Glenlee resident supports boundary push for northern suburbs
GLENLEE resident Jenny Lightfoot is throwing her support behind Rockhampton Regional Council's push to acquire Livingstone Shire's fringe suburbs.
These suburbs include Glenlee, Glendale, Rockyview, The Caves, Yaamba, Etna Creek and Canoona, Marlborough, Ogmore
Following de-amalgamation of the outer suburbs four years ago, Ms Lightfoot said residents have long voiced their preference to return to Rockhampton Regional Council's jurisdiction.
The move, she said, is mainly spurred by the wish to be part of a city where the majority of her suburb's residents do their shopping, banking, and send their children to school.
In 2013 and 2014, residents voted strongly in favour of merging into the Rockhampton region, but they were marginally out-voted.
"Glenlee is closer to Rockhampton than Yeppoon,” Ms Lightfoot said.
Ms Lightfoot said Rockhampton's Mayor Margaret Strelow was approached about absorbing the outer suburbs years ago.
But only now has action taken place to push the move.
"They've sat on their hands because each council, when they apply for funding, it's all based on their population,” Ms Lightfoot said.
"The greater your population, the more likely you are to get good government funding.
"That's why Livingstone wants to hang on to us... and why Cr Strelow would prefer us to be in Rockhampton - it adds to her population numbers when applying for state and federal funding.”
But Ms Lightfoot warned even if the outer suburbs were to move back to Rockhampton, the grass may not be greener.
"If council has a major project, they channel their funding into those i.e. the redevelopment of the foreshore at Yeppoon and Rockhampton riverbank,” she said.
"Glenlee is one of the only suburbs with no street lights and all the new sub divisions have them.
"The only funding that's gone into Glenlee is the parkland redevelopment and if there's a pothole, they'll fix it but only after major rain.
"Funding will probably be an ongoing issue but at least we'll be within the council in the local government area that we exist in.”
Mayor Strelow said the boundary change isn't about being able to apply for more funding, "as most schemes are capped regardless of population”.
"As Ms Lightfoot has said herself, residents in those suburbs use our roads, our infrastructure and are part of our community, not Livingstone's, so it makes sense,” Cr Strelow said.
"Council has consistently advocated for Glenlee, Glendale and Rockyview to transfer to us as they were promised and there's been a lot of behind the scenes work as well as public statements.”
Livingstone Shire Council has been approached for comment.