In May, Planning Minister Matthew Guy announced that "Hanging Rock will be saved from development" and "ongoing planning protection had been secured". He offered the Macedon Ranges Council $1 million over the next four years to "secure ongoing maintenance of the public facilities at the Rock .. and protect the East Paddock from commercial development."
Here we are some four months later and what has been achieved. Absolutely nothing! No funding and no protection. Why? Is it because the council does not want to protect the East Paddock?
I have attended five council meetings since the Minister's announcement and have not heard any discussion or read any submission regarding the required rezoning. I have only heard Councillor Letchford pontificate at length on his concept for a grandiose Hanging Rock Precinct Plan based on some 'higher order level of thinking'. Having a differing view from Cr
Letchford, he may see me as being idiotic and coming from the 'Town of No', but I do seem to remember that council has already done the work for rezoning the East Paddock to match the zoning as exists for the Hanging Rock Reserve. It was submitted to council for its May 2010 meeting!
With the looming state election, it now seems clear to me that council, by failing to act as required, probably risks forgoing the funding and thereby jeopardising the long-term future of Hanging Rock yet again.