Council claims it did not agree to boundary review over three disputed suburbs

Richard Dinnen - Queensland Editor |

Livingstone Shire Council, in central Queensland, claims it may not have agreed to a boundary review to determine control of three disputed suburbs.

A vote is underway to decide whether Glenlee, Glendale, and Rockyview stay with Livingstone Shire or return to Rockhampton Regional Council.

It’s part of a boundary review being conducted by the Local Government Change Commission, but Livingstone Shire deputy mayor, Adam Belot, said his council may not have agreed to take part.

“We’re calling on the deputy Premier to confirm the origin and basis for the agreement of both Livingstone and Rockhampton to embark on the current boundary review process.

“Our records only show agreement to the terms of reference for the review.

“Council today resolved to call on the State Government to confirm its commitment to fairness in the boundary review, by ensuring our residents will not go backwards financially in any outcome related to this process.

“Queensland Treasury Corporation’s own figures show the majority of Livingstone ratepayers would be out of pocket up to $250 a year if the move goes ahead. It’s not fair.”

Rockhampton Mayor, Tony Williams, said Livingstone Shire was trying to undermine the democratic process and rewrite history.

“The Local Government Minister’s original referral in January 2019 clearly references the agreement between both councils in June 2018.

“This letter is publicly available on the Electoral Commission of Queensland website.

“Over the past months, we have seen them call for the process to be stopped, the vote to be stopped and now this.

“People will see this for what it is, just another attempt to influence an independent, democratic process.”

The disputed suburbs originally belonged to Livingstone Shire, which formed in 1903. They became part of the Rockhampton region after the merger of 153 councils into 73 larger entities in 2008.

Livingstone Shire returned, and regained control of the three suburbs, when local councils were de-amalgamated in 2014.

Many residents of the suburbs work in or are socially connected to Rockhampton, and previous votes favoured a return of control to Rockhampton Council.

The two councils have engaged in a heated public debate in recent months, with claims of land grabs, rate rises, and attempts to silence local residents.

The Electoral Commission postal survey ends on July 14, and the State Government is expected to resolve the matter before the end of the year.