Shire defends Hanging Rock concept plan

MACEDON Ranges Shire Council says a proposal to develop the Hanging Rock precinct is still at very early stages. 

Councillors last year supported the concept in principle subject to further studies and planning processes, which would involve community consultation.

Mayor Roger Jukes said council could not proceed with any development without community consultation, as per the statutory planning process.

"Council is currently completing a considerable amount of work before the concept is approved," he said. 

"Some information being put out by groups is a long way from being accurate and it's upsetting because it's causing unnecessary angst among the community."

He clarified that council did not approve for any development to occur and that no proposals or permit applications have been received or considered by council.

Mayor Jukes said council’s decision was to explore alternative income sources and the potential for private investment in the East Paddock.

"It's also worth noting that any development to be considered would be in the eastern most end of the East Paddock, some 700 to 800 metres away from the Hanging Rock precinct," he said. 

While he said the rock was not running at a loss, he said council was looking into development of the site to help finance the site. 

"With the current income stream we can't maintain infrastructrure spend that's needed to bring the rock up to the asset it should be," Mayor Jukes said. 

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