I wasn’t initially going to complete a submission on proposed draft Corporate Plan as I wanted to hear from you and not influence your thoughts.
The fact that I hadn’t written down my thoughts was weighing heavily with me though and when the date was extended to this Friday I gave it more thought…so this morning I was up early and decided to quickly put thoughts, concerns to paper.
We find ourselves in different times this year with challenges being faced that at last Christmas none of us could have predicted. For years in Council, myself and other councillors have talked about the need for a Vision to ensure the City is being developed in all areas as the community not only wishes but is sustainable – both financially and for liveability.
This is now the time for everyone to have their say in this Vision but it is a different time and for me the next five years needs to focus on recovery. The City still requires a longer-term vision but requires various affordable, realistic, deliverable City wide projects also most immediately to inject the boost required socially and economically.
Am I convinced this draft Corporate Plan delivers what is required?
Not yet and many more points could be included and discussed, which is why I am looking forward to reading and analysing your submissions and comments to hopefully “get this right”,
You have one more day so make the most of it,
11th November 2020
Redland City Council
PO Box 21 Cleveland Qld
RE: Submission for draft Corporate Plan
It is disappointing that in a time where Local Councils and Government are needing to build relationships and trust to strengthen their communities that the Redland City 2030 Community Plan is to be swallowed up into the Council’s Corporate Plan without the full comprehension by the community of possible impacts.
This is a time where extensive Community Engagement (not simply consultation) could have been held in regards to the future of or revision of the peoples plan, the Community Plan, to strengthen our Redlands Community after an extremely challenging year. It is a time for collaboration and to reset, not business as usual, and by abolishing the Community Plan without “the people on the street” understanding this change is not, in my opinion, an acceptable, accountable or transparent way to commence the next 20 years.
This decision, whether to have a separate overarching Community Plan or for the Corporate Plan to remain the operational document as well as now to become the 20-year Vision document, should be the community’s decision
Through collaboration comes many learnings, understandings and enriched outcomes therefore I am not in favour of the proposal to abolish the Community Plan until I am satisfied the community has sufficient understanding and “a say” to make it their decision.
The Vision outcomes found in the Community Plan have been condensed to 6 Vision Goals in the Corporate Plan. This in itself isn’t necessarily a concern so long as the content has the equal depth and value to deliver to our community.
The first Goal, City Leadership has a Vision statement – Our City is enriched through a spirit of collaboration and respect across Council and the community, which drives our shared community values and achieves outcomes for our people, place and prosperity.
Objectives include meaningful engagement, transparent and accountable processes this to me would represent increased community inclusion in Council decision making yet even with the draft I do not feel this has been obtained.
As the Corporate Pan may become the Vision document, not only an operational document, I would like a level of Governance to be added to the Gaols. Words such as integrity, ethical, transparent, accountable governance could give the sense of commitment and respect to the community through the City Leadership that the Community Plan contained.
The 34th President of United States, Dwight.D.Eisenhower once said, “The supreme quality of leadership is unquestionably integrity. Without it, no real success is possible, no matter whether it is on a section gang, a football field, in an army, or in an office.” Honesty and integrity are two important ingredients which make a good leader. How can you expect your followers to be honest when you lack these qualities yourself? Leaders succeed when they stick to their values and core beliefs and without ethics, this will not be possible.
In regards to the Catalyst Projects I do not agree with City Deals being the only priority project. City Deals is important to the future economy and liveability of South East Queensland however with the impacts of COVID all projects have been delayed for a further 12 months. Now is the time to have a reset of thinking and achieve what is realistic and deliverable, the larger projects may have to wait a while as funding is targeted towards recovering from the recent impacts.
I would like to see as a Catalyst Project that the revision of the Community Plan was listed. Rather than Councillors and Council choosing projects it was would be “healing” and a constructive community process to have deep community engagement regarding their concerns and views for the City’s future.
Included in the City Leadership Initiatives would be advocacy for services and infrastructure to be increased in our area. Attracting State Government work places to our region. Instead of the words improve ways of engaging with our community” which isn’t a commitment for any action, words such as form a process for future Community Panels to be used in decision making where required.”
The third Goal Natural Environment: –
I would like to change the goal as opening up our environmental areas should not be the driver for our commitment to such natural assets. I do not agree with opening all areas as some need to remain quiet, safe places of refuge for the sustainability of our wildlife. Our Redlands environment is our greatest economic asset but to allow it to be over loved will destroy the very asset that our economy is based upon.
One of the objectives is to support ecologically sustainable development through clear planning and policy. To make this an actual action or reality rather than simply a motherhood statement the City Plan would require an amendment.
I would therefore suggest under Catalyst Projects a review of the City Plan to amend where necessary to ensure “planning requirements to achieve ecologically sustainable development” is included. One point might be as simply previously all new houses were required to have a water tank but in 2013 this was removed, (I believe at the request of developers for the initial cost of houses), this requirement could again be added.
Initiatives and objectives refer to target rehabilitation, regeneration and “to commit to proactively preserve our Koala population”, yet the City’s environmental corridors for such sustainability of our wildlife have no specific protection. A Catalyst Project would to be commence an amendment package to amend the City Plan to have some action taken that would achieve a difference.
One Catalyst Project is the Coastline Activation yet the only project under this project is the activation of the Cleveland Point land access improvements – this is recently purchased land with no access while there are other areas across the City that require maintenance and upgrades. I would like to see the wording changed in this dot point 1 to remove listed Cleveland Point land as the only area to have prioritisation. If projects are listed in the Corporate Plan this means budget funding is given to this projects before others and I cannot agree to an unknown project at Cleveland Point being given priority over other existing water access across the City.
Wastewater Treatment Plants and Waste Management are necessary business as usual and for years I have voiced my concern that insufficient funding have been given to these areas to cover maintenance let alone develop into new forms of energy. I totally agree that these areas need to have a priority but am not agreeing to more budgets passing while Redlands wait for a regional solution. Our Waste Treatment Plants require urgent attention now and I would like to see the wording changed to address what is required now and funding in our future budgets commencing next year being given to the safety and needs of our Wastewater Treatment Plants.
Goal 4 Liveable Neighbourhoods – the recent resident survey showed over >82% of people are concerned with the over development of our City and the effect on their neighbourhoods. This has not been addressed in this Goal.
Under Catalyst projects Capalaba Town Revitalisation Project is listed as separate project and I agree with this as it is a City Wide Project. The same status should be given to the Cleveland Revitalisation Project as this is also a City wide Project.
Under place management the wording needs to be changes as it doesn’t only address City Centres but also our Village, Redlands Bay, Amity, Point Lookout, Alex Hills, Wellington Point, Birkdale, Thorneside etc. Our Villages are important hubs within our City and yet are omitted from this section. Again within being mentioned budget funding will not be prioritised for these gathering places.
Place Management has to be City Wide and while our City Centres are their own Project.
I would also like to see Council’s Cleveland administration building project as a separate project as being included under place making is not transparent. This Project could be a catalyst for Cleveland attracting residential and investment as well as housing council administration services.
One Catalyst Project is the Southern Moreton Bay Island Infrastructure – over the past 12 years or so millions have been allocated to the infrastructure of the SMBI. Going forward this is the ideal Project for a Citizen Jury or Panel so Council hears directly from the residents to ensure future funding is addressing their needs. If this infrastructure is to include waste water possibly than that should be included under transparently under the Environmental Projects.
I would also like to see a City wide approach to the delivery of required infrastructure and have the Mainland also listed. Our waste water pipes and treatment plants are in need of attention so this infrastructure should be a City wide heading.
Goal 5 Thriving Economy: –
The Vision statement includes recognising the benefit of our unique geography – this should include not only our location but our natural assets. An objective is to leverage Redlands Coast unique and diverse tourism destination to capture the tourism market…however the Catalyst Project do not marry up for actions to be taken in this area.
With the recent and unknown impacts of COVID our local economy is in for uncertain times. To have Catalyst Project that only deliver in certain areas and over a long period time does not assist our local business now.
Recently there was a presentation on directing funds to deliver short time projects that will assist local business over the next five years. The longer term “maybe deliverable” projects can wait as our businesses require assistance now. This is not business as usual but a challenging time where Councils need to pivot and address what the concerns and needs are now in our economy.
Projects that will inject funds into our Centres and Villages across the City. Small Projects such as street lighting to attract outside visitors to dine at night, projects that while promoting food security also increase tourism. Redlands cannot sit for another 8 years waiting to see if Toondah Harbour will or won’t be commenced. Redlands needs projects that commence immediately again I stress projects that deliver what is required now and not just the larger Catalyst projects where the impacts won’t be felt for years. All the smaller projects build stronger business areas and attract outside dollar in…then naturally the larger projects would follow.
I would like to see smaller projects that deliver included: –
- Place making across the City be included as an economic driver
- The Birkdale Community land definitely should be an economic Catalyst project to commence immediately so at least within a year so part of the area can be opened – if only for kayak launching to commence the tourist visitation to area.
- How wonderful and what a great tourism attractor it would be to have from the Birkdale land, linked to Thorneside, to Wellington Point, to Ormiston, to Cleveland Point to Thornlands, onto Victoria Point and Coochiemudlo Island and then through the Southern Moreton Bay Island where one could camp overnight before the return trip. These smaller projects would inject the much needed dollars into our economy.
Goal 6 Efficient and Effective Organisation: –
The Cleveland Administration building is mentioned in a previous goal; I believe it should also be included here for transparency as a Catalyst project.
One of the objectives 6.4 – Demonstrate good governance etc , these are similar words that also be included under the Leadership Goal.
I appreciate the opportunity to contribute as this is an extremely important draft of what could become the overarching document for Council’s direction and budget spending priorities.
I do believe more consultation is required with the community, more detail and transparency surrounding projects needs to be included and a change of mind set to address that action is required now due to the impacts of COVID on our social and economic communities. While there needs to focus to remain on a future vision for sustainability of the City, short term action with projects is required at this present point in time as our City has faced and will continue face uncertain times.
44 Wellesley Street
Wellington Point Qld 4160