State Member for Caloundra Mark McArdle and Shadow Transport Minister Andrew Powell today promised to send the Landsborough Rail Overpass proposal back to the drawing board with real consultation.
“The Labor Government proposed an overpass going East to West over the rail line, shutting off many businesses from passing road traffic, affecting people’s livelihood and hitting home owners who could lose their homes and devalue property values in the area.” Mr McArdle said
“Yet despite all this, in September 2016 only a limited number of people in Landsborough were told of Labor’s plan to put the Overpass in their town after the so called ‘reference design’ had been completed. Sadly they didn’t ask the community beforehand.” Mr McArdle said.
“The so-called consultation happened between 6 October and 14 October 2016 but only people who “may potentially be directly affected” were notified of the consultation by a letter dated 28 September. The bulk of business owners and home owners had no idea what was happening because they were not told.” Mr McArdle said.
“The Labor Government tried to pull a swifty just like they did in Beerwah a number of years ago - keep people in the dark and then move to shut down any public consultation. Those of us who were here remember the chaos that caused in Beerwah, but it won’t happen in Landsborough.” Mr Powell said.
Mr Powell and Mr McArdle attended a government briefing in November last year and were told further community consultation would be happening. Despite requests for more information they have met a stone wall.
“You can’t treat people like that. At a public meeting in December 2016, which about 300 people attended, it was made very clear that people wanted a say in the future of Landsborough, in fact demanded it.” Mr Powell said.
“This hasn’t happened and we are here today to announce the LNP will restart the process with consultation first. Any determination as to what should happen with the crossing is a very serious matter both economically and socially. The people who live and work in Landsborough must be involved from day one.” Mr Powell said.
“Plans of this nature affect local residents deeply and if this matter needs to be considered in the future then the public will be on board from day one and their opinions will be respected.” Mr McArdle said.
“It’s important to always remember local people have knowledge that a bureaucrat sitting in an office in George Street can never have and it is that input that is vital to make a decision that is to deliver long term benefits.” Mr Powell concluded.