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Byron Shire
May 25, 2024

The writers of Byron Council’s history

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Cr Basil Cameron, Goonengerry

The ongoing rewriting of history by the warring factions of The Greens to support their favoured candidates is disrespectful and counterproductive to the good governance of our Shire.

Most notably the repeated claim about a current and previous ‘Green Council’. Fact is, the Greens have never been in majority on Council. To constantly say that they are or have been, as claimed by Matthew O’Reilly (Letters, March 3), is to greatly diminish the significant work of non-Greens party progressives who have often led the major achievements of recent Councils. It also disrespects those residents who choose not to vote Greens.

Matthew should check the record. The ‘strong vote’ in 1995 to win the ‘battle of Byron’ was for a broad range of progressive candidates, not just The Greens. Of the six progressives elected, only one was a Greens member and he had to rely on the preferences of other progressive candidates to creep over the line.

Any deep dive into the facts and minutes of Council would clearly demonstrate the current party dysfunction going back to previous Councils. Last term it was The Greens who delivered the majority to conservatives when they cynically gave a real estate agent the number two spot on their ticket in order to curry favour with development interests, only to have Rose Wanchap defect once elected. This is the real ‘political history’ behind the diminished 2014 DCP, a direct result of the community’s majority vote for a progressive Council in 2012 lost by The Greens putting political interests ahead of the community.

So before Matthew gives any further lectures claiming that Councillors ‘have not properly understood the history’, I suggest he has an honest look at the past and puts aside the green spin in the interests of better representing the community should he be successful at the election.

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