THE owner of a small tank-building operation on the outskirts of Bathurst says he is packing up and leaving due to “unfair” treatment by Bathurst Regional Council.
Anthony Gittany’s home business at Billywillinga was effectively shut down by council in October when it rejected his development application to continue operating from a shed on his property.
Council had previously granted conditional approval for Mr Gittany to manufacture water tanks on-site at his property, but a report by acting environmental, planning and building services director Richard Denyer said that approval lapsed in August 2011.
And Mr Denyer recommeded against the new DA being approved, saying Mr Gittany’s operation did not meet the council definition of a home business and that there had been a “series of resident complaints” about the business.
However, Mr Gittany blamed poor communication from council for allowing the original DA to lapse.
“I was advised in December 2015 that it had just ‘come to council’s attention’ that the DA had lapsed five years ago yet no attempt had ever been made to notify me of the so-called lapse. Who ever knew DAs lapse?” Mr Gittany said.
Mr Gittany said he had tried to work with council to remain in business.
“Once I was notified of this lapse in DA, I immediately worked with council to address every issue which was presented to me,” he said.
“I had acoustic sound checks done, which passed the legal limit, there is neither danger nor threat to the environment; we don’t retail from here and we have no signage.
“I work on a part-time basis in my own shed, along with other interests which I have there such as my tractors and kids’ motorbikes.
“I have had a petition signed by the neighbours who have confirmed that they have no issues with what I do in my shed.
“I know something is clearly not adding up.”
Mr Gittany said his treatment by council was in stark contrast to council’s own promotion of itself as an Evocity that worked hard to encourage businesses in the area.
He said the debacle had left him with no choice but to leave Bathurst with his family after 22 years.
“By the end if the year we will be out of here,” he said.
He said four people would be left out of work by the shut down of his business.