Development rules ?clear

By PETER CATON

PETE Gladwin, president of the Kingscliff Ratepayers and Progress Association can't imagine the federal government getting closely involved with controversial local development issues.

But even if it does move to oversee development policies, he's worried it won't make much difference.

Mr Gladwin, who collects sand worms for fishing bait for a living, and has been at the forefront of Kingscliff residents' concerns over "inappropriate development", says what is needed is adherence to the rules that already exist.

"We have all these documents now, the LEP (Local Environment Plan) and the DCP (Development Control Plan) but they are not adhered to," he said.

However, he added, if the federal government could introduce "some sort of certainty" with planning documents being followed to the letter, his organisation would probably support its involvement.

Earlier this week Federal Environment Minister Ian Campbell announced the government would push ahead with a 30-year plan for coastal areas to prevent ad-hoc development and warned councils and state governments to co-operate.

He said if local and state governments did not co-operate with the plan, they would "end up having to run the gamut of the very strong federal environmental law and see projects stalled".

Richmond MP Justine Elliot has slammed the move, saying the Howard government could not be trusted to take over planning controls and would allow the Tweed and Byron areas to be developed like the Gold Coast.

Local planning consultants also fear federal intervention could also create another layer of bureaucracy, making development more difficult and causing further delays.



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