Tweed mayor Gary Bagnall was right. The public meeting he sought to discuss the Kingscliff one-way was convened by Our490 was an unqualified success with more than 150 people attending.
I believe Gary Bagnall can lead a surge of genuine community engagement across the Tweed Shire. He can expect support from the our490 group.
The sad part is that this meeting was opposed by council management and four other councillors – unfortunately a majority. Management claimed that ‘these forums can lead to a vocal minority dominating the process’.
Certainly there were angry people but there was no ‘vocal minority dominating the process’ – just a willing co-operation between people. They worked through options to relieve the problems that have been imposed on Kingscliff as a result of less than professional work byCouncil staff.
By fearing that we might be some sort of disruptive minority they show just how out of touch they are.
I hope, in the future these cosseted bureaucrats will be a little more respecting of the residents and ratepayers who, in fact, pay their wages. People are not asking for the world, just that council’s professional staff act in the interest of all ratepayers.
By embarking on the Kingscliff one-way folly they abandoned good strategic planning practice. There will be a doubling of Kingscliff’s population within a radius of six kilometres with development applications already before Council.
If only a small percentage of these people along with those arriving in Kingscliff under the existing zonings want to use Kingscliff’s streets to get to the beach, the creek and the café strip, the one-way decision will be seen as an ever-worsening disaster.
Our490 will continue to demand public consultation backed by a complete suite of information. We support the right of residents and business owners to be engaged in any plans for the future of our shire.
Ron Cooper, Kingscliff