Minister turns back on protestors

A small group of environmental protesters tried to disrupt Minister for Lands Tony Kelly's speech.
A small group of environmental protesters tried to disrupt Minister for Lands Tony Kelly's speech. The Advocate
MINISTER for Lands, Tony Kelly, literally turned his back on protestors yesterday during the launch of a new plan of management for the Jetty Foreshores.

Cries of "save our green spaces" prompted Mr Kelly to shift location of a scheduled press conference from public space overlooking the harbour to inside the Deep Sea Fishing Club, away from the protestors.

“The plan reflects a balanced approach to managing commercialopportunities while delivering positive environmental and socialoutcomes,” Mr Kelly said.

“No land will be sold and no residential development will occur.”

MrKelly said the plan confirms the Jetty Foreshores' future as a workingharbour, setting out a direction for the future use and rejuvenation ofit as a commercial maritime hub, while at the same time promotingrecreational and tourism potential.

When asked if he was going to address the protestors, Mr Kelly said, "I've already spoken to them."

But Jetty Action Group spokesman, Wayne Evans, said Mr Kelly "going through the backdoor" is indicative of community concerns going unheard on a plan the government claims will deliver a positive future for the Jetty Foreshores.

“He claims to have spoken to JAG and engaged the community, but theproblem with this plan is that we haven't had access to all thedetails,” Mr Evans said.

“The community doesn't want any development – residential or tourism, we don't want it here.”However, Mr Kelly said the community's involvement has been integral indeveloping the plan of management and response to earlier concepts hadhelped shape its final make-up.

The Minister then donned another hat to announce a plan for regional economic growth.

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