Tilley: caravan park in Towong’s court

MEMBER for Benambra Bill Tilley will meet with the Towong mayor and acting chief executive in Tallangatta today to discuss the fate of the town’s caravan park.

The future of the park has been thrown into doubt with its controller Goulburn-Murray Water (GMW) not taking bookings beyond June 30.

New Country Fire Authority fire safety regulations are the reason for the halt on bookings.

GMW has said it expects the park to need an extensive upgrade before the December deadline.

Council has mooted the idea of buying the park, which has not had a leaseholder for more than six months, from owner Murray-Darling Basin Authority (MDBA).

It intends to apply for a state government grant to run a feasibility study on the park.

But Mr Tilley said council had long had the option of buying the site and had chosen not to.

“I want to see the caravan park given a new lease of life,” he said.

“If council wants it they should take it and don’t ask for any money off the state government.

“They have been waiting out to see what might come their way.”

Mr Tilley waved off suggestions the council couldn’t afford the park, saying it could lease it for “a peppercorn rent”.

He said GMW’s patience was wearing thin and it was in council’s best interest to “make a strong decision” about what they wanted to do.

“I’ll do everything I can to see a smooth transition into who’s going to run the park,” Mr Tilley said.

He asked for the meeting to be moved to Tallangatta, rather than his Wodonga office, so he could see, personally, the state of the park.

On Sunday about 35 permanent site holders held a meeting about the park’s future.

The meeting organiser, who declined to be named, said. GMW had agreed to ask the MDBA for an extension on site security until mid-2014 rather than October this year.

CORRECTION: The original version of this story incorrectly referred to Goulburn-Valley Water. The park's controller is Goulburn-Murray Water. The article has been corrected.

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