Councillors at odds about depot

COUNCILLORS at yesterday’s engineering services committee meeting were at odds about the specifics of a plan to dispose of an old Warwick Shire Council depot on Canning Street, next to the fire station.

Two motions were put to the meeting before the finer details to sell the remainder of the old depot could be worked out.

Engineering services director Peter See put forward a recommendation to spend $80,000 decontaminating the site so it could be sold for unlimited use.

Mr See told the committee meeting the $80,000 would be spent on removing and stabilising an underground fuel tank and above-ground bowser, and then remove the contaminated top soil and replace it with clean gravel, which would be compacted.

If the site was not decontaminated and just the fuel tank and bowser were removed – meaning it could still be sold for commercial use – it would cost somewhere in the region of $10,000 to $15,000.

Part of the depot had previously been sold to the Queensland Fire and Rescue Service, and Cr Jo McNally suggested this might be a way to go.

Mayor Ron Bellingham said when this occurred they did not decontaminate the site. However he said the $80,000 would be well invested if they did decontaminate the site.

A motion moved by Cr Mally McMurtrie and seconded by Cr Bellingham to set aside $80,000 to decontaminate the site fully was defeated after failing to receive any other support.

A subsequent motion by Cr Neil Meiklejohn to allocate $25,000 to remove the bowser and tank and realign the boundary withPioneer Cottages initially failed to get a seconder.

Cr Denise Ingram then said she believed there needed to be an investigation into other possible methods of disposal, including seeing if the QFRS was interested in purchasing the remainder of the depot.

The motion was altered to include Cr Ingram’s suggestion and Cr Pennisi seconded this motion, which was carried.

The matter will now need to be approved at the general meeting.

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