Moyne Shire council highlight priority projects

THE re-location of key emergency services in Port Fairy heads a Moyne Shire council wish-list.

Moyne has released a list of priority projects it is seeking state government funding for.

Call for change: Port Fairy SES unit controller Stephen McDowell, South West MP Roma Britnell, Opposition Emergency Services spokesman Brad Battin and Port Fairy CFA brigade captain Garth Palmer would like to see the two services co-located. Picture: Rob Gunstone

Call for change: Port Fairy SES unit controller Stephen McDowell, South West MP Roma Britnell, Opposition Emergency Services spokesman Brad Battin and Port Fairy CFA brigade captain Garth Palmer would like to see the two services co-located. Picture: Rob Gunstone

The priority list has been presented to lower and upper house MPs in the region as well as the state government and opposition.

Moyne Shire CEO David Madden said plans were advancing to have a co-location of the town’s SES and CFA.

Both bodies have been searching for homes with the CFA having outgrown its station in James Street and the SES crammed into a small yard in Sackville Street.

He said council has held talks with the CFA and SES and is of the belief the CFA will acquire the ambulance site on the Princes Highway once a new ambulance station is constructed next year.

He said the CFA would then welcome the SES as a co-tenant at the highway site.

”The current SES site is not suitable anymore,” Mr Madden said.

“The current title of the SES site is owned by us but it’s a restricted title. Council has budgeted to remove the restriction on the title. We either pay that money to clear the restricted title to the government or would happily redirect that money to the SES to help fund the new development.”

Mr Madden said it expects to pay $130,000 for the title. It plans to keep the current SES site for more parking spaces in the future. 

Opposition emergency services spokesman Brad Battin visited the Port Fairy CFA site on Thursday to tour the facilities and talk to members. 

Mr Battin said co-location was something the community had wanted for a long time and the current facilities were not up to standard. 

SES unit controller Steve McDowell told Mr Battin both branches were “at the end of their serviceable life.” He said they could share areas such as the kitchen, toilets and meeting rooms while both would have vehicle bays at the front for vehicles and separate control rooms. 

Port Fairy CFA first lieutenant Hugh Worrall said the CFA and SES worked closely together in emergencies and co-location made sense. 

Mr Worrall said the current bases posed occupational health and safety issues.

He said both men and women “got changed wherever they can,” and the SES didn’t have any change facilities at all.