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sydney alternative media - non-profit community independent trustworthy
Sunday, 1 June 2008
Wollemi world heritage boundary still at risk from sand miner & Hawkesbury Council
Mood:  sharp
Topic: ecology

Sent: Monday, April 21, 2008 10:27 AM
Subject: For Sally, media - Iemma office re Hawkesbury Council planning farce, pic fac opportunity for you, ALP land use bouquet?

Sally, etc
Herein is a small to moderate land use political opportunity for the State Govt/Sartor/Iemma given how badly you are bleeding this last several weeks in the big media.
I write as a solicitor, but also community media practitioner 15 years, editor of www.sydneyalternativemedia.com/blog with at present 23,000 readers per month on an upward trend.
Here is a suggestion from a position 'of Swiss neutrality' to you in the ALP state machine to do something "good" no tricks, no hidden agendas, no party politics - but time will run out as Hawkesbury Council is due to decide this by Tuesday week if memory serves around April 29 2008.
If you call Kirsty Ruddock at Env Defenders Office she can vouch for what I am writing about - tel 9262 6989
Basically there is this huge hole in breach of planning approval and conditions since at least 1996, now damaging the Wollemi World Heritage Tinda Creek catchment on the Singleton Rd.
Hawkesbury Council, Liberal Party dominated, are due to ratify a lapsed/breached sandmining approval soon for another 1.3 million tonne sand extraction that even your own EPA expert says will ruin the water supply to the park in this area. The chief planner Matt Owens is previously from Port Macquarie which has been sacked and you can see the fingerprints in Hawkesbury now.
Everyone knows this sand extraction/lack of rehabilitation, is the wrong thing to do but Tom Bruce (Birdon Contracting Pty Ltd) a big donor to the Liberal Party there will get his s.96 ( EP&A Act) modification to keep going unless it's challenged in the Land & Env Court at real trouble or expense, or the State Govt calls it in and fixes it. It's a great picture opportunity too. Look at the hole next to world heritage area for God sake.
It won't affect sand supplies to Sydney generally and owner Tom Bruce is desperate to get out of the business and sell on anyway.
The political opportunity for Sartor, Iemma etc to look good on this land use decision is precious real politik opportunity, even if it's a consolation prize in your current real politik travails.
Will you get Sartor to call it in? You can get a big PR  bouquet if you take up this opportunity. A win win. It won't solve all your other "perception" problems but it will stop the damage being a one way street a bit.
Think about it, but don't delay too much.
Yours truly
Tom McLoughlin, editor, solicitor
tel. 0410 558838, 02-9558 9551
Attach - extensive briefing note here used in meeting with: Mayor Bart Bassett, General Manager Peter Jackson and chief planner Matt Owens (formerly of Port Macquarie Council before it was sacked)
Tuesday, 18 March 2008
Sandmine in Hawkesbury Council boundary operating with lapsed consent for 10 years?
Mood:  incredulous
Topic: ecology

Picture: Neighbours site visit 14 March 2007 with sandminer Tom Bruce 3rd from Left

Posted by editor at 10:45 AM NZT

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