LOOKING TO THE FUTURE OF OUR ISLANDS AND WHERE TO GO FROM HERE!
Time is ticking away as our islands keep attracting more and more people. Many are discovering the value of living on an island, and how affordable it can be for many. It won’t always be that way. The Friendly Bay Islander believes it is time that our cluster of islands is taken a lot more seriously than a jetty or two or three or four and the sealing of a few roads! Over the coming months, we are going to introduce a few topics for discussion that are sure to be contentious. It is OK to put a number of major issues on the agenda, but are we ready for the challenge? Are we able to ‘step up’ and play a role in better managing our outcomes? Scratching just below the surface reveals a number of major problems and issues that deserve to be addressed. And in doing so, we will be calling for some co-operation. Some of the issues that need to be discussed include major infrastructure projects, particularly sewerage systems for our islands. Can it happen; when will it likely happen; what is the best technology for island purpose, and many other factors here, not least of which who pays for it all! Another issue is growth. How many people can our islands sustain without becoming overcrowded? Is our current representation system adequate? Should the current divisions at Redland City Council be adjusted to better service and serve the island community? Should there be a single division for the islands? Or, could the day come when an island council in its own right should eventuate? All of those are material issues, but what about social issues. Are our aged being taken care of adequately; is there enough help for those who need it in many other areas. Should we have an aged care facility on our islands and a hub to manage all island social issues? On and on we go! Basically, we have to become better and managing our own affairs. The islands and islanders themselves have to be able to ‘step up to the plate’ and play a far greater role. Can we do it? These are some of the issues we will be bringing to our pages in the coming months.