Res­i­dents seek­ing full waste fight

Franklin County News - - News - By SALLY HINE

Otaua res­i­dents are still un­sure of the Franklin District Coun­cil’s in­ten­tions in the loom­ing En­vi­ron­ment Court hear­ing for the ap­peal of the re­lo­ca­tion of a waste oil plant to the vil­lage.

A pub­lic meet­ing was held in Otaua on Wed­nes­day to dis­cuss what steps can be taken for the court hear­ing of the ap­peal from WPC to de­velop on the site of the old Otaua Tav­ern.

The ap­peal was made by WPC af­ter FDC ap­pointed an in­de­pen­dent com­mis­sioner who ad­vised against the de­vel­op­ment.

While FDC has de­cided to de­fend the de­ci­sion against WPC in the En­vi­ron­ment Court, Otaua res­i­dent Bill Lee said the com­mu­nity wants to know how far they will fight it.

‘‘We want the coun­cil to do it and do it prop­erly but we are not sure of their in­ten­tions.

‘‘We don’t know if they are pre­pared to me­di­ate or not but if they are we want to be ready to go fur­ther if we need to,’’ he said.

Mr Lee said he and other res­i­dents are not will­ing to me­di­ate on the is­sue so if coun­cil do, it will still end up go­ing to court.

In the case be­fore the En­v­i­ron- ment Court, WPC in­tends on call­ing on com­pre­hen­sive ex­pert ev­i­dence and Mr Lee said they want FDC to have ev­i­dence to con­test this.

‘‘We need to know what coun­cil have done or are go­ing to do be­cause if they don’t pro­vide ev­i­dence we want to do it.’’

At the pu­bic meet­ing of around 40 res­i­dents, a group was formed to raise funds for costs.

FDC’s gen­eral man­ager of en­vi­ron­men­tal ser­vices, James Jef­fer­son said the coun­cil is in­tend­ing to de­fend the de­ci­sion to the En­vi­ron­ment Court, but did not com­ment fur­ther. ‘‘As we are a re­spon­dent be­fore the En­vi­ron­ment Court in this mat­ter, it is in­ap­pro­pri­ate for Franklin District Coun­cil to com­ment fur­ther at this time,’’ he said.

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