Gympie council CEO Shane Gray says he was surprised to hear about Fraser Coast council’s decision to accept waste from this region, as Gympie council has not yet made any decisions about the future of its waste services.
Gympie council CEO Shane Gray says he was surprised to hear about Fraser Coast council’s decision to accept waste from this region, as Gympie council has not yet made any decisions about the future of its waste services.

Bonnick Rd not full, says surprised Gympie council CEO

News the Gympie Regional Council would be trucking its waste up the Bruce Highway to the Fraser Coast has come as a “surprise” to Gympie CEO Shane Gray, who said Tuesday’s media report was the first he had heard about it.

News of the agreement broke on Tuesday following a vote behind closed doors at Fraser Coast Regional Council’s latest ordinary meeting.

Councillors voted 9-2 to accept Gympie’s waste; Mayor George Seymour and councillor Daniel Sanderson were the only two dissenting voices.

It was reported the agreement would allow for Gympie’s waste to be shipped to its northern neighbour, with the Fraser Coast Council to receive financial compensation for taking it.

It was a decision that drew the ire of Maryborough MP Bruce Saunders, who raised concerns toxic waste and asbestos would be among the materials sent into his region.

However, Mr Gray said there appeared to have been a communication breakdown somewhere along the way.

Gympie Mayor Glen Hartwig says he has spoken with Fraser Coast Mayor George Seymour (pictured) about the council’s decision to accept the waste, which Mr Seymour voted against.
Gympie Mayor Glen Hartwig says he has spoken with Fraser Coast Mayor George Seymour (pictured) about the council’s decision to accept the waste, which Mr Seymour voted against.

“I was surprised to see it in the media and I’m interested to have a discussion with Fraser Coast (council),” Mr Gray said.

The council is currently going through a review of options, from a transfer station to the tip.

“There‘s been no decisions made other than that we are starting to plan and look at whole organisational life costs (for the region’s rubbish services).

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“At that time the council needs to be fully briefed before we even go any further.”

Mr Gray ruled out the possibility of waste shipments heading north in the immediate future, saying the council was not yet at a point where it had decided what would be done with its waste, toxic or otherwise, and Bonnick Rd was not yet full.

Maryborough MP Bruce Saunders flagged concerns about toxic waste and asbestos possibly being shipped into his electorate as a result of the decision.
Maryborough MP Bruce Saunders flagged concerns about toxic waste and asbestos possibly being shipped into his electorate as a result of the decision.

Mayor Glen Hartwig said he had spoken to Mr Seymour since the proposal had passed.

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“Fraser Coast and Gympie Regional Council have an alliance with WBBROC (The Wide Bay Burnett Regional Organisation of Councils), we have a very good working relationship with them and if there is opportunities to work together both councils will explore those,” Mr Hartwig said.

“But until this (Gympie) council has a resolution nothing will go anywhere.

“We’re looking to improve the lifespan and get the best value for money for the ratepayer, rather than simply shipping it to another council as a quick fix.”