Sue Brooks May 22nd, 2013
Just working, working, working these days but feel sad that I neglect my blog… This blog has always been mainly a friendly place and I miss the exchange of opinions and ideas. It seems Facebook has taken over this role somewhat but I find people can be nastier on Facebook also. It is sad that people sometimes obviously feel safe to be nasty electronically but I often wonder would the same words be said face to face! Me thinks not!
But we are very busy with our new Food Truck business which requires 4 am starts and is hard work for both of us but there weren’t many job offers coming our way so buying ourselves a job seemed sensible.
The house is still a work in progress…. Maybe the tiler that we have waited over 2 weeks now for a quote will get back to us tomorrow. I am so tempted to nag but decided better not… Once the tiling is finished the vanities and taps and showers go in and we can move in. What a relief that will be…
I also try hard not to get involved or care too much about Council stuff. I am appreciating a rest from that life and the hectic world that local politics is but I am still mad keen to ensure Hervey By is not spoiled and am glad that the market downturn is keeping the development at bay because this Council is very, very pro development!
Anyhow I hope you are snuggled up tight with this cold weather and that life is treating you with kindness. Take care as always..
Sue Brooks February 19th, 2013
At no time ever did the previous amalgamated Council discuss getting rid of the Hervey Bay Esplanade nodes nor did the previous Council desire increased height limits! The ‘new’ draft scheme is exactly what I expected of Mayor O’Connell. It is now that his true desires become apparent. He has rewritten the Hervey Bay Planning a scheme and allowed high density right along the entire foreshore from Urangan to Pt Vernon. A travesty! Noosa put itself on the map by saying no to high rise! But the developers have got what they want. It is time once again for the Hervey Bay community to stand up and fight or we will surely lose our much envied lifestyle! There are 11 Councillors. It will require 6 of them to overturn this stupid ill thought out change for the worse.
Sue Brooks February 13th, 2013
What a very poor choice of headline in the Fraser Coast Chronicle today that trivialises such a very important issue. Anyone who has regularly visited any Council pound sees the end result of irresponsible cat and dog breeding. Beautiful, beautiful pets that spend their last days in a noisy horrible cage before that one way trip to the vet. Why do we as a society continue to turn a blind eye to a growing problem? We get upset about the way cattle are treated at an overseas abattoir, and rightly so, but here in our own towns and cities we are killing cats and dogs by the hundreds week in week out!
The Hervey Bay Animal Refuge (HBAR) is a privately run facility. It appears not to have a wide representative membership, regular public meetings or an open and accountable committee. I am unsure if it is in fact a legally functioning non profit organisation or registered charity. From what I
observe it is run more like a business. HBAR has a high turnover of volunteers and the most recent very hard working caretakers have just left. They say their treatment by ‘committee’ members was far from civil. Many other ex volunteers tell me similar stories.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with making a profit via rescuing pets in need. In fact without a profit rescue groups could not survive. But the Hervey Bay Animal Refuge continues to publicly plea for donations as well as having surrender fees and a large regular income via the Nikenbah markets, yet still continues to sell its pets undesexed! I know of no other animal rescue group that does not desex.
By not desexing HBAR is acting just like a pet shop. It is ensuring that it continues to have a never ending supply of pets by its lack of a desexing policy. The refuge is claiming to be raising funds for desexing. Has been doing so for months.. So where are these funds going? Selling non desexed cats and kittens for $10 each is irresponsible. While some new owners can and will do the right thing there will be many that won’t. Sadly at $10 a kitten it is also a cheap dinner for a hungry pet python! I desperately hope that no kittens are bought for any reason other than to become much loved and cared for and desexed family pets.
HBAR has a large cattery and excellent facilities and a sympathetic public. It is simply a great injustice to all the animal loving residents in our community that HBAR continues to sell undesexed pets. It is time that the community demanded they do the right thing. After all every other rescue group including the Maryborough Refuge can manage to sell desexed pets so there simply are no excuses!
Sue Brooks January 28th, 2013
Take care everybody. I hope that you have all survived the big wet and for those living and owning businesses adjacent the Mary River I truly hope that you can recover after the water recedes. For Burrum Heads residents that have had their houses and sheds battered with roofs lost I trust that your insurance will help you recover. For families that have lost loved ones my heart goes out to you.
I am so sad that our beautiful foreshore has also taken such a battering. Many, many trees have gone, fallen by the undermining erosion as has infrastructure such as at both Aqua Vue and Enzo’s in town and many foreshore parklands have also been decimated. Now is still the time to assist those in need and to help when and where we can. Take care everybody.
Sue Brooks November 13th, 2012
For many, many years I have tried in vain to explain how much money is wasted by having a Local Government Owned Corporation in Wide Bay Water Corp. In years gone by the waste was mind blowing. More recently under the leadership of Peter Scott and the new Board instigated by the previous Council, WBWC has been much better managed. But, to put it quite simply, we do not need a LGOC. I really, really hope Council treads carefully and slowly to dismantle the structure and protects jobs as much as it possibly can but at the end of the day this Council has made the right decision. One I would have preferred was made 4 years ago.
Sue Brooks November 9th, 2012
Every one of us involved in rescuing discarded cats and dogs, that through no fault of their own, become surplus to humans requirements, will be ecstatic to hear that our Council is advancing the tightening of our Animal Control Laws. The introduction of tighter breeding and desexing controls is one small but hugely important step towards halting the over supply of cats that end up either running wild, becoming feral and killing native wildlife, or on death row at the local pounds.
Education does not work, higher registration fees does not work but combined with sensible breeding and desexing Laws properly enforced, then maybe we will start killing less perfectly healthy, beautiful and loving cats and kittens each and every week.
As President of Pet Warriors I hope to live to see the day that our organisation and other similar charitable volunteer organisations close because there are no more cats and dogs in need of saving.
And for the critics I say… If you don’t believe tighter animal breeding and desexing Laws are needed please let me know when next you wish to accompany myself or a volunteer to the local pound and maybe take the trip to the vet with our poor Council compliance officers who all detest that part of their job, or assist the vet in killing perfectly healthy, friendly and innocent cats and dogs! I am appalled that each and every week death is the only future for so many of our cats and dogs.
Sue Brooks October 10th, 2012
I have signed this petition because I am annoyed. Council, without our consultation, has amended the Foreshore Plan and gone ahead and “cleaned up” the Hervey Bay foreshore. While I commend the removal of weeds and rubbish the clearing of cotton wood trees and other established vegetation has left us with a windswept foreshore totally devoid of protection from winds. Picnicers at Scarness last weekend were struggling to enjoy the view while battling the strong winds. In the past they had a view as well as shade and protection from wind.
Far better to leave patches of vegetation to protect the precious native fauna and flora and give us humans shelter also. Something glimpsed and promised is also often more attractive than something laid bare.
Now I have recently moved to a beach front Dundowran block. Will our foreshore also be “tidied up?” it seems hypocritical at best to target an area of foreshore most highly used while at the same time offering no assistance to residents further from town at Toogoom battling erosion. It seems to me that the business owners, Esplanade residents and property developers have won. Their wishes for views have been acted upon regardless of the wishes of the majority of residents and visitors. A simple Council questionnaire would have solved the problem of community consultation and given all interested persons the chance to have their say.
I await the windy summer with interest. I truly hope that our foreshore doesn’t simply blow across the road!
Plase visit The Chronicle web site or this petition to have your say.
Sue Brooks August 30th, 2012
I understand only too well the difficulty that Council has in raising enough funds via rates, to properly fund all the work it is asked to do as well as all the bureacratic work it simply has to do courtesy of higher levels of Government. During my time at Council there was a push to charge business higher rates. I always argued against this as I understand that Fraser Coast businesses do it tough and don’t have any more capacity to pay rates than ordinary householders do. But to impose a rate rise on investment properties is wrong. My daughter had to move to Brisbane to work and rents out her Scarness unit. Why on earth should she be punished for not living in her property? We have recently sold our Eli Waters investment property and this rate rise does not entice us to invest in more local property in the future. This is a discriminatory imposition similar to the unfair valuation based rating system that sees similar properties on either side of a street being rated differently to each other.. Rates need to be as fair as possible with equal charges for equal access to Council services.
Sue Brooks August 14th, 2012
Sad to hear that Hearty Foods is leaving the Bay however the comments made via The Chronicle that the ‘previous Council’ were not supportive or helpful are sad to hear. As a previous Councillor I cannot recall learning that Alex was looking for larger premises. If anything is to be learned it is that community members must contact a Councillor or Councillors if they encounter roadblocks with Council. Councillors do care about our community and all want a strong vibrant healthy community. While higher level Government red tape and ridiculous legislation causes frustrations for all, Councillors can only help when they are made aware of a problem. In saying that large commercial kitchens aren’t prevalent or sitting vacant and would be expensive to construct. Good luck Alex I wish you and your family every success for the future.
Sent from my iPad
Sue Brooks July 24th, 2012
From the minutes of the most recent Council meeting held 18th July 2012.
Question on Notice Response Report – Lorikeets – Scarness Foreshore RESOLUTION ( Taylor / Truscott )
1. Council note the report on lorikeets and acknowledges:
a) the potential risks placed on users of the Scarness Caravan Park as identified in the report,
b) the hazards that the lorikeets place on people and property in the Scarness Caravan Park as noted in the report,
c) the projected loss of revenue attributed to the influx of lorikeets in the Scarness Caravan Park for the 2012/2013 period being approximately $185,000 as indicated in the report.
2. Council approve the removal of the problem coastal pines and gum trees as identified in the report and that more suitable replacement mature age native tree, eg. Tuckeroos, be replanted within the Caravan Park for each tree removed in an appropriate location.
3. Council investigate a suitable location to establish a lorikeet feeding station along the Esplanade and the potential financial and social benefits to the Fraser Coast Community. That this investigation be conducted in consultation with the affected business community, and
4. on the completion of these works, a report be provided to Council on the outcome of this strategy and its effectiveness as a bird management option.
For years I fought any attempt to remove trees from our Hervey Bay foreshore and it has taken this new Council less than 3 months to start hacking into our precious foreshore. The Managers of the Scarness Caravan Park previously managed the Burrum Heads Caravan Park. They successfully lobbied the Council to have trees removed in that caravan park the reason being.. You guessed it… Lorrikeets! The community was outraged! I never supported that action!
Now we have the exact same situation at Scarness where Lorikeets have roosted for years and years. I believe the caravan park managers want to remove trees so that more caravan sites can be created. Why do I believe this? Well removing a handful of trees will not solve the Lorrikeet problem. The Lorikeets roost in trees within and without the caravan park. Removing some trees will not reduce the noise that the birds make at all. I am sure caravan park users already know that a tarp will solve the problem of the bird droppings also.
This caravan park has been very profitable for its entire existence but no the trees have to go so that even more money can supposedly be made! At what cost progress?
Do we want a foreshore bereft of trees and thereby bereft of birds, possums, micro bats, lizards and all the other myriad wildlife that abides there?
Our foreshore is the only thing that separates Hervey Bay from any other coastal city. Our foreshore is unique. It is special and it is ours to nurture not to spoil.
Cr George Seymour promised that we would still have a Councillor with an environmental focus. He has already demonstrated that his principles mean nought. He is the one Councillor I would never have imagined would support the removal of perfectly healthy trees, many of them are likely to be over a hundred years old.
My biggest fear is what is yet to come! Please like the recently created Facebook page called Hervey Bay Foreshore Protection Group. We also need to ensure that community consultation occurs in relation to any task force findings or alterations to the adopted foreshore plan!
Your collective voices are needed now. We need to send a strong message to this new Council that our foreshore is precious. That it is unique and that it must be preserved and not vandalised for the benefit of a few and for some supposed financial gain. The financial gains envisaged may in fact be lost together with much more of our tourism income. After all why will anyone come here if we end up with a wind swept manicured trees and lawn style foreshore that can be found every where else?
PS. The Council report was not made available to the public as part of the Council agenda available on the website. It was listed as ‘To be distributed’. This meant no one had access to it prior to the Council meeting. Is this what we want from our promised open Council?