NO GREEN LIGHT: Council workers Geoff Brandon, Jeff Miles, and former councillor John Bowen at the community consultation meeting for Mt Perry's Drought Relief allocation. Picture: Sam Turner.
NO GREEN LIGHT: Council workers Geoff Brandon, Jeff Miles, and former councillor John Bowen at the community consultation meeting for Mt Perry's Drought Relief allocation. Picture: Sam Turner.

Mt Perry drought projects stuck at red light

EVERY town in the North Burnett has been given the green light for $120,000 worth of community projects, bar one.

Mt Perry’s drought renewal projects have not been approved as a part of the $1 million drought renewal funding given by the Federal Government.

Extensive community consultations were held earlier this year to determine where each town’s allotment of $120,000 would be spent.

An initial statement from the North Burnett Regional Council had confirmed airconditioning and solar panels for Mt Perry’s community hall would be the sole projects used for the funding.

It has now been reported however the community meeting in Mt Perry did not bear anything that met the criteria for the funding.

“Council has undertaken some initial consultation with the Mt Perry community on project priorities, however the outcomes of that work have been inconclusive,” Mayor Rachel Chambers said.

“Council will be undertaking additional community engagement in the near future with the view to prioritise potential projects for Mt Perry and to present these to council in the near future with an allocated funding budget of $120,000.”

Their meeting on February 12 had several big ticket items proposed by residents, including a swimming pool, refurbishing their SW-5 Class tram and improvements to their golf course.

The community consultation meeting for Mt Perry's Drought Relief allocation. Picture: Sam Turner.
The community consultation meeting for Mt Perry's Drought Relief allocation. Picture: Sam Turner.

Documents from the council’s April meeting included three other projects submitted for the funding, which included the contribution to the Mt Perry Race Club’s toilet block, a playground update and a water splash park.

Mt Perry residents Karlene Lucas and Shiralee Plowman were disappointed to find the town hall renovation had been submitted for the funding in March of this year.

“The hall is council-owned property, and to me council should be paying to install airconditioning, and not use grant funding,” Ms Lucas said.

“It needs to be spent on what the town wants, and not on what the council wants.”

Ms Plowman had suggested playground equipment which included a climbing structure, swings and a shade cloth over the current swings.

“I had researched the costings, and it came to $120,000,” Ms Plowman said.

“I thought the play equipment would fit the criteria, as there isn’t much here for children, and it would improve business by having people stop in the town.”

The drought funding aims to use local businesses, suppliers and contractors to complete the projects in order to stimulate the economy.

For Ms Lucas and Ms Plowman, they’re left wondering how the playground submission was not appropriate.

“Our understanding is that it’s about creating jobs and attracting people to the town to create business,” Ms Lucas said.

“As the town stands it’s a drive-through, and we need to give people a reason to stop in town, and the playground would do just this.”



EXPOSED: Bundaberg’s worst suburbs for drug crime

Premium Content EXPOSED: Bundaberg’s worst suburbs for drug crime

In the past six months there’s been more than 700 drug crimes recorded in...

AMAZING VIDEO, PHOTOS: Fishos help tiger shark back to sea

Premium Content AMAZING VIDEO, PHOTOS: Fishos help tiger shark back to sea

Video captures release of grateful giant