NCG AGM Sat 20 Feb - Guest Speaker Bradley Fauteux Chief Executive Parks Victoria
31 Jan 2016 9:00 AM -
1st July 2015 - Press Release: Labor Stands Up For Point Nepean Community And Protects National Park
The Andrews Labor Government is delivering its election commitment to stand up for the Victorian community and end a large-scale, inappropriate development at Point Nepean National Park.
The previous Liberal Government signed a 50-year lease with Point Leisure group with an option for another 49 years, only six weeks before the election. The lease allows for 64 hectares of Point Nepean National Park to be developed into a recreation and leisure precinct.
The proposed development was only signed off after the Liberals rewrote the National Parks Act 1975, which allowed for long term leases in national parks.
The amended laws meant that the views of the Victorian community were ignored in the final proposal to develop Point Nepean National Park.
The community only saw a broad concept plan, on which they had only less than one month to comment.
The Liberals also signed off on a final proposal that was beyond what the community originally agreed to. Further, while locals were unhappy with the final plan, the amended laws meant that no additional community consultation was required.
The Labor Government has been unwavering in its commitment to stand up for the Victorian community, consistently opposing the lessee’s proposal as an inappropriate development of Point Nepean National Park
The Government has been unable to reach an agreement with Point Leisure Group regarding voluntary termination of the lease, and discussions regarding costs incurred of up to $1 million as allowed for under the lease signed by the Liberals will now take place.
In 2010, the previous Labor Government drafted the Point Nepean National Park Masterplan, with a vision of putting a plan in place that both the Government and the community agreed upon.
We will look to refresh the 2010 draft Masterplan, ensuring it reflects current policy, community views, and future opportunities for the site.
Quotes attributable to Acting Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Water, Gavin Jennings
“The Liberals cut the community out of the process, and on the eve of the election signed off on a plan that was not what Victorians wanted.”
“It is yet another example of how the Victorian Liberals rushed decisions and didn’t care about the interests of Victorians.”
“Labor promised to stand up for the Point Nepean community on this development, and we’re keeping our word.”
“We’ll work with the community and business to come up with an outcome that works for everyone.”
Extract from Labour Party Victoria Environment Policy released on Tuesday 25th November 2014
Labor has always protected our natural environment and our national parks. That’s why we will not allow large scale private development in our national parks and will remove the Government’s ability to grant 99 year leases.
Labor will, once again, ban cattle grazing in the Alpine and Red Gum National Park, and incorporate the Anglesea Heath into the Otway National Park. Labor will also establish a new Canadian State Park and introduce new protections for the iconic Hanging Rock.
We are particularly concerned about the granting of a lease to developers at Point Nepean. It is contrary to the master plan and the community’s wishes. Victorians should not be denied access to this national park and Labor will rigorously test what appears to be its privatisation.
Labor established the Point Nepean National Park in 2005. We ensured that the Commonwealth land and the heritage listed buildings were returning to Victoria in 2009 and added to the national park. Labor will, again, protect Point Nepean for all Victorians and seek to ensure it remains open to all Victorians.
We will immediately review the lease to determine its legal status, given it does not become operational until 2016, and look to use any powers of the Parliament to disallow it where possible. We will return Parks Victoria as the overall manager of an integrated Point Nepean Park."