Maintenance obligations for community facility lessees

All Brisbane City Council community facility lessees are responsible for maintaining the facilities they occupy and ensuring their management of the premises meets all laws and statutory requirements.

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Compliance with all laws and statutory maintenance obligations

All tenants are responsible for complying with all laws including undertaking statutory maintenance necessary to meet the legal requirements under any act, regulation, or other statutory instrument which concerns the premises.

Statutory maintenance applies to facility management aspects such as:

  • asbestos
  • electrical - residual current device (RCD, also known as a 'safety switch') and appliances
  • fire safety
  • grease trap/trade waste
  • lifts
  • reduced pressure zone devices (backflow devices)
  • sewer holding tanks/septic tanks.

For example, tenants need to:

  • test and tag portable electrical appliances annually
  • inspect and tag fire extinguishers, blankets and hose reels every six months
  • test smoke detectors annually
  • undertake pest and termite inspections annually
  • clean and service kitchen extraction canopies
  • test refrigeration cold room duress alarm systems.

Council recommends you:

  • establish a complete list of all legal and statutory maintenance obligations applying to your premises
  • nominate a committee member and/or staff member to be responsible for ensuring all tests and checks are actioned
  • make compliance with laws and statutory maintenance a regular committee meeting agenda item.

Clean and tidy

Tenants must keep their leased/licensed premises in a clean and tidy state at all times. There is to be no waste, unused equipment, furniture, or defunct infrastructure left within or around the premises.

Council recommends you:

  • nominate a committee member and/or staff member to be responsible for the maintenance and cleanliness of the premises 
  • make maintenance and cleanliness a regular committee meeting agenda item.

Holding an annual working bee to clean up the premises can also be a great way to keep on top of things.

Waste management

Council undertakes weekly bin collections for general rubbish and fortnightly bin collections for recyclables.

Council also assists tenants to manage waste by providing five tip vouchers (100 kilograms each) and five green waste tip vouchers (100 kilograms each) in your rates notice once a year. If needed, you can obtain additional waste vouchers from your local councillor.

For large volumes of recycling, you can swap your existing 240-litre bin for a larger 340 litre bin for free. No additional quarterly fees apply. Visit our Larger recycling bin page for more information and to order online.

Free recycling is also available at all four Council resource recovery centres for community facility tenants.

For large volumes of green waste, consider using a garden bag collection service.  Visit the Garden Bag Group website to find out more.

Queensland Recycling at Nudgee and Archerfield recycle unwanted hard fill such as soil, concrete, bricks and inert wastes, such as glass or tin. Phone Queensland Recycling on 13 61 35 for more information.

For large scale waste removal, you should use a commercial waste removalist or skip hire company.

Visit Rubbish, tips and bins to access more information on rubbish collections, waste and recycling facilities and how to reduce waste.

For advice on how to establish appropriate collection systems and associated infrastructure, phone Council on 07 3403 8888.

Illegal dumping

For illegal dumping issues, view our Managing issues on community leased/licensed premises.

Containers for Change

Containers for Change provides an exciting opportunity for community groups and charities to raise funds by collecting recyclable beverage containers and receiving 10 cents per container. Most aluminium, glass, plastic, steel and liquid paperboard beverage containers (between 150 millilitres and three litres) are eligible for a refund when returned to a container refund point.

You can also become a donation point and encourage community members to donat their containers to your organisation. It is easy to register, and you can receive your refund via electronic funds transfer to your organisation's bank account.

The scheme is run by Container Exchange (COEX) - a not-for-profit organisation.

If your organisation is interested in participating in the scheme, you made need infrastructure to house the containers. If so, you will need to obtain approval from Council.

Car parking, driveways and traffic management

View the 'car parking, driveways and traffic management' content on our Tenure obligations and responsibilities page.

Find out more about car parking, driveways and traffic management including what your responsibilities are and how to obtain Council approval to undertake any resurfacing or construction works.

Trees and vegetation

Council's Natural Assets Local Law 2003 (NALL) helps to protect our natural assets, including trees and vegetation in urban areas. You must consult Council and obtain written consent before you cut or clear any trees or vegetation from your leased/licensed premises. If you don't obtain written consent you may face fines under the local law. The law provides for on-the-spot fines of $500 and maximum penalties for individuals of up to $50,000.

To obtain Council's approval, as landlord, follow the application for works on a community lease site process prior to undertaking any works.

Mowing and grass clippings

Council runs a regular grass cutting program to maintain Council parks. Many tenants are located in Council parks. Tenants who have publicly accessible park and/or sports fields within their leased/licensed boundary and do not have a liquor or gaming licence are eligible for the grass cutting program.

The grass cutting program provides up to 20 cuts per year using a broad acre mower. General parkland areas are cut to 40 millimetres in height and sports field areas are cut to 30 millimetres in height. The program includes some brush cutting of pathways but does not include grass pick up and removal or cutting around buildings.

Grass clippings should be collected and removed or dispersed appropriately. They should not be placed within 100 millimetres of any tree stem and should be spread thinly if placed around vegetation. Piling grass clippings around the stems of trees produces heat that burns the stem at the base causing 'collar rot' as well as fungal and insect infections which may lead to the death of the tree.

Tenants are expected to supplement Council's grass cutting program with their own maintenance program to ensure the premises are well maintained and/or meet specific activity requirements.

Some tenants elect to undertake grass cutting themselves and do not use Council's grass cutting program.

To remove your premises from Council's grass cutting program, or to find out more about the program, phone Council on 07 3403 8888.

If you have a sports field/s, a good maintenance regime will help it withstand extended high use and provide a safe playing environment for your members and other users. Find out more about sports field management, including mowing tips and maintenance plans.


Tenants are responsible for erecting, repairing, and renewing all fences on the premises, even if they adjoin Council parkland.

If you are experiencing any fencing disputes with neighbours, the Queensland Government regulates how such issues are resolved via the Neighbourhood Disputes (Dividing Fences and Trees) Act 2011. Visit our Fences or boundary disputes page for more information.

If your organisation would like to erect a new fence or replaced an existing fence with a different material (e.g. chain wire to wood), you will need to request Council approval, as landlord, via the application for works on a community lease site process, before undertaking any works.

Drains and water pipes

It is essential that tenants regularly clean all drains and water pipes to ensure they are kept in good working order and to extend the life of these assets.

If drains and water pipes are not regularly cleaned, build-up of materials can cause blockages and damage which can be costly and time consuming to fix. Any repair works must be undertaken by an appropriately licensed person.

Roofs and guttering

The cleaning of all gutters and roof inspections to identify cracked or missing tiles or corroded sheeting should be undertaken regularly. Any identified issues should be addressed promptly. This will extend the life of these assets.

If gutters are not cleaned regularly, this can lead to corrosion, overflow under eaves causing water ingress (leaks), and ultimately results in early roof replacement, which can be costly.

Electrical tagging and testing

As part of your legal and statutory maintenance obligations, all electrical equipment inside and outside your building/s should be tagged and tested by a qualified electrician each year. This includes your main switchboard and any other outdoor lighting switchboards you have on your premises.

Fire safety

You have a legal obligation to ensure the safety of any person in any building in the event of a fire or hazardous material emergency. All buildings must comply with the Fire and Emergency Services Act 1990 and the Building Fire Safety Regulation 2008.

To ensure you are compliant, you should get a fire safety inspection of your premises done by the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services annually. You should also inspect and tag fire extinguishers, blankets and hose reels every six months. This will ensure you have things like appropriate evacuation routes, exit doors, detection and alarm systems, signs, fire extinguishers, hose reels and sprinkler systems in place and in working order. You should also have an appropriate fire and evacuation plan.

For more information, view the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services website.


If you are a Council tenant of a community facility that is listed on Council's local cultural heritage register or the Queensland Heritage Register, there are certain restrictions that will apply to any works you undertake to the premises, including maintenance. There may also be specific design requirements you need to consider.

Visit 'heritage management' on our Maintaining and developing community leased and licensed premises page for more information on how to find out if your premises is heritage listed and how to manage and maintain it.

Development works on community leased/licensed premises

If you want to undertake any development works within your leased/licensed premises (e.g. constructing new infrastructure, undertaking earthworks, redeveloping existing infrastructure, including sports fields), you must first obtain Council approval as your landlord. You may also need other Council approvals such as building approval.

Find out more about undertaking development works on a community leased or licensed premises, including how to apply for approval and prepare your application, the development assessment process, and what to consider when undertaking specific projects such as sports field lighting.

More information

For further advice on your maintenance obligations as a tenant of a community facility:

Related links

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