It was a 5/5 split at the August Council meeting last week when Councillor Keith Williams moved a motion to ‘discontinue major works in the South East precinct of Lake Ainsworth until the completion of the Coastal Zone Management Plan for Lake Ainsworth.’
Mayor David Wright used his casting vote to decide against Cr Williams’ motion. This means that Council will continue with the preparation of the DA for works at the South Eastern Lake precinct (including a range of beautification measures and the closure of the road) and all the documentation and research that must accompany any Development Application.
Councillors on both sides of the argument now agree that the only way forward is to wait for the DA to be completed and placed on public exhibition, and make decisions based upon the specific details of the proposal.
According to Cr Jeff Johnson, ‘The only way forward on this is for Council to complete the current studies and DA process, which have already been paid for. Then the community can see for itself what is actually being proposed and make an informed decision. Once the DA has been completed there will be public meetings and consultation before any final decision is made,’ he said.
Cr Williams, who tried to stop works with his motion agrees, ‘Council is as divided as the community on this, but there will be opportunity to object to the DA once it is finalised.’
‘The timeline for the DA suggests that it will be expected around February, so we just need to make sure that the community gets a good opportunity to see it and consider the proposal in its entirety,’ he said.