There is something essentially undemocratic about the proponent of major housing development projects campaigning for the election of a ‘pro-business council’. Leda Corporation spokesman Reg Van Rij told a Tweed Chamber of Commerce meeting on 7 May to vote for a pro-business council at the September election.
The former state government handed the bulk of future Tweed housing development to one company, Leda, with an exemption from adhering to most of the normal council planning controls. I wonder what more Leda wants. Council now has only the most minimal oversight and surely the community needs to be protected from a large Sydney developer that has only its own profit in mind.
The company recently has been discovered to have illegally cleared neighbouring land that is reserved for nature conservation.
As a retired businessperson, I believe that the Tweed will benefit more from encouraging everyone to consider the whole of our community including the environment. When Mr Van Rij says ‘pro-business’ I suspect he means big business, not the myriad of small businesses that make up the majority of employers in our region.
Massive housing developments like Kings Forest and Cobaki Lakes may suit the Gold Coast but not the Tweed, where residents enjoy a more relaxed lifestyle with a much lower level of traffic congestion and crime.
Current councillors often say things like, ‘We have to accept a major increase in population’. I hope the new council we will elect in September will consult the current residents about that and be prepared to champion our Tweed lifestyle. We do have a choice.
Tweed Respect team
Candidate for Tweed Shire Council