Agriculture opportunities ripe for the picking

Toowoomba Regional Council Mayor Paul Antonio believes agricultural production in the Toowoomba region is set for a major boost with the advent of the Brisbane West Wellcamp Airport. 

“The Wellcamp Airport is presenting unprecedented opportunity for our region.

"On track to be completed later this year, the airport will open up potential for direct export and import capability, never before seen in this community,” Mayor Antonio said.

Toowoomba Regional Council, though the work of the Toowoomba Surat Basin Enterprise (TSBE), is encouraging the agriculture sector in our region to take advantage of the interest shown by markets like Asia in Australian products. 

Read more: Agriculture opportunities ripe for the picking

Grey nomads about to descend on Queensland

As the annual 'grey nomad' pilgrimage to the north of the continent is about to start, Toowoomba Regional Council is urging travellers through the city to stop and pick up essential supplies.

Grey nomads form a large sector of the internal tourism market in Australia and June to September is their busiest time of the year as they head north for the winter months to escape the cold.

Tourism and events portfolio spokesman Cr Geoff McDonald said the annual trek north to Queensland, the Territory and Western Australia is a "must do" on the calendars of Australia's aging population.

"Whether you are a baby boomer travelling indefinitely; choosing to spend the winter months up north; or simply enjoying a few short trips a year ... there is no doubt there is a growing grey nomad community in Australia," Cr McDonald said.

Read more: Grey nomads about to descend on Queensland

Council congratulates Ability Enterprises on nomination

Toowoomba Regional Council has lauded local firm Ability Enterprises on its two nominations in the National Social Enterprise Awards.

Ability Enterprises provides employment opportunities for those with disabilities and the long-term unemployed won a contract in 2012 to operate gate-houses at 13 waste management facilities owned by Toowoomba Regional Council.Nancy-green

The company was this week short-listed in two categories – the One to Watch and Social Innovation award categories – in the National Social Enterprise Awards. Winners will be announced in Melbourne on June 12.

Waste portfolio spokesperson Cr Nancy Sommerfield (pictured) said Ability Enterprises provided steady employment for the most marginalised in the Toowoomba region.

Read more: Council congratulates Ability Enterprises on nomination

Toowoomba Regional Council News - April 30, 2014

In this week's Council News:
  • Building incentives scheme to end June 30,
  • CBD Hotel to retain heritage facade, as demolition works begin,
  • Mayor to play key role in national Inland Rail push,
  • Community Forum to discuss West Toowoomba future development, 
  • Competition offers schoolchildren a brush with fame,
  • Foodies join greenthumbs at this weekend's Gardenfest,
  • And calling on sports fans to support Council in the inaugural Corporate Touch Challenge.

Click on the video below to watch this week's edition of Council News.

Community Engagement Forum to discuss West Toowoomba future development

Community Engagement ForumThe early stages of the West Toowoomba Local Plan will be presented at the Toowoomba Regional Councillor Community Engagement Forum in Glenvale tonight (Wednesday April 30).

The plan encompasses the developing suburbs of Glenvale, the Charlton Wellcamp Enterprise Area and Highfields /Meringandan/Meringandan West.

Read more: Community Engagement Forum to discuss West Toowoomba future development

Mayor to play key role in national Inland Rail push

Toowoomba Region Mayor Paul Antonio is set to represent southern Queensland’s interests in a group formed to ensure local government plays a key role in the development of the Melbourne to Brisbane Inland Rail line.

The Melbourne to Brisbane Inland Rail Alliance (MBIRA), chaired by Parkes Shire Mayor Ken Keith, met earlier this month and includes local government representatives from New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland. 

Mayor Antonio said he was pleased to be endorsed as the only Queensland member of the group’s executive.

“The Federal Government has committed $300 million in the budget for corridor acquisition and detailed alignment of the Melbourne to Brisbane Inland Rail.

This group brings together all local governments with an interest in seeing the inland rail line developed,” he said.

The Mayor’s appointment to the group follows a visit by Chair of the National Implementation Group, former Deputy Prime Minister John Anderson, to Toowoomba in February.

Read more: Mayor to play key role in national Inland Rail push

Competition offers schoolchildren brush with fame

HealthyToothPrimary students who love to flash their pearly whites for the camera are invited to take part in the inaugural Toowoomba Healthy Teeth Competition.

Run by Toowoomba Regional Council and Darling Downs Hospital and Health Service (DDHHS), the competition is designed to promote dental health throughout the region.

Primary schools across the region have been invited to participate, and should have recently received information about the competition via the post.

Council last year voted to add fluoride to a number of town water supplies across the region, including the main Toowoomba supply.

Read more: Competition offers schoolchildren brush with fame

RADF grants promote diverse arts projects across region

April-RADF-1Eight projects successful in attracting the latest round of Regional Arts Development Fund (RADF) grants from Toowoomba Regional Council (TRC) promise to surprise, confront and challenge as well as entertain audiences across the region.

Works including photographic exhibitions, theatrical productions, a new and artistic twist on opera and vocal recitals, dance workshops and performances, a silk painting workshop and the creation of new music for an independent recording project are among eight proposals to receive RADF grants announced recently by TRC Library and Cultural Services portfolio leader Cr Ros Scotney.

"In this round of funding from the Regional Arts Development Fund, a partnership between the Queensland Government and regional councils, we will see projects totalling almost $53,000," Cr Scotney said.

Read more: RADF grants promote diverse arts projects across region

Council News - April 23, 2014

In this week's Council News:

  • Residents urged to support businesses as Goggs Street closes for upgrade works,
  • How to dispose of e-waste safely,
  • Lest We Forget: Where you can remember our fallen diggers this ANZAC Day,
  • Why all roads are leading to Felton this weekend,
  • And Mayoral Prayer Breakfast tickets for sale online.

Click on the video below to watch this week's edition of Council News.

Council News - April 16, 2014

This week's video news segment includes the following:
  • Council unanimously adopts East Creek masterplan,
  • Mayor explains detention basin decision in a one on one exclusive interview,
  • Council looks for a 'sign' from residents,
  • Glenvale State School to host councillors on April 30.
  • And where to find the best Easter events in your region.
Click on the video below to watch this week's edition of Council News.




TRC's outstanding rates, charges down $2 million in past year

A supportive and collaborative approach to rates and charges is paying dividends for Toowoomba Regional Council.

A significant improvement in outstanding rates and charges was noted at today's (Tuesday, April 15) April Ordinary Meeting of Council.

Finance and Business Strategy Committee Chair and Deputy Mayor Cr Mike Williams said the value of outstanding rates and charges was down around $2 million compared with the same time last year.

Outstanding rates and charges totalled $10.8 million (5.87%) at 31 March 2014, compared with $13 million (8.8%) at the same time in 2013.

"Our arrears figures have been improving in dollar and percentage terms in recent years," Cr Williams said.

Read more: TRC's outstanding rates, charges down $2 million in past year

Video News: Wetalla Treatment Plant upgraded

Why are people from around the world coming to our region to see the Wetalla Treatment Plant?

Toowoomba Regional Council Water and Waste Portfolio Leader, Cr Nancy Sommerfield, and Council principal engineer, Will Higgins, explain more in this video (click on the link below to watch):

 

Toowoomba Regional Council News - April 9, 2014

This week's video news segment includes the following:

  • City car park to temporarily close for maintenance,
  • Devoted community worker to speak at this year’s Mayoral Prayer Breakfast,
  • MKR winners set to tantalise Gardenfest,
  • Brrrr! Change of season closes swimming pools,
  • How to beat school holiday boredom,
  • And picture perfect weather set to complement weekend activities.

Click on the video below to watch this week's edition of Council News.

 

Change of season closes swimming pools

Boy-in-Pool optWith the imminent arrival of winter, pools across the region will begin to close.

TRC Library and Cultural Services Portfolio Chair, Cr Ros Scotney said with the exception of the Milne Bay Aquatic Centre (MBAC), all outdoor swimming pools will close for the 2013/14 season as of Monday, April 21.

MBAC outdoor 50m pool will continue to open until 5pm Friday, April 25.

“It’s a fantastic opportunity for our pool lessees to focus on maintenance work during the cooler months,” Cr Scotney said.

“Swimming pools are scheduled to re-open early September – depending on when the water is an acceptable temperature for patrons.”

While the outdoor pool will be closed, MBAC visitors can still enjoy the 25m indoor heated pool, the program pool and inflatable programs.

All other centre facilities, including the gym and popular fitness classes at both MBAC and the Highfields Fitness and Recreation will be available as per normal operation.

For more details clink on this link www.toowoombaRC.qld.gov.au/pools.

Tombstone Tours tell region's remarkable history

Tstone-Tours-P-CullenThe ornate inscriptions on some of the cemetery's oldest tombstones will be embellished into the fascinating, little-known and sometimes tragic stories that helped shape our region.

Presented by local historian Peter Cullen, the Tombstone Tours will be held at Drayton and Toowoomba Cemetery in Anzac Avenue on May 10 and May 18 at 10am.

Libraries and Cultural Services Portfolio Chair, Cr Ros Scotney, said the tours enabled residents to visit the gravestones of families who were integral to our community's history.

Read more: Tombstone Tours tell region's remarkable history

Toowoomba Aerodrome Master Plan points to facility's strong future

Toowoomba Aerodrome-takeoffToowoomba Aerodrome will continue to be a vital facility for many aviation firms and supporting operators into the future, according to Toowoomba Region Mayor Paul Antonio.

Mayor Antonio said Toowoomba Regional Council's (TRC) commitment to the facility and its operators was backed by plans outlined in the Toowoomba Aerodrome Master Plan – Final Draft. A public comment period on the draft plan closed last week.

"Council owns and operates the facility and is responsible for maintaining the grounds and adhering to all regulatory compliance," Mayor Antonio said.

Read more: Toowoomba Aerodrome Master Plan points to facility's strong future

Council News - April 2, 2014

This week's video news segment includes the following:

  • Russell Street to close for six months,
  • New chapter for city library,
  • Committee to put disabled accessibility on the map,
  • An action packed week of activities to celebrate youth across the region,
  • Hop to it! What's on this Easter,
  • And March rain lifts dam levels.

Click on the video below to watch this week's edition of Council News.

Whaddup? It's National Youth Week!

Toowoomba Regional Council is inviting young people to run the streets this week.

As one of many fun events being held across the region during National Youth Week 2014, Run the Streets will be jam-packed with activities including hip-hop workshops, a DJ, free sausage sizzle and street basketball.

Held from Friday, April 4 until Sunday, April 13, this year's National Youth Week aims to engage and involve young people through the theme: Our Voice, Our Impact!

TRC Library and Cultural Services Porfolio Chair, Cr Ros Scotney, said events had been developed to encourage young people to get involved with their community and meet some of the region's youth workers.

"There are many activities right across the region, including lazer skirmish, graffiti and street art workshops, and a festival night," Cr Scotney said.

"Council's multi-purpose Youth Connect trailer, which contains three wall-mounted televisions linked to computers and Play Station 3s, a wi-fi network and mixing desk will also be out and about. "

Regional Lazer Skirmish for ages 12-25 is free and will be held in the follow locations:

  • April 7 – Pittsworth Showgrounds
  • April 8 – Oakey Showgrounds
  • April 9 – Millmerran State School
  • April 14 – Crows Nest State School
  • April 15 – Yarraman State School
  • April 16 – Clifton Showgrounds

The Crash the Streets free youth festival, to be held on Friday, April 11 at the Toowoomba PCYC in James St from 1.30pm, will feature free graffiti art, DJ, skateboarding and parkour workshops. The workshops will be followed by a free Youth Festival Night from 5pm until 9pm, with freestyle motocross displays, live bands, DJs, skateboarding, Playstation battles and more.

The Run the Streets event will be held on Wednesday, April 9 from 10am until 12pm at Wine Drive Park and Thursday, April 10 from 10am until 12pm at Harlaxton Park in Harlaxton.

For more information on other National Youth Week events, please visit National Youth Week or www.youthweek.com

 

Business community agrees to changed OCR traffic conditions

OCR-mapConstruction of new Russell Street drainage, bridge and road structures at Toowoomba's OCR Project will be accelerated with the local community supporting up to a six-month traffic diversion on Russell Street at the rail crossing to expedite works.

At an information session last week with the surrounding business community, Council and the contractor, Probuild Civil, outlined the construction complexities and associated impacts of attempting to keep Russell Street open to through traffic during construction of the new Russell Street culvert.

Toowoomba Regional Council Infrastructure Committee chair Cr Carol Taylor said the construction complexities were substantial.

"It's an extremely confined space that is proving very challenging for the contractor to manoeuvre large construction machinery in and around the Russell/Victoria Street intersection," Cr Taylor said.

"It's also difficult for the contractor to undertake construction activities simultaneously which is resulting in program delays."

Attempting to keep Russell Street open to through traffic also will have a continuing impact on motorists, pedestrians and local businesses in and around the precinct.

"Even with the contractor attempting to keep Russell Street open, there would be numerous short-term closures required, including two six-week closures, and this would be ongoing until the end of the year," Cr Taylor said.

Read more: Business community agrees to changed OCR traffic conditions

Council News - March 26, 2014

This week's Council News includes:

  • The new-look all-abilities playground in Queens Park opens,
  • Wetalla Treatment Plant undergoes an upgrade,
  • Early Flood Warning System extends to Oakey,
  • Library Mega Book Sale,
  • Transition Library set to open on Monday, and
  • Further information sessions on the East Creek Detention Basin planned.

Please click on the video below to watch this edition of Council News.

Community can view East Creek Master Plan options

Toowoomba Regional Council recently asked the design team to review flood mitigation options for East Creek as part of the Gowrie Creek Catchment Management Strategy.

With the review now complete, there is an opportunity for Toowoomba residents to find out about the flood mitigation options at information sessions over the coming weeks.

Mayor Paul Antonio said the sessions will provide the reasoning behind the options and provide opportunities for questions and further information for those interested in the technical aspects of this project.

Read more: Community can view East Creek Master Plan options

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