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Byron Shire
June 21, 2021

Pothole nation

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Ben Nowland, Mullumbimby

Letter to Byron Shire GM Ken Gainger

Welcome to the (pot) holy land of Byron, Mr Gainger! Please venture up Wilsons Creek Road and then into Huonbrook Road. You may need an extra-terrestrial-technology reverse-engineered-rig to get up there – and this is the best the road has been in months!

  1. On January 17 I emailed Council community infrastructure division with details of an idea to facilitate public (community) input of pothole locations using a Google maps web platform – to ramp up the rapid eradication of dangerous road areas. The website idea is awaiting feedback more than a month later.
  2. An example that happens all over the shire: There are two to three workers at the Wilsons Creek School for a few hours in the morning and afternoon just standing on the side of the road. I am not sure of how they value add. Is that really a good use of resources? Surely we can automate and put in an extra sign for whatever it is Council works is trying to achieve.
  3. Have the contracted pothole fixers been instructed to not fix about 25 per cent of the bigger potholes just to keep the tyre shops in business? A bit more contractor supervision may help. A hundred per cent of our (pot) holy land needs to be fixed each sweep. This is where the website would assist because Council works would sign off on fixed potholes. A layer of accountability is embedded in the system.

Mullumbimby Tyrepower are the only benefactors of the holey Swiss cheese we drive on. If let’s say 25,000 residents pay an additional (to normal road wear and tear) $500 a year (this based on my own experiences) for tyre/car repairs that is $1.25 million shirewide, and over 10 years that is $12.5 million. Expenditure on new-improved roads could eliminate the $12.5 million over 10 years that the resident pays.


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  1. Why so we not have an etag situation for all streets that leave the highway for visitors. The user pays system would be great especially if it was $1.00 Council would then receive an enormous amount of money. Especially with the Festivals about to hit the shire 35,000 x 2 maybe more. This is instant revenue is it not.


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