MAJU PULU KITA MASTERPLAN UPDATE: We reported last fortnight on the great new decking under the Home Island Cyclone Shelter and this fortnight we are pleased to announce that the works on this important community hub will continue to be a focus for our efforts as outlined in the Masterplan. The outdoor cinema will be one step further with materials for the shelter over the steps of the Cyclone Shelter arriving on the next ship. We have also heard from the community their concerns about the balustrading and have materials coming to ensure the balustrading is safer and more child-friendly.
POSITION VACANT: The Shire is currently advertising for a Communication and IT Officer for a 12 month maternity leave position. Applications close 9am Monday 9th September 2019.
CERTIFICATE RECEIPENTS: This month we congratulate 2 staff members who have received their certificate for completing further studies. Congratulations to Ibrahim Macrae for the successful completion of Certificate IV in Local Government (Planning) and Razalie Zainal for attaining a Certificate IV in Local Government (Regulatory Services).
BUDGET 2019/2020: Continuing our series on items of interest from our budget, this week we turn our focus to asset renewal. This may not sound as exciting as new buildings and structures but we know how essential it is to maintain the assets we have so that they continue to be of benefit to the community. A couple of the asset renewal projects we are doing this year are the re-sheeting of the Home Island Community Resource Centre building and the two residential bungalows as the existing sheeting is very corroded. We have, with partial funding support from the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Cities and Regional Development, also re-stumped Government House as the stumps were at risk of failure. So while these projects are not visible to the community, it is important we do give them our attention as responsible asset managers.
WORKS UPDATE: Work on the raised deck at Trannies Beach has commenced. The first stage was to prepare the ground area to ensure good support for the deck. We are using ground screws to minimise the area required for foundations. The ground screws will support the structure that will be raised 600mm and cover an area of 80 square metres.
The solar lighting is now being installed on Direction Island. Each shelter will have its own lighting system with a remote on/off switch within easy reach.
The water bubblers have now been installed; two on Home Island and two on West Island. These have been positioned to enable access by people in wheelchairs. We acknowledge the Commonwealth Government for funding this initiative.
The new igniter switch for the BBQ at the Yacht club will be installed as soon as it arrives. Once it has been fitted we will notify the community via Facebook.
Keep your eyes out for the sea of colour as the shade sails for the West Island Playground will arrive this week. They will be installed as soon as possible.
WASTE MANAGEMENT: The removal of historic asbestos containing material (ACM) from Cocos is an issue we have put some effort into resolving. Recent changes to the legislation will now allow us to apply for permits to transfer ACM to the mainland for appropriate disposal. The transport of ACM will incur significant costs so we are working with the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Cities and Regional Development to find funds to supplement Shire funding to solve this legacy waste issue.
And a gentle reminder: Residents are kindly asked to place their bins one metre from the edge of the road with the handles facing the road on collection days. This will assist the waste management crew and improve road safety.
RECREATION PROGRAMS: I have been delighted to receive such positive feedback from the community for the great activities Organised by our fabulous Community Development Team (Adim and Isa). The after school programs have generated a great deal of participation to join in a variety of activities. A few of the activities that have been on offer have included reef walking and snorkelling at Pulu Maria, open sailing day at the Home Island Sailing Club and just recently the surfing for beginners at The Spot. A camping outing at Scout Park is planned for later this week with 40 students registered for this activity.
October will be just as busy with a busy school holiday program, kids and adult boot camp and Sepak Takraw.
These program ideas have been come from the CIDHS students and volunteer coordinators with the Shire team behind the scenes making it happen. A special thanks to the organisations such as the Cocos Islands District High School and Parks Australia and all our wonderful volunteers that have assisted in making these activities fun and safe. We couldn’t do it without your support.
BUSTS AT OCEANIA HOUSE: Last fortnight I wrote about the repair works budgeted for the Home Island Museum. Continuing that theme, I am pleased to advise that we are working with Lloyd and Avril to bring the Clunies-Ross busts back to the Museum to ensure they are accessible for the community to view. The agreement Council had with Lloyd regarding the busts included a proviso that the busts would be returned to the Museum if Lloyd was not on-island for any length of time. Sadly, Lloyd has advised that he will be off-island for an indefinite period, and it is his preference that the busts are returned to the Shire for safe-keeping and accessibility. Thank you Lloyd and Avril, for taking good care of the busts for these many years and opening your home so graciously so the community and visitors could enjoy these invaluable Cocos heritage assets. We send you our very best wishes while you are off-island.
WORKS CREW TEAM BULDING ACTIVITES ON DIRECTION ISLAND: Later this week our wonderful outdoor works team will be spending the day on Direction Island to give this beautiful place a little bit of TLC. They will be building another two fire pits, doing lots of grounds maintenance to the paths such as whipper snipping and mowing. They will also do some minor repairs to main shelter. This hard work will be followed by some team building activities and a BBQ lunch. We look forward to reporting the results to you in the next Atoll.
These are a few items that I think may be of particular interest but we are always willing to meet with members of the community who are interested in knowing more about Shire activities.
Chief Executive Officer