- Monday 24 July 2017
In my most recent column I presented you, the readers, our residents, with what I believe were the plain, simple and unbiased facts regarding the verge garden furore in Buderim.
Well, here again today in the limited space I have, I hope to provide you with some clarity and balance on another issue that’s currently prominent in the news, regarding the campground at Kenilworth that is operating without approval.
Over the last 12 months or so, Council planning officers have tried to help this particular farmer lodge a Development Application for his property at 18 Paulger Road to enable him to legally operate a campground business.
Because the farmer had always claimed that allowing camping on his property was a means to supplement his farming operation, the application we suggested to him was one of a low key ‘Nature based Camping’ where sites of up to 100 could be assessed relatively easily with relatively low fees and charges and infrastructure. In addition to this , I and my fellow Councillors have sought Council’s Planning Staff to investigate the endorsement by Council for uses up to 10 or so, with a major incentivised reduction in Infrastructure Charges.
However, information and evidence has since come to light that this farmer is infact operating a high scale operation. He has flatly refused to lodge a Development Application or genuinely engage with council planning staff, so council has had no alternative but to request that he either lodges an application or ceases his camping operation.
These actions and regulations may seem cumbersome to some, if you’re not fully aware of the circumstances, but they are necessary by law to protect Council and the wider community we represent. They also protect the farmer himself, who without any Development Approval, could be argued, would be in serious legal jeopardy for personal liability if a claim were to arise in the event of an accident occurring on the farm.
Again I ask, what is so unreasonable about Council actions in the regard? Also, how would it be fair to all those other campground businesses on the Sunshine Coast and in Queensland for that matter, who’ve obtained the required development approvals and paid subsequent Infrastructure Charges in order to operate legally?
If you’d like to know more about this particular issue and why council has a responsibility on behalf of our community to uphold the law in regards to this campground at Kenilworth, jump on council’s Facebook page where you’ll find a detailed statement from Mayor Mark Jamieson, or my Facebook page, where you will find my personal statement. I trust this gives everyone a better understanding of the current situation.
Rounding off for now, Rogo.