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Politician’s ‘threats’ about by-pass debate ‘beyond the pale’?

It’s a sad indictment of our democracy when our so called leaders are now threatening the removal of the bypass funding because we as a community are standing together to say no to cuttings.

By Marnie Cotton – from the Coss Bypass group Facebook page – Wednesday 14 November 2018.

Of course there are noise implication from both cuttings and tunnels. Surely if the RMS and Government wanted to convince us that the cuttings would have a negligible effect compared to tunnels, they would release a noise pollution report comparing both options? But instead we have to wait till after the elections for any EIS reports?
76% of 1000 people in The Coffs Coast Advocate poll say yes to tunnels, why aren’t our elected leaders listening?
#CoffsDeservesBetter #CoffsDeservesTheBest

Below a snippet of the article in today’s Advocate:

“Cr Rhoades moved the motion which was unanimously carried by the four other councillors present (Crs Sally Townley, Paul Amos, Mayor Denise Knight and Deputy Mayor Tegan Swan).

He spoke about the “astronomical” echoing effect from cuttings as opposed to tunnels.

Mr Hartsuyker hit out at this, saying Cr Rhoades is not in a position one way or another to say what the noise impacts are going to be.

“My view is that elected representatives have to act on the basis of fact. Cr Rhoades made a number of claims in relation to the noise outcome from the proposal but I understand that he has no noise data to base that on – it’s nothing more than hot air. It is an inappropriate way to conduct what is an important community debate.”

State Minister for Roads Melinda Pavey has also been highly critical of the move describing it as grandstanding and that she doesn’t want to be in a “slanging match” with council .

“I just think there are better things that ratepayers’ dollars should be spent on rather than opposing what I genuinely believe the vast majority of the community want and need,” she said.

“We are very genuine in our community consultation on this process.”

In what could be interpreted as a warning to council, both Mr Hartsuyker and Ms Pavey have spoken of towns crying out for funds similar to those allocated for the Coffs bypass.

“There are communities on the south coast of NSW along the Princes Highway in particular who are desperately seeking the kind of funds that we have,” Mr Hartsuyker explained.

An Advocate poll on the issue showed the majority (76 per cent) wanted tunnels as originally proposed. Twenty per cent voted for cuttings and land bridges while two per cent were undecided.

Approximately one thousand people voted in the poll.”

Read more: https://www.coffscoastadvocate.com.au/…/business-…/3574562/…

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Coffs Bypass Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/search/top/?q=coffs%20bypass%20group

One Comment

  1. While I agree that the argy bargy over the Coffs Harbour By Pass should cease, because the issue is a community issue far beyond personal political point scoring, there has to come a point when the RMS and NSW Government can no longer ignore the wishes of the community.
    The National Party politicians threatening to withdraw funding is nothing but a last ditch survival tactic hoping that they will retain the seats for the Nationals. It will not work.
    By the way, has anyone heard what the Nationals Candidate for Cowper, Patrick Conaghan, has to say on the Coffs Harbour By Pass ? I haven’t.
    Maybe he doesn’t know about it yet, being a Sydney lawyer ?
    However I must have a small smile when I read that Chamber of Commerce President, Martin Wells, a Real Estate Agent, who has a vested interest in people who may want to sell their homes in West Coffs, has not declared his professional interest in his statement as Chamber Of Commerce President.
    What also amuses me more is that at the last Council Elections, Martin was on the Ticket with Councillor Keith Rhoades, but now he is saying that Keith Rhoades and Council are wrong to be standing in the way of the By Pass to present a united case against the By Pass, as it is currently presented, because we as a community are saying NO to cuttings and “Land Bridges”.
    I suspect the stance that Martin Wells is taking is above all else,”Self Interest Comes First”.
    Well, Martin Wells, McGraths, your Real Estate franchise, will not be getting any property from me to list should I decide to sell. That is my self interest working you could say !!

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