Scant pay for T4 loader

THE city's leaders have banded together in disgust over a lack of development contributions earmarked for the proposed fourth coal terminal in Newcastle.

The T4 coal terminal is yet to be approved but has reached a number of planning milestones and is with the Planning Assessment Commission.

Newcastle councillor Michael Osborne said Newcastle was being short-changed by the T4 proposal. He said the social, health, economic and environmental impacts did not outweigh any benefits.

He said the proposal would supposedly cost $4.8 billion to build, and typically 1 per cent of developer contributions would flow to Newcastle council.

However, the Department of Planning is recommending that Port Waratah Coal Services only pay $528,140 instead of $4.8 million.

"If this proposal goes ahead, Newcastle residents will be impacted with increased dust, noise and health impacts as well as the resulting climate change impacts from the exported coal," Cr Osborne said.

The proponents should be made to fully compensate the community, he said.

The Department of Planning's Preliminary Environmental Assessment Report said it was difficult to calculate a reasonable contribution based on a section 94A Contributions Plan when the capital investment value was very large.

"A contribution equal to 1 per cent of the total of council's works schedule and new public facilities as listed in Appendices A and B of the Section 94A Development Contributions Plan 2009 ($528,140) is reasonable," it said.

Cr Osborne's calls for action were backed by Newcastle lord mayor Jeff McCloy and Newcastle general manager Ken Gouldthorp, who hope to negotiate a better deal.


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