By MATT NICHOLLS
ARMIDALE Dumaresq councillors are likely to meet next week for an extraodinary meeting to approve the development of a new landfill site.
The council will receieve a report this week with the updated costings of building the site, believed to be between $14 million and $15 million.
Councillor Jim Maher said at Monday night’s ordinary council meeting there was “no other option” but to build the new landfill and hoped there would be no further delays.
“All the other ideas that have been proposed have been out of the ball park,” he said.
Councillor Margaret O’Connor, who has been a vocal supporter of alterntatives to a new landfill, almost conceded the fight, saying she was ready and willing to honour the wishes of the community.
“Let’s show the community we can go forward,” she said.
The extraordinary meeting could be as soon as next Monday.
FREE wireless internet in Armidale is one step closer after it was voted unanimously to support a joint project between the council and University of New England.
The free WiFi would be available in the CBD, the Visitor Information Centre and the Armidale Airport.
By joining forces with UNE, the council will save tens of thousands of dollars in infrastructure and operating costs.
Acting general manager Glenn Inglis met with UNE’s interim vice-chancellor Annabelle Duncan earlier this month to discuss the join project.
“The possible joint project between the university and council was discussed and both supported further progression to implement a joint WiFi network,” council’s report said.
“Given the university is committed to installing the university’s WiFi in the mall and their willingness to participate in a joint project with council, this option is considered the best outcome for both parties.”
LONG-SERVING mayor Peter Ducat was recognised for his service to local government at the start of Monday night’s meeting.
Current mayor Laurie Bishop presented Mr Ducat with the Emeritus Mayor Award certificate, signed by Local Government joint presidents Ray Donald and Keith Rhoades, as well as Minister for Local Government Don Page.
Mr Ducat, who attended the meeting with his wife Colleen and family members, thanked the councillors and staff he worked with during his time as mayor from 2005 to 2012.
“I would also like to thank the community, who showed faith in me,” he said.