Po­si­tion de­fended

Isis Town and Country - - Opinion -

I WOULD like to take this op­por­tu­nity to cor­rect two re­cent writ­ers in the News Mail re­gard­ing the is­sue of the Childers Men’s Shed be­ing granted a lease over coun­cil-owned land for­merly used by the Isis Dis­trict State High School for an­i­mal hus­bandry pur­poses. One writer states that coun­cil gave Gin Gin High School “a huge tract of land” for its school-based cat­tle pro­gram. The fact is the land is State Gov­ern­ment owned and the pri­vate res­i­dent who was leas­ing the land sur­ren­dered the lease in favour of the Gin Gin High School. The coun­cil merely ad­min­is­ters the lease as trustee. It is not coun­cil-owned land, un­like the land used by the Isis High School for more than 12 years through an in­for­mal agree­ment with the for­mer Isis Shire Coun­cil. The school has en­joyed, and con­tin­ues to en­joy, to­tally free use of a sec­tion of for­mer ed­u­ca­tion land the then Isis Shire Coun­cil pur­chased from the Ed­u­ca­tion Depart­ment for the lo­ca­tion of a fu­ture aquatic cen­tre for Childers. The 1113sq m of land on which the school was car­ry­ing out an­i­mal hus­bandry pro­grams rais­ing pigs, goats and sheep - was zoned residential and a for­mer home site. The coun­cil has pro­vided this residential por­tion of land for the Men’s Shed while the high school con­tin­ues to use the bal­ance sec­tion for its agri­cul­tural pro­gram. When the for­mer Isis Shire Coun­cil agreed to the high school us­ing the prop­erty it was for hor­ti­cul­tural pur­poses. Another writer ques­tions why a par­cel of land in the Childers show­grounds was not large enough for the Men’s Shed. In ad­di­tion to any new struc­ture en­croach­ing on al­ready es­tab­lished users at the show­grounds, such as rugby league, touch football, cricket, lit­tle ath­let­ics, rugby and soc­cer, as well as the space re­quired for the an­nual show, park­ing was also iden­ti­fied as an is­sue. Many peo­ple do not seem to re­alise that sup­ply­ing land for ed­u­ca­tion pur­poses is not the core role of Bund­aberg Re­gional Coun­cil and ad­di­tion­ally it is highly un­likely that an­i­mal hus­bandry pro­grams would be al­lowed to con­tinue on residential land for ob­vi­ous rea­sons. I am work­ing with the Isis High School in an ef­fort to find State-owned land or pro­vide other al­ter­na­tives in or­der that the school may con­tinue what is a valu­able pro­gram. Ad­di­tion­ally, the Men’s Shed group has been given ap­proval by coun­cil to es­tab­lish a cen­tre that will pro­mote friend­ships, skill shar­ing and great out­comes for the com­mu­nity. Iso­la­tion and lone­li­ness is an in­her­ent part of life for many peo­ple and this pro­ject will

Cr Tony Ric­cia­rdi Sup­ply­ing land for ed­u­ca­tion pur­poses is not the core role of the BRC...

al­low like-minded men mar­ried and sin­gle - to en­joy com­pan­ion­ship and par­tic­i­pate in projects that have a com­mu­nity ben­e­fit. As a per­son who comes from the land I am 100% be­hind ini­tia­tives that pro­vide the op­por­tu­ni­ties for young peo­ple to pur­sue an in­ter­est or ca­reers in agri­cul­tural based en­deav­ours.

Cr Tony Ric­cia­rdi BRC Di­vi­sion 2 rep­re­sen­ta­tive

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