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COUNCIL OFFICERS TO CONSIDER ‘OTHER MEASURES’ IN RELATION TO RESTRICTIVE SEPTIC PLANNING RULING Redland City Council officers are to consider ‘other measures’ rather than the controversial plumbing regulation that will impact house design, particularly on our islands. It means that all homes on all islands and in all Redlands rural areas not connected to the council sewerage scheme, currently have to still abide by the new regulation. The regulation was instigated by officers of the council only; not the council as a whole. The regulation deems rooms previously designed, listed and used as an office, TV entertainment room or ‘work or project’ room are now to be classified as a bedroom. The changes to the regulations have had a huge impact on the islands in particular because we are solely dependent on septic sewerage systems. The building and plumbing industries are up in arms at the decision, as well as people in the process of currently having homes approved with a number of ‘lifestyle’ areas that will no longer be possible. Deputy Mayor Cr Julie Talty has been leading the fight against the new restrictive regulation. She has advised The Friendly Bay Islander that recently department officers briefed councillors on the current plumbing guideline, and the reasons it was introduced on May 16. Cr Talty said: “As a result, officers have subsequently agreed to look at ‘other measures’ that may be used as assessment tools in order support more flexibility in outcomes for new homes, while still ensuring the quality of assessment for waste water management. “The Department has declined to change or rescind the current guideline until a new one is prepared and approved to replace it,” she said. Cr Talty advised that If a new assessment guideline for sewerage and septic system measures cannot be provided within a ‘reasonable timeframe’ then she will bring the matter to council via a “motion to rescind the current guideline and ask Council to nominate a return to the assessment protocols that have worked successfully for a number of years”. REDLANDS COAST SENIORS MONTH GRANTS NOW OPEN Redlands Coast community groups planning to host events during Queensland Seniors Month in October can now apply for support under a Redland City Council age-friendly grants program. Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said the Redlands Coast Seniors Month Grants Program was specifically aimed at supporting activities being planned for the annual state-wide celebration of positive ageing. Cr Williams said $14,000 would be available this year, with grants of up to $2000 for local events and up to $5000 for a single larger scale local event. “Applications will be received online until midnight Wednesday 8 June,” she said. “Events and activities that benefit our island residents are encouraged.” For more information visit redland.qld.gov.au/seniors or call 3829 8999.