Gympie’s iconic Albert Park will soon have no onsite caretaker after the State Government ruled the position breached zoning laws.
Gympie’s iconic Albert Park will soon have no onsite caretaker after the State Government ruled the position breached zoning laws.

Albert Park caretaker has two months to get out

A NEAR 30-year run of onsite caretaking at Albert Park is about to end thanks to state laws.

Gympie Regional Council is today expected to give Albert Park’s onsite caretaker two months notice to clear out after it was found that having a caretaker breached zoning laws.

The park has had an onsite caretaker since 1989, with the only break a 3-4 year period at the start of this decade.

Albert Park has had an onsite caretaker for almost 30 years.
Albert Park has had an onsite caretaker for almost 30 years.

But in February last year the Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy told the council the park, classified as a reserve for park and recreation, cannot be used residentially.

The council attempted to negotiate to keep the caretaker position. However, staff will today recommend the State’s conditions to keep the position be rejected. Chief among these is the council would be forced to take full responsibility of the position, including paying the caretaker’s wage.

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Instead the council is proposing a deal with the Gympie Recreational Association which will split the park’s caretaking between them.

Under the proposal the council will maintain all fields, internal roads and carparking.

Bookings and canteen, grand stand and amenities maintenance will be handled by the GRA.

All user booking income will kept by the group.

The council is also declining to compensate the GRA for the loss of sponsor signs on the Bruce Hwy.

Albert Park’s management is proposed to be handled jointly by the council and the Gympie Recreation Association.
Albert Park’s management is proposed to be handled jointly by the council and the Gympie Recreation Association.

Their loss has cost the GRA $5000-$6000 annually.

A $10,000 compensation payment from the council “was discussed” but has never been paid, the report said.

The GRA said it had agreed to the sign’s removal in good faith “on the basis it would receive $10,000”.

Councillors are also recommended to take a closer look at the onsite caretaker at Gympie’s AFL grounds.

The position is unaffected by the State laws as the land is freehold and leased by the Gympie AFL Club, but staff are advising it be checked to ensure it is lawful and being managed in accordance with the lease and planning laws.

Gympie Times


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