A NEW year may bring a new public jetty to Patterson Lakes after Kingston councillors voted to back a plan to build a floating jetty at the Patterson Lakes Harbour Plaza.
The state government offered $120,000 in funding to construct the jetty and council will discuss ongoing maintenance costs with interested parties.
Overall maintenance costs are expected to be about $10,000 per year.
At this month’s public council meeting Cr David Eden thanked Patterson Lakes residents and businesses for their help in putting together a proposal and application for the grant from the state government.
“I think it’s worth acknowledging the contribution that the local shops would be making by actually handing over some of the moorings or rights to the moorings to facilitate this project,” Cr Eden said.
He noted the existing area where boats can berth, on land owned by Melbourne Water, is run down and potentially dangerous. The water authority says it does not provide facilities for recreational boating. Both the Water Police and Coast Guard say they would also welcome a new jetty at the shopping centre to enable them to patrol the area during peak summer periods.
Carrum Labor MP Sonya Kilkenny said a new public jetty “will deliver positive social, community and economic outcomes for the local community, including local residents, shop owners, local businesses and restaurants”.
“A new public jetty will enhance the area as a destination of choice for recreational boat users and members of the public. This is not a new project. Residents and traders have been seeking a new public jetty for years,” Ms Kilkenny said in Parliament this month.
Cr Ron Brownlees was a dissenting voice against the jetty proposal, calling it “outrageous” since it will be on private land and will service private boat owners and a commercial shopping centre.
“We know that Parks Victoria have already said we don’t want a bar of it,” he said.
“If we commit to something that is not ours I think we’re opening a Pandora’s box.”
He said the state government should fully fund the jetty and its ongoing maintenance and the Water Police and Coast Guard should lobby the government for funding rather than rely on a contribution from council.
Crs Eden, Geoff Gledhill, John Ronke, Steve Staikos, Rosemary West and mayor Cr Tamsin Bearsley voted to back the new jetty. Cr Brownlees voted against the plan and Cr Paul Peulich abstained. Cr Tamara Barth was absent.
An independent committee of management, including residents and boat owners, will be established to determine the best way to maintain the new jetty after it is built.
Council will provide a representative to the committee and negotiate the terms and conditions of the project funding and maintenance agreement.
The original version of this article incorrectly stated Kingston Council had agreed to manage the facility at a cost of about $10,000 each year. This is not the case. Council has not agreed to fund maintenance costs and will provide a representative to a committee of management. Council will negotiate the terms and conditions of the project funding and maintenance agreement. The article was amended on 6 January 2016.