The Federal Member for Capricornia, Michelle Landry is assuring residents near Shoalwater Bay that she is listening to their concerns about land acquisition, as part of the Shoalwater Bay Training Area upgrade process.
Representatives from the Department of Defence held initial information sessions last week with landowners and leaseholders who may be affected by the proposed expansion of the Shoalwater Bay Training Area.
Ms Landry said during this time, Defence officials held 55 one-on-one consultations with 115 people, including landowners, leaseholders and other members of the community.
“I understand this is a sensitive issue for the local community, particularly landowners and leaseholders who may be affected and encourage land owners to seek independent legal advice and property valuations,” Ms Landry said.
“I have sought assurances from Defence that they will explain the timeframe of the training area expansion to landowners who may be impacted.
“And I can assure landowners and leaseholders that community feedback will be incorporated into the master planning process.
“This will lead into an initial business case that the Federal Government will consider in the second half of 2017.
“That will include a land acquisition strategy, including the timeframe and process for land acquisition.
“Importantly, I can assure residents that Stanage Bay Road will remain open throughout this process.”
“Defence is committed to conducting regular engagement with communities and industry, and will hold a second round of consultations in the Rockhampton region in early 2017.
“A community liaison officer will also be appointed in Queensland to provide the local community and businesses with timely updates on developments.
Ms Landry said the billion dollar investment in Shoalwater Bay Training Area will generate its own construction boom in Central Queensland, as local builders and local engineers construct roads, accommodation and facilities at the expanded facilities.
“Under the agreement, priority for the construction of infrastructure upgrades will be given to local businesses, to assist local workers and businesses make the transition from the mining construction boom,” Ms Landry said.
“Land that is acquired under this expansion will be owned by the Australian Government, and the Australian Defence Force will have priority use of the training areas.
“As a result of these upgrades, Australian Defence personnel will have year-round access to better training facilities, enabling greater flexibility to conduct increasingly complex training activities.
Further information can be found at http://www.defence.gov.au/Initiatives/SingaporeTraining/, and Defence can be contacted at any time via email@example.com.