Kelly ?wrong? on Lot 490



THE Tweed Shire mayor has challenged the NSW Local Government Minister over statements he made in Parliament in relation to the contentious Lot 490.

Councillor Warren Polglase said a ministerial statement by Minister Tony Kelly which criticised Tweed Shire Council's handling of decisions relating to the Lot 490 coastal reserve at South Kingscliff was riddled with factual errors.

Cr Polglase said Mr Kelly's statement to the NSW Legislative Council on October 28 contained so many mistakes that it could not be relied on as a credible account of the history of Lot 490.

"From the first paragraph to the last, the minister's statement gets the facts completely wrong," Cr Polglase said.

"The clear intent seems to be to attack the council, and it is absolutely unwarranted."

The ministerial statement centres on council's approval earlier this year of a public road through Lot 490. Cr Polglase said the council had followed proper processes in its handling of the proposed development of the road.

"The development consent given by council earlier this year followed the provision of consent by the NSW government's own agency, the Department of Lands, in December last year," Cr Polglase said.

"The road was strongly supported by the Department of Lands in a letter to council in January this year. The minister's statement refers to the 'questionable nature of the council's DA'. At no time did any officer of the Lands Department propose that any part of the DA was questionable."

Cr Polglase said Minister Kelly's opening statement that Lot 490 was environmentally sensitive was just "plain wrong".

"That land has been sandmined three times. There were no environmental issues identified in an eight-part test carried out for the development consent for the road."

Cr Polglase said it was ironic that, after Minister Kelly stripped control of Lot 490 from council and appointed a steering committee to re-examine the road approval and the future use of Lot 490, that the committee had recommended a similar route to that approved by council.



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