November 25, 2002
Noise: Letter from Ewingsdale PA to BSC General Manager
Here's a letter from Rikki at the Ewingsdale PA to the
Byron Shire Council General Manager, requesting a Pulic meeting over the issue.
Also points out some facts about Environmental Impact Assesments the RTA should
have done before allowing B-Doubles onto the highway.
25 November, 2002.
The General Manager
Byron Shire Council
PO Box 219
RE: Brunswick to Yelgun Highway Upgrade – Request for a Public Meeting
As the elected representative of the Ewingsdale community, I am writing to you to state that it is our community’s demand that a public meeting be held by Council so that residents can voice their concerns about the devastating impact increased noise levels, emanating from the Pacific Highway, are having on our community.
This meeting is necessary to allow discussion before December 6, which is the deadline for members of the public to make submissions in response to the RTA’s Environmental Impact Assessment on the modified Brunswick to Yelgun Upgrade. Should Council fail in its duty to call such a meeting, we will hold Council directly responsible for further harms arising from the noise pollution, and negligent in their duty to conduct due process with such matters on behalf of our community.
State Government legislation “Route Assessment Guidelines for B-Doubles and Road Transport” February 2000 states that an impact statement is necessary before gazettal of the Pacific Highway for use by B-Double transport. (See Sec 5.2 Route Assessment and Consultation – Copies of Assessment Criteria). The Act states that safety, technical, economic and environmental issues, along with any community concerns, should be addressed in that assessment.
It is imperative that Council immediately demand of the RTA copies of the supposed impact statement, and that such statement be forwarded to our organization as a matter of priority so that it may be presented at the public meeting. Further, it is essential that a member of the RTA be present at such meeting to fully explain why by B-Doubles have been allowed onto the highway without community consultation.
Should Council be unable or unwilling to convene such a meeting before the December 6 deadline, then Council must request that the RTA defer the deadline for the public submissions until after such matters have been fully and public discussed.
The RTA’s Environmental Impact Assessment uses data gathered for noise level modeling collected from 17 June to 27 June 2002, the quietest time of the year for tourist traffic and two months before opening of the Yelgun to Chinderah Freeway and before the arrival of B-Doubles on the highway. Clearly, this model is inadequate both in its timing, the model used and its application.
As our community’s paid and elected local government representatives, we request that Council demand of the RTA the independent collection of new data (to be made public), so that these exponential increases in truck traffic can be taken into account. Clearly this new data needs to be included in the Environmental Impact Assessment. Unless this happens, both the RTA and Council will be negligent in their duty of care, due process and the government requirement for full and open disclosure of all public material.
Please advise at your earliest opportunities what steps will be taken to action these requests.
Ewingsdale Progess Association and Hall Committee Inc.,
Posted at November 25, 2002 12:00 AM
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