Cr Engeman hurries Gympie plan

GYMPIE Regional Council needs to be more positive about its future and its relationship with the State Government, a councillor said yesterday.

Cr Graham Engeman said he was concerned council had not prepared for the future adequately in its current planning scheme, now under review.

Therefore, it should work with the State Government on issues associated with our region’s part in the new government Wide Bay-Burnett Regional Plan, currently under development, he said.

Responding to concerns expressed in The Gympie Times this week by his colleague and Planning Committee chairman Ian Petersen, Cr Engeman said council needed to accept “what’s done is done” with regard to Gympie’s involvement in a government sponsored regional planning scheme and should be working more positively to achieve its goals.

“We need to stop criticising. Let’s get on with it and get some resolution of issues, so we get a plan we can work with,” he said.

He said he supported Cr Petersen’s concerns for employment generating commercial and industrial development but said council had not pointed the region in the right direction up to now.

“There’s nothing planned in the 2005 Plan. We need a new town plan with multi-residential, commercial and industrial land, to generate employment and lifestyle opportunities.

“I don’t think we can blame the State Planning Department for going around and working with councils. The mayor’s made the decision (to incorporate Gympie in the Wide Bay-Burnett plan).

“We’re better off being in this early and finding opportunities. We won’t get much mileage if we’re going to keep arguing and trying to lay blame.

“The past is done. Let’s work together and try to resolve the issues. We have to seize opportunities and get the best outcomes.

“I think we need to do something now or growth will jump us and go to Maryborough,” he said.

Gympie Times

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