Reader urges Coffs Coast locals considering leasing out their properties to holidaymakers to be mindful of council zoning restrictions.
Reader urges Coffs Coast locals considering leasing out their properties to holidaymakers to be mindful of council zoning restrictions. Trevor Veale

Downside of Coffs Coast's rising holiday rentals

WITH much interest, I read your articles regarding the upsurge of Airbnb activities on the Coffs Coast.

The articles were well written but only mentioned some positives for the 'property owner' (some extra income) and for the 'tenant' (cheaper accommodation).

No doubt, after reading your articles, some property owners would have been intrigued and encouraged to do some short term letting. 

Your articles failed to mention Coffs Harbour City Council's zoning regulations prohibit 'short term letting' activities (i.e. holiday letting, Airbnb etc) in all residential areas other than those zoned as R1.

Review of the CHCC zoning maps show R1 areas, essentially, located in much of Park Beach, lower parts of the Jetty, a little bit of beachside Sawtell and Woolgoolga and where the northern beaches' resorts are located. 

Any form of short term letting (less than three month lease/rental) in non-R1 zoning areas is unlawful.

At our Korora Bay townhouse complex, our strata managers discovered that the two 'holiday let' townhouses are operating illegally.

Their 'out of town' investor owners and their agents ignored our strata managers' notice to cease holiday letting.

CHCC are presently pursuing these owners and it is hoped that they will cease short term letting.

These townhouses are let whole and provide a very healthy income for the owners (more than double that of normal rental) and the agency advertise these properties on their website and also Airbnb as 'hosts').

There are several negatives associated with the activities of 'short term letting', as follows:

  • Loss of rightful zoning amenity for other complex residents and neighbours.
  • Reduction of property values in buildings that have short term letting activities.
  • Insurance companies consider short term letting to be a 'commercial risk' requiring disclosure (usually not disclosed) and higher premiums (usually not paid).
  • Other owners (and those short term letting owners) put at financial risk due to non disclosure.
  • Poor waste management by holiday lets resulting in unsightly and unhygienic exposure to others.
  • Unfair competition to the Coffs Coast's legitimate resort and short term letting industry.
  • Out of town investors are attracted by this illegal but lucrative opportunity to make top returns.

Living next door to an unlawful, 'pet friendly' (also not allowed) expensive holiday lets isn't much fun as many of the guests have little respect for other residents.

It is also very frustrating when the holiday let owners and their agents refuse to co-operate with the strata managers and the other owners.

I would welcome your future articles about holiday letting/Airbnb and suchlike to be more balanced.

Such unlawful activities are on the increase along the Coffs Coast and CHCC zoning regulations are being ignored.

The vast majority of Coffs Coast residents and legitimate holiday accommodation operators have nothing to gain from short term letting, only much to loose.

Your articles, only mentioning the benefits to a few, are not representative of the issue and not beneficial to the Coffs Coast.

John Christie

Korora

The Australia Day fun run at Park Beach.
The Australia Day fun run at Park Beach. Trevor Veale

Coffs shares the spirit of Australia Day

THUMBS Up to a beaut Australia Day 2018.

Went down to Park Beach, everyone was having a great time - kids, teenagers, adults, man's best friends - all enjoying the wonderfulness of living in Aussieland.

We were a mixture of different nationalities united together soaking in the moment and loving where we were at. This is Australia at it's best.

Sharai Hohner

The Big Windmill prior to its recent facelift.
The Big Windmill prior to its recent facelift. Emily Burley

History behind the big windmill

WHAT a supercilious remark about the Windmill by Paul Hemphill (Advocate, January 27).

It was built by two Dutchmen, who wanted to commemorate their homeland of the Netherlands in their new country.

Frank deKeever died when falling from a beam during building construction and it was finished by Hans Eecen.  

Both families paid for the work.   

In 1974, I took my sister-in-law from Holland down to the intersection of the highway with Thompsons Road and pointed to the two lane road.  

I said this was the highway from Sydney to Brisbane. She replied that I must be joking.

Patricia Degens

A three year lease has been advertised for Coffs Harbour's former Deep Sea Fishing Club site, while council considers an EOI process for longer term uses.
A three year lease has been advertised for Coffs Harbour's former Deep Sea Fishing Club site, while council considers an EOI process for longer term uses. Trevor Veale

Beacon of hope for dormant Coffs club site

COFFS Harbour is known world wide for the big banana but now guess our new title the big lemon, I'm refering to the derelict deep sea fishing club.

Can you believe that this magnificent site has been unoccupied for over two years because of the three year lease stipulated by Coffs Harbour Council.

This could be made into Coffs Harbour's own opera house, same magnificent outlook and potential is mind blowing, specially for entertainment and food.

Why not erect the original lantern from the South Solitary Island lighthouse, this was donated to the Coffs Harbour Council back in 1975 and is now housed and hidden in the old museum under heavy black curtains.

It should be seen by everybody in all its glory as a beautiful and unique exhibit and this would be the perfect spot.

It's not an impossible idea, come on council be realistic and put Coffs on the map

P.Taylor  

A reader's claims about entry fees rising at Coffs Harbour's town pool are inaccurate according to the pool's management.
A reader's claims about entry fees rising at Coffs Harbour's town pool are inaccurate according to the pool's management. Rob Wright

Correcting inaccuracies on fees at the town pool

WE would like to respond to some inaccuracies raised in Thumbs Up Thumbs Down.

The Coffs Harbour Olympic pool is community-owned and all employees are local residents.

Our general admission prices have not risen from last season, in fact we now offer two cheaper options that being our additional child rate for $3 and our new senior rate at $3.50 previously charged at $4.50.

Our multi visit passes have also remained at the same price the only difference being that we now offer a 30-visit option, which reduces the admission cost further.

Our annual memberships have all been reduced, including our adult rate receiving a reduction of $120 for a pass.

Our swimming lessons have gone from $160 per term to $135 per term.

Additionally, we also offer our schools within the community a bulk entry rate of $3.50 as opposed to the previous $4.50.

Our adult squad causal rate has remained the same however, we do recognise that our adult squad multi visit passes have increased by a modest $1 per session.

It's disappointing this misinformation of across the board price increases is now out there in the general community.

Richard, Coffs Harbour Olympic Pool

 

Refugees on board the MV Tampa in 2001. Picture: ABC
Refugees on board the MV Tampa in 2001. Picture: ABC

Term 'illegal' doesn't apply to refugees

IN reply to the letter from Leigh Harvey Coffs Harbour.

Seeking refuge is a legal right despite many in government and the media stating it's illegal.

The "illegals" are people who overstay their tourist and other visas of which there are many but we don't hear about them.

In many countries people flee for their lives, there are no queues, they take whatever opportunities they have to keep their loved ones safe and hope to find safe places to live.

Most of us in Australia will never know the terror, fear, heartbreak, grief and loss that people seeking refuge have to endure.

As the daughter of a holocaust survivor my family endured all these terrors but went on to make good lives for their children and their communities.

My father started the first credit union in Australia.

Many in my family became successful in business, teaching and community services.

Better to be critical of the corporations and monopolies who are are drain on our society, who pay little or no tax and who force the closure of small businesses.

They are a drain on our society.

Oh and a little kindness, generosity of spirit and getting to know people and hear their stories can open up a world of compassion, understanding and maybe even friendship.

Dianne Jacobus, Bellingen

Readers debate Australia's immigration policy and the push to stop the boats.
Readers debate Australia's immigration policy and the push to stop the boats. ABIR ABDULLAH

Stopping the people smuggling boats saves lives

IN A recent letter Dr. Michael Blockey calls the Australian Nation a Rogue State, comparing us with Iran and North Korea. What an insult.

He condemns our border protection for intercepting refugee boats on the high seas and imprisoning refugees for years on Manus and Nauru.

By intercepting the boats and sending them back, we avoid imprisoning the refugees.

In Blockey's last letter (Saturday, January 20 he condemns the Navy for intercepting Tamils fleeing from Sri Lanka.

The conflict in Sri Lanka has been resolved many years ago and this could only be economic refugees.

Europe spends billions of euros to stop the boats without success.

Last year alone about 4,000 refugees drowned and the lovely Mediterranean is now called "The Sea of Death".

I would like to ask Dr. Blockey a question:

Do you want to see more and more innocent people senselessly drown who are sent by people smugglers in unseaworthy boats?

It is time for sober-minded thinking about the refugee crises instead of emotion-driven sentiment.

Peter Zacharius

Coffs Harbour 

Reader says a scheme to introduce registration for bicycles is not feasible.
Reader says a scheme to introduce registration for bicycles is not feasible.

Insurance scheme and rego for bikes not viable

MARK Linney's simple solution to the dangers posed by 'poor drivers' in the (Advocate, Letters to the Editor on January 21) may sound fine at first glance.

I assume he is talking about increasing compulsory third party injury insurance.

As I understand it, several participating insurers already have access to infringement information and penalise drivers with infringement points with higher premiums.

I wonder however that raising the cost of insurance will not necessarily stop many 'bad drivers' from obtaining insurance and if sufficiently effective, the depleted uptake of insurance may mean his own premiums may rise, not to mention the increase risk of drivers taking to the road uninsured.

He also needs to remember that plenty of 'good drivers' with unblemished driving records still have tragic accidents.

As transport accident experts have been saying for years, the best solution to avoiding traffic accidents is technology - autonomous vehicles are inevitable.

His other oft repeated suggestion that cyclists should be registered and insured to help pay for infrastructure is probably not viable economically, when you consider the logistics of initiating, maintaining and enforcing such a scheme.

Neither would it be politically viable given the widely held view that we should be encouraging more cycling for both a cleaner urban environment and better public health, rather than placing financial and regulatory imposts in the way.

The great majority of adult cyclists also own and pay for vehicle registration and insurance, not to mention being tax and ratepayers financially supporting urban infrastructure.

Maybe Mr Linney and others may be able to accept that when a cyclist leaves their car at home and opts for a cleaner method of conveyance they are already making a worthwhile contribution.

And who knows with the coming of autonomous vehicles, maybe the modern bicycle may yet become the last frontier of self-controlled transport.

Then that will be another good reason to ride a bike.

Dave Wood

Reader calls on mobile scooter owners to be mindful of their pets over summer.
Reader calls on mobile scooter owners to be mindful of their pets over summer.

Scooter owners show compassion to your pets

IT distresses me of late in particular to see disabled mobility scooter owners who are not being responsible with their dogs.

They walk them at a terrible pace walk seriously hot paths and roads and as a consequence their pads are bound to be burnt and heat distressed.

Meanwhile, these owners have made themselves comfortable for the outing and well covered.

I wish they would do the right thing and leave their dogs at home through the rest of summer.

This issue is a duty of care otherwise the RSPCA should prosecute.

Penny Werner

 

Jordan Esplanade.
Jordan Esplanade. Flickr

Private development talk along Jordan Esplanade

I HAVE just seen a development application for a six unit building on Jordan Esplanade.

I have lived in Coffs Harbour for 25 years and on many occasions the residents of Coffs have been asked their opinion on development east of the rail line and on every occasion we have been against building dwellings in that area.

I have been unable to find anything on line regarding this application but I plead with the council not to allow this to go ahead.

Vicki Ware

Reader calls on dog owners to be mindful of their barking pets.
Reader calls on dog owners to be mindful of their barking pets. Rob Williams

Pet ownership has gone to the dogs

COULD someone please tell me why some people think it is ok that their dogs barking is ok with their neighbours?

When people get a dog, do they ever think of that, of course not.

I cannot remember ever being asked by a neighbour if I mind if they get a dog and listening to barking at any time of the day or night.

Perhaps they do not have the ability to think.

This is exaggerated by people having dogs in small yards, ignoring them and not exercising them.

Would they like it if one of their neighbours decided to make all sorts of irritating noises at any time of the day and night?

I suspect not, I'm talking to you, non-thinking dog owner.

Before anyone says anything, I grew up with pet dogs, so know they are a bad idea, mess, expense, noise etc.

Unless your place is a farm, need a seeing eye dog etc, then it makes no sense to have one, and only annoys neighbours.

It is also unfair on the dog.

They are pack animals and need constant attention and exercise.

Again, non-thinking dog owner obviously cannot understand this.

Yes, I've heard the term "mans best friend".

What nonsense, you feed them and keep them cooped up, what do you expect.

Following on from that, some people's kids are no better, completely out of control.

They are your little treasures, not other peoples little treasures.

Obviously a lot of non-thinkers these days.

Peter Tyler



Man arrested over indecent acts at beaches

Man arrested over indecent acts at beaches

Police have arrested a 38-year-old man in Coffs Harbour.

HEALTH WARNING: Localised outbreak of deadly disease

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