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Byron Shire
March 3, 2021

Toot toot – toooot!

Latest News

Soli becalmed in NSW Pro surf series

Local surfer Soli Bailey has finished in second place at the Mad Mex Maroubra Pro World Surf League Qualifying Series event held at Sydney’s Maroubra beach last weekend.

Other News

Croquet club gets new turf as it prepares to host NSW championship

The Byron Bay Croquet Club is ready for another big year that includes new turf, hosting a state championship and building on last year’s membership growth.

Australia’s bastardry

Gareth W R Smith, Byron Bay Australia has a long string of racist and anti-humanitarian policies. These range from its...

Constitutional referendum/poll for LG elections for Byron Shire?

Is the wards fight back again? Byron Shire Council staff have advised, in the upcoming agenda, that ‘Council may conduct a Constitutional referendum or poll in conjunction with the Local Government Election, to be held in September 2021’.

Hospital staff want to park for free while they work

It seems that Lismore Base isn’t the only hospital whose workers would like to park their cars for free while they work.

So you think you’d like to run for Council?

Residents considering running for Tweed Council can attend briefing sessions to find out about being a councillor ahead of local government elections.

Action on Cumbalum Interchange at Ballina?

Following multiple community requests, Cr Phillip Meehan brought a motion to the last Ballina Council meeting calling for additional ramps to be built at the Cumbalum-Pacific Motorway interchange.

Basil Cameron, Goonengerry

Thirty five per cent of the NSW population lives outside Sydney, yet neither party (coalition or Labor) are offering more than ten per cent of the dollars to the ‘rest of NSW’ and even less for ‘regional and rural’ areas like the North Coast according to research from the Grattan Institute into the transport ‘election promises’.

There’s recognition of the value of public transport, particularly rail, reflected in the promises made by both parties – but only in Sydney. There are no commitments for either types of infrastructure north of Sydney.

The total value of the promises are $70 billion for the coalition and $50 billion for Labor. The Grattan Institute calculates that each billion amounts to $125 ‘from every person in NSW’.

It’s scandalous that the rail line that connects our population centres remains ignored by the major parties while traffic banks up for kilometres. It’s becoming clearer by the day that emissions from transport are continuing to rise and that urgent action is required to provide sustainable alternatives before we cook in our cars.

Council is undertaking a study for reactivating the rail line that will account for the social and economic needs of our community. Which candidates at this election will back our community’s vision and be effective advocates once the election is over?

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  1. The NSW governemnt in its last term funded thousands of new bus services in NSW of which we got just four. That is what happens when you spend your time pissing in the wind trying to bring rail when neither NSW governemnt has any interest in funding it. The train does not connect the major optional centres – it goes nowhere near the largest, Tweed Heads and the Tweed Coast nor what will be shortly the second largest, the Ballina Coast. More importantly those areas have far the largest number of households dependent on public transprot, and unlike the corridor that number is growing. I note that the Gratton Institute, and also the Productivity Commission, criticised the ACT for introducing light rail in a city with double our area’s population arguing rapid buses were a better value and more equitable solution.

    There is no evidence that a train will relieve the Bay’s congestion which is a result of decades of neglect of road infrastructure. Ballina which gets as many visitors at peak season and gets more commuter traffic does not face the same problems. There is similarly no evidence that a train running off the grid along the e Casino Murwillumbah line on diesel will use less fuel than a modern car with a passenger, and certainly it would use more than an EV bus running on renewable power.

    We will read with interest the Byron Line proposals for a tourist train and whether it will attract funding and add to affordable transport in the Byron Shire. The hourly seven day and evening bus services that carries more passengers down the Tweed Coast than all of the bus services along the corridor and the Byron tourist train and Jeff Provost has recently got a commitment for more services along that route.. Now the policies of TOOTs/NRRAG and Bill Fenelon touted for years have been overwhelming rejected by the electorate, it is time to support support Janelle Saffin and Tamara Smith who both argue for better bus-based public transport to put in place flexible road transport services to villages and regular bus services like the Tweed Coast’s along the main commuter routes, particularly those in an out of Ballina, but also along the disused rail corrdior. .

  2. Well said Peter. The people of our region have spoken and not voted for parties that support the nostalgic dream of returning the train on the corridor that was built in the age of steam trains. TOOT and Basil Cameron please take note!. After 15 years it is well and truly time to put this train dream to rest so something useful can come of the corridor before it is lost forever.


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Shores United win local derby in season opener

Shores United FC began their season in the Anzac Cup B football competition with a 3-1 win over local rivals the Mullumbimby Brunswick Valley FC last Sunday.

Ballina Dragon Boaters win world championships

Shelley Cornish from Tintenbar has won two gold medals in the world indoor rowing championships as well as a world record time, while husband Paul Hurley chimed in with a silver medal.

Senior players triumph at Cherry Street Croquet Club

The experience combination of Joan Campbell (92 years young) and Elaine Astley (89) were able to beat the field and collect a win in the Cherry Streety Twilight Golf Croquet Plate Competition held at Ballina.

Entertainment in the Byron Shire and beyond for the week beginning 3 March, 2021

Entertainment in the Byron Shire and beyond for the week beginning 3 March, 2021