Owners of unfinished houses within the Memerambi Estate debacle organised a public meeting today with local media, National 9 News and Steve Dickson MP. (Member for Buderim and Queensland One Nation Leader). None of our Councillors or local MP were in attendance.
Even before the days event started the Sth Burnett Online reporter, Anne Martindale, stepped from her car and immediately started spraying vile hatred towards these devastated and demoralised owners yelling “I hope you never get your house built” to one of the couple who own a home on site. These people had hoped to get some support from the media over their plight covering 6 years now trying to rectify a debacle that should have never been allowed to happen. What chance have they got of receiving any ‘fair and unbias’ reporting from the alleged Council owned domain media outlet? (* A )
False accusations from the SBO representative that Free Press had organised the day and the foul language continued along with other verbal abuse and accusations.
Steve Dickson MP is calling on Qld Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, to ‘tap Jackie Tradd MP on the shoulder’ ( Deputy Premier, Minister for Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning and Minister for Trade and Investment) and calling for her to initiate an Inquiry into the entire debacle and find out how & why it was allowed to happen.
National 9 News approached our local MP, Deb Frecklington, for comments on the situation and the reporter was not overly impressed by her compassion or concern about the entire issue with just a mere ‘It’s a blight on the community’ being the response from her.
The specific conditions of development approval require the completion of works “prior to the commencement of building work on each lot”
The applicant has requested that the conditions be amended to allow Dwelling Houses to be constructed prior to works being completed
The condition GEN 6: “The development herein approved may not start until a Development Permit for Building Works and Development Permit for Operational Works have been issued and complied with” Struck out and removed by Council. That is where it all began.
The planning amendment was moved by Mayor Carter and seconded by Councillor Duff. The amendment was passed unanimously by the remaining councillors:
– Mayor David Carter
– Deputy Mayor Keith Campbell
– Councillor Kathy Duff
– Councillor Barry Green
– Councillor Debra Palmer
– Councillor Damien Tessmann
Councillor Cheryl Dalton had declared an interest in the matter and had left the meeting.
Until the recent Council election, these Councillors were still on the payroll (Except Dalton) and currently K Campbell is Mayor and Kathy Duff is Deputy Mayor.
Council officers present at the SBRC meeting on 6th April 2011:
– Tony Hayward (Chief Executive Officer)
– Stan Taylor (Director Built & Natural Environment)
– Eleanor Sharpe (Director Community & Corporate Governance)
– Gary Wall (Director Finance & Business) Now CEO
– John Kersnovski (Director Infrastructure)
The area has now been declared a benefited site, with the Council charging each land owner a levy of $37,000 payable up front or over 10 years (on top of our already exorbitant rates). Owners have had to pay rates for the past 6 years with absolutely no reprieve, on properties that are unlivable and now Council is threatening to sell their property if they don’t pay up.
The rectification work being conducted to attempt completion of the estate is not what the residents were expecting. The single coat bitumen road will not withstand normal traffic – even a driveway has to be double coated to prevent damage. Yet Council can spend $350,000 to re-coat bitumen on the Rail Tail?
There were supposed to be 4 retention dams built to ease concerns over flooding through the estate – Only 1 has been done.
Residents have had to either pack up and leave due to financial stress or keep borrowing more to complete the work on houses that has already been paid for. One quote was for over $60,000 to just make their house livable.
One person wanted to borrow money from the bank, so they sent out an assessor to valuate the property – Just $45,000 was the figure they gave her.
Retirees, Investors and Mum & Dad home owners have all been seriously shafted by the Council and Agencies just while trying to invest within the Region. What financial gain to the entire area would have been generated by 50 houses being filled with residents within the Shire? This entire debacle does not send out confidence for investment within the Shire when for 6 years people have driven past what resembled a ghost town of brand new houses.
More to come on this issue.
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