Category Archives: Budget 2020-21

Record $327m budget investment in Redlands Coast


Restarting Redlands Coast is at the heart of Council’s record $327 million COVID-affected budget for 2020-21 which provides a $3 million safety net for those most impacted by the pandemic.

The budget includes an expanded $80 million capital investment in the city aimed at generating and preserving local jobs and adding to and sustaining vital community infrastructure and services.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said it was expected Council’s finances would take a multi-million-dollar hit from COVID, including $3 million in COVID recovery funding that had been allocated to help the city recover from the pandemic.

“Right now we need money spent in our city and, with Council being one of Redland Coast’s largest employers, we are taking up the challenge by ensuring local money creates local jobs,” Cr Williams said.

“Council has been diligent in maintaining low levels of debt and a strong balance sheet over the years in preparation for a rainy day and the rain has arrived, so with local businesses struggling we are going to spend local to keep locals employed.

“A significant part of this record spend is thanks to the strong financial reserves that we built for a situation such as this.

“We are also topping up our COVID recovery fund by a further $1 million, providing a total of $3 million safety net to be used by those most impacted by the pandemic.

“While some Councils have chosen to spread rate relief broadly, we have adopted a deliberate strategy of supporting those who need it most by keeping money aside to provide relief when that need is better understood,” Cr Williams said.

“We know the full impacts of the COVID pandemic won’t be known until later this year when support like the Federal Government’s Job Keeper program have ended and this funding will allow us to do that.

“This may be through rates relief, business support or grants to the community; we will keep an eye on the impacts and have that money on hand to respond when and where it is needed most.”

Cr Williams said Council would absorb as much of the COVID impacts as possible, without passing on the impact to residents.

“We will do this by adopting an operating deficit budget and keeping the increase in general rates revenue to 2.99 percent taking in all rating categories – or about 62 cents a week for a typical category 1a, owner-occupied household, excluding separate charges, utilities and State Government charges.

“The extra money collected in rates through this year’s increase will contribute towards further COVID-19 recovery measures to help areas hardest hit by the pandemic response.

“We have also reduced other charges, with the environment separate charge down 4.7 percent and the landfill remediate charge down almost 26 percent.”

Cr Williams said as part of its COVID response Council had strengthened its focus on spending locally to help stimulate the economy.

“It is about getting people out an about again, getting the economy moving, supporting residents, backing businesses, restoring the climate for local employment and creating opportunity.

“It has allowed us to offer total pensioner rates and utilities rebates of almost $3.5 million, with rates rebates of $335 a year for a full pensioner or $167.50 for a part-pensioner.”

Cr Williams said it was disappointing the State Government had increased bulk water costs by a further 6.4 per cent, meaning the city’s total bulk water costs were now $43.4 million.

“This increase is on top of hefty increases over the last three years and comes despite us asking the State to hold bulk water costs to help residents respond to the COVID pandemic.

“To put this in perspective, the city’s bulk water bill is more than half of what we will spend in our capital expenditure program to provide vital community infrastructure.

“Despite this increase Council has kept its retail water consumption increase to just 2.13 percent.”

The 2020-21 budget at a glance:

  • Record $327 million investment in Redlands Coast.
  • An increase in general rates revenue of 2.99 percent taking in all rating categories – or about 62 cents a week for a typical category 1a, owner-occupied household, excluding separate charges, utilities and State Government charges.
  • Capital expenditure of almost $80 million.
  • The State Government’s bulk water charge, over which Council has no control, increases by about $36 for the average ratepayer to fund a total cost of almost $43.4 million this year.
  • Environment separate charge down 4.7 percent and the landfill remediation charge down almost 26 percent – a reduction of $16 on last year for both charges.
  • Council’s retail water consumption charge up by about 2.13 percent.
  • Total pensioner rebates rises to almost $3 million, with rates rebates of $335 a year for a full pensioner or $167.50 for a part-pensioner and other utility charge remissions and rebates totaling $467,000.

Capital expenditure program at a glance:

  • $30 million for transport, roads and traffic projects.
  • $3.2 million for other infrastructure projects.
  • $10.2 million for marine and foreshore projects, including canal and breakwater works.
  • $12.7 million for water, waste and wastewater projects.
  • $13.8 million for parks, open space and conservation.
  • $2 million for community and cultural development.

Go to our website at redland.qld.gov.au/budget for full budget information.

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Investment keeps Redlands Coast naturally wonderful


Redland City Council will spend more than $31 million enhancing and maintaining the city’s naturally wonderful parks, conservation areas and sports areas in 2020-21.

It builds on a multi-million-dollar program of park and playground upgrades across the city in recent years and follows the acquisition of key strategic land for community use, including the former Commonwealth land at Birkdale, historic Willard’s Farm, the Redlands Coast Regional Sport and Recreation Precinct at Mt Cotton and the former Department of Primary Industries land at Alexandra Hills.

Mayor Karen Williams said the Redland City budget, delivered today, includes $13.8 million for improving popular community parks and sports fields alone.

“There is $1.6 million for the Hanover Drive Park upgrade at Alexandra Hills, $1.3 million for
Apex Park at Wellington Point, $1.1 million for Headland Park at Point Lookout and close to another $1 million for the next stage of Thornlands Community Park,” Cr Williams said.

“We have also seen substantial works either completed or underway in Raby Esplanade Park and at Pt Lookout Oval.

“These are just some of the parks across the city to benefit from major makeovers, as we know Redlanders love their outdoors spaces and we want them to be the best they can be.

“Simply maintaining our parks – mowing and cleaning to keep them in tip top shape and safe – will take the total investment to $30.2 million in 2020-21, while fire mitigation alone costs almost $2 million.”

Cr Williams said she was excited by the potential of the former Commonwealth land at 362-388 Old Cleveland Road East, Birkdale, which was acquired last December.

“Council has backed heritage protection for key features of the site, including the former US Army Radio Receiving Station used in World War II,” she said.

“We worked hard over several years to purchase this land to ensure it becomes a great community asset for Redlands Coast.”

Cr Williams said the commitment in this year’s Budget followed more than $3.5 million in park upgrades set to open in the coming week.

“I know Redlanders love their parks and they will have a whole lot more reason to love them with upgraded parks including Thornlands Community Park, which opens this Saturday; Raby Esplanade Park in Ormiston that opens mid next week; and Apex Park at Wellington Point,” Cr Williams said.

“As part of this year’s Budget we will continue that investment, providing plenty of exciting new parks for local families to enjoy.”

Cr Williams said Council was also committed to supporting sports groups, with major renewal projects planned for Thorneside’s William Taylor Memorial Sportsfield and Redland Bay’s Charlie Buckler Sportsfield.

“We also have earmarked $612,000 to progress the Redlands Coast Regional Sport and Recreation Precinct proposal for Heinemann Road, Mount Cotton,” Cr Williams said.

“The masterplan for this new multi-million-dollar regional sport and recreation precinct has been approved, with the project implemented in stages to provide exciting new sporting facilities.

“With our sports group particularly hard hit by measures to keep COVID-19 at bay, we have already moved quickly to provide them with access to a $50,000 operational funding pool from last year’s budget to help them continue supporting the local community.

“Council is also continuing to work with any clubs suffering financial hardship to ensure they are supported through COVID-19.”


Major parks and sportsground projects

Hanover Drive Park upgrade, Alexandra Hills, $1.6 million

Apex Park renewal, Wellington Point $1.3 million

Headland Park upgrade, Point Lookout $1.1 million

Thornlands Community Park stage 2B $996,000

William Taylor Memorial Sportsfield renewal, Thorneside $827,000

Charlie Buckler Sportsfield carpark renewal and expansion $800,000

Raby Esplanade Park stage 2 $777,000

Redlands Coast Regional Sport and Recreation Precinct $612,000

Go to our website at redland.qld.gov.au/budget for full budget information.

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Redlands Coast island infrastructure boost


Redlands Coast island communities will benefit from more than $11.1 million in major infrastructure and roads spending in the 2020-21 Redland City Council budget.

Mayor Karen Williams said the allocations to projects across the Southern Moreton Bay, North Stradbroke and Coochiemudlo islands underscored Council commitment to improving island infrastructure.

“And we hope this is just the start of the post-COVID investment, with Council continue to push hard for state and federal government funding assistance to bring forward shovel-ready projects for island communities,” Cr Williams said.

“We see projects such as the Glendale Road emergency access road on Russell Island and a range of footpath projects and road improvements as vital to the islands’ futures.”

Council’s 2021 budget, adopted today, includes multi-million-dollar investments in the Southern Moreton Bay Islands as part of a total of a $21.6 million to be spent directly on caring for Redlands Coast island communities – up $1.7 million on last financial year.

“Big ticket projects such as the Russell Island pontoon upgrade, which will cost $3.5 million this financial year, the Weinam Creek car park, which will cost $3.4 million, and another $1.5 million for the islands’ Green Seal program will help to significantly improve conditions for islanders,” Cr Williams said.

“These three key projects are critical to improving access to and around the Southern Moreton Bay islands, with the Russell Island pontoon the start of major marine transport infrastructure renewal program which will now to be accelerated to include upgrades to the jetties, gangways and pontoons at Macleay, Lamb and Karragarra islands over three years.

“One of Redlands Coast’s largest-ever marine projects, this partnership with the Department of Transport and Main Roads will have significant transport, tourism and recreational benefits for the region.

“Another $795,000 will be spent on the Canaipa Point Drive off-road footpath on Russell Island, with $259,000 allocated to upgrade Macleay Island Community Park.

“Island waiting sheds and bus shelters will be upgraded at a cost of $404,000.”

Other major island projects include the upgrade of Point Lookout’s Headland Park on North Stradbroke Island ($1.1 million) and park and streetscape asset renewal on Coochiemudlo Island ($270,000).

Go to our website at redland.qld.gov.au/budget for full budget information.

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Massive boost to make it easier to get around Redlands Coast


More than half of Redland City Council’s projected record capital spend for 2020-21 will go towards transport and traffic solutions, with a dozen big-ticket projects and programs alone costing more than $30 million.

The capital outlay in today’s budget also has a strong focus on active transport options, with more than $5.8 million directed at footpaths and cycleways alone to make it easier for our community to leave the car at home and get on their bikes or head out for walks.

Mayor Karen Williams said Council would continue to work with the state and federal governments to bring forward further funding for a multi-million-dollar catalogue of other shovel-ready road and transport infrastructure projects.

“The $80 million in budgeted capital expenditure is expected to hit a record more than $90 million once carry-over funds and anticipated state and federal assistance is factored in,” Cr Williams said.

“More than $9 million will be injected into the city’s Road Renewal Program, with $1.8 million going to Regional Road Alliance Program projects and another $1.7 million to the Roads to Recovery Program.

“Another $1.5 million will go towards our bus shelter and seat renewal program and $525,000 for the Cleveland Rail bus station. We want to encourage more residents to use public transport than just have machines laying bitumen.

“Our island communities will benefit from the start of a $28.6 million two-year project to upgrade the jetties, gangways and pontoons at Russell, Macleay, Lamb and Karragarra islands, with $3.5 million for the Russell island project.

“At Weinam Creek, the gateway to the Southern Moreton Bay Islands, we have dedicated $3.4 million for the carpark development, and we have committed another $1.5 million to the sealing of island roads.

“All this is not only vital to our island residents but also to the development of a sustainable tourism industry to support local jobs creation.”

Cr Williams said Redlands Coast’s great attraction – its waterways and foreshores – came with a substantial cost.

“With more than 335km of coastline, our operating maintenance costs for marine infrastructure, including boat ramps and jetties, foreshore work and canals will total $8.5 million over and above the $10.2 million earmarked for capital works this financial year,” she said.

Cr Williams said Council was also seeking vital infrastructure commitments from the State Government under its Works for Queensland program and the Federal Government under its Local Road and Community Infrastructure Program and Financial Assistance Grants to add impetus to its infrastructure investment.

“We already have 64 projects worth almost $83 million that are shovel-ready and which, if funded, will support jobs growth and deliver improvements for our community,” Cr Williams said.

“These include community disaster resilience and infrastructure improvements worth
$10.4 million for North Stradbroke Island and $8.6 million for the Southern Moreton Bay Islands, communities which have been particularly hard hit.

“It also includes millions of dollars’ worth of upgrades to the Redlands Coast transport network, including 6.2km of footpaths, 26km of resurfacing mainland roads and 3.7km of green seal for the Southern Moreton Bay Islands in the next financial year alone to help residents and visitors move around the city faster and safer.”

Major road, traffic and transport projects and programs

Road Renewal Program $9 million

Russell Island pontoon upgrade $3.5 million

Raby Bay revetment walls and groynes $3.7 million

Weinam Creek development carpark $3.4 million

Wellington Street and Panorama Drive road upgrade $3.3 million

Southern Redland Bay boat ramp $1.8 million

Regional Road Alliance Program $1.8 million

Roads to Recovery Program $1.7 million

Southern Moreton Bay Green Seal program $1.5 million

Bus shelter and seat renewal program $1.5 million

Canaipa Point Drive off-road footpath (Oasis Drive – Keats Street) Russell Island $795,000

Kinross Road upgrade, Thornlands $700,000

Main Road, Wellington Point, footpath and retaining wall upgrade $650,000

Cleveland Rail bus station $525,000

Moreton Bay Cycleway, Victoria Point (School Road – Pt O’Halloran Road) $500,000

Go to our website at redland.qld.gov.au/budget for full budget information.

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Councillors and senior officers forgo pay rise


Redland City Councillors have forgone a pay rise at the Special Budget Meeting today, saving the City $25,137.

Mayor Karen Williams said Councillors unanimously voted to not accept the remuneration set out for Councillors by the Local Government Remuneration Commission for the 2020/21 financial year.

“Considering the hardship being experience by some of our residents and business community, we could not in good conscience accept a pay rise,” she said.

Cr Williams said the decision by Councillors had been further supported by Council’s senior and executive officers who had also proactively agreed to not accept a pay increase.

“The combined impact of Councillors and Council’s 22 senior officers not accepting a pay increase will save residents about $150,000, which in the current economic environment will be welcome news for the community,” she said.

“Council has worked hard to deliver stimulus packages to ease the burden of locals where possible.

“While our salary savings may not seem a lot in the grand scheme of things, it is a statement of our solidarity with the Redlands Coast community.”

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