Warnervale Working Group report released

Porters Creek Wetlands at Warnervale

The permanent protection of Porters Creek Wetland is a step closer, with the Warnervale Working Group progressing a Biodiversity Conservation Trust Agreement.

The biodiversity agreement is one of a number of priority actions in Central Coast Council’s Tuggerah Lakes Estuary Management Plan.

The agreement has received $432,019 from the NSW Government, providing Council with grant funding to offset a portion of the increase in the Emergency Services Levy for 2019/20.

Council earmarked it for Porters Creek protection.

The Warnervale Working Group was established by Council on April 27 and has held fortnightly meetings since May.

Membership of the Group includes Mayor Lisa Matthews, Deputy Mayor Jane Smith, Councillors Kyle MacGregor, Louise Greenaway, Chris Burke, and staff, including CEO Gary Murphy.

The Council meeting of September 14 attached the action log from the meetings, which shows that the group at the May 22 meeting spoke of terms of reference to be developed using the Wamberal Working Group template as a base.

The Draft Terms of Reference were provided to the Chair on May 28 and continued to be included on the agenda at subsequent meetings until it was finally endorsed at the August 26 meeting, with some amendments.

The action log shows that the group has been seeking updates on the potential site of an aquatic centre or leisure centre at Warnervale, as well as the status of legal advice on works completed and services on Kiar RIdge prior to sale.

It also asked on July 2 for an update on trees as relating to the requirements for clearance at the airport.

The working group received updates on planning applications in the Warnervale area as well as the Warnervale Education and Business Precinct.

Council committed to progress employment generating opportunities in the sectors of health, manufacturing, food production, renewable energy and waste in the area.

The action log showed that the working group is still seeking information on any current development applications in relation to the airport site and an update on discussions with Newcastle Airport.

The report to Council, adopted without debate, noted that Council had funds to progress employment generating projects.

Council resolved on December 18, 2018, to reallocate the Budget for the Airport of $6M for employment generating projects across the former Wyong Shire.

“From the $6M originally allocated to the Warnervale Airport Masterplan in accordance with the resolution of December 18, 2017, there have been costs of $2,844,824.25, as at June 30, 2020.

“The balance of $3,155,175.75 will be restricted in the 2019/20 financial statements,” the report to Council said.

Merilyn Vale

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