THE Launceston City Council will seek an urgent meeting with TasWater, the state government and federal Bass candidates to discuss funding a tertiary treatment plant to stop partially treated sewage from entering the Tamar estuary.
Tertiary treatment was first mooted by the council's former waste water treatment chemist manager Bill Piesse in 1989 when the new sewage treatment plant at Ti-Tree bend was commissioned.
Alderman Ted Sands, who moved the unanimously passed motion for a priority meeting on the plant at yesterday's council meeting, said Launceston residents had waited long enough.
``It's shameful that we've waited decades without doing something,'' Alderman Sands said.
``The river system is the equivalent of some backwater in Bangladesh.
``To allow human waste to be pumped into the river is just not on.''
Sewage appears in the estuary when the city's combined sewerage and stormwater system overloads after heavy rainfall.
Alderman Rosemary Armitage said it was impractical to change the system attached to 9120 Launceston homes so tertiary treatment was the best alternative.
She said, anecdotally, river users had complained about illness after contacting the Tamar's water.
In other matters raised at yesterday's meeting:
Aldermen voted 8-3 to approve a concrete batching plant to be built by Hazell Bros on semi-rural land at Prospect, despite objections from two residents concerned about noise pollution, and that their visual amenity and future land plans would be affected.
Hazell Bros managing director Geoffrey Hazell said the plant's location on Meander Valley Road was strategically important and would keep heavy haulage vehicles out of the city but dissenting aldermen questioned whether the location, on prime semi-rural land, would prevent future development or a new housing subdivision.
The council also approved Chinese restaurant Fortune Wok to open a takeaway outlet in Charles Street, which up until last year housed cafe Tant Pour Tant.
The development had attracted one objection, which argued the outlet would detract from the area's heritage character.
Alderman Rob Soward disagreed and pointed out there was a takeaway burger outlet 80 metres from the proposed development.