Campaign idea sunk
CITY TO JOIN HARBOUR REFERENCE GROUP
THE City of Cockburn has asked to provide input for a proposed Outer Harbour in Cockburn Sound.
Councillors supported Cr Lara Kirkwood’s amendment to the corporate business plan 2016-2017 to 2019-2020 strategic review at last week’s council meeting.
The amendment said the City would participate in the Westport Local Government Reference Group (WLGRG) rather than campaign and advocate for the Outer Harbour as recommended by City officers.
Under a separate motion, councillors agreed to advise the Taskforce that the City was willing to host a future public information session as part of the stakeholder engagement program.
Cr Kirkwood said she could not agree to participate in the campaigning for the Outer Harbour if the State Government had not yet approved the design.
During public question time, WA Maritime Union of Australia member and Hilton resident Ben Lawver asked why the council would advocate for the Outer Harbour before the Westport Taskforce completed work on the design.
Cockburn chief executive Stephen Cain said the Outer Harbour plan was advocated in 2015 and 2016 by previous councillors.
“The Outer Harbour plan would support the terminal of freight links,” he said.
Mr Lawver asked Mr Cain if the taskforce recommended against building the port, the council would follow suit.
“The taskforce has two further studies to complete this year in August and October and the State Government would then make a decision at that stage,” Mr Cain said.
Before the council meeting, members of the Anti-Harbour Alliance group protested outside the Cockburn Council building against the Outer Harbour.
Members of the Maritime Union of Australia and recreational fishers gathered and raised banners that read “Don’t destroy Cockburn Sound” and “Save our breeding zone”.
Eden Hill resident Tim Barlow said he felt “angry” because he believed snapper stock would be wiped out if the Outer Harbour went ahead.