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Update for October 2012

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Date : 28th October, 2012

At our last AGM in 2011, the Vice-President, Doug Sewell’s report relayed information taken from Mawland’s own June 2011 Report, which was available to the QS Community Committee. This information raised more concerns than those we had already voiced, regarding the rebuilding of P21 and P23; their size, their impact on bush and their claimed usage, which was definitely more targeted to 5-star accommodation for tourists than to affordable student accommodation in an education centre.

Mawland’s above-mentioned Report stated their “Concern as to the economic performance sustainability of the site” believing it could be due to some extent to the following:

·         Uncommercial financial expectations of the site

·         High cost of compliance with the Conditions of Approval which may require changes.

 FroQS viewed these statements as unconcealed agitation for change; and queried whether Mawland had requested any adjustment to their rental obligations to DECCW from year 3 onwards.

FroQS also queried the source of the funding for the proposed new buildings, through Questions to Parliamentary Estimates Committee; they were still ‘On Notice’ in January 2012, when the decision from the Heritage Council seemed imminent.

FroQS sought answers to the above during March/April 2012; FroQS President, Vice President and Committee members met with several politicians in whose portfolios the answers might reside. It was a veritable merry-go-round; from the Treasurer, and Member for Manly, The Hon Mike Baird; to the Minister for the Environment,  Minister for Heritage,  The Hon Robyn Parker; to the Minister for Planning, The Hon Brad Hazzard;  and somehow or other the Minister for Primary Industries was involved after the Questions to Parliamentary Estimates had been referred to her.

This all followed on from FroQS making as strong a case to the Heritage Council in Parramatta as possible.  Despite these efforts, the Heritage Council recommended approval of the proposed development, apparently with little regard for our concerns in relation to the heritage values of the site and lack of compliance with conditions designed to help conserve those values.

With the QS Community Consultative Committee in abeyance after their term of appointment expired and has not been renewed, continual community vigilance is needed. Hence we are grateful of your on-going interest and financial membership support in order to maintain FroQS as a viable entity to campaign in the public interest.

This page was created 28th October, 2012, by Judith Bennett, 
Friends of Quarantine Station.