Chook farm’s VCAT appeal

APPLICANTS for a controversial egg farm in Tooradin have taken their case to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT).
In June, council refused to back the application until an environmental impact study had been undertaken.
Last week applicant David Proctor decided to take the issue straight to VCAT in a bid to build an egg farm on the South Gippsland Highway.
The development includes five layer sheds holding up to 50,000 birds, three rearing sheds, 16 silos and a packing and sales building.
Furious local residents were called into action last week, with 100 people turning up at a public meeting at the Tooradin Sports Club last Friday night to decide what their next action would be.
Organisers Graeme and Janet Abelthorpe said the massive response at last week’s and past meetings proved the egg farm could not go ahead.
Mrs Abelthorpe said she was baffled that the plan was even being considered with its close proximity to town and residential properties.
She said residents opposed the proposal because it was out of character with the surrounding area, was incompatible with existing use in the surrounding green wedge and rural conservation zone, and would be visual pollution to residents and tourists.
She said odour was also a massive problem with the wind blowing in a north-westerly to westerly direction back towards town, also affecting adjacent landowners, users of sporting facilities, the businesses and outdoor cafes along the main street, the local school, the tourist buses using Tooradin as a stopover on the way to Phillip Island, the many locals and visitors who used picnic, fishing and boating facilities, and the monthly outdoor market.
She also said the egg farm’s proximity to Western Port was very concerning and the fact that it would be located in a flood zone, which could have serious environmental impacts on the natural resource.
Mayor Colin Butler said the council still had to form an opinion on whether it would continue to oppose the application after receiving the notice of an appeal last week.
He said the council would decide on its next course of action after it received the results of the environmental impact study.