Mayor tells GM to fix up the tip smell

FIX it, and fix it now!

Those are the stern instructions from Coffs Harbour mayor, Cr Keith Rhoades, to his general manager, Stephen Sawtell, over the horrendous smells coming from the Englands Road waste depot.

"Last Sunday morning again . . . the stench out there was unacceptable," Cr Rhoades told Thursday's council meeting.

"You don't have to wind the windows down in your car. You get it (the smell)."

Cr Rhoades said he could not accept it would take another two years before the problems were fixed, considering the council was supposedly the local government leader in waste management.

"Let's fix it, and fix it in the short term," he said.

But he acknowledged council staff were just as frustrated as angry property owners.

Mr Sawtell said council staff would 'roll up our sleeves' and report back in two weeks.

Boambee resident Zeno Baston addressed the meeting on behalf of six families who live near the waste facility and another 100 people who signed a petition complaining about the odours and noise.

"We are upset at what we see as the failure of the council, and of Biomass as the operator of the facility, to properly plan, build and operate a waste management facility that does not generate odour which extends beyond the site boundary," Mr Baston said.

He also said they had failed to manage leachate and to operate the facility in accordance with the environmental protection licence.

They had also failed to stop dumping putrescent waste into the landfill site.

Mr Baston said the odours could be smelt as far away as Coffs Harbour Health Campus, Stadium Drive, the Pacific Highway and Englands Road.

"We were told by Jeff Green (council's strategy and sustainability manager) that it may be up to two years before the waste will be stopped being dumped in the landfill. This is not good enough," he said.

"We want to see a commitment from council that you will stop dumping putrescent waste into the landfill site within three months, and evidence that the facility will comply with its environmental protection licence within three months."


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