Council asks state candidates to support the Redlands

Redland City Council has sent a timely reminder to all local state candidates of what projects and initiatives they want candidates to support during the state election on behalf of the community.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said the Redland City state election advocacy plan asked for a commitment from candidates to support key projects including upgrades to key public transport and state roads.

“Council does not want the Redlands forgotten during this election campaign and this plan will ensure candidates have a firm reminder of the projects our community needs to support our city now and into the future,” she said.

“The plan includes seeking a commitment from candidates to upgrade state roads in the city, in particular Cleveland-Redland Bay Road, as well as the duplication of the Cleveland rail line and the Eastern Busway.

“Congestion on state owned roads and public transport is one of the biggest concerns for residents and we want to ensure state candidates understand their responsibility in helping to alleviate this congestion.

“The plan also asks for the State Government to fully fund the $110 million economic transition of North Stradbroke Island.  Council has been consistent in asking the state to fund the infrastructure and projects needed to transition Straddie effectively and with the 2019 end of sandmining fast approaching this ask is more critical than ever.

“The advocacy document also asks for commitments to provide upgrades to jetties and ferry terminals needed to support other islands in our city.

“State candidates need to recognise and commit to providing the necessary funding to support the unique nature of the Redlands.  As a city with more than 220 kilometres of coastline, unemployment of more than 25 per cent on some of our islands and a higher than average population of retirees, we need a strong commitment from candidates to ensure our city’s unique geography and demographic challenges are front of mind at a state level.

“The advocacy plan also asks the State Government to support our environment by supporting Council’s Koala Conservation Strategy and Wildlife Connections plan and by ensuring state mapping protects small-scale koala stands we have identified in our own local mapping.”

Cr Williams is currently in Western Australia lobbying for improved funding as part of the Australian Local Government Association meeting, where she heard an address from Acting Federal Government Local Government Minister Darren Chester.

“Local Government provides approximately $13 billion to the national economy each year and employ more than 38,000 people, so we need to ensure all levels of government understand the local priorities as identified by the community and organisations like ALGA help to achieve that,” she said.

Deputy Mayor Wendy Boglary tabled the state advocacy document in Cr Williams’ absence and said it was an important document in advocating on behalf of the community to all state candidates and parties.

“This document will be sent to all state candidates and we will be asking them to explain how they will support these priorities on behalf of the community, so residents know where they stand before heading to the polls on 25 November,” Cr Boglary said.

“It includes a request for cost of living relief for residents by reducing the bulk water increases our community has been consistently hit with in recent years, as well as providing support for social services such as a focus on our ageing population and funding for the Redlands Surf Lifesaving Centre of Excellence and Resilience Centre.

“We don’t mind what political persuasion candidates represent, we just want them to clearly understand what the community believes are a priority for the State Government. We also hope to meet regularly with successful candidates following the election to ensure they stay true to their commitments. “

Council has written to all state candidates and asked them to meet with councillors next week to outline their response to the priorities outlined in the advocacy document.  Candidates’ responses will be uploaded to Council’s website along with the state advocacy document.