Newspaper article Gympie Times, The Qld.

{UNDER THREAT } {Future of Bay at Risk}; Dolphin Group Lobbies against Proposed Marina

Newspaper article Gympie Times, The Qld.

{UNDER THREAT } {Future of Bay at Risk}; Dolphin Group Lobbies against Proposed Marina

Article excerpt

Byline: Lee Gailer

TIN Can Bay Dolphin Group wants to know if Gympie Regional Council is backing them in the fight against a marina development at Norman Point that will possibly destroy the "heart of the Bay".

Developer, Seymour Group, has submitted an application to Council that proposes to change the entire landscape of the Point, including the Ramsar listed wetlands and the habitat of migratory and marine species listed under the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) Act in Snapper Creek and the Bay.

The application has been awaiting approval while Gympie Regional Council has remained at arms length about the issue despite marketing the destination as being the ultimate unspoilt area to visit in the region.

GRC Planning and Development Committee chairman Councillor Ian Petersen understood why he would appear to be sitting on the fence over the issue and said it was because the State Government had appointed Council the assessment manager for the development application.

He said it was a burden Council could do without.

"We have to remain at arms length for the integrity of the study," Cr Petersen said.

"I don't believe it's the right way to go because we'll end up spending a whole lot of time and ratepayers money to do a study that the State Government could call in and overturn whichever way we go.

"The State Government needs to do a master planning study of the whole area."

The development application has now been referred to the Federal Department of Environment, Water, Health and the Arts for approval.

Tin Can Bay Dolphin Group spokesman Carole Gillies said if development was to go ahead the environmental and social impact would be of national significance.

She said the group cannot believe any government; local, state or federal would consider approving a development that could not only destroy the habitat of protected rare species but spoil a public recreational area and ruin the Bay's economy. …

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