OPPOSING COUNCILLORS SPEAK OUT ON WATERFRONT
PORT Douglas is a step closer to getting funding for its Waterfront Master Plan after Cairns Regional Council voted to submit the project to the Regional Develop Australia Fund committee for consideration.
The RDAF is a Federal Government initiative which awards grants of up to $25 million to projects of regional significance.
Council held a special meeting on Monday to decide on a sole project to put forward to the RDAF committee, with the Waterfront the only one of 18 council projects which met the funding criteria.
Councillors Nancy Lanskey, Sno Bonneau and Paul Gregory voted against the Waterfront proposal, with Cr Lanskey instead putting forward a roadworks project which wasn’t even on the original list as a consideration and is ineligible for RDAF funding and the other two councillors arguing against the financial viability and regional importance of the Waterfront.
Deputy Mayor Margaret Cochrane was one of the five councillors who voted to support the Waterfront application despite earlier indicating her preference for the Cairns CBD Master Plan, which is not advanced enough for RDAF funding.
Stage 1 of the Waterfront Master Plan comprises the construction of a lagoon pool, relocation of the boat ramp and the Waterfront park and is estimated to cost $35.3 million.
Under the proposal endorsed by the majority of councillors, council is seeking a $10 million contribution to Stage 1 by the Federal Government through the RDAF, in addition to $20 million from the
Step closer: the Port Douglas Waterfront