New Rail Trail committee fighting for funds
ON Friday the Boyne Burnett Inland Rail Trail group jumped tracks and became an incorporated group.
Coucillor Desley O'Grady said it was important for the group move in this direction to secure their long term goal of making the rail trail a reality.
"We formed the steering group last year in order to bring all the groups wanting to be involved into the same tent," she said.
"Being incorporated shows government at all levels that there is a serious groundswell of support for this project to happen locally.
"We can now become a hinge point, in order to start applying for grants and open a bank account."
The meeting was attended by over 40 members of the public and council representatives at the Boyne Valley Discovery Centre in Ubobo.
The new committee was voted in and long term Boyne Valley resident Mark McLachlan was nominated as president.
"I'm pleased to take on the role because we've got such a wide support base," he said.
"But the first thing I'll be fighting for is to retain a small section of track in one of the tunnels.
"It's vital we convince the various state government departments we're dealing with to recognise that those sleepers and tracks are an important part of this region's history.
We'll be working with two councils and two state government departments as well as the contractor who's been told to pull it all up.
"We're asking them to slow down so we can save some of the heritage sections."
Representatives from the Gladstone and Burnett Regional councils added their cautious support for the project depending on the outcome of the feasibility report.
Cr O'Grady said there were a few things the Gladstone Regional Council wanted to clarify but added that both councils were still supporting the project.
"Neither council have been asked to put any money towards the feasibility study," she said.
"Funding for the feasibility study is being sought from QCAP, the Qld Cycling Action Plan."