Battle continues for boat ramps
THE battle continues for Whitsunday businesses and boaties about the state of the region's boat ramps.
Whitsunday businessmen Bob Spees and Greg France now have a petition with 950 signatures calling for the boat ramps to be upgraded.
They took copies of the petition to the office of Member for Whitsunday Jason Costigan last week and yesterday presented copies to Whitsunday Regional Council mayor Jennifer Whitney.
Cr Whitney said she would seek support from State and Federal Government to get answers and results.
"We have never been in a situation where there is no safe access for boaties which is where we are at the moment," she said.
"We need all weather access boat ramps for all sized boats."
These comments come after the closure of the Abel Point Marina boat ramp for refurbishments and the stalling of construction of the boat ramp at Port of Airlie.
"We want to enter discussions with Port of Airlie so boaties can facilitate the pontoon ahead of current time frames that at the moment have been set for 2014," Cr Whitney said.
"We are working with Port of Airlie to get approvals in place otherwise we will still be in the same predicament this time next year.
Cr Whitney said it was crucial to the area that results were seen and not just heard.
"It's not just leisure that it affects; it's a tourism, business and lifestyle issue."
Mr France and Mr Spees are also pushing for a rock wall and fishing pontoon to be constructed at the VMR boat ramp.
Mr France said he was putting pressure on Mr Costigan to ensure the ultimate rock wall project at the VMR would be delivered as per his pre-election promise to secure funding.
"Jason Costigan was very vocal in supporting this issue during his campaign," he said.
"So we're hopeful that once he finds his feet in parliament that his vocal support translates into 'Can Do' actions in the near future." Mr Spees is calling for people who signed the petition to come forward and also submit their email addressees so that the action group can stay in touch with them. Cr Whitney said the boat ramp issue would be on the agenda for the next council meeting to be held in Proserpine on June 13.