COUNCIL APPLICATIONS: Property owners have applied to keep more than the maximum number of animals permitted by council legislation.
COUNCIL APPLICATIONS: Property owners have applied to keep more than the maximum number of animals permitted by council legislation.

Dogs, developments: Four applications approved by council

MEMBERS of the Somerset Regional Council deal with a myriad of issues at their fortnightly meeting, with the planning and development reports almost always being the first matters considered.

Councillors assess a range of submissions relating to development applications, construction plans, animal keeping, and much more.

Read on to find out what developments council have approved at their most recent meeting.

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Extra Animals

Among the more mundane requests considered by council are applications for property owners to keep more than the maximum number of animals permitted by council legislation.

In the Somerset, home owners are only allowed to have two dogs on their properties, but there is leeway for residents to apply to keep more than two dogs if there is sufficient room for the animals, and it won’t inconvenience neighbours.

One of the applications received by council this week was from residents at a property on Rocky Gully Road, Coominya, who are applying to keep six dogs.

The property is already home to three registered dogs, and an inspection by council officers revealed there was ample room, and adequate fencing, to house the additional animals.

A noise complaint was received by council regarding barking dogs, but the person who submitted the complaint did not complete a barking dog log, so this did not factor into council’s decision to approve the application.

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Double Dogs

A second, similar application was submitted by a home owner on Willaura Drive, Mount Hallen, who also wanted to have six dogs on their property, with the intention of breeding them.

Upon inspecting the property, council officers noted there were already three registered, microchipped dogs on the property.

The fencing of the residence was found to be in good condition, and was considered to be good enough to contain the dogs.

A past noise complaint was also received for the property, submitted at a time when the property owner was caring for 16 dogs belonging to a breeder from NSW, who was hospitalised at the time of the bushfires.

When the additional dogs were removed, the complaint was withdrawn.

As part of the approval process, neighbouring properties were invited to offer their feedback on the application.

Two responses were received, one in support of the application, while the other objected, claiming to have seen thirteen dogs on the property while watching through binoculars.

During their inspection in April, council officers only found evidence of the three dogs living on the property, refuting this claim.

Councillors approved the application.

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Lapsed Application

In May of 2016, council approved the continuation of development seeking to reconfigure a Lot of land on the corner of Bauer Street and Summerville Road at Lowood into more than 100 lots.

The application was first made in November 2005, and has been changed and renewed a number of times in recent years.

The latest renewal was valid until April 13 this year, and with no renewal application received, the council wrote to the applicant on April 27 to inform them the approval had lapsed.

Two days later, the council received a reply from the developer, who said they planned to seek reapproval with the Planning and Environment Court, as the council lacks the power to restore an application once it has lapsed.

In their message, the developer asked for council to support their appeal with the court, claiming the reason the development hadn’t gone ahead was due to the abundance of housing already available in the Lowood area, and the financial difficulties inflicted by the coronavirus pandemic.

Councillors voted not to support the application to the court, saying a significant amount of time had passed since the original approval, and that it would be beneficial to reassess the application to ensure it adheres to current guidelines.

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Second House

A property owner on Kilcoy Murgon Road at Sheep Station Creek lodged a material change of us application to construct a new house on their land.

The new secondary dwelling will be a single-storey, four-bedroom house with living and dining rooms, and a front veranda.

Included in the application were site, floor, and elevation plans, which were acceptable to council officers, prompting councillors to approve the application.