Doubt over feedmill approval in Sinagra

THE City of Wanneroo is searching its records and archives to confirm the planning approval status of a Sinagra feedmill.

A report about a submission to the Department of Environment and Regulation (DER) on Inghams Enterprises’ licence renewal for the Wanneroo Road site has been withdrawn while the investigation is under way.

City planning and sustainability director Phillip St John told the council the submission had to be made promptly and the search for relevant documents, sparked by their questions at an earlier briefing, was ongoing.

“Council asked some questions about planning approvals on the site,” he said.

“They go back a number of years, a number of decades and we’re researching that at the moment and we did feel that there is a question over whether approvals are complete.

“I say that with some caution because it doesn’t mean the approvals aren’t in place… there are a lot of very credible references to approvals but there are certain ones which we can not find.”

Acting planning and sustainability director Mark Dickson said the City would consider its position on “any future steps” once they had finished the review of its records.

He said the department had been made aware of the City’s investigations in a supplementary submission made on September 17, along with a request to defer a decision until the search was complete.

“The department has indicated it has some concern over the lack of clarity on the status of planning approval and that any planning constraints will be considered in its decision-making,” he said.

The department told the Times in August that if granted, a new licence would allow Inghams to continue operating an animal feed manufacturing facility subject to any conditions imposed.

The submission period for the licence renewal closed on August 31.

A DER spokeswoman said Inghams’ current licence permitted it to manufacture up to 200,000 tonnes of feed a year.

Deputy Mayor Dot Newton asked for the City to make a submission at its August meeting.

“One of the things I would like to have addressed is whether planning approval allows for a fully blown 24-hour a day, seven days a week manufacturing industry which is occurring there now,” she said.

Mr Dickson said the City’s submission called for the hours of operation to be reduced if a licence was granted.