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Byron Shire
May 16, 2021

Buck$ on the bypass

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Fast Buck$, Coorabell

Apparently Simon Richardson has been complaining around the traps that those opposing the bypass on ecological grounds shouldn’t have left it so late to raise their concerns, such that construction delays are now costing ratepayers money.

I’m not an ecologist and certainly I knew nothing about the Mitchell’s rainforest snail, but I did on several occasions over the past two years angrily raise with councillors their obligation to be aware of the strict environmental conditions imposed by the Land and Environment Court, and urged them not to allow the staff to withhold information. As usual I was ignored. Did Council staff know of the snail well before their decisive vote, but said nothing?

If so, Simon’s approach would be intellectually dishonest in the extreme – blaming ecological detractors for a gross dereliction of duty on the part of staff.

The simple answer is that the senior staff are Simon’s mates, whereas his critics do not flatter him and therefore clearly mean him ill.

Simon will go to the grave convinced that the senior staff adore him almost as much as he adores himself.

Anyway, I hope that the contractors got good legal advice before they signed up. Surely there are clauses in there that oblige Council to pay a base fee for equipment that’s idle, plus punitive clauses; that’s no doubt what Simon is complaining about.

I won’t bother trying to find out any particulars because I can clearly see ‘commercial in confidence’ written all over it.

Also it is worth mentioning in this context that the BEC was quoted a $20,000 fee by council for FOI access to council’s wetlands maps! There must be some further facts council staff are determined to protect us from, eh?

Simon, I hate to break it to you but your signature project has been a circus from day one, continues to be a circus, and no doubt will remain a circus until the day it’s built, or not built, as the case may be.  If it is built I will start a campaign to have it named in honour of your legendary and demonstrated denial skills: the Simon Richardson Reality Bypass.

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