City News

Flooding in Brisbane, QLD

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As you are well aware, our sister city Brisbane, in the Australian state of Queenland, experienced catastrophic flooding following unusually heavy rainfall on January 10, 2011. With the ground already saturated from previous rainfall events, an estimated 20,000 homes in suburbs outside the capital city of Queensland experienced severe damage with the flooding of the Brisbane River.  The photo above shows the brown, sediment-laden waters of the Brisbane River that have flooded nearby low-land neighborhoods.  The community of Rocklea was hit especially hard with flood waters.

On Monday of this week, severe storms hit Brisbane and the City of Ipswich, which is about 40 miles southeast of Brisbane.  Train services that were re-opened the day before following the floods, were again cut moments before the storm struck.  At the height of the storms, 24,000 homes and businesses were blacked out, after 100 power lines were knocked down.  11,000 customers are still without power. 

Our sentiments and thoughts are with the residents of Brisbane, Lord Mayor Newman and his fellow Councillors, as well as the residents of Ipswich, mayor Paul Pisasale, and Councillors. 

Anyone wishing to give financially to the cities of Brisbane and Ipswich can do so securely by visiting the below sites. 

Donate to the Queensland Government Flood Relief Appeal

Donate to Ipswich Flood Appeal

If donating through other websites, please be sure to check the legitimacy of the charities before donating to help flood victims in central and south east Queensland. Click here for more information.

Water-Efficient Landscaping

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The Bay Area Water Supply & Conservation Agency (BAWSCA) will be hosting their annual water-efficient landscape education program between March and May, 2011.  Click here to view their Spring 2011 Class Schedule and descriptions.  For more information, please call 650-349-3000.

Citynews January 2011

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Click here for the January Citynews 2011.

SFO Airport Noise Presentation

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Bert Ganoung from the SFO Aircraft Noise Abatement Office will be presenting on the noise situation in Brisbane and what's been done so far to address it.  This presentation takes place early on the Council's agenda for the meeting, which starts at 7:30pm at City Hall in the Community Meeting Room.  If you can't attend in person, you can watch it on Ch. 27 if you're a Comcast subscriber.  Otherwise, the meeting will be streaming live on the City's website,, with replays during the week on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.  Click here to be taken directly to the live streaming page and to view the broadcast schedule.

Signboard Postings

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Posted on 1/3/2011
Brisbane Parks & Recreation Dept.
Aging Parent? - Cope to Hope
Learn Strategies That Help Your Aging Parent
Jan 11 & Feb 18, 8pm Miss. Blue Ctr.
Info: 508-2143 or
Brisbane Parks & Recreation Dept.
Youth Baseball Sign-ups
Residents $66 / Non-Resident $77
Info: 508-2144 or
Posted Previously on 12/30/2010
Brisbane Parks and Recreation Dept.
Parenting Teenagers Classes
Analyzing Intereactional Patterns and Power Struggles
Tues., Jan 11 - Feb 1, 7 pm, Miss. Blue Ctr.
Info:  508-2143 or
Brisbane Parks and Recreation Dept.
Living Lighter Excercise Classes
Low Impact Aerobic Excercise
Works with Emotions while Excercising
Info:  508-2143 or

Reminder: City Hall will be Closed

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Please note that City Hall will be open for business its regular hours today, from 8am - 8pm, but will be closed the remainder of the week due to the New Year Holiday.

May 2011 be a healthy, bright, and memorable year for all!

Sandbags are Available

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The Public Works crew has been adding to the palettes of sandbags available for Brisbane residents outside of the Corporation Yard, located at 1020 Tunnel Ave. (at the corner of Tunnel & Lagoon). 

Residents, particularly those who have experienced flooding in the past, are strongly encouraged to pick up sandbags to ensure they are prepared for possible flooding (more rain is expected this weekend).

Below are suggestions for residents to help endure the rainy season:

  • Clean gutters and down spouts to assure proper water run-off away from the home.
  • Do not block the gutters, creeks, drainage canals, or catch basins with trash or debris.
  • Store unused sand bags in a dry or covered area. Sandbags are not watertight and will absorb water. This makes them very difficult to move when wet.

Hopefully this will keep any flooding at bay and we'll all experience a safe rest of the rainy season.

The E-Waste Crisis

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This Christmas, many people (perhaps even you) will open their Christmas present to find a brand-new personal computer.  Or...laptop, ipod, flat-screen television, etc.  The saying, "Out with the old, in with the new!" will be thought, or maybe even spoken.  A trip to the next e-waste recycling center?  WAIT, not so fast.

You may be familiar with the phrase, "e-waste crisis".  In case you haven't heard about this yet, it's the result of e-waste recycling centers exporting containers upon containers of electronic waste from the United States to countries such as China and Ghana to dispose of it.  E-waste, however, contains precious metals which are extracted before the computer monitors, televisions, and laptops are burned...resulting in hazardous toxins escaping into the air.  In the process of doing so, the workers, often children, are exposed to toxins that cause grave damage to their physical health and, not to mention, the health of the planet.

So what can you do?  Well for one, consider whether you really need that latest gadget or electronic device.  If so, find another home for your current piece of equipment.  If it's still in working condition, you can consider saving it for a garage sale.  (If you live in Brisbane, you can participate in the City-Wide Garage Sale in July)!  Because, as they say..."one man's trash is another man's treasure".

But, if you really need to dispose of your older electronics, then bring it to a certified e-Stewards Recycler.  The e-Stewards certification program is an initiative of the Basel Action Network (BAN) -- you may have heard about them and their founder, Jim Puckett recently on a "Fresh Air" FM 88.5 broadcast: "After Dump, What Happens to Electronic Waste?"  To see where your nearest "e-cycler" is located, then please click here (mouse over the map and zoom in).  You'll see the closest one to Brisbane is located in Burlingame, at the GreenCitizen's San Mateo Eco-Center

To read and see more about the e-waste crisis, e-Stewards has a couple of videos you can stream from this page off their website.

We hope you will stop and think about the ramifications e-waste can have on a community, a country, and the planet.  Do your part and make sure your electronic waste is properly disposed of and bring it to an e-Stewards recycler.  It's only the environmetally-progressive and responsible thing to do!

Storm Alert

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Please use caution when traveling the roads this holiday season, as it's likely to be raining when you head out for last-minute Christmas shopping and meeting with family and friends.

Sandbags are available for residents at the Public Works Corporation Yard, located at Tunnel & Lagoon.

For Bay Area Weather Updates:

For PG&E Storm information:

For the Latest Traffic Reports:

San Mateo County Office of Emergency Services - Storm and Flood Preparedness Information from the County:

Next Council Meeting 1/18/2011

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The December 20, 2010 and January 3, 2011 City Council Meetings have been cancelled.  The Council will be convening next on Tuesday, January 18, 2010 at 7:30pm in the Community Meeting Room at City Hall - 50 Park Place, Brisbane.  The night's agenda will be posted on the City's website on the City Meetings page by Friday, January 14th.  If you would like to be notified when City Council agendas have been added to the website, please e-mail the City Clerk, Sheri Spediacci, at, and request to be added to the e-mail distribution list.