Project gets green light
AT TIMES it was tedious, at times it was torturous, at times the decision hung in the balance.
And that was just yesterday’s marathon meeting of the Fraser Coast Regional Council.
A long-running proposal by Maryborough businessman Micky Souvlis to develop a shopping complex at the Alice Street site of IGA got the go-ahead yesterday morning but only after its 70-plus conditions went under the council microscope once more.
In a split vote, councillors David Dalgleish, Gerard O’Connell, Anne Nioa, Les MucKan, Barbara Hovard and Linda Harris voted in favour of an extremely-amended proposal, with Mayor Mick Kruger, deputy mayor Belinda McNeven and councillors Sue Brooks and Debbie Hawes voting against.
Ms McNeven rose to her feet immediately after the motion had been passed to say she had voted against because she didn’t believe the amended conditions were appropriate as they contradicted council policy in some cases.
The amendment of the conditions was painstakingly seen to by Mr Dalgleish who took the contents of a consultant’s report received by councillors the night before the meeting and applied them to the conditions recommended by the council officer.
At a previous meeting last month the councillors had overturned the officer’s recommendation, preferring the advice offered by consultants Wolter Consulting and it was Wolter’s last minute report – not even submitted to the CEO – that laid the foundations for a final decision yesterday.
After his first amendment attempt was knocked back because the extent of the proposed changes was deemed contrary to the original motion, Mr Dalgleish had “another go”.
His second fine-tooth-comb effort did not cross the line. Among the amendments was a key change to the terms of hours of operations, which will allow individual tenants like Pizza Hut and Civic Video to apply individually to the council for later opening hours at the weekend.
The development application was lodged with Maryborough City Council in March 2007. Before yesterday’s meeting Mr Souvlis blamed amalgamation for the problems his multi-million-dollar application had encountered in the intervening time.