By BELINDA SCOTT
DOGS and cats will be the focus of tonight's Coffs Harbour City Council meeting, which is expected to attract a packed public gallery.
An application to build a new cattery and dog boarding kennels in Gaudrons Road has attracted 169 submissions, all objecting to the application.
Gaudrons Road residents have waged a determined campaign to move the proposal away from what they saw is a too-small site, too close to neighbours in a quiet and beautiful rural residential area.
The exasperated developer says he has spent three years and more than $80,000 trying to find a site for his project and comply with all the rules imposed on him.
At least one representative of the objectors is expected to address councillors, as will the developer Paul Bourne, who operates Pettina Park boarding kennels and cattery at Moonee with his wife Leah.
Pettina Park is operating in older buildings and its leased site is slated for residential development.
Mr Bourne, who has been trying to gain approval for a much larger new pet boarding establishment for several years at several different locations, said he would outline the full history of his attempts to gain approval for his project tomorrow, so that everyone would have a full picture of what has been and is involved.
The development application was advertised for public comment for two separate periods, attracting 105 submissions in early 2007 and 64 when re-advertised with further information late in 2007 and early 2008.
Council wrote to the Bournes in May 2007 advising that their original proposal could not be supported because of concerns with noise, on-site waste disposal, odour, construction and other issues.
It was re-advertised after more information was received. Coffs Harbour City Council's Land Use Health and Development Department has recommended that councillors ask Mr Bourne to defer consideration of his development application until the Rural Residential Strategy is completed.
They have also recommended that his he be requested to provide further information on on-site wastewater treatment, odour treatment and assessment and noise assessment.