Of course, what Clarence Valley Mayor Ian Tiley told the community is not unexpected, but this would be the first time the inability of local government to offer traditional solutions to future coastal erosion has been so clearly articulated at a NSW North Coast level.
The mayor described rock armouring, sand pumping, beach replenishment, large-scale housing retreat and house buybacks as "Possible remedies have proven beyond the financial reach of councils."
Although the mayoral minute did mention three small vulnerable village areas, it remained silent about the fate of larger coastal towns like Yamba. Perhaps because this town is one of Clarence Valley Council's rate cash cows and it wouldn't do to scare the horses.
Even though parts of the town's ocean front residential land currently have a 1-in-1000 statistical probability of sliding into the ocean after a few days of constant rain combined with high tides and heavy seas.
The minute was also careful to lay bad planning policy on local councillors dead for a generation or more. Thereby neglecting to take responsibility for more recent decisions, especially those made by the former Maclean Shire Council under Mayor Chris Gulaptis.
Looking to state and federal government for a remedial or preventative policy is also totally unrealistic, in the face of what could be widespread erosion and salt water inundation predicted to occur along the Australian east coast due to climate change. There just wouldn't be money enough for what in the end would likely be stopgap measures.
King Canute couldn't hold back the ocean and neither can we on the North Coast.
Clarence Valley Council mayoral minute: