Legislative Council, Wednesday 18 October 2023
Ms FORREST question to LEADER of the GOVERNMENT in the LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL, Mrs HISCUTT
With regard to 4WD track access to and within the Arthur Pieman Conservation Areas (APCA)
(1) For all tracks closed since 2010:
(a) What year was each closed; and
(b) Please provide details (and where possible copies) of the notification provided to:
(i) The relevant representative body either the Tasmanian Recreational Vehicle Association (TRVA) and/or Four Wheel Drive Tasmania; and
(ii) The local newspaper advertisement.
1(a) The majority of track closures implemented by the managing authority took effect on 1 July 2012 following approval of the Arthur-Pieman Conservation Area (APCA) Sustainable Recreational Vehicle Access Report and its recommendations by the then Minister for Parks, Brian Wightman. Fifteen tracks were closed. The report considered 94 tracks. Sixty five tracks were in use at the time the process started. Of those, 50 tracks retained full, partial or restricted use.
1(b) Both the TRVA and Four Wheel Drive Tasmania were identified as key stakeholders in the process and invited to comment on the draft APCA Sustainable Recreational Vehicle Access Report in 2010. Both groups were also advised of the final outcome. The process that led to the closure of some tracks involved stakeholder and community consultation and was publicised through the media, production and distribution of newsletters and other processes such as the implementation of the driver pass system and supporting documentation.
Off-road vehicle groups were represented on the Off-Road Vehicle Consultative Group (see below) and the APCA Management Committee at the time.
Closure occurred through signage and physical barriers. The Managing Authority may close any road on any reserved land by erecting a barrier or by displaying a notice on the reserved land as noted in Section 20(1) of the National Parks and Reserves Management Regulations 2019. It is not necessary to advertise a closure for it to take effect.
(2) Does the Government intend to review and/or update the Policy for the Use of Recreational Vehicles on State-Owned Lands; and
(a) If so, when; and
(b) If not, why not?
No review or update to the Policy is currently planned.
(3) Who, or which body or Department developed the Arthur-Pieman Conservation Area and West Coast Off-Road Vehicle Project Steering Committee Status Report of 1 May 2023; and
(a) Which stakeholder groups were consulted; and
(b) How does this document interact with the work being undertaken by Inspiring Places?
The Status Report was prepared by the Department of Natural Resources and Environment Tasmania (PWS) as part of the current APCA Project. The APCA Project is a $10 million commitment from the Government to improving off-road vehicle experiences in the APCA and the broader West Coast. The Report was specifically prepared for the steering committee for the Project.
Inspiring Place was engaged by PWS to prepare the West Coast Off-Road Vehicle Strategy, and primarily engaged with stakeholders. Stakeholders groups consulted include:
• APCA Management Committee
• Southern 4WD Clubs
• North and North West 4WD Clubs
• Four Wheel Drive Tasmania
• Circular Head Council
• West Coast Council
• Circular Head Aboriginal Corporation
• West Coast Recreation Association
• PWS NW Regional Staff
• PWS Arthur River Field Centre
• PWS West Coast Field Centre
• Hydro Tasmania
• Sustainable Timber Tasmania
• West by North West Tourism Association
• 4WD Tourism operators (Smithton)
• Destination West Coast Tourism
• Arthur River community
• Pieman Heads shack community
• Granville Harbour shack community
• Trial Harbour shack community
PWS has also contacted a range of Aboriginal community groups which resulted in engagement with the Aboriginal Land Council of Tasmania.