Residents: 'We can move on with our lives'

RELIEF: Slack Drive residents were elated at the decision not to build a flood levee.
RELIEF: Slack Drive residents were elated at the decision not to build a flood levee. Rebekah Yelland

A COLLECTIVE sigh of relief echoed through the Council Chambers as the decision to not proceed with the Emerald levee scheme was handed down.

Slack Drive residents who would've lost their homes if the project went ahead attended the meeting in the hope they would finally have an answer.

Penny and Stuart Taylor, long-term Slack Dr residents, were in the gallery.

"It's been going on for six and a half years,” Penny said.

"Naturally, we're relieved.

"We don't have to see our home destroyed.”

Since the start of the drawn-out levees discussion, residents of Slack Drive have grappled with ongoing uncertainty.

If the levees did go ahead, the houses would be compulsorily acquired by council.

However, residents would only receive payment for the current valuation of the property, an amount significantly lower compared to when the homes were bought.

Derek Mayne has lived with his family at Slack Drive for 16 years and also attended the meeting.

"We can now move on with our lives,” he said.

"The process needed to be completed by council to look at all of the options as part of their governance.

"If they did not do this process they would not be doing their job properly.

"The process has been challenging and emotional for all involved as it was looking at people's homes.

"Now that the land and house are not going to be resumed we can continue to improve our property.

"We encourage council to continue to clean the river out and complete other flood mitigation projects which have been discussed over the years.

"The more flood mitigation projects are completed the less impact the next flood will have on Emerald.”

Topics:  central highlands council emerald levees

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