Reg Van Rij.
Reg Van Rij. Contributed

Developer wants council ‘ally'

A DEVELOPMENT company wants Tweed Shire Council to reconsider third-party mediation to move forward on two major projects in the region.

Leda Developments, the company behind developments at Kings Forest and Cobaki Lakes, asked councillors to reconsider their positions stating they had to be "allies" moving forward.

Mayor Barry Longland put Blackadder Consulting forward at the last council meeting as a suitable third-party mediator between Leda and the council after the developer claimed anti-development bias from the council's officers.

Mediation was refused in a vote by councillors at last month's council meeting.

"Regrettably and surprisingly that motion didn't succeed," Leda regional manager Reg Van Rij said at the community access meeting on Thursday.

"Blackadder was the council's idea and the Mayor had created the terms of reference.

"We agreed to those terms with not so much as a change to a comma or a full stop.

"If this comes up again then please give the mayor support for the engagement of the mediator."

Some councillors were concerned about who would pay for mediation.

Mr Van Rij refused to comment about costs at the community forum.

The initial motion for mediation put forward at last month's council meeting was defeated 4-3.

Cr Longland said the mediation would build a professional, timely, courteous, respectful and trusting relationship.

At the time some councillors questioned the relevance of mediation with the projects moving forward since the concerns were raised with the council.

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