Jeff Harrison, Sunrise Beach
At the ‘Strange Bedfellows’ public forum, and the two subsequent Community Centre forums, it was apparent we don’t have an organisation that represents all Byron Bay residents, but there are organisations that represent various local interest groups including Byron business, Byron tourism, Byron liquor, and Byron holiday lets.
But the Suffolk Park Progress Association (SPPA) has a high profile in the local media when representing their specific interests. At the latest public forum our mayor Simon Richardson described how the SPPA provided him with a useful single point of reference when considering issues that affect their residents. The Ewingsdale Community website shows they are also effective in lobbying about issues in their immediate neighbourhood.
We have local concerns at Sunrise Beach as well. They range from: the possible impact of future festivals; being able to post a letter at the shopping centre; street campers’ trash; to the consequences of a drive through bottle shop. Perhaps Sunrise Beach residents could also benefit by organising as a registered association. We might then have a more tangible influence over our local issues and create a Sunrise Beach community vibe like they have in Suffolk Park and Ewingsdale.
If any Sunrise Beach residents are interested in forming a representative group, please send an email to [email protected] Initially this is just to see if the numbers are there – no specific issues yet, just say if you’d be interested in getting something going. A Reply All will go out in a week or so with the results and the ‘next step’.
Although many of us live in ‘wards’ of Byron Bay, some town centre issues impact on how we all enjoy our unique town centre. Maybe if the ‘ward’ associations identified and collaborated on those common town centre matters there could be a single point of reference that represents a collective of Byron Bay residents.