Review of determination Eatons quarry, Old Baggotville Road
Wardell resident Mia Cassidy gave a tearful deputation asking for Council’s help as her home and family suffer from the constant pounding of heavy vehicles. Suzie Whiteman circulated a video to Councillors and via Facebook showing the sheer volume of heavy vehicles transiting Wardell.
Council deferred reconsideration of the development application (DA) as there was no documented agreement for materials from the quarry to be transported via the construction corridor, as had been expected.
Deputy Mayor, Keith Williams, then moved a foreshadowed motion, ‘That Council take all necessary steps to implement a temporary heavy vehicles speed limit of 40 km/h in the village of Wardell due to damage to council road assets and private property caused by heavy vehicles servicing the Pacific Highway upgrade.’
‘Local residents are literally being smashed by heavy vehicles,’ said Mr Williams.
‘All Councillors have received pictures of major cracking occurring in a number of local houses. It is our job to do what we can to help protect them. We also need to protect our own road assets. We are witnessing major damage to roads that were never built for this load. Slowing heavy vehicles substantially reduces the impact on roads, houses and people.’
The motion was adopted unanimously.
Pedestrian access and mobility plan
Council adopted its long term plan for footpaths and shared paths throughout the Shire after an extensive consultation process. Councillor Nathan Willis successfully pursued amendments to bring forward works to improve pedestrian safety on River Street, West Ballina into the next financial year.
Deputy Mayor, Keith Williams, successfully amended the motion to ask for a further report on potential shared path connections to adjoining Shires.
‘The rail corridor within Ballina was closed decades ago and has already been sold,’ said Mr Williams.
‘We can’t join the rail trail or benefit from its creation unless we plan how we will connect to our neighbours. Connection to a potential rail trail could be achieved by a “beside the road path” connecting to the rail line somewhere between Bangalow and Eltham.
‘Now we have completed shared pathways from West Ballina through to Lennox Head it’s also time we look further north and consider how we will connect to Byron Bay via The Coast Road to Broken Head.
‘Whatever happens with the rail trail or future public transport networks we should be planning this pathway network with our neighbours. Cycling is a growing form of personal and tourism transport and we need to be ready to take advantage of potential funding opportunities as they arise.’
Library Funding Cuts
Cr Nathan Willis moved his Notice of Motion regarding Library Funding cuts.
Council resolved to write to relevant State Ministers and local members to express its grave concern at the cuts to Library funding announced in the State Budget. A similar motion was adopted by the Richmond Tweed Regional Library Committee (Cr Willis is Chair) on Wednesday.