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Byron Shire
February 3, 2023

NSW 2019 Tweed candidates

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

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Letters – 1 February 2023

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Candidate round up for the seat of Tweed

It is that time again – to make your choice of candidates to represent you and your vision of the future in government.

As this Saturday’s voting day (March 23) draws ever closer  it’s important to remember that your votes count, and you need to know who you’re voting for – then it will all be over and we wait to see what fate and vote and given us.

The seat of Tweed is one of three marginal seats (only a few votes can make the difference as to who wins) in the Northern Rivers. The three leading candidates are The Greens Bill Fenelon, Country Labor’s Craig Elliot and The Nationals sitting member MP Geoff Provest.

Who wins this seat is likely to come down to how you the voter preferences. That is who you put second, third or fourth etc on your ticket. Make sure you preference putting the parties you don’t want to get elected in the last positions. Find out more in our article Will you be throwing your vote in the bin?

Five candidates will contest the seat of Tweed with all of the major parties represented as well as some of the smaller groups.

In order of appearance (on the ballot)…

Craig Elliot, ALP candidate for the seat of Tweed at the 2019 state election. Photo supplied

Country Labor Craig Elliot 

Craig Elliot is the husband of federal member for Richmond Justine Elliot who are both former members of the police force.

Mr Elliot states on his website that Labor will build a high school at Pottsville, put downward pressure on electricity prices and push back against overdevelopment. 

‘Restoring local frontline services including more police, nurses and teachers,’ is another focus for Labor he says.

Position on new Tweed Valley Hospital site 

Country Labor has taken the position of moving the site for the new Tweed Valley Hospital to the yet-to-be-built Kings Forest site. There have been accusations from The Nationals that they are supporting their ‘developer mates’ rather than considering the best position for the site. 

The King Forest development will impact on local koala habitat.

Susie Hearder, Animal-Justice-Party. Photo supplied.

Animal Justice Party Susie Hearder

The key platform for Susie Hearder is to advocate for animals involved in ‘Puppy factories, pounds, pet shops, animal experimentation/medical research, those used in sport and entertainment and intensive animal agriculture.’

More broadly she supports an end to logging in native forests and mandatory koala protection. Sustainable industries. Stronger legal protection for marine an fresh water environments, animals and ecosystems. Greater recognition of Indigenous culture .

Position on new Tweed Valley Hospital site 

‘I would like the hospital to be expanded and rebuilt in it’s current location where the population hub is and where people have already purchased homes to be in close proximity to a hospital. 

We should be saving our State Significant Farmland for food security and we need fresh food to keep us out of hospital.  I don’t agree with putting it at Kings Forest either as it is koala habitat and our endangered koalas are under enough pressure as it is. Both these options will also see our unique coastal villages paved in concrete and turned into another Gold Coast. Let’s keep our beautiful Tweed Coast the way we like it and keep the hospital in Tweed where it is needed and originally planned for.’

National Party member for Tweed, Geoff Provest.

The Nationals Geoff Provest

Geoff Provest is the sitting Nationals member for Tweed and states on his website that he is a strong champion of local issues including the Pacific Highway and gaining higher police numbers. 

Position on new Tweed Valley Hospital site 

Mr Protest has actively supported the current site for the new Tweed Valley Hospital at Cudgen near Kingscliff. The siting of the hospital here has led to significant objections from the local community who have felt that their objections have gone unheard.

Like Labor’s position on siting the new hospital at King Forest the National/Liberal support for the Cudgen site has led to accusations that they are supporting their ‘developer mates’ rather than considering the best position for the site.

Ronald McDonald from Sustainable Australia. Photo supplied.

Sustainable Australia Ronald McDonald

Sustainable Australia are opposed to overdevelopment and support better planning and handing back power to local communities. 

They believe the fact that the state government can step in and take over planning consent for any development over $5m at their discretion under the State Significant development legislation should be reversed. 

Position on new Tweed Valley Hospital site 

I believe the present site for the new Tweed Valley Hospital is unacceptable and would spell the end of the Cudgen plateau as a productive area. Furthermore, a building of this height would be the Trojan horse to break the Kingscliff’s three storey height limit.
It is one of our major policy this election to fight for better planning to stop over development and to return real planning power to local communities. Our local issues of Tweed Valley Hospital is a classic example of government not listening to local communities and that is why I support the relocation of Tweed Valley hospital to a more appropriate site.’

Greens candidate for Tweed Bill Fenelon. Photo Tree Faerie.

The Greens Bill Fenelon

Bill Fenelon is a master mariner who is a long-time Tweed local who is keen to protect the environment and has been actively seeking the end to water mining industry in the region.

He supports the extension of trains from Tweed to the Gold Coast airport and ‘the creation of rail-trail cycleways’.

Position on new Tweed Valley Hospital site 

The Greens support the new Tweed Valley Hospital being moved from the State Significant Farmland site at Cudgen, that was selected under the current Liberal/National state government, to protect prime farmland and the character of Kingscliff.

Seat of Tweed

If you’re not sure which seat you are in take a look at the map below. If you think you might be in the Lismore or Ballina electorate then head to our candidate profiles and maps on these electorates. For Lismore click here and Ballina click here.

Seat of Tweed. Image New South Wales Electoral Commission

Will you be throwing your vote in the bin?

Who wins or loses local marginal seats during the NSW state elections is in your hands – or rather in the way you preference your vote.


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  1. Last I heard, as President of TOOT, Bill Fenelon supported the reinstatement of trains on the Casino-Murwillumbah corridor. This precludes any rail-rail trail as the two cannot possibly safely coexist in the limited width available.

    He also supported the construction of a new railway north from Murwillumbah to Tweed Heads. However he has not detailed the route so that those who would lose their homes or have trains running through their communities can make an informed decision.

    Bill Fenelon please reply here to clarify these issues.

  2. I am very confused by this profile of Bill Fenelon, saying he supports “Rail Trail cycleways.” Is this a misprint by the echo? He has been campaigning for the return of the train on the Casino-Murwillumbah corridor as the president of TOOT!

  3. Bill Fenelon is a leader for TOOT, which is pushing for the return of a full train service along our 132 kms of old disused derelict rail corridor.

    Clearly, anyone wanting trains to be reinstated, is delusional, as it simply isn’t going to happen unless we undergo massive population growth and thousands of employment positions also along this corridor.!! Only then, will government start to consider the enormous expense and ongoing costs for such a service.

    People think having trains and a trail together, is a great idea, but it simply is not possible to fit both on the vast majority of the corridor’s length. On the odd 100 meters here and there, where it may be possible, it would cost alot more than just the train. Then there’s the intractable safety concerns.

    Political liars are one problem. Fairy Dreamers are another. Be very careful who you vote for.

      • Yes but in order to flatten the gradient of the line, most of the corridor is consumed by embankments to raise it above the low areas, and cuttings through the hills. In places these embankments and cuttings are up to six metres high with just enough level width for the rails and little more. The tunnels are just wide enough to fit a train and pass though ridges that are up to one hundred metres above the line so there is no option to divert a trail over the top.

        The rails sit on a formation that drains the water away from the track. A trail would also require a similar formation with space for drainage. There simply isn’t enough width to accommodate two formations in addition to the cuttings and embankments.

        Scratching an impossible to maintain goat track down in the grunge along the edge of the corridor without a proper formation would result in it being destroyed during the first wet season. Even if there were enough space to build a second formation, the available budget would not cover the enormous construction costs.The trail would not be a world class facility and potential tourists would simply go to a proper trail somewhere else.

        Even if these impossibilities were overcome we cannot have trains sharing such a small space with pedestrians and cyclists. What would be the point of having a train operating at walking speed? It certainly wouldn’t attract commuters.

        Those who say the space can be shared are all train enthusiasts and have no concern for the trail. Indeed having the trail fail is exactly what they want.

    • Tim,
      The railway existed for the Gold Coast,
      Maybe an apology is in line. The population there is now more than half a million people and growing fast towards a million.

  4. I won’t vote GREEN, why would I when I can’t prune, lop, remove vegetation or trees overhanging or encroaching on my property because for example a rare black ant MAYBE living in the leaves, but it’s okay with the Greens if you loose your house, home, contents, car, pets, stock, fences, sheds, farm equipment, livelihood and maybe even people to storms or bush fires!!!
    Go Figure!!!

    • Vote Jeremy Buckingham’s L Group in the Senate. He used to be a party leader but quit The Greens because of just the kind of economy destroying nonsense you listed.

      Nothing will send a stronger message to a party that has been taken over by ultra-leftists.


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