Dulcie Hewitt on the track of the Kilkivan Railway Station.
Dulcie Hewitt on the track of the Kilkivan Railway Station. Craig Warhurst

Council proposal could end markets

ONE fairly small block of land has, over the years caused huge problems and frustrations for its de facto caretakers and lessees.

The block, in Kilkivan’s main street where weekly markets are run by the Kilkivan Garden and Community Group, is leased by Gympie Regional Council (GRC) from Queensland Rail.

State Government requires council to have in place a standard arrangement (a proposal) with any group that leases land from Local Government which is owned by the State.

Yesterday, the community group’s spokesperson Dulcie Hewitt said the group received a letter from council stating if they did not comply with the request for a proposal, the markets could be shut down.

She said all up, five proposals had been given to the former Kilkivan Shire Council and GRC.

“The last proposal we paid $47 to have one of our members take A4 size photos and (we) gave it to GRC,” Mrs Hewitt said.

“They lost that one which is understandable with all the moves they’ve had.

“We got a very, very severe letter from council that said if we did not comply with their request for a proposal, they could close down our markets.”

Deputy Mayor Tony Perrett said to the best of his knowledge, council had not received any such proposal.

“This has been ongoing for a very long time and it’s something that we want to get resolved with a formal arrangement in place,” he said.

“There have been numerous meetings over the years but there never seems to be any progress to the point where there’s been a formal agreement.

“We have a legal obligation back to the State over that land and it places council in an awkward position. It’s a fairly straight forward and simple process.”

The Kilkivan Garden and Community Group has turned the land from a barren block into a fairly impressive piece of landscaping which includes 18 Wollemi pine.

“We acknowledge they are doing a good job,” Cr Perrett said.

“It’s not like council is trying to get them off the land.”

Gympie Times


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