16.3 C
Byron Shire
April 11, 2021

Very light greens

Latest News

A win for the roughy

The battle for the 'roughy had been a tough road for conservationists and hopefully this win will be the last fight.

Other News

A win for the roughy

The battle for the 'roughy had been a tough road for conservationists and hopefully this win will be the last fight.

Wooing the discerning gin drinker with Husk Botanic

Husk founder, Paul Messenger, introduces his new Husk Botanic – a fresh cane spirit, designed to be mixed with...

Mullum farmer’s market closed this Friday

This Friday's Mullum Farmer's Market has been cancelled due to the decimation of the site by rain.

West Bank apartheid

Palestine Liberation Centre, Byron Bay The ABC’s Religion and Ethics Report this week featured an interview with former Israeli cabinet...

Dili facing double disaster

The capital of East Timor, Dili, is reeling after flood waters swept through the city on the weekend, leaving at least 27 dead. The President of East Timor, Francisco Guterres Lú-Olo, described the floods as a 'great calamity'.

Big swinging dicks

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Tom Tabart, Former greens councillor

After greens councillors voted to go ahead with the Byron ‘bypass’ disregarding Greens policy on the developer-initiated scam of bio-banking, some may be wondering what has happened.

As a former greens candidate who withdrew (from a winnable position) during the last election campaign I can offer some perspective.

My reason for standing down was that my family was considering moving south but more importantly, I was affronted by the quality of my fellow candidates who had minimal background in the green movement – two had only recently joined the party and were essentially mayoral ‘captains picks’. One was touted by said mayor as the future mayor (no not Michael) and was heavily supported by influential members in the selection process while they attempted to sideline me.

Cr Richardson, mentored by Jan Barham and myself in his first term as a councillor, was then perversely aided in his first mayoral stint by the defection of Rose Wanchup. This allowed him to exercise his considerable verbal skills in opposition to the then pro-development majority without having to make any decisions that may have brought him into conflict with the real power of the GM and staff.

Four greens and four moderates were then elected in a backlash to the deeply regressive outgoing council. Simon as mayor immediately formed a close relationship with the GM ceasing any consultation with experienced greens members, especially former councillors. The three newbies immediately fell into line exhibiting an unparalleled degree of hubris, which they have maintained to this latest decision.

Despite many warnings that the council staff follow their own agenda and can only be controlled if councillors combine to examine and question their work, the green councillors (and others) have opted to repeatedly buckle and defend what has proved to be lazy and questionable staff work. The ‘bypass’ is just the latest example.

Being an effective councillor takes time and hard work to fully understand each issue and the relevant laws and regulations. Being lazy and relying on rhetoric is not an acceptable substitute.

The last time councillors were prepared to hold staff and authorities to account was under Jan Barham’s leadership, I now realise this was a rare exception.


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1 COMMENT

  1. Tom,
    From what I know of your writing, you let it rip.
    This letter is written carefully. Good one. Keep the green thumb on the pulse of Byron.

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