THE state government will again step in to help Moyne Shire battle erosion on East Beach, yesterday pledging more cash to bolster the rock wall.
The state has given $75,000 to council to fix the wall in front of the toilet block — one of the most popular and used sections of the beach during the busy tourist season.
South West Coast MP and Premier Denis Napthine reinforced his support for the council, which will ultimately need $7 million to improve East Beach’s coastal defences.
“Council will use this funding to repair and restore the wall between the toilet block and Bourne Avenue to help mitigate erosion and ensure this section of East Beach does not pose a risk to nearby homes and remains a welcoming environment for everyone, for years to come,” Dr Napthine said.
“The Victorian Coalition government is aware of the sea level rise challenges that Port Fairy is facing and we are working with Moyne Shire Council to deliver projects that help protect this community from inundation and erosion.”
The announcement comes nearly a fortnight after Moyne Shire and the Port Fairy Community Coastal Challenge Group found the erosion levels had reached a metre a month near the old tip site.
Senior council officers have told The Standard the situation will again require assistance from Spring Street.
Opinion is still divided on what can be done to stop the sand vanishing from the beach.
Friends of Griffiths Island maintain opening the south-west passage would “let the flow of natural sand go right through”.
“There’s a lot of sand built up in the passage,” chairman Jeffrey Sproal said.
“We don’t know if it will all go through but the only way to find out is to open it up.”
Mr Sproal said other costly solutions should be delayed until the opening of the passage was tested.
The Port Fairy coastal hazard assessment study poured cold water on the suggestion earlier this year, saying more sand would merely build up around the mouth of the river leading to dredging headaches.