December 8, 2022

DouglasNews.Network

Quality news, views and analysis of issues that affect and inform us in the Douglas Shire.

On The Agenda at Tomorrow’s Douglas Shire Council Meeting

Will Mowbray's proposed $300 million project Northbreak wavepark be approved? Can Council assist with postal delivery to the growing Cooya Beach area?

An Ordinary Council meeting will be held on Tuesday, 29 March 2022, at 10am.

Council Meetings are now open to the public.  There will be a maximum of ten people allowed (due to size of the room and to allow for social distancing) and attendees will not need to pre-register.

In line with government regulations, Council requires that all guests register (to assist with contract tracing) their details prior to entering the Meeting Room.

Council staff will rotate in and out of the room to ensure the COVID safe capacity is adhered to.

The meeting will be live-streamed online and can be access by clicking here.


5.1 Grant Street, Port Douglas – Water Main Renewal

Douglas Shire Council requires a contractor to replace the water main located on Grant Street,Port Douglas. The aging infrastructure has reached its useful life and in recent times has incurred continuous repairs to keep the asset operational. The pipeline replacement will also provide opportunity for a robust system and improve maintenance over the next 50 years.
It is recommended that Council resolves to award the contract to FGF Developments Pty Ltd (ABN 67 102 951 039) for $453,457.03.


5.3 Combined Application Resort Complex & Reconfiguration 1 lot into 4 – 5640 Captain Cook Hwy Mowbray

Council is in receipt of a Combined Development Application seeking approval for a Material Change of Use for Resort Complex (Outdoor Sport & Recreation, Short-term Accommodation, Food & Drink Outlet, Shop, Tourist Park, Air Services & Caretakers Accommodation), Reconfiguration of a Lot (1 Lot into 4 lots & Common Property) & Preliminary Approval for Operational Works (Advertising Devices) over land located at 5640 Captain Cook Highway Mowbray.
The proposed development constitutes the proposed Wave Park development being referred to as NorthBreak.

Helicopter view over Northbreak. Image Credit/ Northbreak


The land is in the Rural zone within the Planning Scheme with a site area of approximately 40.22 hectares with frontage of approximately 570 metres to the Captain Cook Highway.
The proposed development required referral to the State Assessment & Referral Agency (SARA) due to a number of state interests being triggered. These interests included access from the Captain Cook Highway, clearing of vegetation including marine plants and works within a Coastal Management District. Each of the state agencies involved in the assessment of the respective state interests were concurrence agencies under the Planning Regulation 2017.
The development application constitutes impact assessable development and was required to undergo public notification. A total of 30 submissions were received with seven being in favour of the development and 23 opposing.

Council states that,
“While located outside of the designated urban area under the Planning Scheme, the proposed development has unique characteristics and has a development footprint that makes it unsuitable to be accommodated within land zoned for urban development, or land identified as future urban areas under the Strategic Framework within the Planning Scheme.
Should the development proceed to construction, the development will be a significant drawcard for the region and expand upon the existing tourist attractions that Port Douglas and the surrounding region has to offer. New visitation markets and careful diversification of our tourism offering are critical to adding resilience into the Shire’s economy. Given the project’s unique positioning, including its overall design, world-class wave pool, and environmental ethos, it is reasonable to expect the project will deliver a game changing tourism offering for the Douglas Shire with high value global appeal.”

Further,

“On balance, the proposed development is considered an acceptable development outcome when assessed against the Strategic Framework of the Planning Scheme. In the assessment of the development, it is important to acknowledge the unique characteristics of the development and the inability for the Planning Scheme to anticipate and designate land for such a purpose and the economic benefits that the development represents to the region.
In light of the above, the development application is supported and approval of the application
is recommended subject to conditions.”

Image Credit / Northbreak


5.5 Body Worn Camera General Policy

Council’s Authorised Persons use body worn cameras while exercising their powers under local laws and delegated State legislation. The policy intends to provide those staff who have been issued body worn cameras as part of their role, clear guidelines for the use of the cameras and the storage of recordings.

Council’s local laws officers have been using body worn cameras since 2016. There has been
a general acceptance and acknowledgement across a number of industries, including local government, of the benefits of their use, for both the officer using the camera and the customers they are interacting with.
The Information Privacy Act 2009 (the Act) contains a number of privacy principles which set out the rules for how agencies are to collect, manage, use and disclose personal information, including video footage.
The Act also contains a number of provisions specific to law enforcement functions carried out by agencies and acknowledges an agency’s use of personal information for investigation and
enforcement purposes, including:

  • Prevention, detection, investigation, prosecution or punishment of breaches of the law which impose penalties or sanctions.
  • Preparation for, or conduct of, proceedings before any court or tribunal.


As the use of body worn cameras has become more popular within local government, councils have adopted a best practice approach of introducing a policy to their organisation to inform staff of their responsibilities and to provide transparency to their customers.
It is proposed that Council adopt the Body Worn Camera Policy.


5.7 Financial Report February 2022

The attached Financial Report details the progress of the 2021/22 annual budget for the period
ended 28 February 2022. Key points to note include the following:

  • Operating revenue is currently ahead of budget $196k.
  • Operating expenditure is under budget by $1.86m
  • The Operating Surplus is currently $10m, compared to a budgeted Surplus of $8m

6.1 Notice of Motion – Mail Delivery to Cooya Beach

Cr Abigail Noli gives notice of her intention to move the following Motion at the Council meeting,
” That Council,

  1. Contacts Australia Post on behalf of Cooya Beach residents and requests that Australia Post conducts a survey into mail delivery requirements in this suburb.
  2. Council assists, if necessary, Australia Post to conduct the survey with any available resources.
  3. Presents the petition to Australia Post that has been tabled at the 29th March Douglas Shire Council ordinary meeting.

Cooya Beach is a rapidly growing suburb within Douglas and currently there is no mail delivery to the residents. The population of Cooya Beach will continue to grow as further housing developments are constructed. Data suggests that Cooya Beach may be one of the most rapidly growing suburb in Douglas.
The increasing population will place increasing strain on the Mossman Australia Post branch if the residents are forced to travel the distance to collect their mail.
The current situation is not ideal as important mail is sometimes not being promptly attended to and some residents have difficulty travelling into Mossman.
This notice of motion seeks to assist residents in obtaining mail delivery to their residential addresses.

A petition will be presented at tomorrow’s meeting.