Different Rules for Small Fries: McDonalds Applecross

THE McDonald’s decision by the State Administrative Tribunal has convinced me that there are different rules and regulations for the rich and powerful versus the general population.

It was obvious from the decision of the arbitrator that he preferred the evidence of two traffic professionals hired by Macca’s to that of an overawed and outmanoeuvred State Government team.

The two previous levels of Government had seen through Macca’s ploy and unanimously rejected the previous applications and appeals.

It appears to me that the State Minister for Planning sat on the submission (waiting for the SAT outcome?) for a tightening of Local Planning Scheme 5 with an upgrade to Local Planning Scheme 6.

The TPS6 endeavoured to provide certainty of intent of the Melville City Council and the ratepayers that the land zoned for local amenity would remain as that.

The delay ensured that the Macca’s appeal could be heard on the principle of “discretion” by the council as to what constituted local amenity.

That the arbitrator preferred the evidence of the Macca’s representatives is a matter of his opinion that unfortunately is not a point of law.

An appeal by the Government against a government-funded organisation is going to cost the ratepayers and taxpayers some serious money.

On a strictly equitable point, I would say that the residents of Applecross, the anti Macca’s committee, have proportionally more to lose by the development of a fast-food 24-hour outlet than Macca’s hope to gain.

That Macca’s have devised contingency plans for problems dealing with rubbish, odours, noise and criminality demonstrates that they have an expectation that these circumstances will occur.

Why then would a reasonable person press the point to disadvantage others with increased traffic problems as well as those previously mentioned?

BOB GALLOWAY,

Applecross.