28.2 C
Byron Shire
February 4, 2023

It’s pay for parking or raise the rates: Byron GM

Latest News

Go Thistles!

Lismore Thistles Soccer Club has launched the Thistles Acceleration Program, in the process becoming the city’s only player development academy. 

Other News

Witches in the Starcourt

A new year is here! It’s a time for women all over the region to pick up their brooms and set their witchy intentions for 2023. There is no finer time and place to do it than with your Country Witches, comedian Mandy Nolan and singer/songwriter Áine Tyrrell. 

Ocean Shores swimmers power to strong results at regional swimming competition

A group of seven athletes from the Ocean Shores Aquatics swim team took part in the annual Country Regional...


Warren Kennedy wrote an excellent letter last week (28 January) pointing out the deficiencies of capitalism as it exists...

Tributes for songstress Sara Tindley

Hundreds gathered at a small rural property at Lindendale last week to say their final farewells to Sara Tindley, a very much loved personality from the Northern Rivers. 

Appeal for flag stolen from Bruns

The two Aboriginal flags that fly high over the Brunswick River Bridge on Invasion Day have become a potent symbol of survival and solidarity for many in the Shire. 

They are Hotshots

The two-hour production is a visual feast, choreographed and developed by Australia’s leading professionals and a hand-picked selection of dreamy guys who will have the ladies up from their chairs, screaming for more, night after night. With a totally interactive production, The Secret Fantasies Tour is the perfect night out with the girls.

Hans Lovejoy

With plans for paid parking in Byron’s CBD sparking a flurry of complaints from residents, Byron Shire Council’s general manager Ken Gainger has responded to some of the issues raised.

They ranged from why residents should have to pay the fourfold increase in the existing parking fee and comparisons to Sydney.

Council will soon increase fees to $4 per hour for on-street and council-owned car parks.

The existing off-street parking residents’ $25-per- year coupon will increase to $100 per year.

It’s expected to yield up to $2 million per year and, according to mayor Simon Richardson, will be used to pay for the impacts of tourism ‘and to provide better amenities for us.’

Mr Gainger said the rationale behind paid parking was to better manage parking availability in Byron and to generate additional revenue to invest in roads and associated infrastructure.

‘In the absence of a paid parking scheme, council would have no alternative but to significantly increase rates.

‘This would just compound the current lack of equity in infrastructure funding whereby our 1.5 million visitors don’t contribute to infrastructure renewal. Council has restrained growth in rates to the basic annual rate peg limit (this year 2.4 per cent) since 2008/9.’

Mr Gainger explained why residents will need a voucher to park.

‘It is not viable to introduce a paid-parking scheme that only charges visitors. The technology, signage and enforcement costs are significant and a “visitor only” scheme would provide a very low net return to council.’

‘This would not support the additional expenditure required for our roads and other infrastructure.

He says the annual $100 parking exemption fee entitles residents to park free in any on-street/off-street carpark as long as they park in accordance with the signed time limits.

As for the fourfold increase in the existing parking fee, Mr Gainger said, ‘The current $25 pa voucher scheme has a very low take-up by residents and is unrealistically low by any standards.

‘With the introduction of paid on-street parking the value residents will derive over 12 months at $100 pa (27 cents per day providing a benefit of $4 per hour of parking) is considerably higher.’

Finally, comparisons to Sydney are not realistic, claims Mr Gainger, when population density and ratepayer base are considered.

‘Byron has a population of 32,000 and only 14,000 ratepayers, he said, ‘therefore our comparative ability to fund a viable paid-parking scheme that exempts residents and ratepayers is minimal.’

Extensive details of Council’s paid-parking plans are available at www.byron.nsw.gov.au/media-releases/2015/05/26/pay-parking-in-byron-town-centre-to-go-ahead.

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.


  1. It seems like a fairly small price to pay for having a vehicle in the downtown regularly. Personally i like anything that discourages cars from being there. And it will help fund such needs as road repairs.

  2. But therein lies the problems, doesn’t it Ken? The Council would not be allowed to increase rates by 7.3% (150 / 2055.40 = 0.073). That is why you had to come up with a stealth tax for locals.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Pothole protest gets immediate results

Psst: want to get Council staff to do something about the appalling state of roads in your neighbourhood? Organise a protest outside Mullum’s Council Chambers! By...

What’s Love Got to Do with It?

Art imitates life in What’s Love Got to Do with It? a 2022 British romantic comedy-drama film directed by Shekhar Kapur, from a screenplay by Jemima Khan.  The precis reads: ‘Set between London and Lahore, a filmmaker documents her childhood friend and neighbour’s arranged marriage to a bride from Pakistan.’

We’ve had the rain bomb, is a fire bomb next?

We had the Black Summer fires and then the floods and NSW Farmers says time is running out to prevent more mass bushfires at the end of this year.

A smorgasbord of flicks

This year’s smorgasbord of over 40 incredible short films are handpicked from a record 3,200 entries received for Flickerfest’s Academy® and BAFTA Qualifying short-film festival screened recently in Bondi, and Northern Rivers audiences are the first in Australia to experience the best of Flickerfest on tour. Highlights enjoying their Northern Rivers premiere include recent Academy® nominees and much-loved festival award winners alongside exciting, fresh, local talent.