27.7 C
Byron Shire
February 27, 2021

Polglase tipped off Leda

Latest News

Mt Warning ban

Chris Gee, Byron Bay Indigenous readers be advised that the following letter contains references to persons deceased. I read with some...

Other News

Stop motion animators needed

Northern Rivers Community Gallery in Ballina is seeking expressions of interest from suitably experienced digital animators with demonstrated experience...

Northern Rivers policeman accused of youth assault to continue facing trial

A police officer accused of assaulting a 16-year-old in Byron Bay more than three years ago is to continue facing trial this week.

Ballina sludge a mixture of blue-green algae species

A reader has sent Echonetdaily some photos of what he described as 'something nasty and green coming down the Richmond River'.

Will the Lennox Park pavilion survive?

Ballina Shire Council will today debate the future of the Lennox Park pavilion/dressing shed, which is slated for removal as part of the Lennox Village Vision concept plan.

Byron police assault trial could attract human rights law analysis

Northern Rivers policeman accused of youth assault to continue facing trial.

Pottsville’s controversial Men’s Shed extension to be advertised

The controversial Men’s Shed at Black Rocks Sports Fields in Pottsville is seeking to expand its footprint 12m to the west.

[author]Steve Spencer[/author]

Tweed Shire councillor Warren Polglase has defended his action in sending development firm Leda an email written by Cr Katie Milne, which led to the Greens councillor being sued for defamation.

The pro-development councillor stood by his decision to tip off Leda about Cr Milne’s email, which is currently the subject of defamation action in the Supreme Court in Sydney brought by Leda chief, billionaire developer Bob Ell.

Cr Milne used a freedom of information (FOI) application to discover it was Cr Polglase, then Tweed mayor, who forwarded her email to Leda, which is currently proposing two of the shire’s largest ever residential developments.

’Cr Polglase’s action clearly demonstrate that he was serving the interests of Leda, the developer who gave the largest donation of $80,000 to the 2004 pro-development election campaign that caused the council to be sacked,’ she said.

‘Cr Polglase has consistently voted against moves by other councillors to improve either the social outcomes, or the outcomes for koalas and the hundreds of species impacted by Leda’s developments.’

Mr Ell’s statement of claim in the Supreme Court states that an email circulated by Katie Milne to the Tweed Shire Echo, and other press outlets, implied Mr Ell was implicated in the murder of an an associate of his, Michael McGurk, and that he had a scandalous association with the murdered man.

Businessman Mr McGurk was slain outside his home in Sydney in September 2009.

Cr Milne is defending the defamation action.

Cr Polglase this week stood by his decision to forward Cr Milne’s email in March last year, saying the email became a public document once it had been circulated.

’This was not a confidential document at all, it was marked “letter to the editor” and I’m quite sure Leda would have known of its existence as soon as it was published,’ said Cr Polglase.

’I don’t see anything questionable about it. If someone was making accusations about me I would want to know about it.’

Another FOI request by Cr Milne found that in July last year Leda sought information on comments by ‘any councillors about the Kings Forest project’, dating back to January 2007.

The FOI request sought ‘all correspondence, notes of conversations, internal memos and deleted emails’.

Leda also sought all records related to council’s staff submission on the Kings Forest concept plan submission of October 2009.

Cr Milne said council staff chose not to advise councillors that Leda had made the FOI application.

Leda recently circulated two ‘dossiers’ critical of council planning staff’s dealings with its Kings Forest and Cobaki housing projects.

And earlier this month Leda called for the state government to order an independent inquiry into the council’s handling of both projects.

The NSW Planning Department is the consent authority for the massive housing estates, with Tweed planners acting largely in an advisory role.

Cr Milne said the Kings Forest and Cobaki developments ‘for up to 30,000 residents next to these vital habitats could be the nail in the coffin for Tweed koalas’.

‘Leda should have provided an adequate wildlife corridor along the Queensland border at Cobaki, and they should leave the Cudgen paddock and the eastern side of Kings Forest, if they really cared about Tweed Coast koalas.

‘I find it very disturbing that the general manager has refused to seek legal advice on Leda’s reports. We have a duty to ensure the public is aware of the truth in these matters. Dragging our feet in relation to this only serves Leda’s interests.’


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

‘The Great Reset’

Gary Opit, Wooyung I appreciated the letter by Lucas Wright (17 February) on the Great Reset conspiracy fantasy. With our privileged, western, simplistic understanding of...

Letting go

Mary McMorrow, Mullumbimby I respect the parents forgiving the drunk driver who killed their four children (one a cousin) as their way of dealing with...

Ministers misbehave

Keith Duncan, Pimlico Accusations of appalling behaviour by the Liberal Party in covering up misdeeds within its ranks just keep on keeping on. The last...

Transparency needed

Janelle Saffin MP, State Member for Lismore. I read with interest Mia Armitage’s front page article in last week’s Echo ‘Electorates miss out on bushfire...