Division 3 and Environment Portfolio Councillor Jones announces plans for next year
  • Monday 08 August 2011

Councillor Keryn Jones (Environmental Portfolio and Division 3) personally advised key community group members she would not be standing for re-election next term and thanked them for their support, at a low key morning tea today.

Since being elected as Division 3 Councillor in 2008, Cr Jones has achieved much for both her divisional and portfolio work.

Cr Jones said she was pleased with the many diverse projects she had accomplished during her time with Sunshine Coast Council and had more in store over the next eight months.

“From overseeing the development and realisation of the Coast’s first regional grandstand at Stockland Park, to driving Waste Minimisation which has already seen a major increase in the green waste kerbside collection program and a 9% improvement in the amount being recycled across the region, I have always been fully committed to getting the best outcome for my respective divisional and portfolio areas,” Cr Jones said.

“After much consideration and family discussion, I have decided to return to managing my family business next year and I wanted to make this known as soon as possible to encourage those who feel they have a lot to offer to the people of the Sunshine Coast ample opportunity to consider stepping up to the plate in March.

“Of course, I will continue to put 100% into my division and portfolio work between now and the election in March next year.”

Cr Jones said she was honoured to have been given the opportunity to participate in the first term of the amalgamated Council.

“This has been a very challenging time for local government, managing not only the amalgamation process, but coping with water reform, State Government bring forward planning directives, and the effects of the Global Financial Crisis. The work load has been very heavy,” she said.

“I want to provide my sincere thanks to these local people for the input and support they have provided me with during this time.”

Some of the major infrastructure and planning work completed or undertaken in Division 3 during Cr Jones' term include:

  • The $10million state-of-the-art Sunshine Coast Grandstand at Quad Park;
  • Major road reconstructions of Buderim Street and Saffron Drive in Currimundi, with Beerburrum Street scheduled in the five year Capital Works program ($3 million);
  • Major park upgrades to Reg White Park, Warana, Tumbledown Park, Currimundi and Andrea Ahern Park, Dicky Beach;
  • Completion of the Currimundi Precinct Master Plan;
  • Major drainage upgrade to Buderim Street, Currimundi;
  • Ridgehaven dog park, Aroona;
  • New toilet block at Cliff Hargreaves Park, Currimundi, with new rotunda to be delivered this financial year;
  • Complete remodel of toilet block at Crummunda Park, Wurtulla;
  • Extension of Coastal path, Wurtulla;
  • Exercise equipment at Moondara Park, Wurtulla;
  • Forward-planning for Nicklin Way Placemaking and beautification with $5.5million allocated in the 5 year capital works program from 2013/14;
  • Children’s bike track and picnic facilities at Graeme Stuart Park, Currimundi, delivered this year. Forward budget for park upgrades of $205,000 in 2013/14 program;
  • Forward program planning to 2020, with about $4 million allocated for community facilities for Currimundi and Bokarina.

“While I am pleased with the many major projects I have both delivered and forward planned, I am also pleased with the significant number of playground improvements, street trees, beautification works, footpaths, cycleway and road reseals which may seem small in the scale of things but have made a difference to the local people,” Cr Jones said.

Cr Jones also said that the environment portfolio was also especially close to her heart.

“I have had the opportunity to draw on my passion for ensuring the fantastic natural environment the majority of us love so much and upon which our economic future depends, is conserved and enhanced, while ensuring those actions contribute to jobs in sustainable industries,” she said.

“The vision – To become Australia’s Most Sustainable Region - was developed through extensive community workshops and consultation. I took the message seriously and did my very best to champion policies and programs that will ensure that outcome.

“We are now three years into the first term and have done the planning towards achieving the vision and developed a range of action plans to guide us all over the next 10 years.”

Cr Jones has spearheaded the development and adoption of all major environmental strategies, subsequent action plans and funding secured for early actions including:

  • Biodiversity Strategy;
  • Climate Change and Peak Oil Strategy;
  • Waste Minimisation Strategy;
  • Waterways and Coastal Management Strategy.

“The restructure of the Environment Levy was also very important as it will ensure ongoing viable funding sources for the purchase of ecologically important land parcels to be protected in perpetuity, pursuing major catalytic projects and importantly funding the community in the vital environmental work they do,” Cr Jones said.

“This levy funding is critical to ensure good environmental outcomes.”

Cr Jones said the enormous body of work these strategies represent could not have achieved without the support of the Sunshine Coast community, her fellow councillors and the expertise of highly qualified council staff.

“A big thank you to the residents of the Sunshine Coast and my hardworking council colleagues,” she said.

“Now let’s get back to work!”