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August 4, 2021

Former Byron GM to run Norfolk Island

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Hans Lovejoy

From the oil pan into the fire: It’s been confirmed that outgoing Byron Shire Council general manager Graeme Faulkner will soon be taking up the position of chief executive officer of Norfolk Island.

The small island is well known to be experiencing dire financial difficulties; earlier this month on 7 June, the ABC’s 7.30 ran a story entitled ‘Norfolk Island faces economic ruin’.

A staffer from the Norfolk Island Legislative Assembly told Echonetdaily that he was chosen as he was an ‘agent of change’, and that much like other economies reliant on tourism, they experienced a dramatic decline since the 2008 GFC.

The island has been self-governing since 1979. ‘It provides federal, state and local governance for the island and has a legislative assembly of nine elected members,’ they said.

And for a population of around 2000 people on an island measuring just 34.6km2 in size, that’s a lot of representation.

‘Most things are either shipped in or flown in. In terms of remoteness it could be considered more remote than outback towns in Australia,’ they said.

The island’s Anglo history traces back to Captain Cook’s discovery in 1774, and it was a penal colony for the British until 1856. It sits 1,412 kilometres directly east of Evans Head, which is 66km south of Byron Bay.

 


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NSW Parliament off for a month, with full pay

With COVID-19 cases surging across Sydney and defence forces being deployed in the city, NSW Parliament put out a brief statement last week saying MPs will not sit in the month of August ‘owing to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic in NSW’.

Markets could return to Byron’s Butler St Reserve

Byron’s weekly farmers’ market may return to its traditional home in Butler Street Reserve after detailed soil testing found that the park was less contaminated than was feared.

Push to create transitional accommodation at Lot 22

Should the Council-owned plot of land in Mullumbimby, known as Lot 22, be used for temporary accommodation for those at risk of homelessness, as a matter of urgency?

Sticking to facts

Roger Cotgreave, Byron Bay Thanks to The Echo for reporting scientific facts around the pandemic and not relying on social media ‘research’. Also a big thanks...