BYPASS BATTLE: Councillor Keith Rhoades fears the beautiful backdrop of Coffs Harbour will be permanently scarred by the proposed cuttings.
BYPASS BATTLE: Councillor Keith Rhoades fears the beautiful backdrop of Coffs Harbour will be permanently scarred by the proposed cuttings. Trevor Veale

Councillor calls for united campaign against cuttings

COUNCILLOR Keith Rhoades will move a motion at this week's meeting urging fellow councillors to unite in opposition to the current bypass plan.

He wants to send a message to the NSW Government that council and the community 'will not accept the proposed cuttings and demand that the original tunnels, as proposed, be reinstated'.

He fears that the beautiful backdrop of Coffs Harbour will be permanently scarred by the proposed cuttings and they will result in an economic downturn to the tourism industry.

The motion to be raised on Thursday evening also includes a clause calling on council to commence a campaign on behalf of the community to inform the wider community of NSW of the plans for the preferred bypass and its effects.

Cr Rhoades will also request that council funds be allocated to launch this campaign and that a sub committee be formed as a matter of urgency to make it happen.

"Council needs to harness the support of those in NSW who visit our city on a yearly basis for holidays and inform them of the devastation this proposed concept plan will have," he said.

Some refuse to call the current plan a bypass, instead labelling it a ring road or CBD bypass at best. In 2004 Cr Rhoades fought against the current coastal route, arguing it should go further to the west.

"But the government is not going to change its position on the route. What we have to do is ensure that we get the best, with capitals B E S T, outcome we can.

"The government has also got to realise that there are an enormous amount of people opposed to the current concept plan and the government is quite aware there is an election coming up.

"If the Coalition Government is determined to dump this ridiculous proposal on us then they've got to be prepared for the community to reject their candidates at the upcoming State and Fed election. It's their call."



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