DEBATE: Subdividing flood-prone land divides councillors
AN APPLICATION to reconfigure a block of land in North Bundaberg sparked debate in yesterday's council meeting.
Council planning and development spokesman Ross Sommerfeld backed the subdivision of one block into two despite being in a flood hazard area.
Both councillors Judy Peters and Greg Barnes spoke against the application to split the block into a rural residential block (lot 32) with a house and a rural block (lot 50) for livestock.
"I have to vote against this," Cr Peters said.
"It is in conflict with the Bundaberg Regional Council's planning scheme and creates a new lot below flood level."
Cr Barnes supported Cr Peters, saying Google imagery showed the entire area underwater and affected by high velocity water.
Cr Helen Blackburn said a covenant could be put in place prevent the building of houses on lot 50.
Councillor Bill Trevor also voiced his support for the reconfiguration, saying it would allow council the opportunity to complete outstanding drainage works.
Cr Sommerfeld reassured councillors no cattle on the property were destroyed during the 2013 flood and the existing shed had also survived the influx of water.
"Those divisions already exist, we will not be creating any further divisions, we're not creating any new accesses and currently the block is unviable," Cr Sommerfeld said.
"The other block (lot 50) is virtually unusable other than for those who want to agist cattle or horses to have animals close to town, and real estate experts can't sell the block as is."
All councillors except Cr Peters and Cr Barnes voted in support of the motion.
The block will now be divided into two blocks, with lot 32 remaining as a rural residential block and lot 50 becoming a separate area to graze livestock.