"God help Cootamundra", deputy mayor Dennis Palmer commented at last week's council meeting, referring to a requirement for trucks not to be permitted to enter a recycling business in the Turners Lane heavy industrial zone after 10pm.
JLW Services Pty Ltd recycles thousands of tonnes of old tyres it collects from throughout NSW, the ACT and Victoria, as well as large quantities of mattresses from council and private depots.
The tyres are converted into different grades of crumbs worth several hundreds of dollars a tonne, with fine crumbs used to make tile adhesive, medium crumbs go to make soft rubber matting for children's playgrounds, and the coarse grade going onto equestrian tracks.
The mattresses are cut into small pieces, enabling the steel to be removed magnetically, while the flock is compressed into bales and used as a substitute for coking coal in cement kilns in Australia and overseas.
The business delivers huge environmental benefits by giving a second life to unwanted materials, but regulations of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have specified that trucks bringing materials in are not permitted to park on the site after 10pm, or leave the site before 7am.
Cr Palmer said JLW had 14 vehicles on the road.
"These sorts of business rely on heavy transport, with timetables whereby they have to operate within the metropolitan areas," he said.
"Some of these vehicle movements need to arrive at their destination in the metro areas around 9 o'clock or 10 o'clock in the morning.
"But I struggle with this requirement that they can't leave until 7am or get back after 10pm.
"The plant wouldn't be operating, but surely we can make room for them to be able to park on the site no matter what time they arrive. Otherwise they'll have to park illegally on the street.
"I don't know what sort of signal this sends out to any future developers in Cootamundra who want to put up an industrial development."
The issue arose When JLW applied for modification of the development application (DA) council approved last year, to allow for changes to aspects including the layout of the plant and other operational matters.
The amended DA was put on public display for 28 days, and letters were sent to all neighbouring properties.
One objection was received from a resident who strongly objected to it, in particular the request for extended hours of operation to be from 7am to 8pm Monday to Saturday and 9am to 5pm Sundays and public holidays.
The resident claimed the plant had massively impacted their lifestyle, saying complaints had been lodged about several aspects of the operation, including lights and noise from vehicles from 5am until after 10pm. Longer hours would cause further distress.
Accordingly, the council reduced the proposed hours for the plant to finish at 6pm in the evening, with no operation on Sunday or public holidays, and placed the limit of 7am-10pm on the arrival and departure of trucks.
The neighbour's objection referred to the fact that they had purchased their property in December 2009 for the quiet lifestyle close to town, but the council had since rezoned the subject land, which is next to Cootamundra tip and sewage works, industrial.
An examination of google maps shows the nearest residence to be 550 metres away.
Cr Palmer said council had bought the land before amalgamation to dedicate it to heavy industry.
"Now we sit here where we have a developer who cops in excess of 50 pages of compliance reporting.
"The area we bought to put this industrial subdivision up is supposed to be out of harm's way."
Councillor Gil Kelly said he agreed with Cr Palmer.
"You can't get much more removed - it's right next door to the tip," he said.
"It would be like moving into Hovell Street and all of a sudden complaining about the noise of the trains."
Mayor Abb McAlister said "unfortunately its probably the way things are now.
"Existing business can do so much more but the businesses that want to start up, it's out of our hands and we have to abide by the rules and regulations."
Cr David Graham noted that that livestock carriers carted into Wagga and Yass at hours well outside the limits.
General manager Phil McMurray said it was open to developers to negotiate a better outcome with a neighbour, such as screening or double glazing, while the council's manager of devleopment, building and compliance said it was open to developers to request a review of the decision, apply for a modification or challenge it in court.
The mayor said there would be other businesses up and going at the site in 12 months time that would have stock and trucks coming in there after 10 o'clcok and before seven.
Cr Palmer said the amended DA was time-constrained, and requested it be put as printed. It was passed 7 to 1.
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