State govt project team asks big questions at GKI meeting
OVER 20 Great Keppel Island stakeholders including residents and business owners met with a dedicated State Government GKI Project team at the Hideaway on Tuesday night to discuss current and future needs for the island including the connection of the $25 million plan for power and water.
Capricorn Enterprise CEO Mary Carroll who attended the meeting said she was pleased to see state government working with complete transparency and keeping GKI stakeholders up to date.
"A team of 3 representatives including engineer and Project Manager Sascha Kurz and team members from the State Government Department of Innovation, Tourism Industry Development, Chris Newsam and Alicia Bull gave attendees an update on exactly where the project was up to and included the opportunity for stakeholders to ask questions,” Ms Carroll said.
"The team of three have been working in the background for some months investigating all the various options for delivery of the power and water infrastructure.
"It was made clear from the get go, the power and water infrastructure funding is public, it is not a monopolistic infrastructure spend for one developer.
"It is for economic uplift and opportunities for existing and potential future business and residents.”
Ms Carroll said residents were asked if they wanted to connect to the power and water or not raising the question of whether they would be subsidized to do so.
"Stakeholders were asked to complete a questionnaire and include any concerns or suggestions so the team can gather all relative information to include in a project report back to the state due to be complete by the end of June.
"To avoid any confusion of the details of the project an official newsletter will be produced in the not too distant future by the project team to keep stakeholders informed.
"This communication will ensure everyone receives the same information void of individual interpretation.”
The team are reported to be investigating all possible options for the technical delivery of power and water to the island including submarine cables which already have approvals in place and options for island based renewables and hybrid technologies (solar hydrogen, battery storage and on island desalination facilities).
The project team have been working with the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority with revised services corridors and the development of a cultural heritage management plan.
The GKI Project team have met with Woppaburra representatives and have commenced communications with Durambul representatives.
In addition to a publically available newsletter, the group will meet with stakeholders monthly.
A public information session will be held in Yeppoon after the completion of the feasibility phase on a date yet to be advised.