August 21 - 27, 2016: Issue 277

Residents Associations oppose Proposed RYMC Marina Extension Into Pittwater

The Horseshoe Cove Residents Association, Newport Residents Association and West Pittwater Residents Association have expressed objections to a proposal by the Royal Motor Yacht Club to pursue extending their existing marina with a new marina westwards into the Pittwater Estuary on the basis of 'existing use rights'.

Pittwater Council asked them to withdraw their DA as they could not prove they had existing use rights over the proposed resumption of public water space. The proposal for expansion shows extending the floating swing moorings up 56 metres into the estuary. 

A Document, 'Further Memorandum of Advice' available on the RMYC DA page on Council's website show the RMYC has been advised that due to the club having commercial swing moorings licensed from RMS to the west of the marina that it entitled them to claim existing use rights and build a marina over that area

The matter has been placed before the Land and Environment by the RMYC and is listed for September 9, 2016. 
An application to have the matter heard as two court cases earlier in July has resulted, in the LEC deciding there should be in two separate LEC court cases. One on the legal question and the on the merits of the proposal.

That Land and Environment Court Decision may be accessed here 

Greg Ross, President of The Horseshoe Cove Association, and also a RMYC Member who 'loves his club' addressed the Northern Beaches Council at the most recent Meeting at Mona Vale, expressing support for the new council's decision to continue to oppose the proposal.

The Residents Associations state this is an encroachment on a public waterway and, if won would set a precedent for all other marinas with similar moorings who could then claim the same existing use rights and extend their marinas. 

"Additionally we would be concerned that if successful these marina’s would then apply to have their existing (or new) swing moorings relocated on the outside the extended marinas and then reapply in the future to extend them once more." Gavin Butler, President of the Newport Residents Association stated.

"As there already 969 commercial swing moorings in Pittwater- there would be no room left for the public to enjoy the waterway." Mr. Ross explains.

"I am a member of the RMYC, yet amazingly, the RMYC has not advised and has been very deceptive in informing club members about the councils request for the DA to be withdrawn, the decision to bypass the JRPP (Joint Regional Planning Panel) and its decision to fight the new Northern Beaches Council in the LEC. " Mr. Ross said on Friday.

"The RMYC is spending hundreds of thousands of members’ funds without their knowledge but much worse wasting Northern Beaches ratepayers’ money on this ludicrous proposal.

"No one can have the arrogance to assume that they have existing use rights over our precious Pittwater waterway."

I have asked Council to write to the RMYC and tell them to disclose to its members that the community and Pittwater Council said NO-the Northern Beaches Council said NO and the community of Pittwater still says NO."

The Documents relating to the RMYC Development Application may be found on Council's website here
The document showing the proposed changes is here 
A Model of the proposal is here