Fraser acts on ramp, slipway
COULD there be a better time to talk about the boat ramp?
With swell coming straight through the harbour entrance, waves have been hitting the boat ramp entrance to the delight of surfers over the past couple of days.
On Thursday night, issues concerning the boat ramp were raised in parliament after a local petition with over 12,000 signatures to enhance the ramp was handed over to Member for Coffs Harbour, Andrew Fraser last month.
"This petition as presented to the House is extremely important not only for locals in Coffs Harbour but for the vast amount of tourists that come to Coffs Harbour to utilise the boat ramp in the holiday period to fish in one of the most picturesque areas and best fishing spots in New South Wales,” Mr Fraser said in parliament.
In 2015, the Government gave the Coffs Harbour City Council (CHCC) approximately $1.2million to resolve dangers attached to the ramp, which Mr Fraser raised.
"Coffs Harbour City Council was given the money to address the issue,” Mr Fraser said.
"It ignored the plan put forward by Public Works and, according to Coffs Harbour City Council, went to the hydraulics laboratory at Manly.”
The Public Works engineers solution involved a groin headed in a north-west direction off the existing wall at the boat ramp that stopped the accretion of sand into the boat ramp creating a dangerous swell and a surge when seas were high.
Mr Fraser said the Coffs Harbour City Council decided the plan put forward by Public Works would not work and instead dug a hole at the back of the boat ramp to make it deeper, not stopping the accretion of the sand.
Speaking to the assembly, Mr Fraser said he supported the petition to improve the ramp and suggested rather than council be given money, to give it to a government agency to ensure what is planned and put forward, as it was in 2015, is done.
"What I want to see now is the slipway moved to the southern side of the harbour and part of the upgrade include a decent slipway.
"We need a boat ramp and slipway that can be utilised properly without endangering lives and property,” Mr Fraser said.
The debate was made up of four speakers including Parliamentary Secretary for Regional Roads, Maritime and Transport, Kevin Anderson.
"While recognising the challenges associated with the ramp, it is pleasing to see different levels of government and the community working towards a solution,” he said.
Mr Anderson commended the Coffs Harbour Regional Boat Ramp Precinct Enhancement Committee for bringing the petition forward at the Coffs Harbour City Council for supporting them to get the best outcome.