Groups object to boundary changes

SEVERAL Iluka organisations have come together to oppose the change of National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) boundaries that will put Iluka into the Northern Rivers area and result in job losses across the state.

The Iluka Community Consultative Committee is made up of representatives of Landcare, Iluka Ratepayers Association, the Association of Iluka Residents, the Iluka Business Chamber, professional fishermen, Woombah Residents Association and other groups.

The committee met on Sunday and has vowed to fight the State Government's decision.

Committee chair and Woody Head campground manager Karen Toms said the committee "strongly objects" to the move which would see the removal of the Iluka Nature Reserve, Woody Head, and Bundjalung National Park up to and including the township of Woombah from the Clarence area.

"The committee considers that the boundary change doesn't make sense, has no actual benefit and that it will ultimately diminish the capacity of the NPWS in the Valley," she said.

"(And), considering the recent job losses at the jail in Grafton, any movement of government presence or services to larger centres is just another blow for the Clarence Valley."

Clarence MP Chris Gulaptis yesterday met with NPWS Regional Manager North Coast region Alan Jeffery.

He said Mr Jeffery confirmed $101 million would be cut from the department's budget and 350 jobs would be cut state wide.

Mr Gulaptis said Mr Jeffrey told him there would be minimal job losses in the Valley and he didn't believe a change of boundary would result in less money being spent in Iluka/Woombah.

Mr Gulaptis also made the point that until about 20 years ago, Woody Head was controlled by Tweed Heads.

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