Response from Cr de Wit
Several residents have received a reply [finally] from Councillor Margaret de Wit in response to emails sent to her following the Westside News article. The details of her response is given below:
Under the State Integrated Planning Act (recently replaced by the Sustainability Act) Councils are legally required to accept any development application which is lodged. This does not mean that the application will necessarily be approved. An application such as this one will undergo very lengthy and detailed scrutiny by a team of Council town planners, engineers and ecologists who will determine whether or not the application can be approved.
As this application does not meet the criteria in the CityPlan 2000 it is classified as Impact Assessable – Generally Inappropriate. This means that after a certain amount of assessment the developer will be able to erect Public Notification signs on the site to advise the public that submissions can be lodged. It also means that they will have to work very hard to prove to the Council that the rezoning of the land and consequent development should go ahead.
It is critically important that submissions are lodged during the period advised on the signs to ensure they are fully assessed by the Council and to provide an avenue to the Planning and Environment Court if the application were to be approved. Any previous correspondence to myself or anyone in Council about the application is not a valid submission in this process.
After the submission period has closed the Council’s Development Assessment Team will add the public responses to the assessment process and a decision will eventually be made. During the assessment process my opinion will be sought and it is likely that guidance will be sought from the Civic Cabinet (the prime decision-making body of Council made up of the Lord Mayor and Chairmen of Committees).
Like you my preference would be to see the golf course continue. With the Moggill Country Club (a former privately owned golf course and club) now an overgrown paddock, I have seen what can happen and I would hate to see that happen in Karana Downs. That does not mean I support the development of the course. What I can advise at this stage is that I will not support the density in the current application.
I hope this clarifies the town planning process for you. From some of the correspondence I have been receiving it seems some residents think the process can be stopped – under the Act as I explained above – that cannot happen. The other point I would make is that I do not make the decision.
I trust this information is of assistance and I look forward to seeing you on the 17th.
Margaret de Wit
Councillor for Pullenvale Ward