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Council moves to defer Congo Road Nth decision for three months

Presenter after presenter, during this morning's (May 10th 2022) Public Forum session advised the councillors that Council had failed dismally in their communications with the Congo community around the Congo Road North issue. Councillors were told that the methods Council staff adopted of little if any communication in the leadup to their letter drop just days before their intent to close the road for ten days was little short of audacious and that the response to a Councillor by a senior Council staff member saying "Council does not consult on Operational matters" only contributed to the toxic relationship that had built between the Council and wider community. Whilst the most of the current councillors were not in place at the time (November 2021) the message was clear to the new term that the toxicity and failures of the past needed to be addressed and the "rot cut out" in order to move on. To the credit of the councillors, they listened, asked intelligent questions and showed empathy to those who came forward, one at a time to simply ask Council if it was possible to defer the decision so that genuine, engaged community consultation could be undertaken. This was agreed to with the motion formally passed with all councillors other than Rob Pollock voting for the extension. Rob Pollock, in his debate, made clear that the very clear instruction, in 1999, to initiate the actions required to formalise the road formation across Por 197, came to a halt because of the "non agreement" by the land owner.

VIDEO: Clr Pollock speaking to the Motion to defer any Council decision regarding the Congo Road North issue. You can hear the full discussion, the motions and determination, on Council's website.

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