Posted October 17th, 2023

In what was initially anticipated to be a pre-Christmas completion of the Wallis Lake dredging project, Tanya Thompson, Member for Myall Lakes reveals unexpected delays have arisen in the dredging process.

Acid sulfate soil, a contaminant that increases the cost and complexity of sand disposal, has been discovered within the sand in the designated dredging area. This discovery requires additional precautions and resources, contributing to the delay in the dredging efforts.

Additionally, the dredging operation at Lake Cathie has faced interruptions delaying the dredger which is required for Wallis Lake. “This makes it difficult to confirm whether the project will be completed in time for Christmas as initially anticipated,” said Mrs Thompson.

“I understand the importance of this project to the local oyster industry, fisheries and all other businesses that rely on Wallis Lake’s vitality during the holiday season. I can assure the community that both State and local Government and all departments are working extremely hard to get this project underway as soon as possible.”

Minister for Transport, Jo Haylen said, “I recognise how important reliable access to waterways is for communities where tourism and maritime activities, both recreational and commercial, make up a big part of the local economy.”

“I have asked Maritime NSW to work with Council and other authorities to ensure that we can resolve issues with dredging at Wallis Lake as soon as possible.”

Mrs Thompson commends the Minister for Transport for her dedication to this project, ensuring the Wallis Lake dredge continues to move forward. “It’s reassuring to see Minister Haylen working across party lines and prioritising the Wallis Lake dredging operation. While we face these unexpected obstacles, I am confident we will overcome them with this level of commitment and collaboration.”

A MidCoast Council representative has confirmed that the planned Tuncurry boat ramp channel dredge will commence prior to Christmas.

“Regular updates will be provided to the community as we work through the challenges that have arisen during this crucial project,” concluded Mrs Thompson.

Photo supplied by Chris Drummond, Department of Planning and Environment.

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