Mayor questions study costs

WHILE not quite saying it’s money down the drain, Byron Mayor Cr Jan Barham has raised major concerns about $120,000 spent on a Belongil Creek flood study.

At last week’s council meeting, Cr Barham said the study, prepared by consultants SMEC Australia Pty Ltd, contained inaccuracies and inconsistencies which she didn’t think she would find in a document that cost that amount of money.

She said the report was lacking information on ‘very basic issues’ related to flood levels, sea level rise, storm surges and the opening of the Belongil Creek mouth.

She challenged anyone to read the report and ‘be properly informed’.

Cr Barham said the report didn’t properly inform councillors to allow them to make a responsible decision on the issue which the council had to get ‘right’.

Cr Basil Cameron said the study was a ‘very technical document’ which was hard to understand.

He said there were issues that needed to be clarified.

On the motion of Cr Barham, the council voted to defer putting the flood study on public exhibition for comment while clarification was sought on sea level rise and storm surge scenarios used in the study.

Additional information also will be sought on climate change and council resolutions in relation to climate change, along with information on licence requirements for opening the creek mouth.

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