Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Road concerns discussed

Warrenbayne roads were again a hot topic with councillors meeting with local residents to discuss logging trucks.

February 28, 2013 4:58am

Warrenbayne locals met Benalla Rural City councillors for an informal discussion about the use of Dobson-Davies Rds for logging trucks.

Benalla Rural City councillors last week met with members of the Warrenbayne community to discuss the use of Dobson and Davies Rds by logging vehicles.

Councillors Suzy Martin, Ellen Crocker, Margaret Richards, Ross Jenkins and Peter Davis attended the meeting after participating in a bus trip along the Dobson and Davies Rds route to see the areas of local concern.

Warrenbayne Community Group’s Bill Dobson told the Ensign the issue had been ongoing for quite a few years.

‘‘It’s very, very important that our views are heard and we represent them,’’ Mr Dobson said.

Hancock Victorian Plantations (HPV) has proposed for a number of years that the use of Dobson and Davies Rds would save up to $40000 on operating costs for the company.

However, Mr Dobson said the small benefit to the company would be largely detrimental to the community.

‘‘$40000 per year is a drop in the bucket for a multinational company of that size,’’ Mr Dobson said.

‘‘I don’t think individuals would ask for the same sort of assistance.’’

Mr Dobson also said a main point of concern to the Warrenbayne community was the status of the motion that restricted B-double trucks on Dobson and Davies Rds.

‘‘Our concern is that the existing motion still stands,’’ Mr Dobson said.

Veronica Shilling, general manager development and environment, said loaded or unloaded B-doubles could only be on prescribed roads in Victoria, and that Dobson and Davies Rds were not prescribed roads.

The issue will come before council again in the next cycle, which Cr Martin said was a normal part of council proceedings that allowed them to stay updated on progress.

A similar community consultation process was proposed in council last week for the Devenish township on the issue of the proposed drainage works.

No recommendations from the 1996 report into stormwater drainage in Devenish were ever actioned, and following the floods in 2012 it is apparent the drainage within the township needs to be improved.

The report is currently being reviewed by the original consultants, Planright, and following community consultation an agreed approach and proposal will be incorporated into the Capital Projects Program.

Having found benefit from visiting the Warrenbayne area of interest, Cr Crocker proposed a similar bus trip to educate councillors on the various aspects of the drainage problems that need to be addressed.

Although the total cost for upgrading the drainage system was estimated to be $170000 in 1996, this figure would need to be updated in light of the review, and council did not offer any proposed budget for the works.

Mayor Alexander said everyone in Devenish was passionate about the project and she was pleased that council had agreed to do something to help the township.

Cr Martin, who moved the motion, agreed that the people of Devenish had been co-operative despite their long suffering.

‘‘They definitely deserve to be rewarded for their patience,’’ Cr Martin said.

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