, of course, as we all know the Muslims fast during the month of Ramadan every year.
So I did make particular mention to the Ahmadiyya Muslim Association that I would be getting up in Chambers and speaking about their event tonight just to let people know that it's not just the Muslims who fast. I think it's something that we all could learn education from and so I was more than happy to do that. Unfortunately most of us are missing the Parliament House Iftar dinner tonight because for whatever reason they're holding it on a Tuesday evening which they don't normally so unfortunately none of the Councillors can attend.
I've attended seven every year and I think Councillor OWEN, the Chair, attended a few in your time as well. So unfortunately we're missing that one but there is another one there on Thursday night with the Commonwealth Bank having an Iftar dinner and then there's the traditional VIP at home Iftar so I think all up that's probably about six or seven for the month for me, which is not too bad. Unfortunately I don't fast during the day as well but anyway. So that's all, thank you.
Yes, thank you, Madam Chair; I rise to speak on item A, which is the Hellawell Road-Avenue, Borella Road-Avenue intersection, which is basically the installation of two sets of traffic lights. This was an election commitment at the last election, and I’m very grateful to the LORD MAYOR and the team for allowing that to be processed into the budget as an election commitment. The project is now under way.
The residents who live out this way have been after this for more than 15 years. In fact, Gary Hardgrave, when he was the Federal member for Moreton, had done a petition way back prior to 2007, asking for traffic lights at the particular intersection which was actually Hallowell Road and The Avenue. At that point in time, The Avenue was basically a one-way in, one-way out situation, so everyone that lived in that area relied on breaks in the traffic on this extremely busy road, Hallowell Road, to get out of their homes, basically. So it’s been a long time coming, and I’m very grateful.
As an extraordinary turn of events, as it turned out, when they were looking at the project, they were able to identify that Borella Road also had an issue, and that was mainly because there’s a really large school there, one of the largest primary schools in Brisbane, if not the south side, but potentially with McGregor—Sunnybank Hills, which has more than 1,000 students and they’re just a primary school. So a lot of people come from outside of the ward to go to Sunnybank Hills State School, and they were finding problems trying to get into Borella Road through to Symons Road from that street.
So it’s a really good outcome that we’re actually ending up with two sets of traffic lights as well as pedestrian signalised lights for all the children and the residents that live in that area. As the LM mentioned in his report, it’s fairly extensive work that he outlined. There’s two bus bays that have to be relocated; there’s footpaths, bicycle paths.
More particularly, this item A is dealing with the land resumption, and as we all know here in this place, land resumptions are not something that Council undertakes lightly, but it was something that needed to be done. It actually only involves one property, so one person, one homeowner who had some land. There were no houses involved. There was a block of land that they had themselves eyed up for development, so therefore they looked at the plan and thought if we went ahead and resumed that small section of their land, they wouldn’t be able to develop their piece of property to the full extent, namely driveways, et cetera.
So, yes, we could have gone in and just said to the officers: you know what, just take it because we need it for this thing, and it’s going to benefit many thousands of people. But that’s not the path we chose. The path we chose was one of consultation which, as everybody also knows in this place—or they should know—consultation takes a bit of extra time. So we came back with a compromise, and I said to the officers, let’s see if we can compromise and just maybe take some of their land and some of the land that’s next door to them, which actually included a pathway which was then owned by a body corporate, which then involved more than 15 houses. So, as you can imagine, again the consultation period extended.
So Council officers were getting concerned that it was starting to delay the project, because then we come into here and we get smashed from the other side about, you know, rollovers and projects not being finished in time, and carryovers and all this sort of stuff. But you know, unless you get into the nitty gritty and know exactly what’s going on with a particular project, you have no idea why there have been delays. So I am putting it on the record now.
If it comes out that there’s any delays at the end of this project, it’s purely and simply because we went out to consultation, not once with one resident but twice with a resident and a body corp. At the end of all that, we did manage a compromise. We have moved some of the land down slightly, taken resumptions from half here, half there, and we’ve now got a really good outcome. So, for the residents who live in that area, and not only just my area but other wards that are coming through, like the LORD MAYOR said, from Beaudesert Road. So that’s the Moorooka Ward with Councillor GRIFFITHS, your residents will be coming through there as well, heading to Sunnybank Hills Shoppingtown, which is a really popular shopping centre; the Calamvale Ward residents coming through.
It will be a fabulous outcome, and I really, really thank not only the LORD MAYOR for the funding but also Councillor COOPER and the team there that have been working really hard with everybody in that area, because obviously there is no gain without pain, and it has been a bit painful, people trying to travel, not only one but two intersection upgrades, and I thank them for their patience, and I thank the team for the great work that they’re doing out in my space. Thank you.
Thank you, Madam Chair. I rise to speak on the Chinese Lunar New Year which is coming to an end and the Korean Association—their official opening of the Community Hall also on the weekend.
Friday evening was the Queensland Federation of Taiwanese Association—that was their big Chinese Lunar New Year followed by Saturday evening the Chinese and Vietnamese Lions—they had their dinner event.
I was supposed to actually have my Movies in the Park that night but because of the rain it was postponed, so Councillor ADAMS very kindly gave my apologies.
Sunday night was the Malaysian Business Council—had their Chinese Lunar New Year dinner and then Monday night was the Australian Cantonese Association Lunar New Year dinner as well. so after Councillor HOWARD has the Chinese Lunar New Year celebration in Chinatown Mall, Sunnybank is the place to be. It's where it's all happening.
Now the other place—the other thing that's supposed to have happened on Saturday night that didn't because of the rain was Sunnybank Plaza were having their Luna New Year rooftop party. So it's still listed in the book obviously because this book's printed some time ago. That's actually been postponed to this Saturday night now. So if you do feel like you want to get out to Sunnybank and enjoy some of the parties that goes on there with Lunar New Year it's all still happening this Saturday night.
The other thing that I mentioned on the weekend was the Korean Association—thank you to LORD MAYOR Graham Quirk and of course Councillor BOURKE in Lifestyles. They managed to sign a lease with the Korean Association and they opened their Community Hall on the Sunday morning—Saturday morning; can't remember now—sometime on the weekend—yes, Saturday.
That was also in association with their New Year's lunch that they did down at Svoboda Park as well which was attended by unfortunately not as many people because of the rain, but they did have this massive thing called a bibimbap—I don't know quite if that's how you pronounce it, but anyway it's this huge massive bowl that's filled with lots and lots of rice. I don't know how many tonnes of rice and all sorts of vegetables and everything, and then as part of it us representatives had to get in and try and stir it and mix it all up. We had these ginormous big spoons that they gave us to use so that was quite hard work, but it was fun anyway.
Then I just want to say congratulations to the Korean Association. They did work extremely hard from when they first signed the lease to actually getting into the building. They had six weeks where they did some massive renovations. I rang Councillor BOURKE on the morning when I'd walked into the building, which is only the second time I'd been in that building—the first time was before they did the renovations—and I said it was a job well done. They did a really, really good job. I was very, very happy and they are very happy.
They had consulates from not only the Gold Coast but Sydney as well. So of course now the Korean Society of Gold Coast is very keen to get a place of their own, so I've mentioned they perhaps should speak to Mayor Tom Tate because he might have a spare building or two after the Commonwealth Games is finished.
But I just want to say congratulations again to Councillor BOURKE and your team. It was a fabulous, fabulous outcome and the Koreans are extremely happy. Thank you.
Brisbane City Council is providing a helping hand to keep community gardens flourishing at Kyabra Community Gardens as part of this year’s Cultivating Community Gardens Grants program. Lord Mayor Graham Quirk said $40,000 was being shared across 18 Brisbane community groups to preserve and enhance community gardens in their local area.
“Community gardens provide a wonderful opportunity for like-minded green thumbs to work collectively for the benefit of a cleaner, greener and more sustainable Brisbane,” Cr Quirk said.
“The gardens also provide a wonderful social activity for local interest groups, providing residents with places to meet and grow healthy food in their neighbourhoods, and helping to build stronger, more cohesive communities.
“Every day, Brisbane City Council works with residents and local communities to help make our city what it is today with a long-term vision for the future.”
The projects being supported as part of this year’s program area is Kyabra Community Gardens Runcorn in the amount of $2,261 for Orchard Retaining Walls. This will be used for an established 140 sqm fruit tree orchard is currently susceptible to soil erosion and runoff. To remedy this, a non-CCA treated retaining wall with galvanised supports will be constructed
Councillor Kim Marx said the funding would encourage more people to get involved in their local community while promoting to importance of thinking clean, green and sustainable.
“Council is committed to supporting local non-profit community-based groups and organisations to establish and maintain community gardens on Council-owned and other land,” she said.
A total of $375,000 has been allocated through the Lord Mayor’s Community Sustainability and Environmental Grants Program 2017-18 through three sub categories: Environmental Grants, Native Wildlife Carer Grants and Cultivating Community Gardens Grants.
For more information on Cultivating Community Gardens Grants, visit www.brisbane.qld.gov.au or call Council on (07) 3403 8888.
Thank you, Madam Chairman, I rise to speak tonight on my attendance at the Local Government Association Queensland Conference that was held in Gladstone in October. The exact date, Tuesday 17 October and I know that because that was my daughter's 19th birthday so she was more than happy I was in Gladstone while she was partying down here where I couldn't see her.
Anyway, as Councillor TOOMEY mentioned, it was very wet and windy weather up there in Gladstone but it didn't really matter because we particularly spent all our time inside anyway. So we really didn't get outside much at all but yes there was a lot of flooding road closures and stuff like that. So residents did suffer unfortunately due to that storm event.
There were two guest speakers, in particular the one I enjoyed listening to was Zelda la Grange as has been mentioned. She was the personal assistant to Nelson Mandela for more than 19 years. She grew up obviously in a white Afrikaans family, very racist and the first she knew of Nelson Mandela was the day he got out of prison and her parents had said to her, they have let the terrorist out of prison and that's what she was led to believe and she never questioned that.
Anyway, circumstances led to her applying for a position within that government and she ended up as I said becoming his actual personal assistant and companion for over 19 years so it was a really amazing story that she had from where she had come when she was 23 to where she is now 45 and was with him up until his death. So obviously a very close relationship and she looked after all his travel arrangements and was the gatekeeper of his diary so was actually quite a very important person.
The other speak by the name of Sebastian Terry. He spoke about his adventures after deciding to write his 100 Things to do list. This came about as a result of a friend of his dying extremely young and he didn't feel he wanted to look at his life with regret. So he talked about all the things that he'd done. One of the things, it was actually number two on his list, was to marry a stranger in Vegas which he did within two days of arriving in Las Vegas he convinced this stranger to marry him and they obviously then got divorced I'm guessing, he didn't say anything.
Yes, so he basically now travels the world fulfilling his list but also helping others fulfil theirs. I think that was where he was going with his speech. This had become not about so much him in his list, it was about people around the world and their lists. Obviously, with the advent of social media he's got Twitter and Facebook and Snapchat and all that.
If a person writes to him and says I have a specific list or item on my list that I want to fulfil, he sometimes—he will send that out to his greater community and then he'll get all the ideas coming back and people will help him with that sort of stuff to help other people to fulfil their list.
He's written a book obviously—that was number 100 on his list and he's managed to achieve that. We all bought a copy of the book which he very kindly signed for us. He wrote in my one what's on your list? Number one. I have to say I still haven't written down what my number one on my list is yet. So maybe over the Christmas holidays I might have time to think about it.
Also, the other thing is I want to offer my congratulations to all the LGAQ as an organisation and in particular Mayor Jamieson as President. He runs a pretty tight ship. I've been down to the—I've been to the Women's Local Governments and I've been down to the one in Canberra, the Australia one and I have to say Queensland certainly knows how to run a convention.
We got through more than 90 motions pretty much in one day. It was a day a half and that's with all the other speakers, all the presentations and everything like that. Yes, there was some robust debate which is always good to have and to hear. There were also quite a few laughs, unfortunately at Mayor Williams' expense because she'd done a few motions that she never quite managed to get up.
It was—in the end the debate was really very respectful and also congratulations to the workers and volunteers and residents of Gladstone who had this invasion of quite a few hundred people coming to the area. Yes, there was entertainment at the gala dinner on the Saturday evening. It was interesting and as I've mentioned to the LORD MAYOR, we need to make sure that we do as well, if not better. I won't go into the details of what the entertainment was but if you're interested I'm happy to tell you.
Yes, and the other person we had there was Marcia Hines was also their singer as well with her band. So I just want to say thank you to the Council officer who always travels with us. She makes sure we get on our planes, she makes sure we've got all our bags and we get to where we need to be when we're supposed to be and I know a lot of work goes into that behind the scenes. So she knows who she is, we won't mention her by name but thank you very much for all your help and thank you to Councillor BOURKE and Councillor TOOMEY for being wonderful travelling companions. Thank you.
Thank you, Madam Deputy Chairman. I rise to speak on mostly what happened on the weekend, the IndOz Festival, the India Day Fair, Runcorn Family Fun Day and the Gold Star Reading Program out in my library. To start, it was an honour to represent the LORD MAYOR at the official opening of the IndOz Festival which was held here in King George Square.
It was so nice to be welcomed like an old friend by the community and I did catch up with a number of old friends that I hadn't seen for some time. The weather was fabulous, the food on offer was plentiful and there was certainly lots of people attending. As is tradition, the ceremony was opened with the beating of the drum.
After the IndOz Festival, a number of us headed up to the hill to Roma Street Parkland for the annual India Day Fair hosted by GOPIO including yourself, Madam Deputy Chairman, who spoke and represented our LORD MAYOR, Graham QUIRK at that particular function. I'm lucky to have attended every single one of those events and so I've been a Councillor/candidate so that's going on to six times—six years.
As always, it's a lot of entertainment, a lot of noise, a lot of colour and always a lot of food. My understanding is that it went well into the night until nine o'clock at night where there was a well-known singer from the Punjabi community and apparently they were expecting upwards of 15,000 people to attend but I was long gone by then.
The next day I had the Runcorn Family Fun Day. As you all know, we lost the Karawatha Family Fun Day when we lost the Ward of Karawatha so we decided we would call this the Runcorn Family Fun Day because that's what the new ward is called.
It was another day with great weather.
There was a lot of people involved in this particular event, in particular my staff. Laurel, my PA, did all the huge amount of ground work behind the scenes getting ready for the day, organising all the rides, the entertainment and everyone that attended on the day.
My other staffer, Heidi, was with me throughout the day, as was Laurel, and she stayed behind and we packed up and headed everything back to the office along with both of our husbands who were the marquee ‘putter uperers’ and ‘taker downerers’. So we couldn't have done it without Derek and Steve. So I thank them as well at this opportunity.
Finally, the Gold Star Reading Program, it's always wonderful to have that out in my library. We had more than 200 students receiving their certificates and their medals and we had three cakes which we had to cut up and I can tell you, there wasn't a lot left at the end of three. There's a lot of people come to Sunnybank Hills Gold Start Reading Program, I can tell you.
Councillor MARX: Yes, three cakes, Councillor SUTTON and we buy them from Woolies who are great supporters and the cakes are massive. They're like A3 size so yes we have hundreds of people turn up and it's always a great support. I look forward to the second Gold Star Reading Program out in the Sunnybank Hills Library coming up shortly. Thank you very much.