Ludwig consults with Defence on Master Plan for Shoalwater
LIVINGSTONE SHIRE Mayor Bill Ludwig is satisfied with the Shoalwater Bay expansion process after talking with the Defence Department yesterday.
Mayor Ludwig said the discussion he had with Defence yesterday suggested they will have more certainty about which land will be purchased for the expansion and what land lease agreements the Defence will enter with other landholders in the area by mid-year.
Cr Ludwig made the call to Defence after being approached by The Morning Bulletin about comments Capricornia MP Michelle Landry made yesterday morning about how she had not seen the Master Plan and that the Defence were 'keeping it under wraps'.
He said Defence were confident from the level of interest from willing sellers in the past that they would be able to have 'a workable outcome'.
Cr Ludwig said, from his understanding of the conversation he had with Defence, the Master Plan was more of an operational footprint than anything.
He said Livingstone Shire was interested in the size of the expansion.
"From council's perspective, I am very comfortable with what they have said to us,” Cr Ludwig said.
Livingstone Shire will lose rates as a result of the expansion, but Cr Ludwig said that will be easy to work out when Defence are in a better position to inform the council.
He said Defence also had plans to look at lease agreements with landholders, instead of outright purchases, mainly for land the ADF will only require occasionally.
"I think they are moving forward in a positive consultative way,” Cr Ludwig said.
He said Livingstone was looking forward to working with Defence on infrastructure upgrade opportunities when the footprint for the land acquisition and lease area was available in the second half of the year.