Mark Coure, Member for Oatley, has called on Georges River Council to extend the public exhibition period for its draft Local Environmental Plan (LEP).
Mr Coure joined the community in expressing his opposition for the Plan, claiming residents have been ‘blindsided’ by the LEP’s alterations to land zoning, dwelling sizes, building heights, heritage listings, landscaping and foreshore protection.
According to Mr Coure, his office has been inundated with concerned community members, who express their discontent over a range of issues relating to the LEP.
These concerns include: the clearing of the beloved natural landscape, increased traffic and parking issues, the effect on local education infrastructure and loss of privacy.
Mr Coure also labelled Council’s proposed May 15 closure of the public exhibition period as ‘‘undemocratic’’.
“Our community is tight-knit. We rely on local resident groups and societies to meet and discuss changes. Many older residents may not have access to online petitions and prefer paper surveys.”
“The importance of word of mouth in our democracy is not to be underestimated.”
“Currently, these traditional methods are not possible, which excludes a significant portion of our community from the consultation process.”
Mr Coure said, in order to combat this, he and his staff have been letterboxing ‘Community Surveys’ to affected areas of the community.
However, Mr Coure acknowledged that the only solution is the delay of the public exhibition period until post-COVID-19.
Mr Coure wrote to Georges River Council’s General Manager, Ms Gail Connolly, requesting that the public exhibition period for Council’s draft Local Environmental Plan be extended until social distancing laws are relaxed in NSW.
Mr Coure has pledged to keep the community updated on the progress of his request.