Have your say about the Cleaverville foreshore management plan


The City of Karratha would like to hear your thoughts about the management of popular fishing and camping spot, Cleaverville.

Cleaverville, located 20 minutes west of Karratha, is used for fishing, camping and off-road driving by locals year-round and visitors during the winter months.

However, a growing residential population and number of seasonal visitors are impacting the area.

An extensive network of unregulated access tracks are causing dune erosion and campers are establishing new campsites along the foreshore, which provides habitat for four critically endangered bird species and two vulnerable turtle species.

The City has developed a draft foreshore management plan to protect the coastal environment for future generations.

The draft foreshore management plan will guide the City’s management of Cleaverville to ensure the site’s long-term recreational, cultural and ecological values, and enhance tourism activities.

The draft foreshore management plan was developed in consultation with traditional owners and the community, including community workshops, an online survey and interviews with visitors at Cleaverville.

Council endorsed the draft foreshore management plan in November and the City is inviting the community to review the plan and make comments and suggestions.

The draft foreshore management plan is available online at www.karratha.wa.gov.ay/public-notifications

Submissions should be made in writing to Ranger Services, City of Karratha PO Box 219 Karratha WA 6714 or via email to submissions@karratha.wa.gov.au before Wednesday, 19 December.

Destination plan to boost tourism industry moves ahead


An ambitious plan to double the current visitor spend in Karratha and be ranked in the top 10 places to visit in Western Australia by 2030 has been released for public comment.

Council endorsed the draft Destination Management Plan (DMP) this month as part of the City’s commitment to strengthen the local tourism industry, increase the number of visitors to the region and diversify the City’s economy.

The City commissioned the plan to provide a framework to identify opportunities and coordinate strategies to develop the region’s underrated and unique adventure, nature and eco-cultural experiences.

City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said the plan was developed in consultation with local tourism industry stakeholders.

“This plan identifies some of the challenges and strengths to promote Karratha as a tourist destination and proposes priorities to attract more visitors to our spectacular region,” Cr Long said.

“The Destination Management Plan will be a practical tool to guide the sustainable development of our tourism industry, working with local tour operators and businesses.”

Karratha received 372,000 visitors in 2018, which was an 82 per cent increase from the 167,000 people who visited Karratha in 2012, according to Tourism Research Australia (TRA) data.

“This is a significant increase and encouraging sign for the future of our emerging tourism industry,” Cr Long said.

Fifty-five percent of visitors to Karratha were domestic and international overnight visitors, who injected $262 million into the local economy, according to TRA.

Karratha ranked second behind Broome for total holiday visitation based on the average number of visitors between 2016 and 2018, out of eight local government authorities in North West WA.

Focus areas to achieve the plan’s objectives include introducing a destination event program, encouraging investment into new tourism products and experiences, and raising awareness of Karratha as a vibrant tourism destination.

The draft DMP will be advertised for public comment for 21 days.

The draft DMP is available online at www.karratha.wa.gov.au/public-notifications and at the City of Karratha Administration Building Monday-Friday 8.30am to 4.30pm.

Public comment can be made in writing to the City of Karratha, PO Box 219 Karratha WA 6714 or via email to economic.development@karratha.wa.gov.au before 5pm December 7.

Nearly $1.5m of savings to flow back into the community after budget review

Nearly $1.5 million in savings identified in Council’s November budget review will be re-allocated to enhance liveability across the City of Karratha.

Council’s budget was reviewed in October and $1.49 million in savings will be redirected to fund new projects and extend current programs and services.

Community safety initiatives will receive a significant boost, with the City’s solar walkway lighting program extended and security screens installed at the Frank Butler Community Centre.

City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said a subsidy scheme for residents to claim rebates on private sensor lighting and closed-circuit television cameras would also be established.

“Community safety is a priority for the City and we continue to investigate ways to work with police to prevent crime and anti-social behavior,” Cr Long said.

Community projects and events will also benefit from the surplus funds.

“The Dampier community will benefit from a vibrant new artwork at the skate park and Council will undertake a detailed design for the Hampton Harbour Marina,” Cr Long said.

“The first stage of the Karratha Revitalisation Strategy will be implemented, the Nickol Bay Bushfire Brigade will benefit from funding towards a new shed, and Council has set aside funds to celebrate Karratha’s 50th birthday in 2019.”

The City’s kerb and footpath maintenance program will be extended and carpark works completed at the Karratha Leisureplex.

The amendments to Council’s budget will not affect Council’s bottom line, with a modest surplus forecast for the financial year.

Council’s budget is reviewed twice each year as part of its ongoing commitment to financial management.

Changes to the Karratha Visitor Centre coming in 2019

The provision of visitor information services will be delivered by the City of Karratha in 2019.

The City’s current contract with the Karratha Visitor Centre (KVC) expires at the end of 2018 and Council decided in June to bring the services in-house.

City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said bringing the services in-house would provide significant operational efficiencies.

“The City has many operational systems in place and bringing visitor information services in-house will improve efficiency and economic sustainability,” Cr Long said.

“The KVC has provided valuable visitor information services to support local tourism from Karratha and Roebourne for a number of years and I would like to thank the organisation for their hard work.”

“Tourism is an important area for our region’s economic diversification and Council has invested significant resources into a national place-branding campaign which will complement the new in-house service.”

City of Karratha officers have been working with the KVC staff to ensure a smooth transition and that disruption to visitor information services is minimised.

The Karratha and Roebourne visitor centres have now closed. During the transition period, the City of Karratha will provide an interim service from the Administration Building on Welcome Road.

A selection of maps and brochures are available from the City of Karratha and reservations for Integrity Coach Lines bus routes can be made.

A revamped tourism and visitor information services is anticipated to launch in February 2019.

Woodside compromise on Bay Village

An amended proposal put forward by Woodside regarding the Bay Village development has been endorsed by the City of Karratha Council.

The revised proposal follows months of negotiations between the City, Woodside and the State Government over the facility.

A key component of the revised proposal will ensure use of the camp is limited to Woodside employees and contractors.

The endorsed proposal also includes a limited approval period of 10 years with the option of a five-year extension based on need, instead of 30 years as originally put forward, and a reduced bed count of 604 beds instead of 700 beds.

In addition, Woodside will comply with all of the other City recommended conditions of approval, including the establishment of a daily bus service for residents of the facility so they can easily access local retailers and services.

Other initiatives include higher quality urban design, the employment of Village Lifestyle Coordinators who will work with City of Karratha to ensure there is a high level of integration between this facility and the Karratha community, and commitments around local contracting during construction and operations.

There will be no bar facilities within the camp and sporting and recreation facilities have been downsized in an effort to encourage residents to integrate with the community by utilising existing quality facilities within the community.

Woodside advised that if Council accepted the modified conditions of the proposal it would withdraw its appeal from the State Administrative Tribunal and the Minister for Planning.

Council will continue to work with Woodside and the State Government on this matter to ensure an acceptable outcome for all parties.

Comments from City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long:

“This has been a long and challenging process for everyone involved, but it was absolutely necessary for the City to advocate the strongly held views of our community and seek a better outcome than what was originally proposed for this facility,” Cr Long said.

“The City has always supported the exciting growth opportunities that were being proposed by Woodside through the Scarborough and Browse projects, but wanted to make sure that the local community got significant benefits from these projects.  The City believes that the tough negotiations that have been held with Woodside and the State Government on this issue has led to a significantly better outcome for all parties.”

“Woodside has demonstrated that substantial growth opportunities are being progressed and that, if these projects proceed, there will be a need for significantly more accommodation.  This accommodation will include a combination of residential and Camp style accommodation.”

“The design and functionality of the facility has vastly improved from the original proposal.”

“Woodside has been a part of our community for over 30 years and the developments proposed by them indicate that they are likely to be here for at least another 30 years.  The City looks forward to working with Woodside to progress the exciting expansion opportunities that they and the other North West Shelf joint venture partners.”

2018 Walkington Award recipient announced

 City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long with 2018 Walkington Award recipient Richard Shaw.

City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long with 2018 Walkington Award recipient Richard Shaw.

Year 12 St Luke's College student Richard Shaw received the prestigious Walkington Award for his academic excellence and generous community service at an awards ceremony on Monday.

The Walkington Award commemorates the service of the founding director of North Regional TAFE (previously known as Karratha College and the Pilbara Institute), Doctor Al Walkington.

The purpose of the annual award, valued at $5000, is to encourage local students to continue full-time or part-time tertiary studies at a recognised education institution.

For his achievements, Richard will receive a $5000 bursary from the City of Karratha to be used for tuition fees and to support his studies.

City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said the Walkington Award had a proud history of assisting local students pursue their academic aspirations.

“We have been running the Walkington Award for 34 years now, which gives students in our community a helping hand to further their studies and career goals,” Cr Long said.

“I am always proud to see the hard work in our young people put into their education and the ways they generously give back to our community.”

“It is an exciting time for our education sector, with funding recently secured to establish a Pilbara Universities Centre right here in Karratha so aspiring students can access nationally accredited courses and degrees without having to leave their hometowns.”

Cr Long congratulated this year’s winner and all the applicants.

“Richard is an exceptional leader who volunteers his time mentoring younger students at St Luke’s College and also through soccer,” Cr Long said.

“I wish Richard and all of the 2018 Walkington Award applicants all the best in their future endeavours.”

Local sports stars shine at 2018 Community Sports Awards

 2018 Community Sports Awards recipients (left to right back row): Sporting Group of the Year Karratha Junior Rugby League President Nic Rolle, Sportswoman of the Year Cheyenne Wailu, Sportsman of the Year Cody Scale, (left to right front row): Junior Sportsman of the Year Max Grasso, Junior Sportswoman of the Year Sophie Taylor, Official of the Year Simi Cagilaba, Coach of the Year Gavin O’Brien with guest speaker former Australian cricketer Dean Jones.

2018 Community Sports Awards recipients (left to right back row): Sporting Group of the Year Karratha Junior Rugby League President Nic Rolle, Sportswoman of the Year Cheyenne Wailu, Sportsman of the Year Cody Scale, (left to right front row): Junior Sportsman of the Year Max Grasso, Junior Sportswoman of the Year Sophie Taylor, Official of the Year Simi Cagilaba, Coach of the Year Gavin O’Brien with guest speaker former Australian cricketer Dean Jones.

More than 100 members of the local sporting community gathered at the Karratha Leisureplex on Friday evening to celebrate the achievements of local clubs and codes at the sixth annual FUTURECLUBS Community Sports Awards.

Presented by the City of Karratha, Rio Tinto and the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries, the annual awards recognise volunteers, players, officials and coaches, nominated by their peers, who have made a significant contribution to their code.

City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said the annual awards were an opportunity for the City to showcase the talent of local sports stars and excellence within the thriving sporting scene.

“Not only do these annual awards acknowledge local athletes’ sporting prowess, they celebrate the commitment and countless hours of work behind the scenes by volunteers involved with more than 100 diverse sporting groups, ranging from boxing to water polo,” Cr Long said.

“It was great to see so many high caliber nominations once again this year. Congratulations to all the nominees – your nomination is a testament to the respect your team and club have for you. The award recipients should be very proud of their passion and dedication.”

Cr Long said the sports awards were also a reflection of the success of the City’s club development program.

“Our FUTURECLUBS club development program offers support and assistance to local sporting clubs and associations with their continued growth and development,” Cr Long said.
FUTURECLUBS is a City of Karratha, Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries and Rio Tinto initiative.

2018 Community Sports Award recipients are:

  • Novo Resources Junior Sportswoman of the Year – Sophie Taylor

  • Rio Tinto Junior Sportsman of the Year – Max Grasso

  • Rio Tinto Sportswoman of the Year – Cheyenne Wailu

  • CITIC Pacific Mining Sportsman of the Year – Cody Scale

  • Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries Coach of the Year – Gavin O’Brien

  • Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries Official of the Year – Simi Cagilaba

  • Red FM/Spirit Radio Volunteer of the Year – Lisa Moore

  • City of Karratha Sporting Group of the Year – Karratha Junior Rugby League.

Independent umpire rules in favour of City on Bay Village camp

Woodside will need to comply with all 14 conditions recommended by the City of Karratha in order to build its proposed Bay Village camp.

The City had expressed disappointment that Woodside would be contesting a number of conditions including how many years the camp could operate and who it could accommodate.

The independent Joint Development Assessment Panel, however, has sided with the City and ruled that the camp can operate for a 10-year time limit only, instead of the 30 pushed by Woodside, and that it can only be used for the company’s employees and its contractors.

City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said he was pleased with the outcome and that the community’s interests were upheld.

“Our Council has fought extremely hard to ensure that if this facility is to be built, it is done with the community’s best interests at heart,” Cr Long said.

“The 10-year development approval is in line with all recent camp developments to ensure that FIFO facilities only remain while demand exists.”

“Limiting its use to Woodside workers and contractors will ensure the facility operates as originally proposed by Woodside, i.e. for its expansion projects only, and not in the open market.”

“To have these conditions upheld by the independent umpire is proof that Council’s diligent endeavours to ensure the best possible outcome for the community has paid off.”

“The City will continue to work with Woodside and the State Government to ensure that the Bay Village camp is built in line with community and Council expectations.”

Brew and the Moo still the premier beer and beef festival of the North West!

After two massive years with attendance numbers exceeding 1800 in 2017, ‘Brew and the Moo’ will return in 2018 on Saturday 10 November as the Pilbara's premier beer and beef festival, and addition of Brewed Family on Sunday 11 November. 

Since launching in 2016, this unique regional event has attracted over 3,000 beer and beef lovers from across Western Australia with 30% of patrons travelling from outside of the region to attend the event. This year the event is set to be even greater with an extended range of food and beverage options plus the addition of Brewed Family on the Sunday which will allow families the opportunity to be part of the beer and beef action. The 2 day event looks set to attract an even larger crowd to the City of Karratha across the weekend. 

Tickets went on sale only weeks ago and are selling fast. Event Director, David Yakas believes 2018 will be the biggest year yet “We’re so excited to be bringing all the brew and all the moo back to Dampier in 2018. The addition of Brewed Family is quite exciting as we have received numerous requests over the past two years from parents asking to be able to bring their children and we think our chilled Sunday session will the perfect opportunity”. 

The combination of beer and Pilbara beef with live entertainment on a balmy November evening at Hampton Harbour’s idyllic beachside will be perfectly complimented by a chilled Sunday session for the families. Over the two days, Brew and the Moo will showcase six musician acts from chilled acoustic sets, to dance floor hits right through to an old school DJ session. The Brewed Family event will include a kid’s zone to keep the kids entertain with face painting, roving entertainment and rides. 

And if you’re budding chef or maybe a BBQ legend wanting to learn more, Brew and the Moo is offering Pitmaster University on the Friday afternoon where you can learn from some of the best beef smokers and chefs of WA.


Brew and the Moo is also working hard to increase the exposure of the thriving cattle industry of the region. “This year, 75% of our food vendors have indicated that part or all of their menus will be created with Pilbara beef from the team at Outback Beef which is really exciting. Our aim of the event is to not only increase the exposure of the beautiful region but also showcase our fantastic beef.” David Yakas said. 

Wrapped Creations, the Karratha based event management team behind the development and organisation of the event, aim to offer with Brew and the Moo, an earthy sense of sophistication and style in the Pilbara, breaking down the traditional perceptions of the region. With contemporary performers, a smorgasbord of fusion and traditional beef dishes, and a great range of craft beer, Pilbara folk need not want for the city life. 

By siting the event at Dampier’s Hampton Oval, Brew and the Moo is drawing attention to the seaside suburb and its stunning beachfront views, as well as encouraging engagement in Karratha. This event and venue looks to provide a gateway opportunity to draw in visitors and pique their interest to explore the region further. With tourism becoming an increasingly major focus for our region, Wrapped Creations will continue its partnership with the Karratha Visitors Centre to offer travel destination packages including accommodation for Brew and the Moo 2018. 

Wrapped Creations has been successful in securing ongoing funding for the event through the City of Karratha council and through the WA Tourism Regional Events Scheme along with numerous local and national businesses keen to see the event succeed long into the future. 

For information and ticket sales please go to www.brewandthemoo.com.au. There are still opportunities for food vendors to participate, and any interested Vendor can contact Wrapped Creations via email, info@wrappedcreations.com.au or call 9144 4204.

City raises concerns ahead of Bay Village development decision

Woodside will contest a number of conditions proposed by the City of Karratha when it make its case for the development of Bay Village workers camp next week.

The City of Karratha Council resolved to support the application subject to 14 conditions including that the facility would have a time-limited development approval of 10-years and could only be used for Woodside employees and contractors.

Woodside has now indicated it will contest these conditions as well as another to build a lit pedestrian way and cycle path linking Bay Village with the Tambrey Estate.

Instead, Woodside is pushing for a 30-year approval and wants to remove the other conditions altogether effectively meaning that the camp coul operate in the open market.

City of Karratha Chief Executive Officer Chris Adams said he was disappointed with the decision by Woodside to contest the conditions.

“Despite Council strongly objecting to a new lease for this development, the City has been working with Woodside in good faith to achieve the best possible outcomes for our community,” Mr Adams said.

“We have set out what we think is a very fair and reasonable list of conditions to enable a facility of this type to operate in our community. The 10-year development approval is in line with all recent camp developments to ensure that FIFO facilities only remain while demand exists.”

“Woodside’s justification for this facility was that it was required for staff and contractors associated with their projects, but they are now saying they will not have a participating interest in the facility and want it to run as a commercial operation.”

“We are hopeful that the joint development assessment panel will have our local community in mind when it makes its final decision on the Bay Village development next week.”

The Joint Development Assessment Panel will meet on Tuesday 9 September to make its decision.

If the JDAP approves the development, Woodside will seek a lease from the State Government for the site.

The City will continue to advocate that, if this facility to be built, it needs to have appropriate rules and regulations around it so it works as a part of our community and is not detrimental to the local community and local businesses.

Council takes next step to cultivate bright prospects

Council is moving forward with plans to develop two economic diversification projects which would generate jobs and attract business investment to the city.

Two separate studies have been completed which identified suitable sites for commercial-scale solar and wind energy farms and an intensive agriculture business.

City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said the study into solar and wind power land supply options found northern WA has one of the best solar resources in the world.

“More than 119,000 hectares of land was identified as highly suitable for commercial-scale solar electricity generation, with 7245 hectares highly suitable for wind energy,” Cr Long said.

“Five suitable solar power sites have been identified, with one site large enough that the solar energy generated could be exported.”

“Council has been working hard to develop renewable industries for a long time, and the Pilbara sun already generates a large portion of Karratha Airport’s power needs, with the first-of-its-kind solar farm supplying the airport’s operations.”

The feasibility study to assess if intensive agriculture was a commercially viable and sustainable industry identified a site within the City’s Airport Reserve, known as the Eco Hub, as the best location.

The study looked at tomatoes as a potential crop and assessed two scenarios – two hectares of greenhouses and 20 hectares of greenhouses.

Cr Long said the study found the 20-hectare scenario could produce 13 million kilograms of tomatoes per year.

“To put that into scale, that is nearly 2000 per cent of the Pilbara’s demand for tomatoes, so there would be significant export potential,” Cr Long said.

Intensive agriculture businesses generate approximately five to 10 jobs per hectare, the study found.

“This means the smaller option could create up to 20 jobs while the larger option could employ up to 200 people if it went ahead,” Cr Long said.

“These projects are great examples of our efforts to diversify into more sustainable industries so business in Karratha isn’t restricted to the resources sector.”

Council is committed to investment attraction in the city and will continue to highlight opportunity for developers and identify suitable sites for these kinds of projects.

Council welcomes green haven for city centre

A shady green public space that connects the Red Earth Arts Precinct with the city centre is one step closer following the completion of a detailed concept design.

The City of Karratha will call for tenders next month for the construction of Welcome Park after Council endorsed the scope of works last week.

The $2.3 million project will transform the vacant lot on the corner of Welcome Road and Sharpe Avenue into a peaceful place to rest.

The development aims to provide a landscaped link between the arts and culture precinct and the city centre so residents and visitors can stroll from the library or cinema to the shops and cafes, restaurants and bars.

City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said Welcome Park would provide an increased level of amenity to the community and visitors.

“This exciting project continues our efforts to activate the city centre and will offer a welcoming entry to Karratha,” Cr Long said.

“The design features a focus on shade, native vegetation and seating areas for quiet contemplation or picnics, which I hope the community will enjoy.”

The development includes long-vehicle parking at the rear of the shopping centre and a pedestrian footbridge to link the new car park to Welcome Park.

“As well as a shady spot to enjoy your lunch, this park will be a place to learn about elements of our community’s unique story through interpretive signage,” Cr Long said.

“Sites have also been identified for sculptural artworks to promote public artworks by local artists and groups.”

Brew and the Moo – showing WA and the rest of Australia what the big fuss is about!

Since launching in 2016, this unique regional event has attracted over 3,000 beer and beef lovers from across Western Australia with 30% of patrons travelling from outside of the region to attend the event. The combination of beer and Pilbara beef with live entertainment on a balmy November evening at Hampton Harbour’s idyllic beachside seems to be getting noticed on the National stage.

In a huge week of highs for Wrapped Creations, the Karratha based event management team behind the development and organisation of the event, Brew and the Moo has been announced as a State Finalist in the Australian Event Awards. 

Brew and the Moo has been confirmed as amongst the best events in Western Australia with the announcement of State Finalists in the 2018 Australian Event Awards.  Entries are judged on all aspects of event management including best practice, innovation, marketing, stakeholder engagement and management, sustainability and event legacy. 

Co-chair of the Event Awards Judging Panel Sandy Hollway AO said:

“The diversity of Australia’s events industry continues to amaze me, as does the ability of the Awards to put a spotlight on not just the incredible events and achievements which take place each year, but to draw out the challenges event organisers manage to overcome through determination, innovation, collaboration and resourcefulness.” 

And if that is not enough to be excited about, Brew and the Moo has also been announced as a finalist for the category of Festivals & Events in the prestigious 2018 Perth Airport WA Tourism Awards which were announced last night at the Finals Fever event which was attended by more than 180 tourism operators and industry representatives at Little Creatures in Fremantle. 

Event Director for Wrapped Creations, David Yakas said:

“To be able to create an event that within only two years of inception is being recognised on the State and National stage against long term events is just fantastic. We are so proud to have created this signature tourism event for the region and we know that is has a long term future on the Pilbara events calendar”. 

Whilst all the spotlights seems to be shining on Brew and the Moo, it shouldn’t go unnoticed that Wrapped Creations was also confirmed as amongst the best small event management companies in Australia with the announcement of being a National Finalist in the 2018 Australian Event Awards. 

Event Director for Wrapped Creations, David Yakas said:

“To have your event recognised at a National level is fantastic but then to have the judges recognise not only the incredible events we create for the Pilbara and but also the achievements of our hard working team to deliver so many events year after year is exciting.”


Winners of the 2018 Perth Airport WA Tourism Awards and Australian Event Award will be announced at award ceremonies held in November 2018. 

Brew and the Moo will be coming back on the 10th and 11th November 2018. 

For information and ticket sales please go to www.brewandthemoo.com.au.

Multimillion dollar upgrades for busy Karratha heavy haulage roads

 The City of Karratha has received more than $4.4 million of Federal Government funding to improve heavy vehicle safety and freight efficiency.

The City of Karratha has received more than $4.4 million of Federal Government funding to improve heavy vehicle safety and freight efficiency.

The City’s road resealing program has received a significant boost, with extra funds allocated through the Federal Government’s Heavy Vehicle Safety and Productivity Program.

The Heavy Vehicle Safety and Productivity Program provides funding to local and state governments for projects designed to improve heavy vehicle safety and freight efficiency.

In addition to $1.3 million budgeted by the City of Karratha for road resealing and gravel re-sheeting this financial year, more than $4.4 million of Federal Government funding has been allocated to projects within the City.

Almost $3.4 million has been allocated to build a road train assembly area on Madigan Road at the intersection of North West Coastal Highway.

Just over $836,000 has been allocated to widen the intersection of Mooligunn Road and De Witt Road in the light industrial area, and $175,000 will be used to upgrade heavy vehicle parking at Mardie on North West Coastal Highway north of Fortescue River.

City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long welcomed the boost to upgrade busy heavy haulage highways and major roads.

“The City works hard to pursue funding from sources, including government grants, corporate partners and returns on investments, to reduce reliance of revenue generated by rates,” Cr Long said.

“This is a significant amount of funding which will go a long way towards making our busy roads safer for truck drivers and other motorists.

“The City has budgeted $2.4 million to upgrade Mooligunn Road and the extra funds will help us expand that project and deliver a major upgrade to the LIA."

Cr Long said the community had identified improving roads as a priority in the Community Survey and Strategic Community Plan.

“With more people choosing to live and work within the City, we recognise grassroots infrastructure are vital to achieving our vision to become Australia’s most liveable regional city,” Cr Long said.

Ninth annual Red Earth Arts Festival launch a success

The ninth annual Red Earth Arts Festival is underway after festivities kicked off on Friday, August 31.

More than 3000 people flocked to the award-winning facility to enjoy a free, family-friendly evening of roving entertainers, dynamic performances and tasty food stalls under the stars.

City of Karratha mayor Peter Long said it was the first time the launch had taken advantage of the superb facility, which was a big boost to the region’s thriving arts and culture scene.

“It’s always a pleasure to launch the festival, which has been one of the highlights of our annual events calendar and much-loved by the community for almost a decade,” Cr Long said.

“This year is extra special because we have a magnificent arts and culture hub to host many of the exciting entertainment options for children, adults and families. I’m looking forward to seeing the community out in force over the next 10 days, immersing themselves in the diverse REAF program.

“I’m proud that the City continues to deliver a festival that is still evolving after many years and that transforms our communities into vibrant celebrations of artistic and cultural expression.”

Rio Tinto general manager Ports Cape Lambert Chris Osborn said he was looking forward to being part of the 2018 Red Earth Arts Festival.

“This year’s programme ensures the whole community can get involved, from the family-friendly launch to the children’s activities and shows just for adults, there is something for everyone,” Mr Osborn said.

“Rio Tinto is committed to the long-term development and effective delivery of arts and culture initiatives across the Pilbara that help add to community vibrancy.

“The arts and culture scene in the Pilbara has grown significantly in recent years and we are very proud of our contribution to the local community in this space.”

REAF 2018 runs from Friday, 31 August to Sunday, 9 Septemberwith events held in Karratha, Roebourne and Wickham. For more information and to purchase tickets visit www.reaf.com.au

This year’s Red Earth Arts Festival is proudly presented by the City of Karratha alongside principal partner Rio Tinto with support from the State Government of Western Australia, Pilbara Ports Authority, Performing Arts Connections Australia, Kennards Hire, Cleanaway, Nielsen Liquid Waste, Karratha Signs and Pilbara Media.

 The ninth annual Red Earth Arts Festival took over the Red Earth Arts Precinct on Friday August 31.  Credit: City of Karratha

The ninth annual Red Earth Arts Festival took over the Red Earth Arts Precinct on Friday August 31. Credit: City of Karratha

Reduced rate increase following community feedback

The City of Karratha Council has opted to reduce its proposed rate increase for residential properties to an average of 1 per cent following a public advertising and submission period.

The revised model means that 32 per cent of property owners will receive a reduction in their rates, while 38 per cent will increase by less than 2 per cent.

Overall the increase in rate yield for 2018/18 will be less than a third of the consumer price index.

In addition, the City will develop a policy around rate relief for property owners facing hardship.

City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said Council had listened to the calls from the community and opted for the minimum rate increase possible while continuing to maintain the standard of services expected from the community.

“While there are clear signs of economic recovery and many exciting projects on the horizon, we understand that some people in the community are doing it tough at the moment and we have tried to implement a rate model which has the smallest impact on those in most difficulty,” Cr Long said.

“The City has critically reviewed all areas of its expenditure in an attempt to reduce costs and is actively looking at ways to increase revenues from sources other than rates. The City has deferred spending on new equipment, increased energy efficiency measures and improved procurement processes to maximise savings.”

“At the same time we are delivering more and better services to the community including the new Red Earth Arts Precinct, upgraded roads and footpaths, new parks and ovals, community events and additional sporting facilities."

"Our community survey feedback indicates that the community loves these facilities and wants to see more of this type of activity. The 2018/19 proposed rates reflects the minimum increase possible while maintaining and improving the delivery of these services and facilities.”

"Unfortuantely due to a revaluation of properties this year rates will fluctuate between property owners.”

“Rates are calculated by multiplying the gross rental value of a property set by the State Government, by the rate in the dollar set by Council.”

“Each property is valued individually so changes in value are inconsistent across the City, and even within suburbs and towns.”

“As valuations have dropped this year, the rate in the dollar charged has increased to ensure the City receives the rate yield required to deliver the infrastructure and services planned for the next financial year.”

“When valuations have previously increased, Council has significantly reduced the rate in the dollar to compensate."

The City’s 10-year Long Term Financial Plan anticipates annual rates income growth of approximately 2 per cent per annum.

Council calls wrong decision on State Government camp approval

The City of Karratha has condemned the State Government’s decision to allow Woodside Energy to build Transient Workforce Accommodation in Karratha. 

Premier Mark McGowan announced the approval of a 30-year land lease for the camp earlier today, subject to a memorandum of understanding.

The development will see a 700-bed camp built on the outskirts of town. The Premier has linked this project to the potential Browse and Scarborough gas projects. 

While the City is extremely keen to see Browse and Scarborough gas fields processed through the Burrup gas processing facilities, the application to the government for this proposal did not mention these projects and, to date, there has been no commitment from Woodside to progress with these initiatives. 

City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said that approving the camp on this basis is putting the cart before the horse. He did welcome the announcement regarding Woodside’s local jobs portal but indicated that this commitment to local jobs seems to be at odds with the decision to allow a new, very large camp to be built for FIFO employees. 

“This camp approval has disregarded the best interests of residents and the community will be disappointed with this decision,” Cr Long said.

“Housing workers in such a segregated manner is old school thinking and will result in poor outcomes for the community.  Where FIFO is necessary, our desire is to integrate FIFO workers into the community with quality, permanent buildings near to town facilities; much like what has been achieved by Rio Tinto in Wickham,” he said.

The TWA proposal was overwhelmingly rejected by the community in a survey conducted at the end of last year with 80 per cent of respondents preferring operational workers to be accommodated residentially in town based dwellings.

The City did offer better solutions but they were rejected. To date, Woodside has refused to issue a copy of the plans and drawings so that Council can properly assess the proposal.

Research commissioned by the Karratha Districts Chamber of Commerce and Industry indicates that the decision brings with it a net loss of 69 local jobs and takes $4.8 million in local incomes and $6.6 million per year from the local economy; figures which City of Karratha residents found unacceptable in the recent survey.

Cr Long noted that Council was doing its best to grow local employment and Woodside did not demonstrate to Council a need for this village at this time, particularly for a 30-year term. 

Council will continue to advocate for local community in this matter, working with the State Government and Woodside to try to ensure the best possible outcomes for residents and the local community from this poor decision.

Local company to build viewing platform

Trasan Contracting have been awarded the tender for Stage One of the Point Samson Foreshore Management Project.

A decision was made at the March Ordinary Council Meeting to award the construction of the 70 metre viewing platform off Point Samson beach to the local Karratha company, injecting almost $1million back into the local economy.

City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said the project had been a number of years in the planning and now that the contract had been awarded, residents could expect to see on the ground works begin in April.

“The Point Samson Community Association have been a driving force behind this project and we are very pleased to be able to commence construction of the viewing platform, especially with a local contractor,” Cr Long said.

“The new platform design reflects the history of the precinct with the platform to imitate certain aspects of the original jetty and site. I know the community are very excited to see this project come to fruition and all going well it should be completed and in use by mid-2018,” he said.

This development forms part of Council’s work to rejuvenate the Point Samson Foreshore under the Point Samson Foreshore Management Plan.

The proposed second stage of this project is a jetty that extends 150m out over the water, ending with a fishing platform. However funding is yet to be allocated for this component.


Karratha-Brisbane flight schedules released

JETGO Australia will provide direct flights between Karratha and Brisbane from the 25th June subject to final regulatory approval.

The Karratha to Brisbane service will operate on Tuesdays and Fridays from the 25th June until 21st September, and then Wednesdays and Fridays from the 24th September.

The Brisbane to Karratha service will operate on Mondays and Thursdays from the 25th June until 21st September, and then Mondays and Wednesdays from the 24th September.

Tickets will be available online from www.jetgo.com from Thursday 5th April.

JETGO Australia’s Managing Director Airlines Paul Bredereck said the company was very excited to offer the new services, marking two major milestones for the company. 

“JETGO currently operates the smaller Embraer ERJ135, ERJ140 and ERJ145 jets with 37, 44 and 50 seats. This service will see Jetgo introduce the larger 98 seat Embraer E190 to its fleet along with Business Class,” Mr Bredereck said.

“The larger E190, whilst new to JETGO Australia’s fleet, has previously been operated in Australia by Virgin Australia and Cobham, and is very popular in the region.”

The new services are being established with support from the City of Karratha.

City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said expanding services from Karratha Airport had been a top priority for Council.

“We consistently receive feedback from the community that they want more flight options from Karratha and we have been working hard to attract additional services,” Cr Long said.

“We are delighted at the introduction of Brisbane flights, opening up new opportunities for inbound travel to the City of Karratha and direct access to the East Coast and international connections from Brisbane Airport,” Cr Long said.  

“JETGO Australia is planning to introduce flights between Karratha and Singapore from late September, however considerably more work is required before these flights can commence,” he added.

Tickets will be available online from www.jetgo.com from Thursday 5th April.


Council disappointed at Water Police loss

The City of Karratha Council has expressed its disappointment at the announcement that WA Police resources will be withdrawn from the community when the North West Water Police, based in Dampier, will be shut down at the end of the month.

City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said that the North West Water Police had a vital presence in the community especially given their heavy involvement in a number of recent incidents in the City of Karratha and wider Pilbara region.

“It is with great regret that we have learned of the decision to retire WA Water Police vessel Delphinus which is currently based in Dampier,” he said.

“Delphinus has provided a preventative police presence for the region’s critical infrastructure since 2006 and has been heavily involved in a number of security and safety incidents including the recent drug bust in Dampier Port, marine accidents such as The Returner fishing boat sinking, island rescues, and the helicopter incident in Port Hedland.”

“I met with the Pilbara Police Superintendent Paul Coombes and Local Member for the Pilbara Kevin Michel today to express the Council’s concern and we urge the State and Federal Governments to step up to the mark and replace the Delphinus with a new vessel capable of providing these essential services in our remote north-west.“