Council to withdraw support for Stratford expansion

GLOUCESTER Shire councillors will today vote on a recommendation urging them to withdraw their support for the proposed expansion of Yancoal’s Stratford mine.

Council had given its qualified support to the expansion project subject to several conditions including the removal of the proposed Roseville West Pit, the deletion of embankments and voids and mining hours being contained to between 7am and 10pm.

The service provider was also seeking an annual contribution of nearly $57,000 from Yancoal to maintain the Bucketts Way.

The Department of Planning has completed its preliminary assessment of the proposal and invited comment on the draft development consent.

Council says virtually everything included in its submission to the department had been ignored.

“(Our) review of the (assessment and draft development consent) has revealed a general lack of consideration of council’s submission,” Environment and Planning manager Graham Gardner wrote in a report to council.

“In particular, the recommendation of the deletion of the proposed Roseville West Pit and the embankments and voids has not occurred.

“Issues relating to noise, health and traffic remain, in council’s opinion, unresolved.”

Mr Gardner said, under the proposed consent conditions, Yancoal would only have to pay an annual contribution of $3525 for upkeep of the Bucketts Way.

“Council was keen to ensure a reasonable balance between the economic benefits of the mine and the need to respect the amenity of people living in close proximity to this activity,” Mr Gardner wrote.

Yancoal’s application has been referred to the Planning Assessment Commission.

A public hearing on the proposal is expected to be held early in the New Year.

“This means there will be no merit appeal rights in regard to the application,” Mr Gardner said.

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