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December 4, 2021

Call for removal of ‘illegal’ election signs

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Darlene Cook, Elly Bird and Vanessa Ekins want fellow candidate Steve Krieg to remove his signs. Photo supplied.

Three Lismore Mayoral candidates have united to publicly call for the immediate removal of prominent signage that they say has been illegally installed by another candidate’s team.

Council has strict rules about what you can and can’t do as far as election signage goes – including the size, where they are hung, when they can be hung and when they must be removed.

Penalty infringement notices and fines

The Council notification also outlined a schedule of fines including a penalty infringement notice for $330 may be issued for signage placed without approval or contravening the regulations, a notice for $572 may be issued for signage in a road reserve that poses a safety issue and a penalty infringement notice for $3,000 (individual) or $6000 (corporation) can be issued for carrying out a development without consent, including the placement of unlawful signage.

Labor candidate Darlene Cook, Elly Bird from Our Sustainable Future and Vanessa Ekins from the Greens say the signs for candidate Steve Krieg are just not on.

Elly Bird said that two weeks ago, Council notified all candidates of the requirements around election signage. ‘All candidates were clearly told that legislation around election signage stipulates that signage is not allowed to be larger than 0.8m2 and that it cannot be displayed earlier than five weeks out from the election.

‘Candidates were requested to immediately comply by removing illegal signage.’

Ms Bird said that Our Sustainable Future and Labor had put up signage on bus shelters that they thought was compliant. ‘And some excited Greens supporters had put up one or two signs but as soon as we were notified they were quickly removed.’

‘Steve Krieg’s team were notified at exactly the same time as us but their signage is still there, and not only is it still in place but they have put up more that are clearly not compliant.’

Oversized signs all over the community

Ms Bird says they put up oversized signs all over the community two full weeks earlier than is legally allowed and didn’t take any of them down when they were requested to do so. ‘They are still up, and they shouldn’t be.’

Darlene Cook says that not only is this poor behaviour in response to Council directives, it is sending a clear message to the community that this group does not believe rules and regulations should apply to them. ‘On Friday afternoon there was finally a laughable attempt made to comply with the placement of thin masking tape gridlines being stuck across one side of one of the non-compliant signs. Within minutes it was falling off.

Bending the rules

‘This is clearly an attempt to bend the rules so they can retain their illegal signage.’

Vanessa Ekins says that if this is their response when they are asked to comply with regulations that were clearly outlined to all prospective candidates, it doesn’t bode well if they are elected to Council.

‘Steve Krieg should immediately remove his non-compliant signage, and if he doesn’t then it’s clear that he and his team think that they are a law unto themselves and we should all be very concerned about their ability to stick to the rules if they are elected to Council.’


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    • Dennis, I think it’s more that these three (as you call them), are actually concerned with doing the right thing and making a point when the rules are broken. I should think any fair-minded person would see this as a quality needed when sitting on council, representing your LGA. Does your comment mean that you are happy for would-be councillors to break any rules they choose not to comply with and if so, how can that possibily mean they will be honest and truthful and fair, qualities we have a right to expect from our councillors.

    • I think the concern is that this candidate and his supporters do not play by the rule book, do not follow Council guidelines even when clearly asked.
      That is a grave concern that reeks of the corruption and double-standards that we’re so used to from our big parties in office where money, power and coal have greater leverage than law, justice and the will of the people.
      Let’s make sure we don’t get that here locally in Lismore!

  1. I was under the impression that the council rules were related to signage on private property, with nothing to go on public property.
    The bus shelters and large, prominent, advertising signs are “commercial advertising” and come under a different set of rules. It’s a long time since I actually read the rules, and maybe it has changed since then.
    It is one of the problems of our democracy that those with deep pockets can buy higher exposure.

    • Political advertising around elections has very strict rules that are quite independent and different to commercial advertising – I think you can trust the three Councillors and The Echo there.

  2. No Dennis, this group is of course the LNP dressed up as “Independents” maybe due to the efforts of the current NSW State Government who have just lost a sitting Premier to an ICAC enquiry and of course or the spiraling out of control Federal Government which is currently an international laughing stock in more ways than one.

    At best this is a group of small business operators, including Real Estate and Used Car Salesman who clearly they think the rules don’t apply to them, Yes very much the LNP, what is Lismore in for if they get control of this great region?

  3. Matt has explained it perfectly.
    They are not prepared to state who they are representing but plaster their corflutes all over the place in the same way that Kevin Hogan did at the last Federal election.
    Who is paying for them, I wonder. The Nats have no real concept of ‘behaving with integrity’

    • In my opinion there are 3 categories of people who wish to put up their hand to hold public office as a Councilor on local government. The first and most noble incorporates those who actually do care about their local community and the environment so they hope to be able to do the right thing and make improvements for the common good. The second category are those that see local government as a stepping stone for their political career on a wider stage. Lastly there are those who simply wish to be elected to further their own interests or to benefit (usually financially ) of their chosen few. I don’t believe that Mayor Ekins, Cnr Bird nor Cnr Cook fall within the last category. I have seen them all in action closely over the last 2 years and while I do not always agree with all the decisions they may make they appear to have the common good, which in this day and age must have the environment at the top of the list, as the prize.

  4. How pathetic is this whole sign thing, it just shows there petty minds and a clear reason Lismore desperately needs the change that is Steve Krieg

    • Please enlighten us of what Krieg’s policies are? All I have heard from him is how bad Lismore is. Most negative campaign I have ever seen, straight out of the LNP handbook.

  5. It is interesting how those who appear to support Mr Kreig in this thread have stooped to attacking the person which is often the case when they are unable to argue the point or incapable of so doing.


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