David Hudson to chair new FPAC
Musician, artist, indigenous advocate and Council’s cultural advisor, David Hudson, has been nominated as chair of the First Peoples Advisory Committee (FPAC).
A number of minor changes have been made to the FPAC following it being disbanded prior to the March 2020 local government elections.
Changes include the reduction of members from 15 members to a minimum of 10, with the option to invite specialists or interested parties to participate in a meeting, while the annual ‘special meeting’ has been removed, reducing the number of meetings per year from seven to six.
The aim of the FPAC is to provide Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people of the Cairns local government area with input into Council decision making processes.
Step in the right direction for Gordonvale overpass
A proposed pedestrian overpass to be built as part of the $481 million Bruce Highway upgrade from Edmonton to Gordonvale has been given in principle Council support.
When complete, the overpass will provide a crucial pedestrian link for residents on the western side of the Bruce Highway into the centre of Gordonvale.
However, the location of the overpass requires Transport and Main Road (TMR) use Council land adjacent to Charlton St in Gordonvale and within the Alley Park (west) Sporting Master Plan for the footpath connections.
The impact on Alley Park (west) will prompt a revision of the Master Plan, which will occur in the next financial year.
Go Clubs serves up tennis funding
Trinity Beach Tennis Club will receive $4,290 in funding assistance for the construction of an all abilities ramp.
The club has been actively advancing its wheelchair tennis and the Run n Roll program, and the Go Clubs Essentials funding for installation of the ramp will make access easier for participants of these programs.
Program deliveries literacy outcomes for thousands
Council delivered 215 events to more than 7,200 participants as part of its First 5 Forever in the 2019-20 financial year.
The sixth year of Cairns Libraries First 5 Forever (F5F) family literacy program was delivered at all eight libraries, as well as community outreach events and through partnerships.
Funded by the State Library of Queensland, the family literacy program is aimed at supporting stronger language and literacy environments for young children aged zero to five years, along with their families.
While face-to-face programming was interrupted during the mandatory library closures earlier this year, since the reopening of libraries services, new initiatives have been developed to support families and carers during the current pandemic.
Ongoing planning will continue to ensure that programs respond to community needs and are reviewed in line with government restrictions.
Support for local musical production
Cairns artist Andrea Allumay has received Council support to stage a modern musical theatre piece titled The Last Five Years at Tanks Art Centre.
Council has endorsed a $5000 Arts and Cultural Assistance grant towards Tank 5 venue hire and resources to help the artist in staging the production in January 2021.
Ms Allumay will perform in the show alongside professional director and performer Michael Lee Porter, both who backgrounds in performance and musical theatre, including involvement in recent Cairns Choral Society productions.
Program aims to improve deadly digital skills
Cairns Libraries has been awarded a $10,000 Deadly Digital Communities (DDC) Grant to help to bridge the digital divide for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
To be delivered in 2021, Council will seek to partner with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander groups to provide a program that will improve digital literacy skills and access to learning opportunities.
The grant is an ongoing partnership between the Queensland Government led by State Library of Queensland and Telstra.
Governance and Economics Committee
Council reaffirms CQUniversity relationship
Cairns Regional Council will enter into a new four-year Memorandum of Understanding with CQUniversity.
A four-year MOU was signed between the two organisations in November 2016, with the intent of fostering a collaborative relationship to enhance and progress mutually beneficial outcomes of relevance to the Cairns community and Tropical North Queensland.
The current MOU, which expires on 4 November, has helped to deliver environmental, entrepreneurial, artistic and economic outcomes.
The education industry in Cairns has evolved in the past four years and the university has grown and evolved to meet new opportunities.
The new MOU builds on the established relationship, with some amendments to better reflect current and future priorities, and will encourage industry development or diversification that could result in direct or indirect economic benefit for the local economy.
Works Committee (Infrastructure, Water, Waste and Wastewater)
Water mains to be replaced
More than $2 million will be spent to replace water mains in Redlynch, Bungalow and Mirriwinni.
The works are part of Council’s annual water main replacement program, which identifies aging or deteriorated water mains that need to be replaced, generally because of persistent breakages.
Council endorsed $774,000 to replace a 710-metre, 100mm water main along Redlynch Intake Rd with a 225mm pipe, with works to be completed June 2021.
A further $835,000 has been allocated for the replacement of a 5km-long main at Stager Rd, Mirriwinni, with completion scheduled in June 2022.
Finally, two sections of mains, totalling 550-metres, will be replaced at Little Spence St, Bungalow, at a cost of $530,000 and with a scheduled completion of June 2021.
While there have been no failures in these two sections of the Little Spence St main (at Aumuller St and at Brown St) over the past two years, a hot water issue has been identified.
The new main will be installed at a greater depth with increased cover to reduce issues with water temperature.
Dam sitting at 88 per cent capacity
Copperlode Dam was sitting at just above 88 per cent capacity on 5 October, slightly above the level it was during the same period two years ago, but still below 2019 levels.
Water production for September totalled 2036 megalitres, at an average of 67.8 megalitres per day, with 1549.5 megalitres accessed from Copperlode Dam and 486.5 megalitres from Behana Creek.
Significantly, rainfall in the Copperlode Dam catchment area for September was 106mm, compared to just 6mm for the same period in the previous year.
Improving roundabout safety for cyclists
Council has updated 29 roundabouts and progressing works on a further six to increase safety for cyclists.
Council manages 157 roundabouts across the region, many being single lane with no dedicated cycle lane, which can lead to confusion as to who has right of way and where the cyclists are supposed to ride.
The roundabout safety program and associated improvement works, which have been rolled out over the past three years, aim to provide improved clarity as to who has right of way, as well as provide safer passage for cyclists either through the roundabout or via off-road paths.
Council has budgeted $1.76 million over three years for the program, with Federal Government Black Spot funding of $935,000 received to use towards the initiative.
Resolutions resulting from the above Committee Meetings are to be ratified at the next Ordinary Meeting of Council, to be held on 28 October 2020.