HORSHAM Rural City Council has put Qube and Wimmera Container Line on notice after six months of failed negotiations for access to the Wimmera Intermodal Freight Terminal.
Qube started operating from the city’s Mill Street freight terminal in November until it could operate from the new intermodal freight terminal at Dooen.
Horsham Mayor David Grimble said the two freight companies had been given enough time to reach a commercial agreement.
He said council would prepare a report and seek advice from Transport Minister Terry Mulder on what it could do to improve the situation.
“I know that we took the opportunity to go and talk to Mr Mulder about that and we gave the companies an opportunity to discuss and come to a satisfactory resolution,” he said.
“They haven’t done that and I think this council has given them plenty of time.
“I am really getting sick and tired of the argy-bargy between the two – the community is sick of it and so am I.”
Council economic and corporate director Tony Bawden spoke to a Department of Transport senior policy adviser about the terminal on Monday.
“An issue we have discussed is that we don’t want to see any lease extension beyond November 1 at the Mill Street site to either Qube or any other operator,” he said.
“He considers that to be a highly unlikely scenario, but that is something we need to stitch up.”
Mr Bawden said council had received mixed messages from Wimmera Container Line and Qube about the negotiations.
“The last update last week was that there were some prospects that might eventuate out of the negotiations,” he said.
“We have heard these messages before and then they go quiet again.”
Horsham North Residents Committee secretary Rae Nelson said the negotiations needed be more transparent.
“If there is nothing to be hidden, let’s see how bad these offers are that Qube won’t accept,” she said. “We should question all the secrecy and ask what is so outlandish that Wimmera Container line has put to Qube.
“Put it all on the table and make all transparent.”