Mayor Anne Baker and chief executive Gary Stevenson address residents at the Carmila QCWA hall.
Mayor Anne Baker and chief executive Gary Stevenson address residents at the Carmila QCWA hall. Madura McCormack

Why coastal residents in the region fear a new council plan

EXCLUSIVE:

Carmila resident Mark Stanger and his neighbours have been left scratching their heads over the future of their beachfront properties, amid fears council implementation of new planning laws could strangle their ability to build on their own land.

"I went to a consultation meeting wanting to know if I could put a boat shed up, and it turns out that was the least of my worries,” he said.

Mr Stanger, in a filled Carmila QCWA hall on Monday night, couldn't find out from Isaac council staff if the changes brought on by the scheme would even let him rebuild after a fire or cyclone.

Isaac Regional Council's first proposed planning scheme since amalgamation in 2008 is out for consultation, with councillors, the chief executive and directors on the road to answer questions.

The council is also the crash test dummy for the government's new state planning laws signed off in July last year.

The State Planning Policy is the pre-eminent document for deciding what can be built where in Queensland. A key theme of the SPP is to make communities resilient against natural disasters and hazards brought on by climate change.

Government planners have mapped Clairview to be flood prone up to the western edge of the Bruce Highway. In Mackay, the entire CBD, half of Andergrove, and most of Slade Point is mapped as a "high storm tide inundation” area. Similar to what all of Colonial Dr, Clairview, has been deemed.

More than a hundred residents of a 400 metre coastal strip at Carmila, and a 4km stretch in Clairview could be rezoned 'limited development' in the new scheme, in a bid by the council to fit the bill.

Mayor Anne Baker said her council was committed to sorting out the confusion.

"It is all new for everyone... we are listening and we are taking on notice what people are saying to us,” she said.

"We will do our very best to progress those concerns.”

A spokesman for the Department of State Development said the integration of the SPP is done contextually according to the different circumstances faced by local councils.

"All Queensland councils are required to ensure their planning scheme appropriately integrates the most recent SPP and this is normally done when a council updates its planning scheme,” he said.

In the meantime, the SPP over-rides any council scheme that has not yet integrated the document.



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