14.3 C
Byron Shire
July 4, 2022

Developer’s legal bid to overturn fees

Latest News

ARTEXPRESS to visit Tweed Regional Gallery

Tweed Regional Gallery & Margaret Olley Art Centre is one of only two regional venues exhibiting ARTEXPRESS 2022. The exhibition is an annual showcase of exemplary artworks from the HSC examination in Visual Arts in NSW.

Other News

Dry July to help you and Our House

In July 2008, three mates, Brett, Kenny and Phil, wanted to take a break from alcohol, so decided to abstain for the month of July, coining it their 'Dry July'.

Celebrating NAIDOC Week in the Northern Rivers 

The Northern Rivers encompasses the Bundjalung, Gumbaynggirr and Yaegl nations with celebrations for NAIDOC taking place up and down the coast. 

ARTEXPRESS to visit Tweed Regional Gallery

Tweed Regional Gallery & Margaret Olley Art Centre is one of only two regional venues exhibiting ARTEXPRESS 2022. The exhibition is an annual showcase of exemplary artworks from the HSC examination in Visual Arts in NSW.

Flood-prone land in Murwillumbah swapped for flood-free land 

It has been five years in the making but the innovative land swap of flood-prone land for flood-free land in Murwillumbah is underway with a second round of ‘expressions of interest’ about to open. 

Destruction of Brunswick Heads mahogany

The foulest crime against the planet was committed secretly in the heart of Brunswick Heads during the pandemic lockdown....

Two confirmed cases of diphtheria in northern NSW

On Saturday evening the North Coast Public Health Unit confirmed that there was a case of diphtheria in a two-year-old child in Northern NSW.

Luis Feliu

Tweed Shire Council has knocked back a bid by billionaire developer Bob Ell for almost $9 million in road contribution fees for his Cobaki subdivision to be dropped in lieu of roadworks in Queensland.

Tweed mayor Barry Longland said he ‘thought it was a joke at first’ that the developer was ‘asking us for credit for work they’ll do in Queensland’.

But the owner of the Leda development group wasted no time in lodging an appeal to the Land and Environment Court against the decision by Council seeking $8.7 million in fees due for the Cobaki housing estate’s first 917 residential lots.

A hearing has already set for January 14.

The state government approved the subdivision for the township of around 5,500 homes at Cobaki, just across the border, in 2010 while the Joint Regional Planning Panel (JRPP) ticked off Leda Manorstead’s first stages in May last year.

The development, on the Tweed Shire side of the border, will initially only have entry from Boyd Street in Tugun on the Gold Coast and a condition of consent was for the developer to upgrade the intersection of Boyd Street with the Gold Coast Highway at a cost of around $4 million.

Leda was also to extend and widen Boyd Street to four lanes and build a roundabout at Inland Drive, all up  a total cost of around $9.5 million.

But now Leda wants Council to drop the $8.7 million in Tweed Road Contribution Plan (TRCP) levies by discounting the roadworks and crediting the balance for future fees.

In a letter to Council from its lawyers, Leda said the Boyd Street works would provide access and additional capacity to the Gold Coast from the Tweed Shire ‘well in excess of the demand generated by the Cobaki development’.

The extra capacity, Leda argued, would also provide a benefit to other new housing developments in Tweed Shire south of Cobaki, such as The Rise and at Bilambil Heights, which are currently on hold ‘due to this very traffic-capacity issue’.


The letter warned Council it would take it to court if it did not accept the request.

But staff then sought its own legal advice, and concluded ‘there are a few compelling reasons to support the request to delete the TRCP contributions’.

In their report, staff said deeds of agreement existed between the developer, Gold Coast City Council, Tweed Shire Council and the Queensland Department of Main Roads dealing with the road infrastructure required on each side of the border.

‘These deeds remain current, and clearly set down obligations of the road authorities and the proponent with respect to the provision of road infrastructure,’ staff said.

In response to Leda’s claim that ‘the Queensland location of the works is irrelevant’ when considering those works as part of the contributions, staff said there was no ministerial approval to include them in the fee plan.

Staff said the TRCP can only apportion costs to NSW developments and the Boyd Street works would also significantly benefit the Gold Coast by improving access to places such as John Flynn Hospital, Gold Coast Airport, the desalination plant at Tugun and other housing development and community and sporting facilities there.

‘The TRCP is unable to further apportion costs on these developments, and it is a reflection of the deeds that Leda has voluntarily undertaken that they will bear the full costs of these works without the Queensland authorities paying their share.’

Cr Carolyn Byrne was the only one to back the developer’s bid in the 6–1 vote.

The relationship between Leda and Tweed Council has been testy at the best of times, with the developer producing and making great play of ‘secret dossiers’ last year that were critical of staff, environmentalists and others who Leda claims were being obstructive to their plans.

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.


  1. Yes, Just another example of the contempt with which developers hold councils. It would be nice if Leda developments packed up their bags and went home, I wonder where that is, Dream on.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Australia to light the way with industrial-scale power

Big ideas are easy. Finding the big money and big names to back them is not. But a long-term plan to turn WA’s Pilbara into the largest renewable energy hub in the world has just taken a giant leap forward.

Koori Mail wins NAIDOC Week award

Local media outlet and responder to the February and March floods, the Koori Mail was honoured at the annual National NAIDOC Week Awards held on Narrm Country on Saturday evening.

Active Fest and Olympics heading to Byron

Want a fun day of netball, rugby league, soccer, skateboarding, BMX, baseball 5, or tennis? The Active Fest is coming to the Cavanbah Centre in Byron on July 14.

First Nations Voice in Council moves closer

Byron Council will aim to give local First Nations people a role in its decision-making process by September 2024, echoing the newly-elected federal government’s pledge to honour the Uluru Statement from the Heart.