His­toric agree­ment for Gorge

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - FRONT PAGE - An­gelique Pat­ter­son

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.’’

Pic­ture: AN­GELIQUE PAT­TER­SON

MOV­ING FOR­WARD: BBN di­rec­tor Chantel Can­non and Moss­man Gorge res­i­dent Frank Fin­lay

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