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Council seeks re-think on wind farm “victims”

Upper Lachlan Council will ask the State Government to take “urgent action” to prevent some families from being virtually forced off their properties and homes by proposed wind farms at Gullen Range and Taralga.

These families have been given the choice to accept the close proximity of turbines to their homes, or to sell out to the developers.

The finding by the Land and Environment Court indicated it recognised that the closeness of the turbines would create severe problems for these landholders.

Council’s actions at the meeting at Gunning last Thursday followed repeated urgings by Cr. Malcolm Barlow, the receipt of a number of letters urging action, and support for an extensive case prepared by Mr. David Brooks, of the NSW Landscape Guardians.

The letters expressed concern that Council had rejected Cr. Barlow’s move at the previous Council meeting to seek legal opinion on the right to appeal.

The latest action was moved by Cr. Barlow and seconded by Cr. Sandra Bill.

Council will forward Mr. Brooks’ paper to support its request for Government to take another look at the Court’s decision.

Council will urge the Government to use Mr. Brooks’ extensive paper as “possible grounds for a legal appeal against those decisions.”

This action was taken despite State Planning Minister Mr. Brad Hazzard again virtually washing his hands of the matter.

In a letter received at the Council meeting, Mr. Hazzard wrote: “I have carefully noted the views Council has expressed about the acquisition provisions in the approval conditions for the Taralga and Gullen Range Wind Farms, which were imposed by the Land and Environment Court.

“However, I am unable to intervene in the Court’s decision.

“Please also note it is the landowners’ decision as to whether they wwish their properties to be acquired.

“There is no compulsory acquisition…..”