DOUGLAS SHIRE COUNCIL / Decides on the Daintree Ferry, Tourism Strategies, Water and Waste

daintree river traffic queues

An ordinary Council meeting was held this morning Tuesday 26 July 2022, at 10am. Douglas Shire Councillors addressed the following agenda items.

5.1 Audit Committee Meeting Minutes

Carried unanimously.

5.2 Interim Financial Report June 2022

Carried unanimously.

5.3 Daintree Ferry Crossing Solution

It is recommended that Council resolves to replace the existing Daintree Ferry, with a single ferry capable of four lanes of road vehicles and dual road vehicle loading capability and associated landside infrastructure upgrades on both riverbanks.

The motion was moved by Cr Michael Kerr, and seconded by Cr Peter McKeown.

Cr Lisa Scomazzon spoke against the motion; that it was premature, suggesting that the Report is probably three years late. She wanted more detail; answers to questions as to exactly how the findings of the Traffic Study were made, ie what figures were used. Have approvals been sought for this option? Cr Scomazzon’s main concern is the amount of money spent so far trying to resolve the matter. She acknowledged that it is important to move on, but that not enough information has been provided to date, nor discussed at workshops, to decide on such a big decision.

Cr Peter McKeown spoke briefly in support for the proposal, in the interests of moving forward.

Cr Abigail Noli noted she was happy to discuss the motion, while Cr Zammataro, agreed with Cr Scomazzon that there are still important questions that need to be answered, and would therefore like to defer the decision. He also asked whether Council proposes building the ferry or putting it to tender, another unanswered question.

Consequently, Cr Zammataro proposed a procedural motion to defer the motion, seconded by Cr Scomazzon and supported by Cr Noli.

5.4 Application for permanent road closure over unnamed road reserve, adjacent to Lot 129 on SR454 Toll Gate Road, Oak Beach

Decision deferred.

5.5 Operational Plan Progress Report for April to June 2022

Carried unanimously.

5.6 Report from the Chief Executive Officer for period April to June 2022

5.7 Capital Works Progress for Last Quarter 2021-2022

5.8 Tourism Port Douglas Daintree Strategic Plan 2023

TPDD’s 2023 strategies outline the wide range of activities and initiatives TPDD will undertake to further their five-year vision of firmly positioning Port Douglas Daintree as the Eco-Luxe and sustainable destination of Queensland. Cr Noli drew particular attention to the community’s and Council’s need to really focus on those key words in their broader decision-making.

Carried unanimously.

5.9 Waste Reduction and Recycling Plan

Carried unanimously.

5.10 Unreasonable Complainant Conduct Policy

Carried unanimously.

5.11 Rates Rebate – Not for Profit Entities Policy – July 2022

Carried unanimously.

5.12 Contract WO5644 – Reef Park Port Douglas Street Lighting Phase 2

Carried unanimously.

5.13 Tender for Mossman Water Treatment Plant Ultrafiltration System Upgrade

Carried unanimously.

5.14 Tender for Smart Water Meters – Phase 2

Douglas Shire Council engaged Taggle Systems Pty Ltd to supply, install and work with Council to enable a smart water system that would provide real time water meter readings for the purposes of water security, while improving water billing and network maintainability.
Phase 1 had a limited budget, which was funded by Queensland Government under 2021-24
Works for Queensland initiative. The budget enabled rollout of 900 smart water meters and
set up of the data management platform known as Aqualus.
This Variation for Phase 2 will be a continuation under Contract 020-023 – Smart Water Meters
with Taggle Systems to ensure the remainder of the Shire’s active water meters are upgraded
enabling complete oversight and data capture of water usage for the purposes of billing and
water network management.

Cr Zammataro sat out of the decision-making under family conflict of interest.

Motion carried.

Meeting closed 10.39am.