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Byron Shire
March 9, 2021

National MPs not delivered much on north coast

Latest News

Seapeace: the late Tony Maxwell’s wetland legacy

Many curious minds have pondered the purpose of the rice paddy-like waterbodies that scallop the contour lines out into the Ewingsdale coastal plain that can be viewed from St Helena Road.

Other News

Supporting independent news or making fat cats fatter?

The recent skirmish between Facebook and the government is hard to miss, even if you rely on Facebook for your news. But what does it all mean?

Koala groups lobby Tweed MP Geoff Provest for action

Local koala groups have been taking action to protect NSW koalas by meeting with Tweed State Member of Parliament, Geoff Provest seeking his support for action on koala protections and asking him not to support the koala killing legislation his government are putting forward.

Tweed Council staff’s delegated powers debated

The question of what staff and councillors get to decide in relation to development applications was raised by Tweed Councillor Ron Cooper at the last Tweed Shire Council meeting.

Byron carjacker and stolen vehicle still not found

Police say that a man carjacked a 17-year-old in Byron Bay just before midnight on Friday.

Ben Hamilton riding for kids with cancer

Ballina man Ben Hamilton is riding his bike 500km to help young kids with cancer.

Children approached by stranger in Murwillumbah

Police say a Queensland man has been charged following two alleged child approaches in Murwillumbah today.

What a strange letter from the Nationals’ Ben Franklin MLC (Byron Shire Echo, March 7), for taking a swipe at Keith Williams and Ballina Country Labor for daring to remind the voters of the Ballina electorate just how ineffectual the Nationals have been on the North Coast since the early 1970s (this letter requires some serious fact checks).

According to Mr Franklin, over the years the Nationals have delivered major infrastructure projects ‘in spades’, an amazing claim, I’ve been coming to and living in Ballina since the early 1970s. and driving down the two-lane goat track that was called the Pacific Highway from Brisbane, sometimes taking well over four hours.

I guess I must have missed all the ‘modern infrastructure’ somehow, but yes, the Howard government finally funded the Chinderah to Yelgun upgrade but only after Paul Keating initially made it a 1996 election promise.

As for the rest of the Pacific Highway upgrade to Ballina, Bob Carr’s Labor government built the Tyagarah to Ewingsdale upgrade, and when Labor’s Janelle Saffin won the seat of Page she secured Federal funding for the remaining sections, including the Ballina and Alstonville by-passes.

And as for the new Byron Hospital that the Coalition built ‘without an operating theatre’, the resumption of the land and most of the planning was again done by Bob Carr’s Labor government along with major upgrades of the Lismore Base Hospital.

Don Page was a very popular Nationals’ Member who lobbied hard but unsuccessfully for his Coalition government to build the Ballina bypass, and was rightly invited to attend the opening, the Labor Party never seriously contested the seat until 2015 when Don retired.

Keith Duncan, Pimlico

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