Tweed Shire council’s extraordinary meeting last night went straight into a closed session to discuss their ongoing concern over Health Infrastructure’s decision to build the new Tweed Valley Hospital at Cudgen near Kingscliff.
During the closed session the council resolved to refer the hospital planning process to the NSW Ombudsman for review rather than pursuing legal action at this stage.
‘We as a council are still not happy,’ councillor Ron Cooper told Echonetdaily.
According to the Relocate Tweed Valley Hospital team, the 2017 North Coast Regional Plan had identified the current Tweed Hospital site for re-development.
However, they claim that the health minister overruled this decision and pushed for a greenfield site that eventually turned out to be on state significant farmland at Cudgen.
‘Council obviously has been advised by its learned counsel that work is most probably illegal,’ said Relocate Tweed Valley Hospital president Haylee Paddon.
‘But we’ve heard they’ve also had warnings from health infrastructure (HI) that they (council) will be sued for delay caused to the project.
‘So you can’t blame them for being prudent with public funds – (they were) much more prudent than HI NSW have been.
‘Health infrastructure are spending away furiously on a development that doesn’t have consent from planning and the EIS submissions have not been addressed. But they continue to push on to try and get as much done before the next election in 64 days.’