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Speedy Planning Action Needed to Protect Green Wedge

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Mr MORRIS (Mornington) (19:10): (1892) I raise a matter this evening for the Minister for Planning, and I am delighted to see the minister at the table.

The matter I raise is amendment C270 to the Mornington Peninsula planning scheme, which the minister probably is not aware of yet because the council only resolved on this on 17 February.

Mr Walsh interjected.

Mr MORRIS: What the council is seeking in fact is the reverse of what the Leader of The Nationals implies there.

What the council is seeking is that the minister authorises the commencement of that amendment as expeditiously as possible.

Mr Wynne: Put it on exhibition.

Mr MORRIS: Allow them to put it on exhibition as expeditiously as possible.

The amendment deals with a situation with a special use zone that is currently in place. Some of it is inside the urban growth boundary, but the particular areas that are of concern are those areas outside the urban growth boundary.

There are a number of sites affected—in Mount Martha; the Point Nepean National Park; the Mornington golf course; in Kunyung Road, Mount Eliza; the Manyung recreation camp in Mount Eliza; the Portsea Golf Club. There is a range of them but the issue generally is that this is a special use zone which is essentially in a place where the green wedge zone would normally be.

The underlying zone in effect is the green wedge zone, but the special use zone sits over the top of it.

One of the critical things is that the subdivision controls et cetera are very, very different to the green wedge zone, so particularly in sensitive areas—like the area between Mount Eliza and Mornington, which is an incredibly narrow strip anyway—if this zoning is allowed to continue to exist, and the land within the zones is  developed in the manner that the special use zone would permit at maximum, it is a very different situation to what is intended and what has always been intended in the green wedge zone.

Of course as the minister is well aware, there is a long history, even dating back to the Bolte government, that there was no intention to develop that land between Mount Eliza and Mornington. Dick Hamer and Alan Hunt put in further protections. Under the Bracks government the green wedge zone was introduced, which changed the controls but basically strengthened the argument that those areas should be retained.

It is about getting the balance right. I think this is a fairly critical time. We are now getting to the point where we might lose it if we are not very, very careful.

I do not believe either side of politics wants that to happen, so if the minister can authorise the commencement of that amendment as expeditiously as possible, get it out there and get people talking about it.