The Stockton Community Liaison Group has responded positively overall to a final briefing on the long-term plan for managing the suburb’s coastline prior to it going to councillors for endorsement on Tuesday.
City of Newcastle will be one of the first councils in the State to submit a Coastal Management Program (CMP) when it lodges the plan for Stockton by the end of June, meeting a shortened deadline of 18 months set by the Local Government Minister.
Stockton Community Liaison Group Chair Barbara Whitcher said after years of very robust engagement with City of Newcastle and lead agencies like the Department of Planning Industry and Environment, it appeared a positive way forward could be set through Stockton’s CMP.
“The Stockton Community Liaison Group has been meeting regularly with City of Newcastle for more than two years, advocating for our community’s interests through what is complex issue of managing ongoing coastal erosion,” Ms Whitcher said.
“Yesterday our Liaison Group was given an overarching brief on the draft Stockton CMP and overall we are pleased and relieved that sand nourishment is at the centre of the plan for both amenity and asset protection in line with our constant feedback.”
“The draft CMP will be put on public exhibition next week and we will be encouraging everyone to have their say before it is submitted to the NSW Government for approval.”
Newcastle Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said the Stockton Community Liaison Group had played a pivotal role in shaping the CMP.
“Thank you to the Stockton Community Liaison Group for your dedication, leadership and advocacy in developing a long-term solution for Stockton that returns sand to the beach for both amenity and asset protection,” the Lord Mayor said.
“The collaboration between City of Newcastle staff, the NSW Government and community has been key to the development of the draft CMP, which has sand nourishment as the cornerstone of our long-term solution to coastal erosion.
“I want to acknowledge commitment and genuine cooperative approach that been achieved by our shared passion and dedication to achieving a positive future for Stockton.”
Formed by the Lord Mayor in February 2018, the Stockton Community Liaison Group includes local community leaders who advocate for a positive long-term solution to erosion at Stockton Beach with the City of Newcastle, NSW Government representatives and Hunter Water Corporation.
Yesterday marked the 21st formal meeting of the group as they continue to advise the City on the development of the CMP for Stockton.