Neil Morrison, Byron Bay.
In the matter of BSC’s proposals for various rate increases over the period I believe firstly your notices inclosed with our rate notices do verge on the fraudulent in that this information failed to disclose the nil rate increase option, accordingly any resident response to this request is flawed.
Similarly the general manager’s justifications including quoting some mythical average rate impost and the effect on these rates over the four-year period were sufficient to believe he is an outcast from ‘Noddy Land’ or alternatively he has his head in the sand (on one of our promoted tourist beaches) so far that his toes may not show.
We have lived in Byron for some 25 years, in which time our rates have increased some 1,600 per cent with no discernible increase in services nor infrastructure nor ambiance to our benefit.
This place has been promoted by state, regional, commercial and local tourist bodies to such an extent that it is known world wide and attracts in excess of two million visitors annually, has one of the highest Airbnb densities on the planet, and otherwise holiday lets at obscene levels.
It is the above commercialisation that is responsible for the deterioration of all the levels of infrastructure and ambiance in this place, it is this commercialisation that should be rated by way of differential rate levy (as on the Gold Coast) bed taxes (not good enough to cry ‘They wont let us’) and or other, rather than your limp wristed and some what vengeful attempt to levy permanent residents so as to subsidise the very activity that is so detrimental to our daily anxiety levels.
It is this commercialisation that provides rivers of gold to all the above special interests. I’m thinking stamp duty, GST, land tax, then mortgage, maintenance, improvements and rate tax deductions apart from business rates profits, paid parking and others.
In short, your proposal smacks of laziness, would do little or nothing to allow me access to and from my town, not move one damm dopey visiting pedestrian across an intersection, not shut one holiday let down in a residential zone, nor instruct our northern visitors on how to drive on a roundabout with the added insult to require we permanent residents to pay for your infrastructure to further flood our place with ever more commercialisation.