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Coliban Water hands the running of its airport in Central Victoria to the Cohuna Lions Club after the Gannawarra Shire Council voted to terminate its lease and hand back the operating licence, despite protests from the community. Read the full story

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Not a resource for incredibly wealthy aircraft owners, but a District's means of access to lifesaving transportation.

 

They ought to be congratulated!

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Never ending attacks on rural airfields. Essential to have in emergencies and an asset for any town that's a bit away from major centres. How's Tyabb Going? Developers opportunity to put pressure on Councillors.( Slip a few quid etc).. Flying little planes is not a crime nor the province of the ultra rich.  Nev

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2 hours ago, facthunter said:

Never ending attacks on rural airfields. Essential to have in emergencies and an asset for any town that's a bit away from major centres...

Years ago our Federal government gave away control of these vital community assets.

Another monumental blunder by the Liberal National Party coalition.

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14 minutes ago, Old Koreelah said:

Years ago our Federal government gave away control of these vital community assets.

Another monumental blunder by the Liberal National Party coalition.

Really? The LNP gave away Cohuna?

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2 minutes ago, turboplanner said:

Really? The LNP gave away Cohuna?

The feds gave airports to local government; we’ve all seen how much they valued them.

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22 minutes ago, Old Koreelah said:

The feds gave airports to local government; we’ve all seen how much they valued them.

which airports?

 

 

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The local council seems a bit weak.  Wonder if the rate payers will get a reduction on their rates now they have palmed of the costs.

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To be fair, an airport is not without running costs and conditions imposed (security etc)  Compared with an industrial estate the returns aren't there. The big money is when you get rid of it and rezone and up goes RATE income which Shire Council CEOS salaries are based on. Developers LOVE a swathe of land near town becoming available. Golf Courses face a similar fate even though they are the major part of open Land left that way in a lot of cities. pilots should be prepared to pay for the use of an airport at a fair rate subject to review by an independent body with expertise and some subsidy from the Federal Govt as the States ceded most of the major taxes to them long ago. It's fairly obvious we need airports. Nev

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47 minutes ago, facthunter said:

pilots should be prepared to pay for the use of an airport at a fair rate subject

That sounds fair. We pay to use non-toll roads through levies included in vehicle registration fees. But there are millions of vehicles contributing to building and maintaining roads in that way. Unfortunately, successive governments have stifled the aviation sector that would use those small country town airfields.

 

It looks like a nice airfield, and only about 2 kms from town

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I've said.this before but I'll repeat it.

The Commonwealth does own some airports in the Capital cities but hasn't sold any in recent times.

We still have to worry about the lessees because not all of them are fair

 

Where an airport/airfield is owned by a Council or owned privately converting it to Residential Zoning can produce spectacular results.

In a recent hearing in Melbourne a developer admitted that he had bought 100 Ha of land f0r $70,000 at farm rate.

Once it was rezoned from Farming to Residential prepared for housing lots he sold it for $55 million - a 785 fold gain

So that's the prize and people apparently are quite happy to drop a million or two around to smooth the deal through.

 

If the Council or the owner has owned the land for a certain period they have what's called Existing Use Rights, so if they don't want their airfield/airport rezoned that's it.

That doesn't stop land around them being rezoned, buf if they were smart enough to include a condition which gives them the right to fly around the circuit patterns their survival is even stronger.

 

There have been recent cases where airfields were saved using Existing Use Rights. (I'm not going to say who they are; they can release that information if they want.)

 

There have been many, and I mean many cases lost where the owner has not made this claim even after they had been advised it would save them.

 

One of the favourite tricks of a developer is to get close top the Council and say he wants to build a transport hub or 2000 homes and it will bring 3000 jobs etc to town; he just needs the local airfield rezoned, the land next to it or whatever the deal involves.

 

His next step is to get close enough to the Council to get the Planning people to come up with a proposed "Activity Precinct" or similar innocent name and a Planning  Scheme Amendment is drawn up to send to the Minister for Planning. The airfield people get wind of it, arc up, and the Council generously calls for submissions, consultations etc and gravely writes down all the complaints. The airfield owner says this isn't fair etc and they know they have him. They generously give him some reassurances and the owner figures that better than nothing so he signs off on the Activity Precinct which goes to the Minister and is approved.

 

The all important thing is this a new Scheme a few days old. The Airfield owner has no existing use rights to this Scheme which allows for Residential/Industrial etc and the value, as we saw above goes up multiple times - usually a minimum of tenfold overnight and the airfield is sold.

 

That's just a general story, becaise each State has its variations, but never let go of Existing Use Rights. If the developer wants a conference, raise it at the conference before it can be expunged.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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