On another level however, this first step toward Noosa’s de-amalgamation from the Sunshine Coast Regional Council represents what a community can do from the grassroots to redress undemocratic wrongs – the forced amalgamation by the Blight government and theft of our successful shire’s money to prop up two unfinancial southern shires ravaged by Councils complicit with developers’ unsustainable greed.
NOOSA’S bid to separate from the Sunshine Coast Regional Council is one step closer to success.
Local Government Minister David Crisafulli announced this morning he would progress Noosa’s application for de-amalgamation to the Boundaries Commissioner for further consideration.
Noosa is only one of five successful applicants.
Nineteen former shires applied for de-amalgamation.
Boundaries Commissioner Col Meng and the Queensland Treasury Corporation will work together over the next two and half months to consider the cases for de-amalgamation.
“This was always going to be a difficult process but if a proposal stacks up, the community will make the final decision at a referendum,” he said.
Free Noosa chairman Noel Playford says he’s delighted that Noosa has made the cut, although not surprised.
“Let’s be honest, if our submission had not made it to the next stage, then nothing would.”
Mr Playford took Noosa’s 70-page submission and a petition of residents to the Minister’s office late last month.
He says the Boundaries Commissioner and his staff will soon be heading for Noosa to speak with local people and gauge for himself just how deep is the passion for de-amalgamation.
The former Noosa mayor said it was a once-only shot at breaking away from the “giant Sunshine Coast Regional Council”.
“For those who want to protect our balance of low-key development, lifestyle and natural beauty, we will probably never get another chance.”
Mr Playford has urged local people to make a brief statement to the Boundaries Commissioner on the issue.
“We need people to tell him what they think, why they want their council back. He’s read about the passion for independence in Noosa, but now he needs to see if for himself.”
The Noosa area – a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve – represents an environment on which we humans and the animal and plant species with whom we share a habitat rely. Having respect for the land on which we all depend means having respect for Indigenous values. Noosa will be protected through de-amalgamation – and our environmental and democratic values will prevail.
“A Noosa businessman suggested to me the other day the SCRC is like a giant slug sucking the life out of Noosa. That may be a little over the top but you get the picture.”