Division continues within the local Greens membership, with the Byron Greens convener telling Echonetdaily that claims over the Byron bypass by acting mayor Michael Lyon in Echonetdaily were incorrect.
Byron Greens convener and former councillor Duncan Dey told Echonetdaily that the Byron Greens was the ‘local group’ mentioned in the mayor’s column, published in last week’s Echo.
Dey said, ‘We wish to clarify that the group has not been “consulted” nor taken a position for or against the current Byron Bay bypass project’.
‘The Greens oppose biobanking and locally we have expressed concern to Greens councillors that biobanking was fundamental in gaining approval for this bypass route’.
Biobanking, as explained in last week’s Echonetdaily, involves taking ‘credits’ when removing/destroying native habitat, and compensating for it with similar biodiversity plantings elsewhere.
Consultation v discussion
Cr Lyon told Echonetdaily, ‘We have a different view of what consultation is – this issue was discussed with the local group [Byron Greens] at the time the decision was being made’.
‘The local group left it in our hands to determine and, as Duncan says, did not form an opinion one way or the other.
‘It was discussed, and this is consultation in my book.
‘I share the concerns over biobanking and believe there is nothing stopping us from doing more as additional compensation for the loss of vegetation’.
Dey added, ‘The mayor’s column read like the Byron Greens supports Michael’s position’.
‘So far, the group is neither for or against – we have not been consulted.
‘I disagree with Michael that an impromptu discussion is consultation’.
No public forum on bypass
Calls by local Greens MP Tamara Smith for a public forum on the Byron bypass have fallen flat owing to Greens councillors being unsupportive.
No councillor support
Mr Dey says, ‘The Greens aren’t planning a public meeting at this (late) stage. If councillors were on side, it would have value. Personally, I’d support it’, he said. ‘I expressed my dissatisfaction with the route about to be built in my Notice of Motion to the August 2014 meeting of Council.
‘I still hold that same view’.