Minutes of proceedings the 4461 meeting of the Brisbane City Council, held at City Hall, Brisbane on Tuesday 3 March 2015 at 2pm



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QUESTION TIME:

Chairman: Are there any questions of the LORD MAYOR or any of the Chairman of Committees?

Chairman: Councillor MARX.

Question 1

Councillor MARX: Thank you, Madam Chair. Yes, my question is to the LORD MAYOR. I understand that Brisbane's biggest export market, international education, creates a significant number of jobs here in Brisbane, and you recently announced a subsidy to create purpose-built and centrally located accommodation for these students. Can you please provide further information on this subsidy?

LORD MAYOR: Thanks very much, Madam Chairman, and I thank Councillor MARX for the question. A few years ago I announced a subsidy on four and five-star hotels for Brisbane. This was, in fact, a removal of infrastructure charges on that occasion for four and five-star hotels. That was on the back of the fact that we had not had a new four or five-star hotel for 10 years. That announcement created a flurry of economic activity in the city which last year alone saw around 900 new four-and five-star hotel beds come on line over 10 hotel developments.

One of the things that I believe this city also needs is purpose-built student accommodation. It is in the same way as hotels have been—an area that has been very difficult to get across the line in terms of their financial viability. The need for student accommodation is critical. Firstly, we have 75,000 international students in our city each year. We have, of course, students that come down from country areas of Queensland. There is more and more interstate migration in terms of educational opportunities.

So the need for student accommodation is one which is significant already, and one which I believe will continue to grow as we see growth in the economies of particularly our Asia Pacific neighbours, but also growth of the interest in Brisbane across the globe.

So we have two choices here. We can simply just let things track along as they are, or we can do something about it, and that is by way of creating a fresh economic development opportunity. So, in conjunction with Queensland Urban Utilities (QUU), Council and QUU jointly will provide a significant reduction in infrastructure charges to a level where we believe many new developments will now fly. There are conditions around those new developments. The first thing is we're looking at an area that is, as the crow flies, four kilometres from the GPO. We are looking only at medium and high density residential areas, and also at other re-zonings or area classifications such as centres and the like, or the equivalent thereof.

The other aspect that we know—we know there's around 300,000 square metres of surplus office accommodation in our CBD at the present time, and this is another area where the transformation of some of that office space into proper purpose-built education accommodation—


Councillor interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —can also apply. So, Madam Chairman, there is I believe going to be significant interest in the market around this. I think it will be both domestic, as in Australian interest, as well as international interest, as we saw with hotels.

The other benefit that I think can be derived from this is that we know that there has been pressure on our suburbs in terms of student accommodation out there in housing stock. If we can provide 24-hour supervision with proper caretaker facilities in terms of this accommodation, and that is going to be one of the requirements, appropriately placed, close to transportation nodes, close to activity nodes, like Southbank, CBD, et cetera, then I believe that this will work very, very successfully. It will help to relieve some of the pressure on some suburbs around the city that see increasing student accommodation take-up within housing stock in the city.

Further to that, I believe that the opportunity for universities to be able to provide not only a course—and we are not here just talking about universities but also other education providers in our city—for them to take up the opportunity to provide not only a course offering but also an accommodation offering with that will be an extremely positive thing for our city.

This industry provides some 20,000 full-time jobs in Brisbane. It is very important to us; it is a growing sector, and we need to set ourselves up to meet that growth.

Chairman: Further questions?

Chairman: Councillor DICK.


Question 2

Councillor DICK: Thank you, Madam Chair; my question is to the LORD MAYOR. Your most recent polling research, paid for by ratepayers, has confirmed what everyone knows inside this Chamber and outside. Only one in two Brisbane residents, or 50 per cent of Brisbane residents, think Council is 'open and transparent'. Why are you proud of leading the most secretive Council in Australia?

LORD MAYOR: Well, Madam Chairman, we have some nice verballing again from the Opposition Leader, but this Chamber is very used to that. He talked about polling research. That is just nonsense. This is research that has been carried out by this Council for decades now, so it is research that allows Council to ensure it is aware of what the community is thinking. He talks about the most secretive Council in Australia. Well, Madam Chairman—


Councillor interjecting.

Chairman: Order! Councillor SUTTON!

LORD MAYOR: —Madam Chairman, he might want to have a bit of a look at what people think about the State governments of both persuasions; perhaps of—

Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —Federal governments of all persuasions.

Chairman: Councillor JOHNSTON!

LORD MAYOR: Well, Madam Chairman, you might want to have a bit of a look at those if you—

Councillor interjecting.

Chairman: Councillor DICK!

LORD MAYOR: —yes, I don't think you'll find that Kevin Rudd or other Prime Ministers have done very well over time either. So, the reality is that this Council, if Councillor DICK wants to quote research, has a far higher reputation than other levels of government when it comes to responsiveness to the community—

Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order! Order! Councillor SUTTON, I'm talking to you. If you continue to yell out like that, you may be warned.

LORD MAYOR: —there will be all sorts of numbers that the Opposition Leader will be able to throw up. The important thing here is that this Council is undertaking the works to improve this city every year. We are dedicated to a better Brisbane. We are dedicated to ensuring that we—

Councillors interjecting.

LORD MAYOR: —if they don't want to hear the answer, I'll sit down, it's that simple. It is that simple—



Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —No, you have a choice; you can either let me answer the question, but if you want to continue to interrupt, I'll sit down. It's up to you.

Councillor interjecting.

Chairman: Councillor DICK!

LORD MAYOR: So, Madam Chairman, the reality is that we have a job to do of improving this city. That is what we are tasked with doing. People will ultimately have the judgment around those issues. They always do—


Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: They always do. So Councillor DICK, you know, you talk about these things. You're a new boy around here in relative terms—

Councillor interjecting.

LORD MAYOR: —you are; you're a new boy around here in relative terms—

Chairman: Order! Councillor NEWTON!

LORD MAYOR: —so, you don't know. You see, you've never served in a Cabinet with Councillor FLESSER or with Councillor NEWTON or Councillor ABRAHAMS. They need to tell you in your party room meetings what things were like, what things they did, because I've sat with them, and I know—



Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —I've had the opportunity to examine what's gone on in the past—

Chairman: Councillor ABRAHAMS!

LORD MAYOR: —so, Councillor DICK, as someone who hasn’t been in a Civic Cabinet situation here, you will always throw up these—

Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —new age claims, lacking in experience and knowledge in this place. So I just say this; in the end, our job is to get on with making Brisbane a better place. We are, as a team, dedicated to doing that, and we will continue to make that our focus.

Chairman: Further questions?

Chairman: Councillor WINES.

Question 3

Councillor WINES: Thank you, Madam Chairman; my question is to the Chairman of Brisbane Lifestyle Committee, Councillor ADAMS. I understand that this Administration's investment on community halls, compared with the record of those opposite in this Chamber, has benefited many residents, community groups and organisations. Can you please outline what this commitment is and the benefits to our city?

Councillor ADAMS: Thank you, Madam Chair, and thank you Councillor WINES for the question, because I am more than happy to stand here and talk about this Administration's commitment to the residents of Brisbane and delivering right across Brisbane to the amenities, like community halls and community pools and libraries, and so much else that we do in the Brisbane Lifestyle portfolio.

With regards to our community halls, we have a broad range of hirers that go through from business functions to conferences, community meetings, weddings, parties, dance groups, martial arts, Scouts meet in our halls—the list is endless. For that, we have made sure that we have delivered for the people of Brisbane.

Councillor SIMMONDS mentioned in Chambers recently that there has been a 200 per cent increase in community hall spend over the last three years compared to Labor's last three years in office. That is $15.6 million this Administration has spent on community halls compared to Labor's $5.23 million in their last three years of Office. This shows the contrast between the Opposition and the Administration—not what they say; what they actually did.

We have also increased the number of community halls that are there available for the community to use right across Brisbane, from 12 in 2000 to 17 halls in 2014-15 that are available. We have more hires and more hours' use for the community. Our utilisation hours have actually increased to around 15,000 hire hours from 2000 to now 51,000 hire hours that we see in our community halls, day in, day out.

Some of our big upgrades in the last three years—we have seen Upper Kedron and Sunnybank, Zillmere, Wynnum, Bracken Ridge and Hamilton wards. We have seen things like new storage cupboards in Wynnum, accessibility improvements, green rooms with change facilities and toilet upgrades. Bracken Ridge has got kitchen improvements, meeting rooms and storage; Sunnybank had handrails and reconfiguration of the kitchen so it's easy to get in and out if you're in a wheelchair. Our brand new hall that was given to us by the Zillmere Senior Citizens to look after for perpetuity has had a full refurbishment of the toilets and provisions of People with Disabilities (PWD) toilet, disability access ramp installation, and just an overall renovation, so that the seniors can still use it, but the wider community can use it as well.

In 2014-15 we will see upgrades in Old Inala, Bracken Ridge and, of course, a major contribution to the Richlands Community Centre. We have seen a concerted effort on the AV improvements of our community halls during this term, and the LORD MAYOR's commitment at the last election to deliver those improvements right across our community halls means our local communities can now use low cost areas for their performances, with high level performance areas to use.

We have seen installation of lighting bars, sound systems, projection equipment and fixed lighting. They're able to use it more effectively for not just plays and dance and recitals, but for seminars, presentations, and awards ceremonies. They have the ability just to plug in their CDs and DVDs and microphones, and some of them have some specifically tailored theatrical sound and lighting obviously in places like Mount Gravatt Progress Hall, Wynnum and Sandgate which are used for bigger productions by our local communities as well.

Of course, in all of these halls that we've upgraded recently, we've also included our hearing loops to make sure those that are hearing impaired can clearly hear the speakers and the performances from the stage. In 2014-15 we will also have the following halls with hearing loops that have just come on this year—Moorooka, Northgate, Sunnybank, Toombul, Zillmere and Acacia Ridge. Bracken Ridge and Old Inala will be done by the end of this financial year.

As well as making them more useable for people, we have also looked at the actual facility improvement. There has been asbestos work that has been done right throughout the halls as well. Some 353 community facilities have been audited in 2012-13, 364 in the last financial year, and we are still working through our list for this year, but we are making sure that all of our critical structural repairs are done, and again, we make sure that our community halls are not only the best equipped but also the most user friendly for all of our residents as well.

Not to mention—I know I am running out of time—but we can't go past mentioning the Forest Lake Community Hall. I know that Councillor OWEN-TAYLOR isn’t here, but she would be cheering right now if she was. Of course, our spectacular Performing Arts Centre that we will see delivered in next financial year at the Sunnybank Rugby Union. Thank you, Madam Chair.

Chairman: Further questions?

Chairman: Councillor DICK.


Question 4

Councillor DICK: Thanks, Madam Chair; my question is to the LORD MAYOR. Your most recent polling research, paid for by ratepayers, shows that 52 per cent of residents don't believe “Council makes decisions that ensure fairness for all residents”. LORD MAYOR, why do you keep making decisions that are not fair or in the interests of Brisbane residents? When will you start giving residents a fair go, or is it time to give someone else a go at running City Hall?

LORD MAYOR: Well, Madam Chairman, you have to wonder about Councillor DICK's questions. I would have to—

Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —I would have to ask myself why I should bother responding to questions when they are based on such a false premise. The first question—

Councillor interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —if you listened—no, he's got the research, hasn't he? Well, there's a fair bit of transparency to start with—

Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —he's got the research—

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —he's got the research. Now, Madam Chairman—

Councillor interjecting.

Chairman: Councillor JOHNSTON!

LORD MAYOR: —Madam Chairman, I just want to make a couple of points here. Councillor DICK's question is one which is based on a premise, and it's a premise of accuracy in the question. He said in the first question—he used words to give a completely wrong impression of the reality.

That first question, when asked, about Council being open and honest, there were only two per cent that strongly disagreed when that question was put to them—two per cent that strongly disagreed—


Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order! Order!

LORD MAYOR: —there were 16 per cent that disagreed, but if you listened to Councillor DICK's question, you would have been left with the impression that there was this overwhelming majority of people that believe that this Council was, in his words, not open and honest. It is not true, Madam Chairman—


Councillor interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —and you've got the research—you've got the research. You look at it again. Because those research numbers say that 2 per cent only strongly disagreed that this Council is open and honest. Now, Councillor DICK—

Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —if you're going to come in here and masquerade—

Chairman: Order! Order!

LORD MAYOR: —in deceit and misrepresentation, then you ought to consider your position as Opposition Leader. You ought to consider your worthiness as Opposition Leader if you are going to try and pull the wool over—

Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —pull the wool over everybody's eyes, as you have just tried to do.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: Madam Chairman, that is the fact of the matter—50 per cent of people said that they considered this Council to be open and honest, and two per cent strongly—

Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —two per cent strongly disagreed.

Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

Chairman: LORD MAYOR—

LORD MAYOR: So Madam Chairman—

Chairman: —sorry, if you can just wait until they quieten down, thank you—

LORD MAYOR: Certainly.

Chairman: —thank you, LORD MAYOR.

Councillor interjecting.

Chairman: Councillor ABRAHAMS!

LORD MAYOR: So, Madam Chairman, I am quite happy to stand here and answer the questions. What I'm not prepared to do, though, is to put up with Councillor DICK's deceit. You have to listen carefully to the way he words these questions.

Councillor JOHNSTON: Pont of order, Madam Chairman.

Chairman: Point of order against you, LORD MAYOR.

Chairman: Yes, Councillor JOHNSTON.

Councillor JOHNSTON: Madam Chairman, the question to the LORD MAYOR, as I understood it, was the survey showed 52 per cent of residents felt that Council was unfair. The LORD MAYOR seems to be debating the previous question which he dealt with, and I would ask you to draw him back to what is—I'm interested in the answer to this. If our surveys are saying 52 per cent of residents—

Chairman: I don't need a lecture, thanks, Councillor JOHNSTON.

Councillor JOHNSTON: —think we're unfair, can we please have the answer?

Chairman: You've raised a point of order.

Chairman: LORD MAYOR, to the question.

LORD MAYOR: Very happy to, Madam Chairman. So that question, I can tell you, that the people when we asked, the Council makes decisions that ensures fairness to all residents, 48 per cent believe it is yes, 26 per cent neutral, and 20 per cent in total disagreed—two per cent strongly disagreed.

So, Madam Chairman, you try any bit of research—


Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —you try any bit of research on anybody at State and Federal level against those questions, and you will find those numbers—

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —you will find those numbers will more than match any day of the week. I just remind the Labor Party that they spent, when they were in Office, what would be the equivalent in today's dollars $2 million—

Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order! Order!

LORD MAYOR: —I'll give you your dollars in your terms. It was—

Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —See, they don't want to know about this.

Chairman: Just wait a minute, LORD MAYOR.

LORD MAYOR: They don't want to know about this, because it's not part of their storyline, but it is the fact.

Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: They spent on AC Nielsen some $1.312 million in 2000 alone on research. They were research mad. I am quite happy to answer Councillor DICK's questions, but I can tell you that I will be correcting the slant and the spin that he puts on these questions. You see, it is all about the political campaign for Councillor DICK; it's nothing about how we can debate the issues to make a better Brisbane; nothing to do with a comparison of what they will do in Office. It is all to do with motherhood statements—

Councillor interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —spin questions and political campaigning. Madam Chairman, I am not going to be dragged down by Councillor DICK or anybody else, and I am not going to change my focus on getting on with making Brisbane a greater city than what it already is.

Chairman: Further questions?

Chairman: Councillor HUANG.

Question 5

Councillor HUANG: Thank you, Madam Chair; my question is to the Chairman of Public and Active Transport Committee, Councillor MATIC. I understand that this side of the Chamber is rightfully proud of its commitment to Brisbane's ferry network. Can you please provide further information on this commitment?

Councillor MATIC: Thank you, Madam Chairman, and I thank Councillor HUANG for the question and the opportunity to elaborate to the Chamber the amount of investment that this Administration, this side of the Chamber, has seen in the last two terms, that has seen record improvements in our public transport infrastructure, improvements in our CityCat network, in our ferries, and in our terminals and, importantly also, the improvements that we have seen in patronage.

Our iconic CityCat network has grown steadily over time since its launch, and we have seen through proper investment from this side of the Chamber, through planning and putting the dollars behind it, we have seen a fleet that has increased from its initial launch of eight to more than double of 20 CityCats, and also an increase from 24, now to 25 terminals, with the introduction of Milton.

By seeing that level of record investment, we have seen improvements over all, not only in the frequency but also the timetabling. We have seen increases and improvements in the number of services in peak hour from literally five minutes to an average service across the day of 15 minutes. That is the kind of improvement that we have seen.

But importantly also, we have seen that strong commitment by this side of the Chamber to enhancing the service in different ways and in different forms. We have seen, for example, the new Hopper service and its implementation by the LORD MAYOR in 2012, taking an old service that saw an average patronage of 8000 per week, to a new and improved service reaching out to Brisbane residents, meeting the needs of not only our tourists but also our city-based commuters, to an average of 30,000 patrons a week. That is the real kind of investment and innovation that this side of the Chamber has implemented which has seen an enhancement of that service across the city.

But also it is important to look at delivering new CityCats, as we have continued to grow the network, as we have continued to grow in our population; the demand has ever been increasing. This side of the Chamber, this Administration, understands that need and has invested the money appropriately. It has seen an increase of two new Cats that are proposed, one already delivering, bringing the numbers from 19 in the last term to 20 currently, and there is another CityCat proposed by June of this year as well, bringing the service to 21.

By doing that, we will continue to have innovation in the number of services we have, and provide even further opportunities for Brisbane residents to enjoy our CityCat service. Our terminals, we have recently seen the increase in the number of terminals by the implementation of the new terminal at Milton. We have seen the improvements of Bulimba terminal, and with that also, we have seen, importantly, through the Lord Mayor's Access and Inclusion Plan, those key improvements in disability access for all of those Brisbane residents with a disability, whether it be slight or whether it be significant.

It is important at the end of the day that we provide the service and accessibility to all Brisbane residents. By making sure that we continue to invest in that space, we will continue to see an increase in patronage. We have seen, also, through Milton significant improvements in Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) improvements, and through Bulimba as well. We have also seen them through Hawthorne and through Bretts as well. For example, the walkway, unlike anything else invested by any other level of government in this country, providing the necessary statutory requirements for creating a level base in order for residents to be able to access the pontoons, irrespective of what time of the day.

We have also seen innovations within the CityCats by retrospectively upgrading them to meet our legislative requirements, through our monohulls as well, and also through our existing terminals, making sure that we are complying with our DDA requirements.

Also the flood recovery work that we have undertaken is a significant amount of work, and I need to acknowledge both the Federal and the State Governments for their record investment of $70 million collaboratively into that process. We have seen those works being rolled out across our terminals to provide the flood resilience for the future.

These are the kind of projects that this side is investing in. But it is important, when you look at the history of the ALP, about their investment in the network which they initiated in 1996, they had within 1996 a total of six CityCats and two in 1998. Then, after that, what was their investment? Nil. It was not until 2004 with the Newman Administration that we began to see the record investment that we needed to in terminals. The ALP—

Chairman: Councillor MATIC, your time has expired.

Councillor MATIC: Thank you, Madam Chairman.

Chairman: Thank you.

Chairman: Further questions?

Chairman: Councillor JOHNSTON.


Question 6

Councillor JOHNSTON: Yes, Madam Chairman, thank you. My question is to the LORD MAYOR. I refer you to my request to include the community and RSLs in replanting of the World War I Living Memorials at Graceville and Yeronga, two of the oldest memorial parks in Australia. You advised me to contact Council officers about the re plantings. I did that on 10 December 2014, three months ago, and I table a copy of that request. There is also a copy here for you personally.

I then contacted Council officers again on 6 and 25 February, and I have not had a response at all to my requests. That is why I raised this matter directly with you, in writing, several weeks ago. My question is; given the significance of Anzac Day this year, will you make a public commitment today to direct officers to work with the community to replace the 20 lost Living Memorial trees as part of the scheduled Anzac Day commemorations in Tennyson ward this year?

LORD MAYOR: Thank you, Madam Chairman, and I thank Councillor JOHNSTON for the question. What I am prepared to do today is to take your question away. I will then come back to the Chamber and give you a more comprehensive response at the start of Question Time next week.



Councillor interjecting.

LORD MAYOR: Yes, thank you very much, Councillor JOHNSTON, I appreciate that. So, Madam Chairman, I thank Councillor JOHNSTON for the question today. I will be very happy to look at the detail of that during the course of the week. Prima facie—and again, prima facie, without knowing the details, because again I am used to—


Councillor interjecting.

Chairman: Councillor JOHNSTON!

LORD MAYOR: —within this Chamber getting questions, taking them at face value, in good faith, and then when I do the investigation I find there is a completely different story. So Madam Chairman, I am just saying, prima facie, from what Councillor JOHNSTON has asked of me today, it looks fair and reasonable. I will certainly take it away and come back with a comprehensive answer next week at the start of the Question Time.

Chairman: Councillor KING.



Question 7

Councillor KING: Thank you, Madam Chair; my question is to the Chairman of Finance, Economic Development and Administration Committee, Councillor SIMMONDS. This Administration is committed to creating jobs by connecting Brisbane business with the growing Asia Pacific region through events such as the Asia Pacific Cities Summit (APCS). Could you please update the Chamber on this year's event?

Councillor SIMMONDS: Thank you very much, Madam Chairman, and thank you very much to Councillor KING for the question. It is a very timely question, because just last week we held the launch of the 2015 APCS where we had the LORD MAYOR kick off the registration process for the summit, as well as announce some of our keynote speakers and corporate partners.

We had over 200 present from the wider Brisbane business community and over 200 present at the launch, and it is quite clear that there is a buzz around this summit as we roll on from the successful hosting of the G20, the Global Café and some of our major international sporting fixtures of the last few months.

This is, of course, the Asia Pacific Cities Summit, a Brisbane City Council initiative that was started by the Soorley Labor Administration who also saw the benefits of connecting Brisbane with Asia, and we have been very proud to carry that on. The event supports Brisbane businesses' engagement with Asia by connecting leaders of Government with business, and also maintaining international relations and the exchange of ideas on leading best practice for cities.

The 2015 summit itself will in fact be the 10th anniversary of the summit. It will be the 10th summit that has been held, and we will hold it here in Brisbane in a combination of the Convention Centre and City Hall on 5 to 8 July. Since 2004, the attendance at the APCS has really grown. We saw the last summit reach new heights, with over 100 cities represented, and over 2200 delegates in Kaohsiung in 2013.

For the 2015 summit, we will again be targeting over 100 cities from around the region. Other cities to have hosted it in the past of course include Seattle, Chongqing and Incheon in South Korea. In the spirit of regional collaboration, we also of course have the Council of Capital City Lord Mayors and the Council of Mayors for South East Queensland who have also agreed to participate in the summit this year, and we thank them very much. They, too, understand the importance of increased job and economic opportunities for their regions provided by this summit.

We've got four main themes for the summit in 2015. The first one is Global Cities, which will look at cultivating cities of talent, creativity and innovation. The other theme is Digital Cities, exploring the science and technology of cities. The third theme is Future Cities, so developing cities and smart communities. The final theme is Cities for People, which is all about creating clean, green, accessible and inclusive cities. Each theme will have a keynote speaker as well as a couple of overall high profile speakers for the event.

The LORD MAYOR was able to announce at the launch just last week that the two highest profile speakers will of course be Lord Sebastian Coe, who was Chairman of the 2012 London Olympics Organising Committee, and Randi Zuckerberg, the sister of Mark, who is a founder and CEO of Zuckerberg Media and a co-founder of Facebook. Other speakers include SY Lau, Senior Executive and Vice President of Ten Cent Media Group, one of the largest digital media groups in the world. We also have Allen Lew, Chief Executive of SingTel Optus, and Tyler Brûlé, the Publisher and Editor in Chief of Monocle magazine, a worldwide publication.

The impressive list of speakers is complemented, of course, by a young professionals forum where we will encourage 18 to 30 year olds in Brisbane who, thanks to our partnership with Griffith University, will undertake their own complementary ideas forum. They will particularly be looking at some of the challenges that our cities are likely to face in the next 20 to 30 years. They will be putting those ideas to the mayors as part of that summit.

We will, of course, also continue to have our business matching program which in Kaohsiung yielded some $230 million in results for Brisbane businesses. So you can see the worthwhile endeavour that this summit really creates.

We also announced our principal sponsors for 2015, and we are delighted to have Microsoft on as our major corporate partner, and we thank them very much for their involvement in the summit. Council is also pleased, of course, to again welcome the support of the Queensland Government as our principal government partner, as they have in the past, and they will do again this year. We had Stirling Hinchliffe, the newly installed Assistant Minister of State Assisting the Premier. He spoke at the launch last week as well. He was very proud of the fact that he attended the very first APCS summit as a member of Lord Mayor Jim Soorley's staff. So he has a very personal connection to it.

We then had a presentation in Committee today. I was very pleased to hear of Councillor SUTTON's enthusiasm in the Committee this morning, expressing her desire to attend the summit. I am willing to take that forward. Perhaps next time, though, I hope that the enthusiasm of Labor Councillors could extend to actually voting in favour in this Chamber of this particular summit. I know that they voted against the funding for this particular event previously. So I hope that they will join their Government colleagues in supporting it.

Chairman: Thank you, Councillor SIMMONDS.

Chairman: Councillor DICK.

Question 8

Councillor DICK: Thank you, Madam Chair; my question is to the LORD MAYOR. Can you confirm you've spent half a million dollars on polling research on Brisbane's residents since you've become LORD MAYOR? Given one in two people in Brisbane believe you are running the most secretive Council in Australia, and more than half believe they aren't getting a fair go from this Council, will you today commit to publishing all Council research that you have commissioned so that all residents can have an opportunity to see for themselves just how poorly you are performing, or do you want a legacy of being a Lord Mayor that is tricky, mean and out of touch?

LORD MAYOR: Well, you know, Madam Chairman, inexperience always shows—it always shows. Councillor DICK, this information is available. So, you know, the people that have been in Cabinet with you have to explain to you the decisions that previous Cabinets have made in relation to this stuff—


Councillor interjecting.

Chairman: Councillor ABRAHAMS!

LORD MAYOR: —yes, you have, Councillor ABRAHAMS; yes, you have. You have sat there—you sat there with me in Cabinet and determined a policy, and Councillor FLESSER, your signature is on it too, and I ought to suggest that—

Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —you have a chat to Councillor DICK about that joint Cabinet decision that was taken. If you do that, Councillor DICK, the answer to your question will be answered. Simple as that—

Councillor interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —look, talk about some of the things you've done, please.

Councillor DICK: Point of order, Madam Chair.

Chairman: Point of order, LORD MAYOR. Just a moment.

Chairman: Yes, Councillor DICK.

Councillor DICK: Look, a history lesson—

Chairman: Your microphone is not on.

Councillor DICK: —sorry—

Chairman: Thank you.

Councillor DICK: —a history lesson from the LORD MAYOR is his only way of answering this question, I know, Madam Chair, but I really do ask you to bring him back. Will he commit to publishing the data? Not a history lesson on former Cabinets. This data here today.

Chairman: Thank you, Councillor DICK.

Chairman: LORD MAYOR.

LORD MAYOR: Madam Chairman, I am happy to answer—



Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —I am happy to answer the question. The first part of the question he said was that we've spent half a million dollars on research. I just compare that to what Labor spent in one year which was, in today's dollars, $2 million on AC Nielsen Research—$2 million—

Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order! Order!

LORD MAYOR: —in one year.

Councillor interjecting.

Chairman: Councillor SUTTON!

LORD MAYOR: So don't lecture—


Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —this is the problem when you haven't been around very long—

Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Councillor SUTTON!

LORD MAYOR: —that's the problem when you haven’t been around very long. You don't understand the history, and your colleagues aren’t telling you the history. If your colleagues had told you the history—and Councillor FLESSER, it's time you used some of your experience from Cabinet—

Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —and Councillor ABRAHAMS and Councillor NEWTON, when you signed the document with me—

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: —when you signed the document with me—

Councillors interjecting.

Chairman: Councillor FLESSER!

LORD MAYOR: —in Cabinet, which set out—

Chairman: Just a moment; just a moment, LORD MAYOR.

Chairman: Councillor SUTTON, I have already spoken to you about the loud interjections. If you continue to interject in that way, you will be formally warned.

Chairman: LORD MAYOR.

LORD MAYOR: Madam Chairman, they signed the document with me in Cabinet which set out the policy.

Councillor DICK: It's got nothing to do with it.

LORD MAYOR: It has everything to do with it, Councillor DICK.

Councillor interjecting: No, no.

Chairman: Councillor DICK!

LORD MAYOR: No. What I'm saying to you is this—

Chairman: Order!

LORD MAYOR: What I'm saying to you is this; your Cabinet colleagues signed a document with me which set out a policy in relation to this research.

Councillors interjecting.

LORD MAYOR: Why would I want to change it?

Chairman: LORD MAYOR—

LORD MAYOR: Why would I want to change it? If I'm happy to—

Chairman: LORD MAYOR, LORD MAYOR, thank you.

Warning – Councillor Shayne SUTTON

The Chairman then formally warned Councillor SUTTON that unless she desisted from interjecting she would be suspended from the service of the Council for a period of up to eight days. Furthermore, Councillor SUTTON was warned that, if she were suspended from the service of the Council, she would be excluded from the Council Chamber, ante-Chamber, Public Gallery and other meeting places for the period of suspension.


Chairman: LORD MAYOR.

LORD MAYOR: So, Madam Chairman, if they want me to change the policy, they're really saying they want me to be secretive in relation to this stuff. Surely you remember the policy that you signed in Cabinet around this. I don't think they do.

Madam Chairman, this is available. Go and get it and read it. It's as simple as that. Between the three of you, you must remember the policy that you signed during that joint Cabinet period, which made the availability of this for everybody, including you, Councillor DICK. So talk amongst yourselves and work it out.

From the very same page of that document that Councillor DICK has in his possession—we're so secretive he's got the document, and there's more there if you go looking, Councillor DICK. On the issue of, “Council invites and welcomes customer feedback”, 66 per cent of people said yes, we do; 14 per cent disagreed, with only 1 per cent strongly disagreeing. On the issue of, “does this Council effectively deliver its services to the residents of Brisbane”, 68 per cent agreed, and only 1 per cent strongly disagreed, and a total of 12 per cent disagreeing—

Councillor interjecting.

LORD MAYOR: —no, he didn’t ask about that. It's on the same sheet of paper. He conveniently left them out, didn’t he? Conveniently left them out, because it's only about spin and political campaigning when it comes to Councillor DICK.

Chairman: Further questions?

Chairman: Councillor McKENZIE.

Councillor DICK: Point of order, Madam Chair.

Chairman: Yes, point of order; yes, Councillor DICK.



MOTION FOR SUSPENSION OF STANDING RULES:

461/2014-15

At that juncture, Councillor Milton DICK moved, seconded by Councillor Helen ABRAHAMS, that the standing Rules be suspended to allow the moving of the following motion

Councillor DICK: I move that this Council immediately makes available online to Brisbane residents all Omnibus customer satisfaction survey results commissioned by Council over the past three years.

Chairman: Suspension of the Standing Rules of Procedure has been moved by Councillor DICK, seconded by Councillor ABRAHAMS.

Chairman: Councillor DICK, you have three minutes to establish urgency.

Councillor DICK: Thank you, Madam Chair. We have just heard from the LORD MAYOR of Brisbane that he has written a cheque for over half a million dollars for research which he will not publish to the ratepayers of Brisbane. We have just heard a lecture from the LORD MAYOR that eight years ago in a hybrid Council where all information was available, yes the document was signed, but a lot has changed in eight years. The people of Brisbane have been locked out of the information—

Chairman: Urgency.

Councillor DICK: —and the urgent motion of this today is, because I have released this information, I have obtained it. The people of Brisbane deserve it as well. If this LORD MAYOR has nothing to hide, if he is open and transparent, and if apparently half of Brisbane is wrong because they think he's leading the most secretive council in Australia, well, he will vote for this motion today. He will provide this information, and if he is so proud of this data, and this Council is doing such a good job, well, why wouldn’t he put it on the Council website? Why wouldn’t he want to be spruiking this? Because he knows that this data is a damning indictment on just exactly what the LNP have been up to. Not delivering on residents, not giving a fair go to residents, and more importantly, shutting them out of the process.

Well, if the LORD MAYOR thinks that this is good news, why won't he provide it on the Council website? If he thinks it’s good enough to spend over half a million dollars—

Chairman: Are you calling point of order? There's a problem with these microphones.

Councillor MURPHY: I'm on. Madam Chairman, it's Councillor DICK's duty to establish urgency, and I ask you to ask him to do that.

Chairman: Yes, I'm aware of that. I'm waiting for urgency. I haven't heard anything that says that it's so urgent at the moment, Councillor DICK.

Councillor DICK: —sure, Madam Chair; let me explain very clearly. With half a million dollars of expended ratepayers' under his LORD MAYOR's hand, he has a duty and obligation to provide this data to the people of Brisbane. If he is proud of the data—and we have just heard that he thinks he is above criticism. This LNP Council don't want the criticism. Well, Madam Chair, the data itself is damning in exactly how they are running this city. If they are proud of this, and he has nothing to hide, he will vote for this motion today. He will improve the transparency and openness of this Council, because otherwise we will continue to get data that shows one in two people in Brisbane think that this is the most secretive council in Australia. Madam Chair, that is what the data is showing. Worst still, one in two people think that they aren't getting a fair go out of this Council. Well, Madam Chair, I say times have got to change. If this LORD MAYOR and this LNP Council is open to transparency—

Chairman: Urgency.

Councillor DICK: —they will vote for this motion today. It is urgent that we debate this motion today, because the data that I am referring to today, whether it be traffic congestion, whether it be over-development, whether it be not mowing our parks, we know that the LNP are a secret Administration. We know that this Council should release this data, and—

Chairman: Are you calling a point?

Chairman: Just a minute, Councillor DICK.

Chairman: Councillor MURPHY.

Councillor MURPHY: Yes, point of order, Madam Chairman.

Chairman: Yes.

Councillor MURPHY: Councillor DICK is repeatedly failing to establish urgency, and I ask that you—

Chairman: Yes, thank you; I have called him back several times.

Councillor MURPHY: —have him establish urgency or sit down.

Chairman: Thanks, Councillor MURPHY.

Councillor DICK: Well, it's also—

Chairman: Your time has expired, Councillor DICK.


Councillor interjecting.

Chairman: Pardon?

Councillor DICK: Every time I move an urgency motion, Councillor MURPHY interjects me continually.

Councillors interjecting.
The Chairman submitted the motion for the suspension of the Standing Rules to the Chamber and it was declared lost on the voices.
Thereupon, Councillors Milton DICK and Helen ABRAHAMS immediately rose and called for a division, which resulted in the motion being declared lost.
The voting was as follows:
AYES: 8 - The Leader of the OPPOSITION, Councillor Milton DICK, and Councillors Helen ABRAHAMS, Peter CUMMING, Kim FLESSER, Steve GRIFFITHS, Victoria NEWTON, Shayne SUTTON and Nicole JOHNSTON.
NOES: 18 - The Right Honourable the LORD MAYOR, Councillor Graham QUIRK, DEPUTY MAYOR, Councillor Adrian SCHRINNER, and Councillors Krista ADAMS, Matthew BOURKE, Amanda COOPER, Margaret de WIT, Vicki HOWARD, Steven HUANG, Fiona KING, Geraldine KNAPP, Kim MARX, Peter MATIC, Ian McKENZIE, David McLACHLAN, Ryan MURPHY, Julian SIMMONDS, Andrew WINES and Norm WYNDHAM.

Chairman: Councillor McKENZIE, you were on for a question before?


Question 9

Councillor McKENZIE: That's correct, Madam Chairman. My question is to the Chairman of the Infrastructure Committee, Councillor SCHRINNER. I note the Infrastructure Committee received a presentation this morning on the King George Square car park art gallery which I understand is the first of its kind. Could you please share with the Chamber what this unique initiative is?

DEPUTY MAYOR: Thank you, Madam Chairman, and thank you, Councillor McKENZIE for the question. Indeed, we did have a presentation this morning on this unique project. Council, as an entity, does a whole range of different sized projects, from the very large infrastructure upgrades to some of the smaller things that do also make an important difference to the liveability, vibrancy and lifestyle of our city.

This is a project which, in many ways, is a small project, but is an important project in supporting our very talented local artists. We have so many of them in this city. What it does is essentially it creates Brisbane's first car park art gallery. We have essentially turned some unused dark, dingy space in an underground car park into an art gallery for park benefit and for the support of those emerging artists that we're having displayed on the wall.

So we've created a display involving nine light boxes, and it will rotate between different emerging artists every few months. So we'll have the opportunity for many artists from the Queensland College of Art, which is a college of Griffith University, to display their artworks to the public. The benefit is not only to those artists but it is also to all users of the car park and an ability to take a Council asset, a piece of Council infrastructure, and liven it up—make it a more friendly, enjoyable place to be in.

We know that car parks can be, as I said before, dark, dingy places where people can feel unsafe. We want to make the King George Square car park the opposite of that—a place where people can use safely, enjoy using, and experience something truly unique. I'm not sure where else this is being done. I certainly haven’t seen any other examples of it around. But certainly I'm aware it's the first time it's been done in Brisbane, and it's a great thing.

Already since we've launched this car park art gallery, we've had some great initial feedback from the community. I put a post up on Facebook this morning about the art gallery, and already there are a whole range of supportive comments. So Gwenda Truman Steven said, “what a great idea!”. The Brisbane Greeters, who run public tours around our city, said, “it looks great!”. Judy George says, “Oh My God (OMG)!—what a gem of an idea”. Lew Bromley said, “now that's cool”. Debbie Burnett says, “my 14-year-old daughter would like to know how to apply to get her artwork displayed”.

So there's already been some good initial reaction to this artwork, art gallery in the car park. It is stage 1 of a two-stage project that we're doing down in King George Square. It fits in nicely with other projects that we're doing, like our Vibrant Laneways project where we're tarting up and creating some atmosphere in some of our small laneways across the city.

So Brisbane is happy to help push forward the boundaries and lead the way in terms of this sort of thing, and in particular support our very talented emerging artists and art students in our city. We have a really bright future when it comes to the students who are studying art at the Queensland College of Art, and we'd like to see these artists become successful not only locally but on the world stage. If we can do a little bit to help, then that is something that Council should be proud of, and all ratepayers should be proud of.

Chairman: That ends Question Time.







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