PROFESSIONAL surfer Mick Fanning and Kirra Surfriders secretary John Robin check out a photo of what Kirra was like in its heyd
PROFESSIONAL surfer Mick Fanning and Kirra Surfriders secretary John Robin check out a photo of what Kirra was like in its heyd

Stuckey joins sand fight

By ED SOUTHORN

CURRUMBIN Liberal MP Jann Stuckey re-entered the Tweed state election campaign yesterday, launching a united front with Nationals candidate Geoff Provest to bring back Kirra's perfect surf.

Flanked by professional surfers Mick Fanning and Dean Morrison, Mrs Stuckey and Mr Provest called a press conference at Duranbah Beach to announce an action plan which would amend the Tweed sand bypass pumping contract.

A week after Mrs Stuckey called tongue-in-cheek for a fence to be erected to stop Tweed youth gangs crossing the border and trashing Gold Coast venues, the Liberal MP yesterday said a petition and letter-writing campaign would pressure the NSW and Queensland governments to restore Kirra's waves.

She said the Kirra surf, destroyed by a build-up of pumped sand aiming to stop erosion and clear the Tweed River entrance, could be fixed by simple, inexpensive measures devised in consultation with the Coastal Alliance community group and taking into account recommendations from the recent Griffith University Kirra surf study.

The action plan calls for restoration of Kirra's Big Groyne to its pre-1996 length, a new ocean delivery area north and west of Coolangatta for dredged sand, a delivery area south of the bypass system (at Letitia Spit) for dredged sand, a new pumping outlet at North Kirra, more rigorous monitoring of sand delivery and removal of penalties for non-compliance with contracted sand quotas.

Mrs Stuckey said immediate work to assist Kirra's wave quality could be carried out for only a "few hundred thousand dollars", but the NSW and Queensland governments failed to recognise the econo-mic value of surfing.

"This is one of a myriad of cross-border issues our respective Labor governments have put in the too-hard basket," Mrs Stuckey said.

"It doesn't matter whether it is the Tugun bypass or the sand bypass, all we ever get from Neville Newell is stubborn and lazy opposition to fixing the problems we share on both sides of the border."

Former longboard world champion Wayne Dean also at the press conference, said he understood the full cost of implementing the "fix Kirra" plan was around $4 million.



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