Council defers application to proposed telecommunications facility in Birregurra
April 11, 2019
Colac Otway Shire Council has deferred a decision on a planning permit for a 20-metre Telstra monopole in the centre of Birregurra to seek community feedback and clarification on black spot funding.
Shire Mayor Cr Jason Schram said Council understood how important improved mobile phone coverage was to the community and wanted to seek feedback on the proposed location of the tower due to the impact it may have on the neighbourhood character of Birregurra’s main street.
“Council deferred an application yesterday for the construction of a 20-metre-high Telstra telecommunications monopole at 52‐54 Jenner Street, Birregurra,” Cr Schram said.
“Council has consistently supported proposals associated with the Federal Government's Mobile Black Spot Program, however in this case we’d like to get feedback from the community on the height and visual prominence of the proposed monopole given how close it would be to Birregurra’s Main Street Heritage Precinct.
“Council deferred the item to also get clarification regarding the Black Spot funding and whether the Federal Government would still provide that funding for a telecommunications monopole in another location in Birregurra.
“State planning policy considers that Council must make sure an appropriate balance is reached between any potential visual impacts on the heritage precinct of Birregurra and the overall net community benefit of modern communications infrastructure.
“Council is committed to improving mobile phone coverage in Birregurra, particularly before next fire season. We’ll work with the community and Telstra to achieve the best outcome for the Birregurra community.”