Call for new recycling depot

A NEW materials recycling facility (MRF) has been proposed for Armidale Rd, Elland.

If approved, the facility would replace Clarence Valley Council’s two existing MRFs in Grafton and Maclean.

The proposed development is an existing landfill site on Armidale Rd, South Grafton.

The council-owned facility would consist of a large shed to house a consolidated MRF built to take bulk recyclable material, such as from kerb-side pick-ups.

The proposed facility would initially process 6000 tonnes per annum, increasing to about 12,000 tonnes during the life of this facility.

A council report states that the new facility was needed to accommodate the increased Clarence Valley population expected in coming years.

The report said the council’s existing facilities were unable to cope with current and future demands.

The MRF went before the ordinary meeting of council in Maclean this month where councillors heard a deputation from Jenene Heath, whose house is near the proposed facility.

Ms Heath expressed concerns about the MRF having a negative impact on her and her family, both now and into the future.

“How would you like to have a facility of this type next to your place of residence?” she asked councillors.

Ms Heath said she also believed the facility may have a negative impact on people visiting the nearby lawn cemetery.

In their report, council staff said they believed they had addressed concerns expressed about the facility, including its set-back from the road; aesthetics; noise problems; and the potential for contaminated run-off.

After considering the council officer’s report, and listening to Ms Heath’s deputation, all the councillors appeared keen to explore possible alternatives.

Cr Karen Toms put forward a motion that the matter be deferred to allow councillors to inspect the proposed site.

The motion also called for further comment by council staff in a report exploring possible alternate sites for the MRF on the same block of land.

In a unanimous decision, all eight councillors present at the meeting voted for the motion.

Cr Pat Comben was unable to attend the meeting because he was in Coffs Harbour, cut off by flood waters.

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