Burrum District Community Briefing
Dear Residents,

Thank you for attending the fourth of the Fraser Coast Regional Council Community Briefings.


These are being held across the region to hear your concerns and keep you up-to-date with what is happening within Council and particularly your area.
We decided very quickly after the March 15 election last year that one of our main priorities as an amalgamated Council was to create a two-way dialogue with residents.
We live in a large region so it is important we get out and about to the many different communities to hear your ideas and concerns to consider when making plans for your area.
Many issues and questions were raised at the Burrum District briefing. Below are answers to the questions.
The Councillors and staff who attended the briefing feel that it was very successful and I would like to thank everyone who attended.

Yours faithfully

Councillor Mick Kruger

Fraser Coast Regional Council


Question 1: Con Loss
Mr Loss wants the same duty of care afforded to Howard that is shown to other parts of the region.
The Burrum Chamber of Commerce held a meeting with the Council’s CEO Andrew Brien and Economic Development Officer Andrew Jackson. They received a response to their enquiries about two months after the meeting saying Mr Jackson would get back to them in two weeks but that did not happen. Mr Loss asked if the community’s expectations were discussed at Council meetings and if not they should be.
A: The Council’s CEO has responded to the Burrum Chamber of Commerce and the Chamber has since met with Fraser Coast Councillor Gerard O’Connell and the Council’s Economic Development Officer Andrew Jackson as part of the Council’s Economic Development Strategy Workshops. Staff are compiling detailed answers to the Chamber’s questions that will be forwarded to the Chamber when completed.

Question 2: Frank Lovett
Mr Lovett wants the Council to address flooding in East Street. The wall on a nearby dam is too high causing the flooding. Mr Lovett has already provided Council staff with information and photographs but so far the Council has done nothing to alleviate the flooding. He considers the problem man made.
A: External Services investigated and staff are working with Mr Lovett and adjoining property owners to try and resolve the matter expediently.

Question 3: Alan Peebles
Mr Peebles is concerned about silting in the Burrum River. He has travelled up the river by boat and flown over it and considers the silting to be a major environmental problem. He suggested Councillors and Council staff take a flight over the river as far as the upper reaches, to see for themselves then put pressure on the State Government to correct the problems.
A: Mayor – It has been a problem for years. It is difficult to get permits from the State Government to do any remedial work, but the Council will investigate.

Question 4: Carol Bussey

Ms Bussey congratulated the Council on its newsletter. She said residents in Burrum Heads did not get the Observer or the Independent so the Council newsletter was the only way they could receive Council news.
A: The Independent goes to Toogoom and Howard where it is delivered to letter boxes, and it is bulk dropped in Torbanlea and Burrum Heads. Howard, Torbanlea and Toogoom residents can obtain a copy of the Hervey Bay Observer as a part of the daily newspaper the Fraser Coast Chronicle.
Ms Bussey also asked the Council to support the Glossy Black Conservancy to protect the Glossy Black Cockatoo, an endangered species found along the Burrum River, and in Howard and Walligan. She said the Council could become a partner in the initiative for $5000 (as have the Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast Regional Councils) or could become a sponsor (like Bundaberg Regional Council) or a friend (like Gympie Regional Council).
A: The Council actively supports the Glossy Black Cockatoo Conservancy through the promotion of the Land For Wildlife Program.

Question 5: Josef Froeschl
Could the Council please investigate the bus stop in Howard?
The bus pulls up near the intersection in William Street while children are standing on the other side of the street. They all then run across the road to board the bus. It is extremely dangerous.
Could the Council please find out who is responsible for the bus stop and ask them to put in a bus shelter to protect our children?
A: The External Services directorate is investigating relocating the bus stop and installing a shelter.

Question 6: Cheryl Gray
Ms Gray thought the community briefing was not advertised well enough resulting in a small turn out.
She wants more footpaths in Howard, particularly in the main street where she would like footpaths on both sides of the road. Footpaths to the nursing homes would also be good for those in wheelchairs and using walking frames. Without footpaths the elderly residents are risking their lives walking on the road.
A: External Services are reviewing the need for footpaths within Howard. Staff will liaise with the Progress Association.

Question 7: Judy Sheen

Could the Council find out if there is any truth in rumours that soon the trains will not be stopping at Howard? Ms Sheen said that many residents relied on the train to get to Brisbane for medical appointments, especially those who did not have cars. Elderly people in the area were worried about the prospect of losing train services. Could the Council investigate and let the Progress Association know?
A: Council will liaise with Queensland Rail to determine if there are any plans to change the current arrangements for trains at Howard to determine if there are any proposed changes. Once Queensland Rail has responded to Council’s requests for information a response will be provided to the community.

Question 8: Con Loss
Trucks and rail contractors turn around on the road verge near his house on the corner of Henry Drive and Tremlin Street churning up the grass and mucking up the table drain. Each time he mows he has to fill in the ruts. Could the Council put in posts or plant trees to protect the verge?
A: Staff have resolved the issue with Mr Loss. Guide posts were installed.

Question 9: Alan Peebles
Glossy Black-Cockatoos have a very restricted diet, feeding only on the seeds in cones of she-oaks (Casuarina and Allocasuarina) and only on selected individual trees.
Some of the people buying new blocks in the area have destroyed all the trees that these birds feed on, usually without knowing their importance to the Glossies. Could the Council distribute a leaflet to land purchasers in the area explaining the importance of the trees to the birdlife? Some new residents who have destroyed trees say they would not have done so if they had known about their importance beforehand.
A: The Council actively supports the Glossy Black Cockatoo Conservancy through the promotion of the Land for Wildlife Program. Information on the Land for Wildlife Program will be included in the New Resident’s information pack.

Question 10: Mal Chard
Mr Chard was concerned that the Chamber of Commerce had not heard from the CEO Andrew Brien and Council’s Principal Officer Economic Development Andrew Jackson after receiving only an interim response after their meeting. He said residents in the outer areas would be upset if the Council did not communicate adequately with them. He said that a meeting held at the Susan River Homestead between the Council and the Chamber was supposed to happen quarterly but six months had passed since the first meeting without any mention of another meeting.
A: The Council’s CEO has responded to the Burrum Chamber of Commerce and the Chamber has since met with Fraser Coast Councillor Gerard O’Connell and the Council’s Economic Development Officer Andrew Jackson as part of the Council’s Economic Development Strategy Workshops. Staff are compiling detailed answers to the Chamber’s questions that will be forwarded to the Chamber when completed.

Question 11: Mal Chard
Howard needs a sewerage system in order to expand and to attract accommodation providers. Is that likely to happen?
A: The Fraser Coast Regional Council’s Land Use Strategy will amongst other issues, be planning for residential growth opportunities, as well as analysing the infrastructure required to support resultant settlement patterns. The potential for growth in Howard will be considered as part of this project.

Question 12: Mal Chard
The community centre needs to be extended particularly for more rooms to attract and accommodate more health services. Is that possible?
A: This project is one of a number of projects in the Howard/Torbanlea area that Council’s Major Projects section is preparing a report for Council’s consideration.

Question 13: Mal Chard
Where is the Council up to with the proposed purchase of the railway land in Howard. He said two parties were interested in buying parts of the land the Torbanlea Museum is on and part could be set aside for a tribute to the mining industry.
A: Mayor – The State Government was reducing the number of departments from 23 to 13 and the railway land now came under a different department which is reassessing the situation. He saidthat the price of the land should have come down because of the economic situation. Unofficially the State Government had agreed to the proposal but it would depend on what the new department came up with.
The Director of community Services Peter Smith said that the Council’s Major Projects Team was investigating ways to develop the Torbanlea Museum land and would report back to the Council.

Question 14: Mal Chard
Boom gates are needed on the railway crossings in Howard. Residents have been pushing for boom gates for 15 years without success. The crossings are particularly dangerous in summer when the sun is in the driver’s eyes. Could the Council lobby the government to have them installed?
A: Director of External Services Ron Smith – The Council supports Howard residents and has been lobbying Queensland Transport to have boom gates installed but QR and QT said they were
concentrating on high priority level crossings in North Queensland where there had been a series of accidents. The Council would continue to lobby for boom gates.

Question 15: Bill Gosewisch
What is happening with the boat ramp car park at Howard?
A: Director of External Services Ron Smith – Negotiations were still proceeding. The Council did not want to take control of the land because it was contaminated. The Council was prepared to take control of the road, toilets, barbecues and the boat ramp while the State Government retained
control of the remainder of the area. The contaminated areas would be fenced.

Question 16: Veronica Andrews
How often is Wal’s Camp boat ramp maintained?
A: Council staff clean the ramp on an as “required” basis.
The residents replied that they wanted the ramp cleaned every three months.

Question 17: Carol Bussey
A sign cemented into the ground near the fish cleaning table at Burrum Heads should be removed because it has sharp edges and is at a dangerous height for children. Ms Bussey said the sign was unnecessary because the information was provided on other signs.
A: Council staff will investigate.

Published by Henry Sapiecha 15th August 2009