SOMERSET REGIONAL COUNCIL CONFIRMS JIMNA FIRE TOWER A QUEENSLAND STATE RESPONSIBILITY

After consideration of the recent Forestry Plantations Queensland (FPQ) offer for Somerset Regional Council (SRC) to take ownership of the Jimna Fire Tower, SRC have predictably declined, confirming the long held Jimna Fire Tower Action Group (JFTAG) belief, that responsibility for this Heritage Listed Icon lies with the Queensland State Government. It is JFTAG’s view that it is grossly unreasonable to expect local council to take ownership in the absence of any management plan, funding sources, or at the very least some effort on the part of FPQ to present an acceptable takeover package. It is patently clear that the Queensland State Government should intervene in this wasteful, procrastinating exercise in buck passing, and lift the veil of secrecy, manipulation and deceit that has camouflaged the core issue of the “PUBLIC AND COMMERCIAL USE OF STATE FORESTS AND NATIONAL PARKS,” which continues to confuse and restrict forest recreation and threaten the Jimna Fire Tower. 

FPQ TO INITIATE NEW HERITAGE PROVISIONS:- Recent changes to the Queensland Heritage Act, has actioned FPQ to secure the Jimna Fire Tower, by installing guyed supports and fencing. The reviewed provisions places much greater emphasis on owners to protect Heritage Listed Places, including measures to prevent damage by fire, weather or vandalism. JFTAG welcomes this development and is pleased to advise that FPQ  have undertaken to proceed with stabilisation plans in early 2009.  

RELEVANT EXCERPT FROM LETTER SENT TO FPQ  Item 2….You advise that quote ” a suitably qualified expert has been engaged to develop design specifications that would enable the tower to be stabilised using guy wires, and exclude public access through a suitable fencing structure” unquote.

JFTAG..Q2….Would JFTAG nominated engineers/architects be invited to participate in the planning process so as to avoid further conflict of interest, duplication and therefore waste of resources in respect to.

A….Ensuring that the proposed guy wires and associated attachment mechanisms at ground and tower levels, are not only designed to create a compliant future work place, but that they are compatible with JFTAG’s expert advice already documented, thereby avoiding duplication.              

 B….Ensuring that the proposed security fencing is designed to be compliant with a safe and adequate work area, in conjunction with  meeting your public security requirements, again avoiding duplication.

C….Ensuring that when designing the security fence that adequate site space is allowed for off road parking and public viewing from ground level. It now remains to be seen whether FPQ is prepared to invite stakeholders to the planning table to create long term solutions or continue with authoritarian muddling.

FRIENDS OF JIMNA FIRE TOWER MEMBERSHIP FUNDING APPEAL:-Please access application enquiries and forms by utilising any of the contact options below. Membership Fees are :-.. $10 Single …. $15 Double …….$20 Business ….and/or…. $….Donation…. JIMNA FIRE TOWER NEEDS YOUR FINANCIAL SUPPORT.

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