The statement ascribed to Cate Coorey in a comment on the article ‘State bureaucrats “foisting” West Byron plan on council’, claiming that I and other so called ‘pro-development’ councillors are ‘letting’ DoPE override council’s rules is so untrue that it borders on being a lie.
We asked to have this DCP written by douncil many months ago, and this request was refused. This fact is on the record. By the time this Council was elected, the DoPE zoning process was well under way. Councillors have no more authority over the DoPE in this matter than any member of the public. Recommendations made by us with regard to a number of design parameters have not been adopted by DoPE. The DCP has been inserted by DoPE into the 1988 LEP without our consent or choice. Consequently, the minimum lot sizes we inserted in the 2014 LEP will not apply to this DCP.
The fact remains that this whole situation rests with the previous council which refused to properly consider an application to rezone land that had been identified decades earlier for residential ‘investigation’. By doing so, that Council guaranteed that the owners could apply directly to the DoPE under a procedure which I believe was created by the NSW Labor Gov. Had the previous (Greens controlled) Council acted responsibly, they could have zoned the most appropriate parcels of land, in a staged manner, and created a DCP that reflected the aspirations of the Shire.
Councillors saw the DCP for the first time last week. We have many questions to ask DoPE, and we hoped to be given a genuine opportunity to make constructive improvements to the document at today’s (postponed) meeting. The above article contains so many inaccurate statements it is impossible to refute them here. It is a shame that readers have only been given the unsubstantiated and untested claims of one unqualified person to form their understanding.
Byron Shire councillor Sol Ibrahim