Van park plans spark reaction
FED up with Tweed Shire councillors not listening to their concerns about development, particularly a huge new caravan park, Cabarita Beach and Bogangar residents have taken matters into their own hands.
But rather than simply protest against the council and State Government, they yesterday took the “positive” move of appointing their own university expert to undertake wide community consultation and draw up a community-backed plan for the area.
“That’s the key. It’s a community action rather than a community response,” said the Griffith University researcher and local resident Dr Kerrie Foxwell-Norton.
Dr Foxwell-Norton has been commissioned by the Cabarita Beach/Bogangar Residents’ Association to set up a six-month-long consultation process collecting community opinion on development options for the village.
The spark which fired up the association to find its own expert was a controversial plan for a 200-site caravan park by councillors acting in their role as trustees for a prime beachfront block of crown land and the NSW Lands and Property Management Authority (LPMA).
That was followed by heavy legal threats from the council seeking return of leaked secret details about its plans which landed on the doorstep of the association’s president, pensioner Cath Lynch.
The legal pressure forced Mrs Lynch to stand down and her place be taken by acting president Neil Moores.
Yesterday Mr Moores said the new initiative was “in part a response to current development proposals for the Cabarita south precinct,” where the caravan park is planned.
“It is a response to the expressed desire of many residents to have a say, on their own terms, in the development of their village.”
The move won praise from National Party MP for Tweed Geoff Provest.