Historic agreement for Gorge
AN HISTORIC agreement is being negotiated to give residents of the Mossman Gorge community a chance to own their homes.
Bamanga Bubu Ngadimunku Incorporated is negotiating with the State Government to improve local land, housing and infrastructure arrangements at the community.
Cairns Regional Council has confirmed its support for the changes, which will allow for private home ownership and economic development and improve social housing and municipal service delivery at Mossman Gorge.
There are 31 homes located on two lots at the community and without individual lots designated, municipal service delivery is not provided to each house by council and individuals cannot lease or buy homes.
BBN CEO Peterson Opio said they are negotiating with the relevant state departments to transfer the lots onto the State Government’s One Social Housing, which will open it up for home ownership.
‘‘The end goal for the community is to have the chance to move forward into home ownership,’’ he said.
‘‘We have been actively and in a positive manner been negotiating not only with Queensland Housing but with CRC as well and FaHCSIA (Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs) in an initiative to close the gap and have access to home ownership, something every Australian should have the right to do.’’
CRC acting general manager of planning and environment Kelly Reaston said council will continue to progress negotiations to reconfigure the lots.
‘‘We have worked quite closely with both BBN and Cape York Welfare Reform and the State Government in this project for some time,’’ she said.
‘‘Council will continue to partner with them throughout the project and anything left on January 1 will be the responsibility of the new council.
‘‘It fits in with our reconciliation action plan.’’
MOVING FORWARD: BBN director Chantel Cannon and Mossman Gorge resident Frank Finlay