Public forum calls for moratorium on SEQ growth (MAR)
Thursday 1 March 2007
A public forum held in the Sunshine Coast on Saturday, 24th February, called for a delay
in the finalisation of all South East Queensland growth plans until after the next local
government elections in 2008.
The South East Queensland Regional Plan 2002-2026 (SEQ Regional Plan) requires
each local government in SEQ to prepare a Local Growth Management Strategy (LGMS)
by 30 June 2007 for approval by the Regional Planning Minister. The LGMS details how
local governments are to meet the population targets set out under the SEQ Regional
Simon Baltais, President of Sustainable Population Australia – South East Queensland
Branch said that the forum organised by the Sunshine Coast Environment Council
(SCEC), and one of many public events expected, seeks to empower the community by
encouraging them to tell the State Government what they want at the ballot box of the
next local government elections to be held in 2008.
Caloundra City is one of the first local government areas in SEQ required to submit an
LGMS and existing residents fear that there concerns are not being listened to.
“In a survey conducted by the Sunshine Coast Environment Council, 89% of Caloundra
residents feel that they were not consulted on the population targets set out in the Plan,”
SCEC coordinator, Keryn Jones, said. “Surveys conducted by SCEC, The University of
the Sunshine Coast and Maroochy Council indicate that the majority of Sunshine Coast
residents place a high value on the natural environment, much of which will be destroyed
by the rapid pace of development mandated by the SEQ Regional Plan.”
Residents called for the State government to delay the local growth management
strategies and provide communities with the option to vote for local government
candidates who support stable, low, medium or high growth options, rather than forcing
them to accept the doubling of the population by 2026 proposed in the SEQ Plan.
“Every resident should be voting on the future of their shire or council at the 2008
Council election,” said Baltais. “They will have seen the details of their draft LGMS and
the various options available. Local government candidates likewise will know the
options and will be asked to publicly state the option they support. The people can then
“It is obvious that the current State Government is hell bent on ‘development at any cost’
yet clearly many SEQ communities don’t want anything to do with this poorly conceived
and unbalanced vision,” said Baltais. “The State Government should let the
communities of SEQ determine their future, not residential developers.”
“Delaying the finalization of the LGMS until after the 2008 Council elections will provide
certainty to all levels of government as to what the people want,” said Baltais.
For further information:Simon Baltais, President SPA-SEQ – (07) 3822-4943 or
0412 075 334