A PROPOSED overlay for homes susceptible to rising sea levels could soon go ahead despite the plan receiving 39 objections during its one-month exhibition period.
Amendment C394 Proposed Coastal Inundation Overlay would cover 1,726 properties on the Bellarine Peninsula and around Corio Bay that have been identified as at risk of a 0.8 metre sea level rise or storm surge.
Of the 43 submissions sent to the COGG between July and August this year, 39 were objections.
Key concerns included the potential impact on property values, floor levels and building heights, insurance costs and timeline of sea level rise projections.
There were also requests to remove specific properties from the proposed overlay. While opinions about the overlay have been divisive, the council responded to each submission and recommended two minor changes (which were requested by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning) as a result.
Last week, the city also resolved to refer all submissions to an independent panel appointed by the Minister for Planning at its meeting last week.
Geelong mayor Stephanie Asher said the independent panel would give council an additional expert view and allow the city to make an informed decision about whether the proposal should go ahead.
Cr Trent Sullivan, deputy chair of the citys rural and coastal portfolio, said the state government required all councils to plan for sea rises.
We are acting in line with our requirements.
We acknowledge the submissions made and well await the independent panels recommendations with interest.
All submitters will be invited to appear before the panel to present their submission.
The panel will then provide a recommendation to council before a decision is made.