Council attempts to go to war against Big Box Retail

Policy Parrot says:

How to win friends and influence people is a book that should be struck across the head of Councillor Cathy Casey many times until she gets the message.

Foolishly Casey tried to pass a motion that the Unitary Plan make all big box retail over 450sqm be non complying.

She failed but not without a slagging match joined by other Councillors who bemoaned and cried foul the work of the giant retailers who continue to build large retail stores across our city.

The idea was doomed to go down in a ball of flaming napalm because anyone with half a brain knows that there is no win in taking on the biggest property development businesses in this country.

Let’s look at the list of enemies made by Casey on Black?Friday:

The Warehouse
Mitre 10
Progressive Enterprises (Countdown)
Foodstuffs (New World and Pak n’Save)
Briscoes and Rebel Sport
Harvey Norman
The Good Guys
And so on. ?

Collectively these giants spend north of $1 billion per annum on new development, dwarfing Fletchers and the big housing companies and all the big investment trusts combined on annual property spend.

The colossal that is big box retail is not to be messed with. They set case law, they have very deep pockets and they keep going until they win. They are very very powerful.

What possesses a Councillor to think that the big box retail group can be stopped is beyond this Parrot. You can’t stop them. They are too powerful, too rich and too damn good at what they do to be beaten.

This Parrot asks anyone to name a project by these companies that has been rejected. Even where it was, through meticulous work in the Courts the decisions are over-turned.

What a winner Casey is. And what a way to make friends. One doesn’t take on the big guys at planning. One runs from them or one keeps them happy to avoid their meddling and the years of delay caused by appeals and savage lawyers who are wheeled out with filed teeth and tear gas.

Trying to banish big box retail is like a little nation taking on the yanks. You know it’s not going to end pretty.