NEW SURF COST CUTS
By PETER CATON
DESPITE calls for more surf lifeguards and lifesaving facilities on Tweed beaches, fees charged to developers to build up the services are about to be cut.
At today's first Tweed Shire Council meeting of the year, the administrators will consider trimming the fees which are paid by new developers for each house lot - or unit - they plan in new subdivisions.
Most of the fees are set to be cut by at least $7 per lot to $200, saving developers thousands of dollars.
But the cut comes just a month since a man drowned at North Kingscliff. Yesterday chairman of the Casuarina Beach Surf Safety Committee Gordon Walker described the council move as ludicrous.
"They are living in an absolute la-la dream world," he said. "We are actively running our own fundraising. We have actually set up a charity to support surf lifesaving." Mr Walker said the new charity, Kid-Safe Beaches, currently in the process of becoming registered, would provide a "cash kitty" for surf lifesaving services along the Tweed Coast.
The charity's first big fundraiser will be a golf day at the Coolangatta Tweed Heads golf course on March 17.
"What I find is totally ludicrous is that Council is reducing developer contributions when developers are pushing the population up along the coast," he said.
"It doesn't make sense."
Council staff have told the administrators the fees can be cut because proposed emergency services at 'Kingscliff South' (Casuarina Beach) have been replaced by the Salt lifeguard post funded by the Peppers and Outrigger resorts and Salt SLSC.