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Powell and McArdle Media Release – Serious concern over Blumel’s Aerodrome plan (13 January 2012)

Member for Caloundra Mark McArdle and Member for Glass House Andrew Powell have raised serious questions over mayoral candidate Debbie Blumel’s plans to relocate the Caloundra Aerodrome and remove control of the existing site from the State Government.

Cr Blumel reportedly* plans to ask the State Government to gift the Aerodrome site to council to “take control of the tendering process” and relocate the Aerodrome to a 350ha site south of Caloundra on the eastern side of the Bruce Highway.

Shadow Environment Minister Andrew Powell said the ill-conceived plan puts the Beerwah and Glass House communities under constant threat of aircraft taking off and landing.

“Both of those areas are growing rapidly in population, and this plan is simply placing a current situation somewhere else,” Mr Powell said.

“These communities spoke loud and clear when the Aerodrome was originally under threat of relocation, they don’t want it to happen again.

“We must not forget either that theGlassHouseMountainsare heritage listed and should not be subject to flights overhead.”

Mr McArdle said the Caloundra Aerodrome has been in its present location for 80 years.

“This Aerodrome was here first, and other communities were built around it. To move the site next to existing townships is ridiculous.

“These operators have already been put through enough as a result of council’s bungling of the tendering process.

“On one hand Cr Blumel’s saying she’s extending the leases, but then on the other hand she’s saying ‘We’ll close those leases, shut the businesses down and move the airport’, which the Government rejected at a cost of $100 million in 2009. All it’s done is created more confusion.”

Mr McArdle also questioned Cr Blumel’s motives over her statements.

“Is this a political stunt, and did she speak to all operators at the Aerodrome as part of her supposed listening tour last year?”

*Caloundra Journal, 13 January 2012

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