Zoning a state issue

THE zoning of the coastal strip of Crown land between Flat Rock and Lennox Head in Ballina Shire Council’s draft Local Environment Plan is a State Government issue, according to general manager Paul Hickey.

Mr Hickey was responding to calls last week by the State Member for Ballina, Don Page, and Ed Standfield from the North East Surfers’ Alliance to have the land zoned E2 in the draft LEP changed to E1, which is for national parks or nature reserves. Under the E2 zoning, some development is allowed, with the consent of council.

But Mr Hickey said the E1 zoning, under the NSW State Government LEP template, can only be applied to land that is reserved as a national park or a nature reserve under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974. “The land being referred to, located in the corridor between the Coast Road and the coastline north of Flat Rock, is not reserved under that Act,” he said.

“Zone E2, being the next highest environmental zoning under the new draft plan template, and being an environmental conservation zone, has been applied by council to the area in question in recognition of its ecological, cultural and aesthetic values.

“Therefore we have applied the highest environmental zone allowed under the State Government LEP template to our draft LEP, which is the best outcome we could achieve at this point in time.”

The Ballina Environment Society has organised a public meeting to discuss the draft LEP on May 5 from 6pm in the Richmond Room, behind Ballina library.

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