Feds, state should pay for levee

GYMPIE Regional Council is determined to push ahead with a levee to save the CBD from flooding despite a rescind motion from breakaway councillor Ian Petersen.

Cr Petersen made some good points yesterday and had every right to bring the motion back to council.

He is worried the cost of the levee will blow out and the ratepayers will be left with the bill.

It's a valid concern.

There are a lot of struggling ratepayers in the region and rates arrears, from residents unable to pay up, continue to grow.

The last thing the community needs is something that will increase rates.

The problem is, if further study shows the levee can be built safely and on budget, the idea has merit.

But it should only go ahead if it is funded by State and Federal governments, not ratepayers.

I have heard some people say even if the project was funded by State and Federal governments it would still be a "waste of money".

I disagree.

If Federal and State governments decide to throw money around, like they did during the last floods, I would rather them throw that money our way than to other communities.

If the money is to be "wasted" it might as well be wasted in Gympie to bolster our economy.

One thing is for sure, council needs to make cuts or savings in the budget to fund its slice of the project.

Ratepayers can't afford another rate increase.

Gympie Times


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