Byron Shire Council has informed residents, albeit a bit late, of ‘ Vegetation work to be undertaken at Tyagarah airstrip in late November will see more than 500 trees planted near the airfield and 72 trees and shrubs pruned as part of routine maintenance works to make sure the aerodrome is safe for the people who use it’ (directly from council newsletter, mistakes included).
This ‘work’ is primarily for the benefit of a single publicly-listed multinational corporation that is not even based in Byron Shire, (Wollongong I am lead to believe) making profits off the back of Byron’s image.
Yet the council staff do not see it as essential to negotiate a Fly Neighbourly Agreement (FNA) in order to assure quality of life for the residents which is free from extensive small aircraft noise pollution.
FNAs have been negotiated for unlicensed and unregistered aerodromes elsewhere in Australia and staff suggesting otherwise is just not true. Nearby examples include Casino, Evans Head and Southport. The total cost of the winning tender for a FNA was only $13,505 (GST inclusive).
The council also do not see it as necessary for the airfield to be financially viable. Last figures on the lease on Tyagarah Airfield is $36,000. Yes it is astounding. Just a few of us could take out the lease on the air strip and only give rights to fly to the small aircraft local guys who have been there for years and be done with it.
This would save all those rate dollars keeping the airstrip safe for whom exactly? And at the same time the koalas get to keep their trees free from being ‘pruned’.
Susana Gardavsky, Myocum