Councils’ tip clash

By YASEMIN TALAT

BRIMBANK City Council has objected to the application before the City of Melton for the expansion of the Boral Landfill.
At an ordinary council meeting last Tuesday night, administrators declared that the Brimbank City Council would lodge an objection for the expansion because of the potential impact to local residents.
Chair of Administrators John Watson said the existing odour problems from the landfill site must be resolved before any expansion was considered.
“Our residents have a basic right to clean air, and as a good neighbour Boral’s number one business priority must be addressing the odour problem caused by the site before planning future expansion,” Mr Watson said.
“Although we are not the responsible planning authority for this application, we have received a number of complaints from our residents regarding amenity issues associated with the landfill which we take very seriously,” he said.
In November last year, Boral lodged a planning amendment with Melton City Council to dramatically increase the size of the existing tip to 179 million cubic metres or the equivalent of 105 times the size of the MCG.
The Boral Landfill site is about 1.5 kilometres from residential buildings in Brimbank.
Residents from both municipalities have initiated action against the proposal through a number of means including the “Stop The Tip” group, which will hold a community rally in Melton today.
“We can’t simply refuse the application because it isn’t in Brimbank, however we can certainly object and make it known that Brimbank City Council cannot support any expansion until these problems are resolved,” Mr Watson said.
Administrators agreed that the facility was important for the area, but that it had to be managed properly.
“There is no question that the Boral Landfill plays an important role in managing waste for the West, and we see our role as helping to influence the best outcomes for the operation of the site and our nearby community,” Mr Watson said.
“Essentially, council is seeking to find the best balance between the needs of the greater west for waste management with those of nearby residents to the landfill site,” he said.
As part of the objection, Brimbank City Council will also seek an increased buffer zone (up to 1000 metres) and that the expansion be reduced in size to enable future expansions to be approved in stages.
Melton City Council’s general manager Planning and Development Luke Shannon said the council had received 3800 objections to date, and council officers were in the process of assessing the application.
“Council officers will then prepare a complete report, which will be considered by council at an open council meeting,” Mr Shannon said.
“No date has yet been set.”

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