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Redland City Council has called for full state funding to upgrade the Southern Moreton Bay Island ferry terminals to provide a safer, more reliable service to residents.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said public transport was operated and funded by the State Government, and as a result it was appropriate for the State Government to fund the $26 million needed to upgrade the ferry terminals for safety reasons, and to meet Federal DDA compliance.

“The original ferry terminals were constructed by the State and then transferred to Council sometime in the 1990’s and since then ratepayers have been paying for their upkeep.

“Council’s decision makes it clear that going forward the State should fund the capital cost, as well as owning and maintaining the completed ferry terminals.

Cr Williams said Redland City Council was the only Queensland Local Government Authority with ongoing responsibility for ferry terminal infrastructure on regulated Translink ferry routes (excluding Brisbane City Council).

“Apart from the precedent of State responsibility for public transport facilities, the reality is that Council does not have access to public infrastructure funding necessary to meet SMBI ferry infrastructure replacement costs; it would financially cripple our ratepayers.

“It is important to note that there is already a substantial cost to Redland ratepayers of land-side works to connect this infrastructure, and that is important in the business case consideration.

“Council will continue to construct and maintain land-side infrastructure such as car parks and connecting roads.”

Cr Mark Edwards told council that the application to the State Government for change in responsibility and the building of the new jetties on all Southern Moreton Bay islands, has been aided by recent reports from DTMR, Translink and council officers.

The reports state:

• The current jetties are not compliant with the Disability Discrimination Act.

• The jetties are approaching the end of their useful lives and are in poor condition

• Lack of amenities

• Terminal overcrowding

• Accommodating future passenger growth.

All levels of Government have been working together since 2015 putting together a business case with the help of an independent consultant funded by Translink at a cost of $250,000.

The final business case plan is expected to be considered by the Translink Board next month (July 2018).

It is estimated that the capital cost for the new jetties will be: Russell Island $10,817,567; Macleay Island $6,071,330; Lamb Island $5,073,827; Karragarra $4,500,550 for a total of $26,463,274

The stumbling block will come down to financial responsibility for the works.

Mayor Williams concluded: “We are not walking away from SMBI - we are walking with them on this fundamental issue.

“We will continue to honour the current arrangement and our absolute commitment to the SMBI; and sincerely hope that the partnership with the State will continue, and they will respond positively with much needed support to meet the aspirations of these important island communities.”

• Our jetties need replacing!