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Byron Shire
May 12, 2021

Illegal letting

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Matthew Hartley, Byron Bay

Congratulations to Michael Lyon for continuing to speak out against illegal letting in residential areas. However, his financial concerns will be allayed if he continues to pursue illegal activity via the correct method: Penalty Notices.

There are hundreds of millions of dollars in fines waiting to be collected by means of Penalty Notices. No more complicated than parking tickets. 

By now, Council should have written to all real estate agents and online accommodation sites, requiring information within 7 days. Issuance of Penalty Notices – one for each date, because each date is a separate offence – should have begun. If this has not happened, why? 

Corruption is the single most damaging issue in the world, from Brazil and Borneo to Byron Bay. Illegal letting is no different from illegal logging and illegal contract manipulation. It could have been stopped when it began, at the first house.  Obfuscation and inaction fostered its growth. Who knew and did what and when will be determined. Justice will be done.

Let me repeat this; the mayors statements that there was ‘actually nothing’ to prohibit tourist letting in residential areas was and is false. His statement that we must now ‘fire off litigation missiles’ is false. His claim that dealing with the problem “isn’t simple” is false.  Whether he is simply in error, or deliberately misleading the public, will be determined in due course.


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