Author Archives: Cheryl

Mary Street, Built Out Pedestrian Refuge – Kilcoy – The reason behind this decision.

Category : General News

Doctor Weller is seeking to relocate the pedestrian refuge as explained:
As at 18th February 2021:
Work has commenced and almost completed for a pedestrian refuge at 42 Mary Street Kilcoy.
This is immediately outside a busy medical practice and removes ALL immediately accessible parking for unwell,elderly, disabled and people with wheelchairs,walking aids etc.
The most utilised pedestrian access is to IGA  3 parking spaces away .
Dr Weller asked permission to use my reply email as my position in this matter.  I am more than happy for Dr Weller to share my position with our residents.
To assist the publication of my position, I offer the advice over social media for wider distribution.
Dear Mark
Since, your question about the placement of the built out pedestrian refuge, I have retrieved the minutes of Council’s Ordinary Meeting dated 13 November 2019, whereby the report regarding parking options in Mary Street, and which includes all scenarios and supporting data is tabled.
I was approached by a business owner on 30 October 2019 regarding the preliminary plans and the proposed location of the built out pedestrian refuge. The business owner believed that the proposed site would have resulted in eight lost car parking spaces in front of the businesses.  The business owner suggested, after alleged discussions with you, that the refuge be placed closer to your surgery.  My understanding was “you were not opposed to the idea”.
I took this request to Council at the 13 November 2019 Ordinary Council Meeting, and the Officer’s report already records that “The pedestrian refuge is considered an essential requirement of the project (Mary Street).  The final location remains under review but will be positioned to minimise the impact on parking to local business”.
I believe the request from the business owner was honoured and this is reflective of what has now occurred.
When checking the Kilcoy traffic flow and safety improvements plan (July 2020), I am unable to find a better location than what is illustrated on the plan.
I know you have said to me that the refuge should be located across from the stairs that lead to the IGA store.  However, and I am not an engineer, but I would be very concerned for our elderly, our sick or injured residents trying to get across Mary Street so close to the intersections of Royston and Mary Streets.
I trust the integrity of this CBD traffic flow and safety improvements project.  As I have already stated at the two meetings that occurred between yourself, Garth Duffy, Marty & Lisa Tanwan, Joey Walker, I am not an engineer and I am not a truck driver, but I trust these professionals’ judgement.  The feedback to me, is that, this project will result in major traffic flow and safety improvements for Kilcoy.  The speed limit has been reduced to 50kph; however, we must ensure that all road users obey this rule.   No Excuses!!!
Mark, as a side issue, can I ask if any of your patients are aware of the parking area behind the surgery?  I have parked there a couple of times, but it appears to be underutilised.  It will not suit all patients, but it will assist many.
In my role as Councillor, I will be advocating for a robust streetscaping plan, and one that seeks community consultation.  This must be done correctly and reflect community’s perception.    As the project is advancing, I am receiving less and less negative comments.  I believe residents are only just starting to see the benefits this enormous project will bring to Kilcoy.
I will be interested to revisit this conversation this time next year with you Mark.
Sincerely

Cr Cheryl Gaedtke – Ordinary Meeting 24 February 2021

Category : General News

 Cr Cheryl Gaedtke – Ordinary Meeting 24 February 2021

 Agenda Item # 5 Matters of Public Interest

 There is a group of artists from Fernvale who are currently working from a container in Lowood and who would much prefer an art space more conducive to their hobby.  I am asking on their behalf if there is a space local to Fernvale that would be suitable.

Absolutely fabulous news that Queensland’s Anzac Day Dawn Services, marches and public commemorations will go ahead as normal in 2021 as announced by the Premier of Queensland.

Agenda Item # 35 Councillors’ Report

February

10 Council Ordinary Meeting

10 Council Workshop

10 Kilcoy State High School P & C Assn monthly meeting

11 Brisbane Valley Rail Trail Users Association – Nurinda Underpass Mural – Inspection of progress of works via bikes

11 Brisbane Valley Interagency Zoom Meeting

11 Esk Hospital Auxiliary

13 Over 50’s BVRT Bike Ride – Yarraman to Moore (49 km)

15 RADF Assessment Meeting – Esk

16 Economic Development and Tourism Committee Meeting – Esk

16 Esk Recreation Reserve Committee Meeting

17 Yowie Park Tree Planting

17 Kilcoy District Progress Inc. monthly meeting

17 Brisbane Valley Kilcoy Landcare Group Meeting – Kilcoy

18 Woodfordia – Creative Alliance First Nations Visual Artists Residency Industry Information afternoon

19 Special Meeting – Non-Profit Organisation

22 Toogoolawah State High School Investiture

23 Lowood QCWA Community Morning Tea

23 Kindred Spirits – catch up with the business owners

I was informed at the Kilcoy State High School P & C Assn meeting, that the school has been advised that it will receive a grant of $5.8m to build a two-story school hall.  This need has been identified years ago, and it is absolutely fantastic news that the growing school will enjoy such a wonderful achievement and a very needed hall!

Brisbane Valley Kilcoy Landcare Group are keen to arrange the showing of Kiss the Ground at Toogoolawah and Kilcoy.  The documentary will open after a guest speaker will share current information about the alternative farming methods.  The group look forward to working with Council in supporting the regenerative agriculture workshops being planned in the region during April and May.

There were around 25 artist that took part in the Creative Alliance First Nations Visual Artists Residency Industry held at Woodfordia over a four-day creative development intensive program.

 


Cr Cheryl Gaedtke – Ordinary Meeting 10 February 2021

Category : General News

Cr Cheryl Gaedtke – Ordinary Meeting 10 February 2021

Agenda Item # 5 Matters of Public Interest
Congratulations to all Australia Day nominees and award winners, well done, and a very happy birthday to our very own centennial Mrs Butler. Also welcome to our country to the new Australians naturalised during the Australia Day Ceremony.

The longest serving female mayor in New South Wales, Lilliane Brady has passed away at the age of 90. Mayor Brady has been remembered as a legend and a wonderful leader. Ms Brady had received a Lifetime Achievement Award and an Order of Australia medal. Ms Brady was mayor of the outback mining town of Cobar for almost 23 years, and a local councillor for almost 38 years. In 2020, Ms Brady was honoured to receive the Minister for Local Government Award for her commitment to increasing participation of women in local government.
The mayor was known for not suffering fools, and once when complimented by a Minister on what she was wearing at a Local Government Conference, Ms Brady replied by saying “Ï’m here for finance, not romance.”
I am so sorry I never got to meet Mayor Brady, and what a wonderful motivational speaker she would have been for such events as the Women Leading in Local Government Program 2021. A true inspiration to the 90 Queensland female Councillors currently undertaking the program.

Friends of the Forest invite residents who are interested in their forest care project to meet on 3rd March 2021. Numbers are restricted to COVID needs. Please contact Carolita Fuentes 0435 411 376 to confirm your attendance.

Following the success of the Stonehouse Open Day held in 2019, the historical Stonehouse Open Days will be held on 24th and 25th July this year. Further information to follow.

Agenda Item # 35 Councillors’ Report
January
7 Teams Meeting – 2021 Planning
20 Ordinary Council Meeting
20 Workshop Meeting
20 Brisbane Valley Kilcoy Landcare Meeting
21 Somerset Youth Leadership Camp 2021– Currimundi
25 Clean up Somerset Waterways & Parklands Meeting – Fernvale
26 Australia Day Award Celebrations – Esk
26 Mrs Butler – 100 year Birthday Celebrations – Esk
26 Kilcoy Australia Day Races
27 Kilcoy District Progress Alliance Committee BBQ
February
2 Mt Glen Rock Steering Committee Meeting – Esk
2 Kilcoy PA&I Society Meeting
3 Somerset Dam & District Progress Assn Meeting
4 Brisbane Valley Heritage Trail Meeting – Yarraman
5 Kilcoy Art Society – Courthouse Gallery / Toogoolawah Movie – The Dry
6 Yowie parkrun – 2nd Birthday Celebrations
9 Kilcoy Hospital Auxiliary Meeting

It is wonderful to see that the local Show Societies are planning for their 2021 shows, and that other local community groups are also planning their events for 2021. Let’s all hope that things continue to go well during the year and that there are no unforeseen circumstances that will prevent the successful staging of the planned events.


Cr Cheryl Gaedtke – Ordinary Meeting 20 January 2021

Category : General News

Cr Cheryl Gaedtke – Ordinary Meeting 20 January 2021

 Agenda Item # 5 Matters of Public Interest

I would like to acknowledge the oldest man in Australia and the fact he has just celebrated his 111th birthday.  Congratulations to Mr Dexter Kruger and I hope he had a great birthday celebration.  Mr Kruger was born in Kilcoy on January 13, 1910, he worked as a cattle farmer until he retired in his mid-90’s.  Asked what was the best invention, he said the telephone was the best invention he saw in his lifetime.  Mr Kruger described it as “magic”.

Ever since he turned 100, Mr Kruger has been asked the secret to a long and happy life.  “There’s no secret”, he said, just keep breathing, have three meals a day and the time goes on”.  “I do sing and whistle, and I have half a dozen prawns every day”, he added.

Agenda Item #41 Councillors’ Report

Whilst on holidays in North Queensland, I had a chance catch up with Cr Drew Wickerson, Councillor Rockhampton Regional Council.  Cr Wickerson completed the Local Government Elected Members Diploma at the same time as I undertook the same studies.  I was eager to learn more about the First Turkey MTB Park located at Mount Archer and the Mount Morgan MTB Trails.  It was an interesting experience to ride both trails, which are very different in many aspects.

I received complaints about non-compliant camping occurring in a Kilcoy Council park over the Christmas period.  Many thanks to the swift action of our Chief Executive Officer, who ensured that the matter was quickly rectified.  It appears that this attitude of using land for one’s own use is widely abused.  A local land owner was the unfortunate receiver of a large amount of rubbish and even human faeces at his property located north of our regional boundary.  The “bush doof” took place at Upper Kandanga between December 30 and January 2 with a report of more than 1000 people in attendance.  It was also reported that residents were furious that around 1000 people would enter a private property without permission.   The property owner is now left to clean up the area.


Cr Cheryl Gaedtke – Ordinary Meeting 17 December 2020

Category : General News

 Cr Cheryl Gaedtke – Ordinary Meeting 17 December 2020

 Agenda Item # 5 Matters of Public Interest

 The ongoing issue of hooning within our region is once again highlighted by the residue of rubber left on the bitumen.  Police target the behaviour by increased police presence, strong enforcement through infringement notices, prosecuting offenders where possible and impounding and immobilizing vehicles.  According to local stats there are many offenders living in nearby areas, and meet on a very sporadic basis.  Community members can report via the Policelink website https://www.police.qld.gov.au/reporting or the HOON Hotline 134 666 (13HOON).

A number of Kilcoy residents have approached me about their concerns with the frequency of power outages in the general area.  There are unconfirmed reasons for the outages, and these occurrences is outside of storms and bad weather, albeit, I would like to request that Council make contact with Energex to enquire about the reasons for the number of outages and future solutions to avoid the ongoing problems.

 

Agenda Item #27 Councillors’ Report

December

09           Ordinary Council Meeting

09           Workshop Meeting

10           Annual Tourism Volunteer Christmas Lunch – Linville

A lovely lunch was shared with many of our volunteers at the Linville Hotel.  I am sure that the recent community and business initiatives realized in this unique village has impressed all.

11           Friends of the Forest – Regeneration Project – Greenhide Reserve Linville

Many thanks to Friends of the Forest for organising the working bee at the special Linville location.  Four inquisitive girls shared an environmentally educational morning.  We are all looking forward to the next working bee.

17           Ordinary Council Meeting

17           Workshop Meeting

17           Council Break-Up & Christmas Function

 


 Cr Cheryl Gaedtke – Ordinary Meeting 9 December 2020

Category : General News

 Cr Cheryl Gaedtke – Ordinary Meeting 9 December 2020

 Agenda Item # 5 Matters of Public Interest

The Red Bench campaign has been given some really great support by our Councillors who have met on the Red Bench in Lowood to discuss what this initiative represents.  I would like to express my sincere appreciation of the time and advice offered by Senior Constable Toni Hay (Lowood Police) whilst we talked profundity about the available resources, programs and services here to help.  I acknowledge the support also offered by the Somerset Community Men’s Shed by their generous offer to paint a Red Bench in one of our towns.  We all seek to create pathways for a life free from violence and fear.

COVID-19 has tragically worsened domestic and family violence, with almost 1 in 10 women in a relationship experiencing domestic violence during the crisis, with two-thirds saying attacks started to became worse.  $152 million has been committed to the safety of Queensland women and girls and delivered 140 recommendations made in the Special Taskforce on Domestic and Family Violence report, Not Now, Not Ever, Putting an End to Domestic and Family Violence in Queensland.

The State Government has re-introduced legislation to ban single-use plastic items in Queensland, items such as straws, stirrers, cutlery and plates.  Following community consultation, 94 percent of the 20,000 respondents supported the proposal to ban single-use plastic items.  As this has been a difficult year the ban start date will be no earlier than 1 September 2021.  Local government, retailer associations and environment groups have all called for expanded polystyrene products to be included in the plastics ban.  There are preferred alternatives available that are less harmful to the environment.

 

Agenda Item # 30 Councillors’ Report

November

25           Council Ordinary Meeting

25           Council Confidential Workshop

25           Brisbane Valley Kilcoy Landcare Group AGM

26           Official opening Bertram Shallcross Bridge & Gregors Creek widening project

A lovely morning centered around the newly designed bridge with much safer approaches, and the newly upgraded section of Gregors Creek Road.  The family were pleased to carry out the honours of the official opening.  Mr Jeff Shallcross proudly shared with the those gathered, the history of the Shallcross family.  It was lovely to see the Shallcross family together for such a special milestone.

26           Kilcoy Recreation Ground Advisory Committee Meeting

27           Stanley River Environmental Education Centre end of year BBQ – Hazeldean

December

01-03     Fact Finding Trip – Tasmania Councils – Mountain Bike Tourism

04           Kilcoy Lions Club & Kilcoy District Progress Alliance – Meeting

04           Interview with Senior Constable Toni Hay, Lowood Police – Red Bench, Lowood

07           Somerset Regional Art Gallery – The Condensery Advisory Committee Meeting

07           Somerset Regional Art Gallery – The Condensery Advisory Committee Workshop

As a member of the Fact Finding delegation travelling to Derby and St Helens Tasmania, I found the three-day study tour very beneficial and which provided answers to all of our questions.  It also provided very relative information far beyond what we could have anticipated without direct contact and sharing lengthy discussions.  We met with the Mayor, General Manager, Council Officers directly involved with Derby and St Helens Mountain Bike Tracks.  Neighbouring Councils with completely different experience, visions and outcomes.  We also spoke to community members to understand their position with respect to the recently completed local government tourism initiatives.  And of course, the trails had to be ridden to understand the attraction and competing standards.  I feel extremely confident to be an active supporter of the proposed development of the Mt Glen Rock Recreation and Nature Park.  In addition to the above, Council developed introductory relationships with each Tasmanian Council, in the capacity of mountain bike tracks and rail trails.


Cr Cheryl Gaedtke – Ordinary Meeting 25 November 2020

Category : General News

 Cr Cheryl Gaedtke – Ordinary Meeting 25 November 2020

 Agenda Item # 5 Matters of Public Interest

 Community members are uniting in an effort to change the unwelcomed attitude of campers and other users of environmentally sensitive areas in the southern section of our region.  Community members are taking an active stance and will ensure that rubbish left behind is collected and disposed of appropriately.  In due time, this unacceptable occurrence will be reduced and eventually replaced with responsible behaviour and attitude.  Together, this despicable matter will be resolved.

 Congratulations to Hayden Smith representing Somerset Region SES Unit, for receiving the North Ipswich Rotary Police and Emergency Services SES Officer of the Year.

It has been reported that a new procurement agreement designed by the Australian Olympic Committee will provide Queensland companies with first preference of providing hundreds of services from torch design to the opening and closing ceremony fireworks.  Hundreds of Queensland businesses will be given the opportunity of building stadiums, roads and key resources for the 2032 Olympics as part of a “Queensland First” strategy to be ratified by the International Olympic Committee.

 

Agenda Item # 32 Councillors’ Report

November

11           Ordinary Council Meeting

11           Council Committee Meeting

12           Brisbane Valley Interagency Meeting

13           Funeral – Coen Michael Fry

The Kilcoy community said farewell to a very respected and well-liked young man who was regarded as a bit of a comedian.  Coen gave up his time to volunteer with the Rural Fire Brigade and judged cattle at the Ekka.  As a big fan for sausages in bread with onions and barbecue sauce, along with Bushell’s tea, the dish was served to guests following Coen’s funeral.  A precious gift to his family, and who lived a full and varied life with a true work ethic at such an early age.

16           RADF Committee Assessment Meeting – Esk

16           Somerset Herbs – Somerset Health Hubs Community Co-operative (launch and formation) – Esk

17           Economic Development & Tourism Committee Meeting – Esk

17           Esk Recreation Grounds Advisory Committee Meeting

18           Traffic & Safety Advisory Committee Meeting – Esk

18           Kilcoy Showgrounds & Racetrack Master Plan Meeting

21           Linville – Opening of Community Garden’s Sculptural Entry “Growing Together”

22           Linville – “A Song with Words” Camerata – Qld’s Chamber Orchestra & Barbara Lowing (Actor)

24           Kilcoy Interagency Meeting

24           Official Opening Coronation Hall Book Library – Somerset Dam & District Progress Assn.

The Linville Heritage Festival was held over the weekend 20 – 22 November and congratulations must go to two community groups – Linville Progress Association and Toogoolawah and District History Group for working together to make available a unique and interesting event.  With solid vision and hard work, the community of Linville is clearly the winner.  I also acknowledge community members who got in and shared the workload.  Well done to everyone!

 

 

 


Cr Cheryl Gaedtke – Ordinary Meeting 11 November 2020

Category : General News

 Cr Cheryl Gaedtke – Ordinary Meeting 11 November 2020

 Agenda Item # 5 Matters of Public Interest

 It is with a heavy heart that I share the sad news of a 20 year old Mt Kilcoy resident who lost his life in a car accident on Monday morning 9th November 2020.  The accident occurred on the D’Aguilar Highway between Kilcoy and the turn off to Harlin.  (My Father and the young lad’s Great Grandfather were great mates.)

I would encourage our residents to attend the Linville Heritage Festival to be held 20 -22 November 2020.  There is lots of information on the Linville Progress Assn.  Inc. Website.

Mortgage repayments are now cheaper than rents in many Brisbane suburbs, and it has been reported that those making the switch to home ownership are saving hundreds a month.  Kilcoy was mentioned as where buyers will see the greatest savings, around $470 per month cheaper than typical rent costs.  The report discloses the tendency is evident in all property types, however most common in units and houses in fringe locations where values are around $300,000 or lower.

Congratulations to Brisbane Valley Protein for receiving the Ipswich Region Food and Agribusiness Award presented at the City of Ipswich Business Excellence Awards.  Tough competition was provided by agribusinesses from across Ipswich, Scenic Rim, Lockyer and Somerset regions.

 

Agenda Item #25 Councillors’ Report

October

28           Ordinary Council Meeting

28           Council Committee Meeting

29           Human & Social Recovery Group Meeting

30           Councillor Day – Victoria Park, Brisbane

November

04           Somerset Dam & District Progress Assn Monthly Meeting

05           Brisbane Valley Heritage Trail Committee Monthly Meeting

08           SWFSA fish release – The Spit, Lake Somerset

08           Inspection 37 Davis Court, Hazeldean

A very enjoyable day held at Victoria Park, Brisbane on Friday 30 October.  A day that provided important information sharing and a chance to network with new and returning South East Queensland Councillors.  Appreciation to Council of Mayors, South East Queensland for organising the event, I look forward to a future networking opportunity.

A great morning was held with around twenty volunteers releasing between 100,000 and 120,000 Bass fingerlings at The Spit, Lake Somerset and Lake Wivenhoe.  Many thanks to Garry Fitzgerald and his crew for an educational morning.


Cr Cheryl Gaedtke – Ordinary Meeting 28 October 2020

Category : General News

Cr Cheryl Gaedtke – Ordinary Meeting 28 October 2020

Agenda Item # 5 Matters of Public Interest

Along with my daughter and granddaughters, I attended the Curious Festival held at the Empire Theatre, Toowoomba on Saturday 17 October. This was a great family event with lots of entertainment, bubbles and fun. I appreciated the festival theme – “the future belongs to the curious”. Council has been fortunate with the recent collaboration with this establishment and the opportunity for our local youth who are interested in the arts to take part in the Empire Youth Theatre right here in Esk.

A local resident reported the story of the little tractor and trailer on route around our region. The driver and his offsider are fundraising for a charity. The gentleman is known as The Travelling Jackaroo and is collecting for and supporting Dolly’s Dream. He has been welcomed to the Dolly’s Dream fundraising team in an effort not only to raise funds, but also raise important awareness against bullying. The Travelling Jackaroo plans to complete a trip around Australia raising funds.

It may be reflective of the COVID times; however, a local real estate was number one rural selling agent in Australia for the month of October. Well done to the team.

Agenda Item # 34 Councillors’ Report
October
19 Linville – Exercise group
20 Kilcoy State High School – Review
20 Brisbane Valley Kilcoy Landcare Group Monthly Meeting

A recent request I made on behalf of our residents and supported by the two Kilcoy schools for a continuation in an identified school bus service was rejected by DTMR. The department outlined the reasons why the request was denied and offered advice as to how to approach this matter in the future.

 


Cr Cheryl Gaedtke – Ordinary Meeting 14 October 2020

Category : General News

 Agenda Item # 5 Matters of Public Interest

 I would like to remind community members of the forthcoming Arts Queensland funded arts initiative.  On Friday 23rd October “Funny Mummies” a comedy showcase will be performed at the Somerset Civic Centre.  Empire Youth Theatre will be based at the Somerset Civic Centre for a six-week residency.  Flipside Circus will hold workshops in November.

Congratulations to the Lowood & Fernvale Community Bank Branch for another rewarding 2020 financial year.  A total of $33,561.00 was distributed throughout the Somerset region.  It has been acknowledged that this amount is representative of the cancellation of many community events due to COVID-19.  The branch has provided a massive 6% dividend on shareholder investments and over the ten years, invested $884,040 back into the Somerset region communities.

It is reassuring to learn that Kennedy Air has now positioned their Fire Boss firefighting aircraft to Watts Bridge, ready to support the QFES as required during the forthcoming summer fire season.

 Agenda Item # 47 Councillors’ Report

September

28           Meeting with Mr Jones and Ms Wheatstone – The Condensery, Toogoolawah

29           Kilcoy Interagency Meeting

29           ALGWA – Qld Branch AGM – zoom meeting

October

06           Kilcoy Tennis Club monthly meeting

07           Somerset Dam & District Progress Assn monthly meeting

08           Brisbane Valley Interagency Meeting

12           The Condensery – 5 year planning session

13           Consultation – Local Flood Management Plan – Kilcoy

A very important topic was discussed at the Kilcoy Interagency Meeting, whereby the provision of a community venue and home to many of the visiting services was supported by various service providers.  This initiative would provide a safe and inviting space for our community members to meet with relevant services.

Congratulations to all newly elected office and zone committee members who have put their hands up for the forthcoming year of the Australian Local Government Women’s Association – Queensland Branch, at their Annual General Meeting.

Residents have expressed their concerns again with the mistreatment of our waterways and environment.  This concern particularly relates to Savages Crossing and Twin Bridges areas.

 

 

 

 

 

 


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Somerset Farmers book your seat now for the Farmer's Big Night Out on Wednesday, 8 September at the Somerset Civic Centre.Enjoy a great evening of live entertainment, dinner and socialising. This event is Free for Somerset farmers.Call Council on (07) 5424 4000 to book your ticket now as seats are limited. ... See MoreSee Less
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Councillor Cheryl Gaedtke for a strong Somerset Region
See you there tomorrow morning for a sausage sandwich.🌭👍👍💲2-50 each ... See MoreSee Less
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Deputy Premier and Minister for State Development, Infrastructure, Local Government and PlanningThe Honourable Dr Steven MilesGreater council integrity for QueenslandersThe Office of the Independent Assessor will receive more funding and Queensland communities will see improved clarity for councillors around their decision-making, announced the Deputy Premier and Minister for Local Government today.The Deputy Premier announced $1.302 million over two years to support eight full-time equivalent positions in the Office of the Independent Assessor OIA.“It’s vital Queensland communities have confidence in the decision-making of their elected representatives, and we are looking to ensure that decision-making isn’t hindered by any confusion around potential conflicts of interest,” Mr Miles said.“The Government recently undertook a project which analysed the operations of the new councillor complaints framework to make sure it is working smoothly and effectively.“The analysis resulted in a number of recommendations, including streamlining the interactions between the department, the Office of the Independent Assessor (OIA) and the Councillor Conduct Tribunal (CCT).“We will streamline the process of declaring conflicts of interest, clarifying when a councillor can and cannot participate in decision-making, and how the conflict of interest framework, including the definition of ‘related party’, applies in small council settings.“We’re also providing greater resourcing support for OIA to help carry out its investigations into councillor complaints and keep up with high demand.“To support the OIA to carry out its investigations into councillor complaints we’re committing an additional $1.302 million over two years to support eight temporary full-time equivalent positions.It follows an announcement in December 2020, of an extra $250,000 for the OIA to fund an additional three staff.Mr Miles said the Government will continue working with key stakeholders such as the Local Government Association of Queensland (LGAQ), to look at ways of improving the system.Local Government Association of Queensland CEO Greg Hallam thanked the Deputy Premier and his department for working proactively with the LGAQ and its member councils to review the current conflict of interest laws to make sure they are achieving what they were designed to.“Ensuring Queensland’s conflict of interest rules are both workable and effective is of critical importance to local councils and the communities they serve,” Mr Hallam said.“We have provided the Deputy Premier and his department with an extensive submission outlining some of the unintended consequences our member councils are experiencing and recommending potential reforms to the Local Government Act and we look forward to continuing to work in partnership with the Government to progress those changes.”Mr Miles thanked the LGAQ and all stakeholders involved for their input to improve the sector.“It’s crucial we keep listening to stakeholders and support councillors to be the best representatives they can be for their communities,” Mr Miles said.“This is about making a good system even better by increasing transparency and integrity and providing Queenslanders the finest Local Government system in the country.”ENDSMedia contact: Katharine Wright – 0428 957 903 / Amy Hunter – 0423 651 484 ... See MoreSee Less
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