By Jackson Russell
The site of Kilmore’s State Emergency Service depot will be reserved for emergency services for the foreseeable future, after Mitchell Shire Council transferred the property to the Victoria State Emergency Services Authority.
An alternate recommendation, moved by Cr Bob Humm, included a provision to rezone the property at 103 White Street from commercial to public use. The motion was passed unanimously.
The then Shire of Kilmore allocated a portion of the property to the SES in December 1984, with the remainder of the property being allocated in February 1990.
When the Shire of Kilmore and Water Board split in 1990, the water board then became owner of the property.
While the SES tried to buy the land in 1992, it was unable to as it wasn’t an incorporated association.
The Shire of Kilmore bought the land for $30,000 on behalf of the SES and provided the SES with a low-cost loan of $26,000.
According to a letter dated July 11 1996, the loan was scheduled to be paid off by June 30, 1999 and council officers confirmed in 2013 that no money was owed to council.
Cr Humm said council would now allow the land to be transferred to the SES now that it was reserved for emergency services.
“It will always be emergency services and they’ve committed that the emergency services will stay there. If they move out, other emergency services will be able to move in,” he said.
“In the future, if they should move out, what could go on there is emergency services housing as well as a station.
“If you just hand it over, you don’t know what could become of it in the future.”
Cr Fiona Stevens said the decision acknowledged the importance of emergency services in Kilmore.
“This recommendation is common sense and gives due acknowledgement to the SES and the service if gives to the community,” she said.
By Jackson Russell