‘THIS STINKS’: Gympie’s rubbish to be trucked to Coast
Gympie's rubbish, including potentially toxic waste, will be sent up the Bruce Highway to be disposed of on the Fraser Coast.
This is after the council voted in favour of the decision behind closed doors last week.
The motion was decided during the ordinary meeting in Maryborough and was first on the confidential agenda.
Mayor George Seymour and Councillor Daniel Sanderson were the only councillors to vote against the motion to allow Gympie to dispose of its waste in Fraser Coast landfills.
It passed 9-2.
Cr Seymour told the Chronicle he was not in favour of allowing the Gympie council to bring its waste to the Fraser Coast instead of building another landfill site of its own as its existing site ran out of space.
"Trucking all of Gympie's rubbish up the Bruce Highway to Maryborough is neither sensible nor sustainable," he said.
"The council is a democracy and a majority of councillors have approved this decision, so I will work to make sure it is effected to the benefit of our community, but I don't think it is a good decision."
It is understood the council will receive financial compensation from the Gympie council for disposing the waste.
Maryborough MP Bruce Saunders said he was strongly against it.
He said he was concerned toxic waste, including asbestos, would be transported from Gympie to Maryborough.
He also said the rubbish would need to be transported correctly and he had additional concerns about it being driven past schools and dining outlets, as well as what would happen in the event of a crash.
"Why can't Gympie get rid of its own rubbish?" he said.
In a response from the Fraser Coast council, Councillor Paul Truscott said for a number of years, the Wide Bay Burnett Regional Organisation of Councils had been following a State Government strategy to regionalise and rationalise landfills and resource recovery.
"In line with State Government and council waste strategies, the Fraser Coast Regional Council and Gympie Regional Council have been discussing options to develop regional landfill and resource recovery solutions to support our communities," Cr Truscott said.
"The transport of waste is regulated by the Queensland Government under the Environmental Protection Act.
"Any regulated waste being transported to our landfills is required to meet those requirements.
"Council has been working with all neighbouring councils through WBBROC and the State Government to work toward regional waste management solutions."
Cr Truscott said what had been accepted by the Fraser Coast council was already available to Gympie council or any other council.
"Anyone could theoretically bring their rubbish in, domestic or foreign to our region, and they would have to pay at the gate like anyone else," he said.
"This is just formalising a deal, which the Fraser Coast can also financially benefit from.
"I can understand others concerns, but theses concerns were already present before any agreement and, as an individual, I believe we are in a position to help out our fellow neighbour.
"What if it was our region that was in this position and needed help - wouldn't we want a neighbouring council to help us?
"And if we have the ability to do good to a neighbour, shouldn't we?"