Cr Paul Amos (left) has lodged a rescission motion against last week’s airport lease decision. He was surprised to hear Cr George Cecato (right) and Keith Rhoades wanted the rescission motion dealt with sooner than at the next (and last for the year) ordinary meeting. As a result an extraordinary meeting will be held this Wednesday.
Cr Paul Amos (left) has lodged a rescission motion against last week’s airport lease decision. He was surprised to hear Cr George Cecato (right) and Keith Rhoades wanted the rescission motion dealt with sooner than at the next (and last for the year) ordinary meeting. As a result an extraordinary meeting will be held this Wednesday.

Amos shocked State & Feds not involved in airport lease deal

Councillor Paul Amos says the Coffs Harbour Regional Airport lease decision is the biggest this Council has ever had to make.

"Because of the length of the lease, and the impact it will have on many generations to come, and the dollars involved."

That's just one reason he's moved a motion to overturn Coffs Harbour City Council's recent decision to place management of the regional airport into the hands of a private company under a long-term lease.

He's also surprised Council has not had to seek approval from the State or Federal Government given their multimillion-dollar contributions to the Airport Enterprise Park.

"I am surprised we haven't had to have some kind of endorsement from the Sate or Federal Governments for us to be able to part with this very important piece of infrastructure."

Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack, Member for Cowper Pat Conaghan and Mayor Denise Knight at the enterprise park sod turning in January this year.
Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack, Member for Cowper Pat Conaghan and Mayor Denise Knight at the enterprise park sod turning in January this year.

The State and Federal Governments have each chipped in $10m for the project.

On Thursday evening Councillors debated for nearly an hour before coming to a tied vote on executing the controversial airport lease.

Councillors Michael Adendorff, Keith Rhoades, Denise Knight and George Cecato voted in favour, while Townley, Paul Amos, John Arkan and Tegan Swan voted against.

Mayor Cr Knight's casting vote brought it over the line.

"Because this is so important we should look to a clear majority of councillors to make this happen," Cr Amos said on Monday.

FULL STORY: 'Let's get on with it': Council votes to privatise airport

But following the vote Crs Amos, along with Crs Sally Townley and Tegan Swan gave notice of their intention to lodge a rescission motion.

An artist's impression of the Coffs Harbour Airport Enterprise Park.
An artist's impression of the Coffs Harbour Airport Enterprise Park.

Cr Amos was under the impression the rescission motion would be voted on at the next (and last for the year) Council meeting but was surprised to hear Crs George Cecato and Keith Rhoades wanted it to be heard sooner.

As a result, an extraordinary meeting has been called for this Wednesday at 5pm.

He says this is a "last ditch effort" to halt the lease and to give Councillors one last opportunity to review the proposal.

"It's a big deal for a long time and we will lose control over a lot of aspects of our airport - not the least of which would be who the lessee could assign the lease over to in the future. It could be handed over to people that we have not had the opportunity to assess properly."

Cr Amos says he is not overly hopeful in the lead up to Wednesday's extraordinary meeting.

"I am disappointed to say I am doubtful it will be successful."