MP’s brother in law gets the nod

See South Coast Register article here
25 Apr, 2012

PLANS to rezone part of a farm along Little Forest Road have been slammed as “absolute, arrant nonsense” during discussions on draft LEP provisions at last week’s Shoalhaven City Council meeting.Cr John Fergusson slammed the proposal to allow three one-hectare blocks on the farm, submitted on behalf of property owner John Hancock.“There is no strategic justification for this,” Cr Fergusson said.

“We are going to end up with a total disaster of an LEP.”

Cr Fergusson accused his council colleagues of “totally emasculating the LEP process”.

Cr Amanda Findley said the application, and the support it obtained on the council floor, “stinks of mates doing favours for mates,” because Mr Hancock was the brother-in-law of South Coast MP Shelley Hancock.

Cr Greg Watson said the claim was “outrageous”.

Cr Andrew Guile said the application had merits and to claim otherwise was “character assassination”.

“This is definitely in keeping with everything else that is happening there,” Cr Guile said.

While he had earlier championed retaining and protecting valuable farming land, Cr Robert Miller said the land proposed for subdivision did not fit the bill.

“It’s not a viable agricultural property now,” he said, adding it was the sort of property that should be considered for large rural residential lots.

A staff report to the special development committee meeting that considered the application recommended against the application because it was inconsistent with the South Coast Regional Strategy.

It also noted the block was beside other rural residential blocks created through a spot rezoning at the H Ranch in 2002.

The rezoning was supported, with Crs Robert Miller, Andrew Guile, Nigel Soames, Greg Watson and David Bennett voting in favour, and John Fergusson, Bohdan Brumerskyj, Amanda Findley and Paul Green against.

About MissEco

Calling all folk who love the Shoalhaven. This blog is to bring your attention to planning issues that are happening right now. To get you to review a community submission that was given to Council and to give people a space to make comments on how they think a future Shoalhaven should look

Posted on May 10, 2012, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. Kristin Moller

    As concerned residents opposite the proposed re-zoning of the Hancock rural property in Little Forest Road, we are alarmed at the lack of consultancy and transparecy in the process. It would appear the slimmest of majorities passed it by one vote, ignoring council staff recommendations against it. What is our recourse?

    • Hi Kristin, thanks for the comment. The recourse is to get involved in the Our Shoalhaven campaign and help spread the word to the rest of the community about how important the next exhibition period and community submissions will be. It is not fair that community has to spend so much time and effort trying to make right the decisions of council who have not engaged in adequate consultation over many of the proposed rezonings, but we need to do it if we are going to get these decisions fixed in the final document. Cheers. Justin Field for Our Shoalhaven

  2. Brave stand.

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