|Before the re-opening of the bar in 2009 and Easter 2011. Will they come back again to Orford ?|
Christmas 2011, the boats are back! Orford is flourishing and why? Because the bar is open.
Nature did the work this time. It could always be like this if Government at all levels, honoured their commitments with regard to maintaining this waterway which is the heart of Orford.
So what is wrong?
Government approved diversion of the river mouth in 2002
to provide for the movement of sand to Raspins Beach to
build up the foreshore which had been depleted by a series
of storms and which had threatened Government assets
adjacent. The river was diverted some 90 degrees from its
original course by opening a new "mouth" and blocking off
the original course.
Friends of the Prosser River provided support to other organisations and concerned citizens, in the successful endeavour to make the river navigable again, after the disastrous 2002 decision to relocate the mouth of the river.
In 2009, Glamorgan Spring Bay Council and the Government Agencies responded to our concerns with finance and support. Click here for the full details. The future of the river seemed assured.
Without small boat access to the sea, Orford becomes a backwater. During the 2009/10 Christmas holiday season, up to 59 boat trailers daily, were parked in Riverside Drive and the adjacent trailer parking area. This represents some $3m worth of boats using the river each day. Yet the Government and the local council is again unwilling to spend funds to maintain, Tasmania's busiest small boat harbour.
So why has it been allowed to happen again in 2011? Easter 2011 saw dozens of boat owners abandon Orford. Those who attempted to navigate the bar will never return, suffering boat damage, frustration and a ruined holiday season. A further question is why has MAST placed the "channel" markers in the shallowest parts so that even on high tide, boats ran aground?
Is it because funds aren't available? No.
Glamorgan Spring Bay Council receives rate revenue in excess of $15,000 pa from Prosser River jetties and a similar amount to Government for Crown Leases. Orford ratepayers also pay in excess of $1.5m pa in Council General Rates and charges.
So what is Council and Government spending on ensuring the Prosser River is navigable? Answer: $0, Nada, Zilch.
Our challenge now, is to ensure that the river remains open
to the sea and fresh water can regularly flow again in the lower
level of the river.
Friends of the Prosser River was formed to draw attention to authorities and the public, the plight of the Prosser River caused through neglect and poor management decisions dating back to the early 1960's and continuing today.
Friends of the Prosser River will develop strategies to improve the health and amenity of the river and advise appropriate authorities of these strategies. We will lobby Government directly and through the media, to effect changes that will improve the river.
Friends of the Prosser River will seek feedback and suggestions from persons who enjoy this wonderful waterway.
Click here for full details and links to more information
The most urgent issues to be addressed are:
► Gaining a commitment from Government to maintain a navigable exit to the sea, i.e. annual dredging of the mouth of the river.
► Gaining a commitment from Government to repair the dam and water reticulation infrastructure and other measures, to maximise the amount of fresh water available for environmental flows. More
We need your help to lobby State and Local Government to maintain the Prosser River!
Or join Friends of the Prosser River and our efforts to improve the river.