A daily Bulletin listing our choice of Decisions of Superior Courts of Australia.


Wednesday, 8 October 2014
Executive Summary (One Minute Read)
Davis v Gosford City Council (NSWCA) - refusal of development consent - clearing of habitat for threatened species - appeal on questions of law dismissed
BB Retail Capital Pty Ltd v Alexandria Landfill Pty Ltd (NSWSC) - contract - entitlement to preference shares on conversion of convertible notes
Moama Bowling Club Ltd v The Thomson Group Pty Ltd (VSCA) - negligence - fire at bowling club not caused by shattering globe - electrical contractor not liable
Sleeman v SPI Electricity Pty Ltd (VSCA) - statutory compensation - installation of electricity poles - owners of neighbouring land refused compensation
Summaries With Link (Five Minute Read)
Davis v Gosford City Council [2014] NSWCA 343
Court of Appeal of New South Wales
Beazley P, Ward JA & Preston CJ of LEC
Environment and planning - appellants sought development consent under Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (NSW) for facility which involved clearing native vegetation that was habitat for threatened species of fauna - Council refused consent on basis species impact statement (SIS) under s78A(8)(b) was required - Commissioners of Land and Environment Court dismissed appellant's appeal under s97 against Council's refusal - appellants appealed against Commissioners' decision on questions of law - Land and Environment Court dismissed appeal - construction and application of ss5A, 79C & s79B(3) - held: no error by Commissioners or Court in assessment of degree of effect on threatened species required for refusal of development application - relevant matters to consider not limited to effect on threatened species that was likely to be a significant effect - Commissioners and Court below did not err by not considering or giving effect to any concurrence of Director-General under s79B(3) - appeal dismissed.
BB Retail Capital Pty Ltd v Alexandria Landfill Pty Ltd [2014] NSWSC 1363
Supreme Court of New South Wales
Stevenson J
Contract - plaintiff ("BBRC"), first defendant ("ALF") and second defendant entered deed by which BBRC became holder of $30 million of convertible notes issued by ALF - notes matured and converted into preference shares in ALF - BBRC claimed it was entitled to be issued with number of preference shares dictated by conversion formula in clause of Terms of Issue of convertible notes - defendants accepted that $10 million of BBRC's convertible notes were converted into preference shares at that rate but that remaining $20 million of BBRC's notes converted on a "$1.00 for 1 share" basis - determination of amount of "Organic Debt" in ALF group on conversion date - Blatch v Archer principle - held: BBRC's $20 million convertible notes converted into preference shares at the rate specified in clause of Terms of Issue and not on a "$1.00 for 1 share" basis - ALF had issued insufficient shares to BBRC and too many shares to second defendant - as to remaining disputes about "Organic Debt", Court concluded one of the amounts said by BBRC to comprise "Organic Debt" did so, and that the others did not - notes converted at the rate in Terms of Issue - level of "organic debt" determined.
BB Retail Capital Pty Ltd
Moama Bowling Club Ltd v The Thomson Group Pty Ltd [2014] VSCA 245
Court of Appeal of Victoria
Nettle, Tate & Beach JJA
Negligence - appellant's bowling club extensively damaged by fire - proprietor claimed fire caused by floodlight containing halogen lamp installed by electrical contractor and claimed damages in negligence from contractor - causation - Pt X, ss51 & 52 Wrongs Act 1958 (Vic) - primary judge not satisfied fire initiated by globe in floodlight shattering - primary judge also held that, even if it were necessary to make finding whether contractor was negligent in selection, supply and fitting of floodlight, contractor was not negligent - primary judge dismissed proprietor's action - appellant contended primary judge erred by paying no or insufficient regard to various aspects of evidence - held: all grounds of appeal rejected - no error in decision of primary judge - appeal dismissed.
Moama Bowling Club Ltd
Sleeman v SPI Electricity Pty Ltd [2014] VSCA 243
Court of Appeal of Victoria
Nettle, Beach & Kyrou JJ
Statutory compensation - appellants were owners of land on which they proposed to build aerodrome - appellants sought compensation under s93(2) Electricity Industry Act 2000 (Vic) for decrease in value of land due to electricity corporation's installation of electricity poles on neighbouring land - any land - held: primary judge correct to hold compensation provisions in s93(2) were confined to the owner of land upon which an electricity corporation undertook authorised activities - appellants were not entitled to compensation under s 93(2) - appeal dismissed