Bobbi Allan, Mullumbimby
Last Thursday morning I spoke at the Byron Council Meeting, during the Public Access time, about a small but complex and important neighbourhood issue – a pedestrian crossing for Tincogan Street, Mullumbimby.
First, the outcome could not have been better. Councillor, Basil Cameron, put in hours of work to produce ten pages of thorough research and reasoning to back his two Notices of Motion in support of the crossing. These were not his only NoMs on the Council agenda.
Council staff had also worked hard on the practical arrangements needed to allow a pedestrian crossing; and thanks to the support of all Councillors, pedestrians will soon be crossing Tincogan Street much more safely.
While at Council, I heard other community members speak about much larger and more complex issues – management of the underground water in the Shire, proposals addressing the needs of homeless women, how to protect both the Byron Markets and the vulnerable Byron foreshore – and much more. Many Councillors had also spent hours preparing supportive Notices of Motion. All communication from community members, councillors and staff was intelligent, informed and respectful.
Our Local Government Councillors do an amazing job for us, which we often don’t notice until we have a complaint or a particular need. The allowances for Councillors amount to about 12 hours per week of a decent wage. I am sure they all put in many more hours per week than that, while finding other ways to financially support themselves and their families. The Mayor’s wage is a bit better – amounting to a very modest half-time salary.
Councillors, you give a lot to our community, and I thank you.