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Collapse Issue 438 - 12 Feb 2018Issue 438 - 12 Feb 2018
Collapse  SPORTIES SPORTIES
Ettalong Bowling Club proposes merger with Sporties
Council to consider making a submission about Sporties
Regional planning panel inspects Sporties site
Waterfront group calls for withdrawal of Sporties' plans
Mehrtens considers independent Sporties' assessment
Sporties' proposal big enough for panel referral
Collapse  NEWS NEWS
Boom gate failure adds to level crossing danger
Almost $1 million to be spent on beach erosion
Fund may go to Patonga boat ramp and Woy Woy wharf
Holstein lists Peninsula roadworks
Playgroup calls on Council to justify herbicide use
Scientific paper written about our cultured pearls
Second youth festival to be smaller evening event
Exchange student returns for Rotary club's birthday
Solar business claims to have been misrepresented
Tree group prepares for National Tree Day
Library wants children for 'some creative building'
Updated map of Brisbane Water is released
Volunteers praised
MP to hold 'Listening Post'
Plan Ahead Day at Woy Woy courthouse
Collapse  FORUM FORUM
Few applications heard by council, fewer rejected
New smart planning paradigms should mean less cars
Council approval unacceptable
Democracy needed in planning process
Where is the Peninsula Urban Directions Strategy?
We're already fat enough
Ocean Beach is quite different to Ettalong foreshore
Save our beach - our future may depend on it
Fight for our land before it is gone forever
The Peninsula has been forgotten
Constructing a Swiss cheese plan with holes of neglect?
Barry Cohen was popular and energetic Member
Collapse  HEALTH HEALTH
New rehabilitation ward at private hospital
Fitness equipment installed at Killcare
Collapse  ARTS ARTS
Bouddi Gallery celebrates 10 years
Duo and folk singer to appear at folk club
Collapse  EDUCATION EDUCATION
Local schools have received $1.5M, says MacDonald
School crossing supervisor needed at Umina
Collapse  SPORT SPORT
Kaylah wins Australian under-16 championship
Young player invited to train with West Ham United
Bowling club celebrates member's 100th birthday
Two Umina surf club members win Council awards
Rookie of the month
Local lifesavers in winning State team
Lions to support women's rugby
Bridge clubs introduces new activities

Democracy needed in planning process

Matthew Wales' claim that reducing the number of DA objections required to trigger a referral to Council will "impede the orderly development we need' ("Chamber opposes lower submission threshold", Peninsula News, January 29) is, of course, patent nonsense.

Unless he means, by "orderly development", a free flow of shonky projects along the lines of the Atlantis proposal in Ettalong, the Sporties proposal in Woy Woy and the West St proposal in Umina.

If, as he avers, "the staff should be able to ... assess these applications without having to constantly refer them to council", why are we faced with the ongoing uglification of the Peninsula which is only slowed by the persistent efforts of a small number of residents who take the trouble to identify problem applications and make their views known to the Council?

On the basis of past performance, it seems doubtful that many residents would have much confidence in leaving planning decisions entirely in the hands of Council staff.

Admittedly, a Council whose most important action in recent weeks has been the removal of rubbish from Umina Beach and councillors whose main concern is the placement of banners on West St are weak reeds to rely on for anyone concerned about the future direction of the Peninsula.

The mayor still hasn't proceeded beyond her inspiration that the development of the Peninsula requires "thought", and, if it takes two years to prepare a plan for Woy Woy centre, the prospects of a definitive plan for the whole Peninsula must lie in the dim, distant future.

By the time of the next election, it looks as though the only achievement Council will be able to point to is the resurfacing of Ryans Rd, and even that required a hefty injection of political pork-barrelling to bring about.

Still, what else do we have?

Feeble as it is, the Council is our only protection against the sort of vision projected by Mr Wales.

In my view, there should be a more systematic procedure for lodging objections with Council than we have now, a better system of communication from Council about the handling of objections and a reliable process for informing objectors about the results of representations.

This is called democracy.

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