A Mullumbimby affordable-housing proposal that sparked resident concerns and had councillors divided in the previous term will be again thrashed out at today’s Byron Shire Council meeting.
After being previously accepted, then refused, then accepted again and finally being refused by the council term of 2012–16, developer Koho Projects lodged an appeal of Council’s refusal to the Land and Environment Court on September 5, just before the September 10 council elections.
And while the case is listed for an initial conciliation conference on January 24, 2017, Koho have negotiated by dropping two of their original ten units on the residential block to eight and say they will supply a plan of management for the development.
To get such density on an average-sized residential block, a percentage of the dwellings will be leased as ‘affordable housing’ as defined within the State Environmental Planning Policy (Affordable Rental Housing) 2009.
A lengthy staff report in the upcoming agenda says a resolution between Council and the developer include plans that are ‘substantially similar to the development as depicted in the plans that form part of the appeal.’
But staff have said it is ‘unclear from the information provided whether a share-car arrangement remains proposed for the development.’
‘It is also not apparent whether the offer for the affordable housing units [is] to be maintained in perpetuity as affordable housing (not just for the required ten-year period).
As for cost, staff say the estimated legal fees for defending the appeal to be $22,000 excluding GST, assuming that the hearing in the matter only takes one day.