DAVID Kempton, Member for Cook, has pledged his continued support for the world-class Mossman Botanic Garden project, as the proponents begin the process of applying for necessary Queensland Government approvals.
Meeting with the MBG board members at the site this morning, Mr Kempton described their vision as “truly innovative”, saying it would add another string to the bow of Douglas’ already strong tourism offerings.
“However this project is not just about encouraging tourists to stop in Mossman and explore the township, this facility will be a world-leader in research, education and conservation of Australia’s Wet Tropics ecosystem,” Mr Kempton said.
“I’ve got to hand it to the founding Committee members and – looking ahead – the new Board members for the massive amount of progress that’s been achieved so far, including purchasing this beautiful site in central Mossman thanks to Warren Entsch’s $1.4 million election commitment.
“Now that the land has been secured, I’m keen to support MBG in its upcoming dealings with State Government agencies – there is still a lot of work to do.
“This includes gaining a water licence through the Department of Natural Resources, gaining approvals through the Department of Main Roads in conjunction with community consultation, and in negotiations with the Federal Government and the Douglas Shire Council.”
Federal Member for Leichhardt Warren Entsch said he was “over the moon” to attend the land handover in mid-2014, which was a key step in showing the Far Northern community that the project was no longer “just an idea” and had backing at the highest levels.
“As the MBG team start the process of applying for complex State Government approvals, the support and assistance of David Kempton will be critical,” he said.
“We have to keep up momentum, start some of the basic works such as clearing parts of the site and establishing a seedling nursery, and ensure the community is aware of the great progress that’s been made.
“Funding for the Mossman Botanic Garden will again be on my ‘wishlist’ for next year’s election and I’ve got no doubt that the headway that is made this year will bolster our application.”
Chair of the MBG Board, John Sullivan, said Mr Kempton had been an avid supporter of the Mossman Botanic Garden to date.
“The MBG proponents have been very happy with David's enthusiasm for the project and we look forward to working together for the long-term benefit of the Douglas community,” he said.
“We are all determined to see this wonderful project advance as quickly as possible.”