The Ramada resort would like to open its restaurant to the public. Chef Jason Dickfos serves a guest.
The Ramada resort would like to open its restaurant to the public. Chef Jason Dickfos serves a guest. Daniel Tweed

Ramada up for $42K bill to change nothing

THE OWNER of Hervey Bay’s Ramada Resort is reeling after learning he is up for $42,420.96 for “headworks” he already paid for and put in when he built the luxury Urangan resort.

Tim Wright wants to open up his popular Ramada restaurant to the public and the material change of use permit he needs from the council has already cost him almost $6200.

But now the council has quoted an “estimate” for “headworks” for the restaurant.

The charges are reminiscent of others that developers have been hit with since they rose dramatically in June last year.

Early in October last year the council’s director of development, David King, threw a lifeline to builders here, saying that if they were “shovel-ready” and their development provided an economic stimulus to the community, he’d take their case to the councillors to consider reverting headworks charges to what they were before June when the steep new costs came in.

But it seems “shovel-ready” does not cover Mr Wright and his restaurant plans.

“We’re not changing anything about the restaurant,” Mr Wright said yesterday.

“It will retain the same number of staff and the 120 seats.

“We just want to open it beyond our resort occupants and their guests because we believe the area needs the restaurant as much as we’d like to show off Ramada to locals and other visitors.”

Mr Wright said the headworks charges quoted were “prohibitive”.

“It would take us two years to just recoup them.

“But we are working through it and there is a meeting with the council scheduled for (today). “Hopefully council will co-operate in this because otherwise the charges are a big impost and it’s essential for our survival that we get to open to the general public.”



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