Council says no to Camp Mornington purchase

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Briana FioreThe West Australian
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The iconic youth adventure camp has gone up for sale after PCYC abandonned all services in the town.
Camera IconThe iconic youth adventure camp has gone up for sale after PCYC abandonned all services in the town.

The Harvey Shire Council has pulled out of a last-minute lifeline that could have kept Camp Mornington afloat.

An urgent bid to save the camp did not gain support at the council meeting last week when Cr Robyn Coleman attempted to move a motion to buy the facility in conjunction with State Government help.

The PCYC put the youth adventure camp, which is 15km from Harvey, up for sale in July. The organisation blamed COVID-19 for relinquishing the site.

The motion was slammed by several councillors who queried why they should fork out ratepayers’ money on something that was outside of the planned budget.

“We have five-year strategic plans for a reason, we can’t just give the CEO an open chequebook,” Cr Craig Carbone said.

Cr Paul Beech questioned who would operate the facility and what the actual costs would be apart from the purchase price.

Although no purchase price was listed, LJ Hooker real estate agent Vincent Siciliano said he expected the property to sell at a price in the “high $1 millions”.

Cr Francis Burgoyne said “this is not an area we should be getting involved in, nothing I’ve heard has changed my mind”.

Cr Michelle Campbell said the responsibility did not fall within the jurisdiction of local government and that it was a State Government issue.

Murray-Wellington MLA Robyn Clarke said she was unable to comment on behalf of the State Government.

She did suggest that the community could rally together and buy Camp Mornington like Dwellingup locals did to save their pub.

Liberal opposition candidate Michelle Boylan, who is also a Harvey shire councillor, announced her support for the purchase of Camp Mornington during the council meeting, however the motion was lost.

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