Planning verdicts before the courts

RATEPAYERS are picking up a huge tab to pay the legal costs of appeals against Rockhampton Regional Council's planning decisions.

High-profile cases currently entangled in the courts include actions protesting the decision to stop the Busby Group operating from a compound in Port Curtis and the controversial approval of Milbi's application to expand.

Developer Dennis Fry is embroiled in a lengthy mediation over his proposal to build 49 affordable homes on land at Parkhurst and Peter and Amanda McCasker have appealed against the council's refusal of a Kanga Bins application to establish a metals recycling centre in Thozet Road, North Rockhampton.

A report to council this week detailed nine appeals lodged with the Planning and Environment Court.

But the McCaskers, at least, might be offered a compromise solution that will avoid the need for a costly court case.

Cr Glenda Mather received unanimous backing from her colleagues this week for her request for a report into the possibility of offering Kanga Bins the chance to operate a recycling service at the Lakes Creek landfill.

The suggestion received a positive reception from Mr McCasker who said he was happy to negotiate.

“If we were able to run the business as we saw fit, I am open to any suggestion that's going to allow us to recycle,” Mr McCasker said yesterday.

“The important thing for us is that we don't simply want to relinquish control of our recycling centre to the council.

“It could be a permanent solution if the council is serious about it and would agree to conditions allowing us control.

“I don't want to end up as a council worker.”

Meanwhile, the McCaskers intend to keep the pressure up with a petition aimed at getting the council to reverse its decision.

The petition is available to view and sign at a number of business premises in the Lakes Creek/Thozet Road area in Rockhampton.

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