File photoRELATED:Horsham Wimmera River ski consultation to startWimmera River ski trial startsHORSHAM Rural City councillors have given in-principle support towater-skiing on the Wimmera River.
It comes after a community consultation process that started in November last year, whichincluded three skiing trial weekends on the river.
Council’s technical services director John Martin presented the consultation results at a meeting on Monday night.
Skiing is not permitted on the river in Horsham becauseboating rules include a five-knot speed limit and a no-wash zone.
However council has allowed Natimukski club members to performdemonstrations for the city’s annual Kannamaroo festival.
Mr Martin said previous concerns about allowing regular skiing on the river included erosion, noise and safety issues.
Wimmera Catchment Management Authority ran a trial in 2014to assess erosion and noise levels.
The ski club thenpresented a proposal to council last year outlining how skiing could be done outside Kannamaroo.
Mr Martin said council received 51 responses during the consultation period.
Forty-five people werein favour of skiing, and six were against it or concerned about it.
Mr Martin said there were processes council could adopt to manage the majority of the concerns raised.
Councillors voted to endorse skiing subject to staff developing water sharing arrangements and formal rules to ensure the activity is compatible with other river users and uses.
Cr Mark Radford said there werestill a few hoops to jump through, but he was pleased with council’s decision.
”I’m happy to see the process continue, that we do endorse the principle of using our river more,” he said.
Mayor Heather Phillips said initially, she thought the process was taking too long.
“But looking at it now, I actually appreciate the amount of background work being done,” she said.
“It means ifskiing is back on the river, it will be done in the appropriate way.
“We need to do it right and I think it’s going quite well.”
Cr Sue Exell said there needed to be more activities on the river.
“Time and time again when we’ve been talking to people in community, they say how underutilised the river is in Horsham,” she said.
Council hopes to prepareupdated water rules by July.
This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.