Opposition to NPWS Sandon plans growing

MORE than 1100 people have signed an electronic petition calling on the State Government to shelve plans to upgrade the camping ground at The Sandon.

The petition, which is on a Facebook page titled Save the Sandon, is run by change.org.

The camping grounds on the northern side of the Sandon River includes a number of beach shacks, most of which have been in the hands of families for generations.

The occupiers of these buildings said they met with a National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) representative in mid-March to discuss the future of the area.

One occupant described the changes the NPWS plans as "sweeping" including demolition of the current shacks and construction of "hard-roof accommodation" cabins.

She claimed the NPWS plans were purely revenue raising and would destroy the natural attributes of the area which had made it popular for generations of local families.

She said the NPWS told shack occupiers it owned the buildings and could confiscate most of them.

The Save the Sandon page has now been shared more than 700 times and has gathered many comments of support since it was created on Sunday.

Most of the people on the page want the Sandon camp grounds to stay the way they are.

But there are dissenting voice as well, with a number of comments questioning why people who pay no rates or rent are allowed to have property there.

Some also ask what is wrong with the NPWS upgrading facilities and opening up the region for more people to enjoy.

"I am glad that they are going to bulldoze the shacks," was one comment.

"The people who stay in these shacks are basically squatters. These squatters pay no rent, no rates, no insurance no nothing.

The park is for everyone. Bring on the change."

The Daily Examiner contacted the NPWS on Monday for comment but has not yet received a

reply.



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