Council objects to water policy paper
Manjimup Shire Council has added its opinion to the voices opposed to proposed water licensing fees and charges.
At the council meeting on Thursday, the council voted to “strongly object” to a discussion paper by the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation.
The discussion paper the council voted to object included measures such as the proposed cost increases on the community and the council.
“The State Government should be aiming to support investment in water security and primary production — building economic capacity and investment — rather than discouraging investment through excessive and unsubstantiated fees,” the council agenda recommended.
As part of its decision, the council also requested more detailed justification for the need for the cost recovery measures described in the discussion paper.
Manjimup shire president Paul Omodei said council staff had been working hard to address the issues.
“We’ve done a lot of work in the past, in about 2007 the State Government looked at introduc- ing water licensing legislation,” he said. “We will be lobbying with all members of Government in an effort to stop the cost recovery increases.”
The vote also included a clause about proposed increased costs to land clearing permits.
For example, under proposed changes, and application to clear 1ha of vegetation would increase from $50 to $1000.
As explained in last week’s council agenda, permits for shire-managed road reserve improvements or maintenance would increase from $200 to $2000 each.
“We see this as a real impost,” Cr Omodei said.