The Relocate Team has great respect for those political parties who are committed to protect Australia’s best agricultural land. We did not support any particular party nor any possible hospital site – we simply asked that the choices of whether to move the hospital and if so where best to move it, be reviewed so as to exclude legally protected lands.
The 2018 public debate is recorded here.
18 December. Formal Objections to suspected illegal work in the protected wetland zone lodged with Dept of Planning and Environment and with Environment & Heritage.
The Relocate Team is concerned that in the absence of an approved EIS or a Development Consent to build a Hospital, work has already commenced to destroy the protected wetland buffer zone on the northern boundary of the proposed Hospital site.
This work is being performed using a power conferred on Government Authorities to construct drainage works for a public infrastructure purpose, on the presumption that the purpose is to serve an existing need. Without a hospital approval, there is of course no existing need. We regard that approach as a dubious reading of the law which then conveniently conceals possible breaches of other laws.
Yesterday we wrote to the compliance sections of both responsible Departments requesting they verify the probity of this conduct and if they cannot, requesting that they issue stop-work notices on the proponents, pending a resolution of the issues it raises.
18 December Objections to the SEPP & EIS have CLOSED.
The Dept of Planning & Environment have closed the objection web-page and are now collating submissions for review & referral if necessary to HI NSW for response to any identified problem areas. Our expectation is that individual submissions will not be exhibited publicly until the collation is complete.
In the meantime you can read the Relocate Team Objection at https://www.dropbox.com/sh/ikgjdyo0vr31hkn/AADH6e5UmFTEcxGoFycAi39ha?dl=0
31st October Stage 1 Concept EIS Released
NSW Dept of Planning & Environment have placed the Stage 1 Concept EIS on exhibition from 1st to 29th November 2018. Details and their standard objection form can be found here. (Click to view.)
The core EIS document itself can be downloaded from this webpage (click to download.)
The SSD legislation is written to make sure the public is restricted to no other formal opportunity but this one to object to any development. You must not waste it.
The Relocate Team will be publishing information on our Facebook page to assist you to make a competent effective objections before the due date. Watch FaceBook, this website and the media in the coming days for advice on how to make sure your feelings & responses are properly heard & recorded.
The Government has announced its record breaking completion time for an EIS with lodgement of their EIS with colleagues at the DoPE. Read more at Project Timeline
Hundreds rally at Kingscliff to protest the loss of farmland and the Government’s going ahead in secrecy concealing the real ultimate impacts of a giant hospital precinct on the community. Click the image to read.
One Tweed Councillor accuses a fellow Councillor of blatant misrepresentation for repeating the Government’s own information on its website. However a second accusation regarding PPP’s is a question that is indeed without documented evidence. In this case. Cr. Cooper’s suspicions rely on five failed prior attempts at privatisation of NSW Hospitals by this government, but there is no present indication at Kingscliff.
Somehow a Minister of the Crown is authorising commencement of work on the biggest project ever attempted in Tweed Shire; with no Development Application, no Environmental Impact Statement; working on private land they don’t own where such work is currently prohibited by law. It beggars belief.
Click the pic to read.
Hundreds protest at Geoff Provest MP’s office. Read the full story.
NSW Dept Planning SEARs issued for Concept Stage 1 asking for examination of issues including many of the serious omissions of the HINSW request, as raised by TSC at their 20th September meeting (see full info below). The Minister for Planning may be less willing to cut corners than the Minister for Health was expecting!
News that negotiations are stalled on a fair price for the site and a Proposed Acquisition Notice has been issued, delaying full site possession by at least 90 days. This means that, despite claims to the contrary, the development remains a prohibited activity, the government has no title to the land, there is no approval to relocate the existing hospital from Tweed Heads to Kingscliff, and there is still no 2018/19 budget allocation for Tweed Regional Hospital from the NSW Parliament. Yet our MP Geoff Provest keeps insisting it’s a “done deal”.
Health Infrastructure NSW say that in the course of preparing SEARs, they have discovered problems in dealing with the environmental damage that Stage 1 works might cause to the sensitive wetland forest in the NE corner of the site. Any such discovery would of course have been obvious to a Year 9 student, but this supposedly underpins a bizarre new argument for performing the environmentally damaging works outside the supposedly mandatory EIS required by legislation. The real motive is more likely the realisation that the DPE’s SEARs will require months to properly prepare in advance of construction approval, yet the Minister and local MP have promised works will commence before the March election. So the Authority has decided to exclude this work from the EIS and seek approval from itself using the provisions of Part 5 of the EP&A Act. One more attempt to avoid full compliance in full disclosure and management of this project’s impacts before work starts. Click here to read their latest letter.
The Tweed Shire Council met today. They resolved to send DPE their official response to the Application for SEARs , which is Health Infrastructure NSW’s request to the Secretary of Dept of Planning & Environment asking her to agree to their suggested scope of an Environmental Impact Statement for Stage 1 of the Hospital. Council saw the request as very inadequate and proposed a far more substantial approach. You can see the impressive full story of what the Council’s in-house planners and the Mayor think ought really to be disclosed to residents BEFORE any approval issues by clicking here and going to Item 36 on page 26. (The DPE issued the SEARs a few days later without acknowledging TSC input.)
NSW Health has just lodged an Application for SEARs with the Department of Planning & Environment. See our process chart. It confirms the Stage 1 will be 450 beds, and provision for ultimate growth to 900 beds. NSW Health are now talking about an ultimate development 20% bigger than the huge 750 bed Gold Coast University Hospital right here in Kingscliff, with no prior district planning whatsoever. Even so, there will be no discussion of ultimate district impact in the EIS accompanying the Development Application because the Stage 1 SEARs application is just for examining environmental impacts of site preparation work, enough necessary to lock the project in permanently, but still not disclosing any of the built hospital effects to the public. Remember our local MP has promised work will start in November, so he somehow knows that irrespective of any findings of any EIS, approval is guaranteed to issue. You can read the rough details of what’s coming at this web page and decide for yourself about the integrity and transparency of this process.
The Tweed Shire Planning Department remains in confusion, issuing a new draft Kingscliff Locality Plan summary sheet showing a new hospital site on State Significant Agricultural Land whilst the master document still says that the the State Significant farmland site will be totally protected from development in perpetuity.
Council’s community consultation to impose the change retrospectively will commence next week.
The Tweed Daily News front page story today is about a wonderful rooftop garden for Tweed Regional Hospital once all the actual farmland is covered with concrete & asphalt.
What the TDN editor failed to mention is that the whole story came from a pro-development lobby group of Murwillumbah farmers and NP members who’ve been trying for years to get their farms opened up for subdivision.
You can read about their real agenda in the Tweed Daily News. (click here).
You can also ponder the weird logic that ignores the fact that if the new hospital was on any other site but this, the community could have farmland AND a rooftop garden.
Our Federal member Justine Elliot, Opposition leader Bill Shorten and Shadow Minister for Rural and Regional Australia Joel Fitzgibbon showing solidarity with Cudgen farmland protection.
NSW Upper House MP’s have been pursuing the Health Minister in Parliament regarding the lack of transparency, flawed logic & and breach of their own policies in the course of site selection . Minister Niall Blair evades a direct answer to local MLC Dawn Walker (click to view video.)
Then ALP Shadow Health Minister Walt Secord raises serious questions of government integrity (click to read). Direct answer again avoided.
STATE GOVERNMENT PLANS TO PURCHASE PRIME AGRICULTURAL LAND FOR TWEED HOSPITAL
Georgia Anderson August 11, 2018
With 100% of the state now in drought, the Kingscliff community is amping up its calls for the government to rethink the proposed Tweed Hospital site.
Despite this, NBN News can reveal the government is planning on purchasing the prime agricultural land within the next month.
Tweed Daily News 8 August 2018 – click to read
Local MP Geoff Provest declares he will definitely ignore the wishes of 10,000 electors from his constituency if they succeed in getting a petition before the NSW Parliament.