17.1 C
Byron Shire
October 8, 2022

Cr Longland re-elected Tweed mayor

Latest News

Byron Community Centre

When did the community centre change to Byron Theatre and was there any public information shared as to this...

Other News

Road access from Bilambil Heights to Tweed Heads via Scenic Drive restored

The significant washout of two sections of Scenic Drive during the devastating flood of February–March left the route inaccessible.

Women to shine at TEDxByronBay

TEDxByronBayWOMEN is about the power of women and girls to be creators and change-makers.

Tweed Council leads the way for responsible dog ownership

The reality is that if you let your dog off-leash in areas where there is native wildlife from birds to wallabies they will disturb nesting sites and potentially attack, maim and kill wildlife, regardless of how much you love them.

‘Sad and distressing’: massive numbers of bird deaths in Australian heatwaves reveal a profound loss is looming

Heatwaves linked to climate change have already led to mass deaths of birds and other wildlife around the world. To stem the loss of biodiversity as the climate warms, we need to better understand how birds respond.

A journey of a step or two

Apart from organic shiraz, my latest investment in health is this mini-stepper, or ‘massage stepper’ as they call it in the country of origin.

Native treats found in Broken Head

Auntie’s Cafe has now opened in Broken Head Holiday Park and is serving a delicious menu inspired by local native foods.

Newly elected Tweed mayor Barry Longland, left, wearing the traditional mayoral medallion, with new deputy mayor Michael Armstrong, who was also re-elected. Photo Luis Feliu
Newly elected Tweed mayor Barry Longland, left, wearing the traditional mayoral medallion, with new deputy mayor Michael Armstrong, who was also re-elected last night.

Story and photo Luis Feliu

Councillor Barry Longland has been re-elected as mayor of Tweed for the next 12 months, his third term in a row in the top job, and he has promised continued stability for the shire during the coming year.

The vote during an extraordinary meeting of Tweed Shire Council last night was 4–3.

Cr Longland’s usual supporters, Crs Michael Armstrong, Gary Bagnall and Katie Milne, backed him against the only other nominee, Cr Warren Polglase, who was supported by his political allies, Crs Phil Youngblutt and Carolyn Byrne.

Cr Armstrong was re-elected deputy mayor by the same voting pattern that elected Cr Longland, against the only other nominee for the job, Cr Youngblutt.

It is Cr Longland’s second term as mayor of the current council (2012–2016) after having served as mayor of the previous council in its last year.

Cr Longland, a former accountant, lives in the village of Uki and was elected to Council in 2008.

After the vote the new mayor told media he was ‘totally honoured and privileged’ to have been re-elected and he looked forward to another year of achievement.

‘I think it represents some stability for the shire. The last council had four mayors in four years and I don’t believe that represents stability for the community,’ Cr Longland said.

He said that he loved the job, and that as mayor he gets out in the community, meets a lot of people, ‘goes to everything’ and finds out ‘what the residents are passionate about’.

‘That’s what you need to guide decision making, it’s not about me. I then make decisions that are in the best interests of the shire.’

Cr Longland said the past year had seen one ‘difficult period’, the sacking of former general manager David Keenan, describing the political backlash as ‘an attempt by some elements to divide the community with the issue, which went on far too long’.

‘Those people need to understand that getting on the back of a truck and attacking councillors is not a constructive way to demonstrate any kind of stability in the community, but that’s well and truly behind us,’ he said.

The ‘back of the truck’ attack referred to Cr Longland’s political foe Cr Carolyn Byrne, who, along with Cr Warren Polglase and other National Party identities, was at the forefront of protests against the sacking, a move which was later vindicated by the Division of Local Government.

The process to recruit a new GM had been recently delayed by a preferred candidate pulling out at the last minute, but Cr Longland said it was now well underway with new expressions of interest being considered.

He also praised acting general manager Troy Green for being ‘an absolute soldier’ in working hard to ‘keep the ship going’.

Cr Longland said he was also ‘alarmed’ at the new federal government’s reported push to kickstart the coal seam gas (CSG) industry in the northern rivers.

He said councillors were unanimous in their opposition to the industry’s taking hold in the Tweed, declaring the shire CSG free, and the community had made a strong stand against it, ‘but we still have to be vigilant about it’.

The mayor said there were many challenges ahead for government, such as impending reforms of the state planning laws, a review of the Local Government Act and proposed boundary and structural changes.

He said other highlights for the year ahead included the delivery of an economic development strategy to build on the business incentives of the past year, continuing developments in environmental protection and milestone projects such as the Margaret Olley Art Centre.

He said he was also ‘excited at the prospect’ of a rail trail being established on the disused railway line between Murwillumbah and Casino, after the state government recently proposed to conduct a feasibility study on it.

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.



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

It’s Ageism Awareness Day

It’s Ageism Awareness Day and the peak body for older Australians, the Council on the Ageing (COTA) Australia, say we must all take action to address the scourge of ageism –  stereotyping and discriminating against individuals or groups on the basis of their age.

Norco set for rebuild but what about other businesses?

While the community digests Tuesday’s news of Norco’s Lismore ice cream factory’s rebuild, Norco Chief Executive, Michael Hampson wants to stress the importance of the plight of all flood-affected Lismore businesses including small and medium size ventures.

Flood-affected youth film screening tomorrow

Flickerfest and One Vision Productions have joined forces to facilitate a workshop and free film screening that has brought flood-affected youth together to tell their stories.

Eco Festival bringing Tweed residents together to get climate-ready

The Eco Festival, to be held in Murwillumbah, aims to bring Tweed residents together for a fun, free event with practical tips to help residents prepare to be climate-ready and environmentally friendly.