In a big announcement for local tourism, the Houtman Abrolhos Islands have been moved from the Shire of Northampton and now fall under the City of Greater Geraldton.
The Department of Local Government and Communities announced that the Minister for Local Government had approved a recommendation to the Local Government Advisory Board to amend the boundary between the district of Greater Geraldton and district of Northampton wherein the Abrolhos Islands now fall entirely under the district of Greater Geraldton.
City CEO Ken Diehm said that this announcement means the City of Greater Geraldton has a seat at the table in terms of contributing to opportunities for the tourism and fishing development of the islands and can play an immediate role in relation to disaster management for the region.
“This boundary change came about due to our great relationship with our neighbouring shire Northampton and we thank Northampton for this extremely positive outcome,” he said.
“Ultimately it is all about the protecting and promoting the Abrolhos.”
The City of Greater Geraldton had advocated for the movement of the boundary as there are a number of service organisations including response units which serve the cluster of 122 islands directly from Geraldton.
This means easier management of disaster events as all service organisations are based in Geraldton.
A special cabinet committee have been working with the Department of Fisheries regarding the management of the Abrolhos and although the City isn’t involved in this committee, we have a significant vested interest in the management of the Islands.
“We want to be more involved and have our voice heard when it comes to the future of fishing and tourism at the Abrolhos,” Mr Diehm said.
“We are proud to have the Abrolhos fall under our district and we will do our utmost to preserve and promote the beautiful islands which hold a very rich history for our community.”