ROB Pollock’s comments on the front page of today’s paper are sure to stir up some angry responses.
Cr Pollock has slammed “self-interested residents” for blocking two major Eurobodalla developments and sending the “wrong signal” about the shire to major investors.
The Eurobodalla Shire councillor and chairman of Regional Development Australia’s Far South Coast branch also took aim at some of the overlays from state and federal legislation, which cripple attempts to develop in the shire.
While not everyone will agree with Cr Pollock, his comments should at least spark some much-needed debate.
Yes, we love our shire being the Nature Coast and we need to protect the very environment that drew us here in the first place but we also need to send a very clear message to developers that clean, sustainable industry is welcome here.
That’s obviously not what they are hearing.
Think, for just a moment, of the much-heralded developments that haven’t proceeded here - the aged care, lifestyle development at Moruya, the hotel development at Catalina Country Club, the Grand Mercure at Batehaven, the spine road, the Country Comfort site, the marina redevelopment, the Moruya airport - the list goes on and on.
Even the gateway site on the way into Batemans Bay remains an unsightly mess and now we have the prospect of the former Batemans Bay Bowling Club standing vacant.
Something has to give.
Even if you don’t agree with Cr Pollock’s views, don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater.
We need to look at ways of stimulating the local economy and the discussion has to start now.