Worker housing plan a small part of the bigger picture
A PLANNING proposal to allow temporary worker accommodation in an industrial park is proceeding at the same time as the development application for the project is on display.
The council's director environment planning and community Des Schroder noted this when the proposal to establish temporary accommodation in the Yamba Industrial Park was debated by council committee on Tuesday.
The DA for the same proposal is on display at the Clarence Valley Council chambers in Grafton and Maclean until November 14.
Cr Debrah Novak asked Mr Schroder if local police had been consulted about the prospect of 128 men coming to live in such a small area.
Mr Schroder said there had been plenty of consultation, but police had not been considered.
"In the next few years there's going to be an extra 2500 highway workers in the region and 1000 people working on the jail," he said.
"In the context of the highway this is small."
Cr Novak asked if the council had any plans in place if "things went pear-shaped".
"I had a conversation with a police officer who said they would have appreciated being included in the conversation," Cr Novak said.
Mr Schroder said what the committee was considering was a planning proposal to ensure the development has a four-year lifespan.
"The DA has been lodged and is out for consultation," he said.
Cr Andrew Baker said he had changed his mind about the proposal and was happy to support it.
"Initially I thought the economic and social aspect had not been addressed and the opportunity to spread the workforce accommodation throughout the community was being missed," he said.
"But the social impact has dropped away and this applicant has made a great case.
"I think the police would also appreciate having all these people in a smaller, more manageable area."