18.4 C
Byron Shire
May 11, 2021

Shared values?

Latest News

NewsCorp announces August revival of regional news print in QLD

Less than a week after the two major NewsCorp-owned outlets on the Northern Rivers lost their websites and redirected readers via The Daily Telegraph (TDT), sister publications in Queensland announced almost the opposite.

Other News

Respect for Country

Léandra Martiniello, Whian Whian It is the night of the full moon, I have just watched it rise. On the...

Cringe worthy PM

Keith Duncan, Pimlico After cringing at the spectacle of Scott Morrison blatantly lying to President Biden during that virtual climate...

Co-op meeting

Annette Snow, Myocum As a Mullumbimby Rural Co-op shareholder of 42 years and a past employee of over 13 years,...

Why do we destroy what we love?

Nan Nicholson, The Channon I have been an environmental activist for over 50 years (I started when I was a...

Highway traffic delays after truck rollover north of Byron

There have been two highway crashes north of Byron this morning.

Board defends its management of Mullum Rural Co-op

The issue of potential fraud and financial mismanagement was a key part of the response from Mullumbimby Rural Co-op...

Last week’s Echonetdaily was full of articles and letters confirming disconnects between Council and Councillors, Councillors and Councillors, residents and Council, residents and residents.

For a start it would be useful to know how many of Council’s senior management live in and/or love our Shire and its shared values. As someone who regularly attends Council meetings and many of our Shire’s arts, cultural, community and political events, it’s very rare to see these senior Council managers in attendance. It begs the question do they have a sense of our “beat of the street”? Yet outside office hours many lower level Council staff are engaged in our Shire.

We now have a magnificent new Sports Complex – and if you haven’t checked it out, do so. But how can its sports fields have a major drainage problem? If you talk to anyone who has lived here for a lifetime they will tell you the land is lower than it’s surrounding neighbours and sits on a peat bog. Senior Council officers can bandy terms like “due diligence” till blue in the face but local common sense tells you the fields needed to be higher or somewhere else. Engineering can overcome most problems but the jury is still out on whether necessary standards have been met.

Dysfunctionality abounds. Our tourism industry provides local employment, and income generation for many and very handsome profits to a small number. Tourism provides little income and huge costs to Council due to Council reflecting our shared values by banning multi-story developments that bring in high Council rates. There are solutions, but these are either opposed by the State Government or by local special interests.

How about major events? We have two entrepreneurs unable to work together so our little Shire has two major event sites, both encroaching on wildlife areas.

At the state level we have two short-sighted adversarial political parties who take turns in determining how the Local Government Act will override our Council’s ability to be its own master.

We have a Council and a State government elected every four years with powers to act, and media space to comment on same, but no meeting ground or bridge between them.

Are we destined to be prisoners of self-serving interest groups? Perhaps. But if Budda is unavailable, then I think we need an ongoing forum space (physical or online) where Councillors, all Council staff and all sections of our community can come together as equals in discussion, facilitated and minuted, to create a series of long term, liveability strategies that reflect our documented core values (see www.byron.nsw.gov.au and in search type ‘core values’).

Jim Beatson
Byron Bay


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Secret footage from Manus detention centre to be screened in Lismore

A thirteen-minute award-winning documentary based on footage secretly filmed inside Australia’s former detention centre on Manus Island is to be screened in Lismore Thursday night.

A grubby business

Cr Cate Coorey, Byron Shire Council Among the reasons Simon Richardson gave for his retirement from the mayoralty was the mental health pressure that the...

Highway traffic delays after truck rollover north of Byron

There have been two highway crashes north of Byron this morning.

Water outage in Ballina this Thursday

Residents on Crane and Owen Streets in Ballina are advised of a planned water outage this Thursday May 13.