11 C
Byron Shire
May 23, 2024

Ballina Council wrap-up

Latest News

Homelessness service funded – but only for a year

With 2024 Street Count data indicating a 16 per-cent increase in rough sleepers in Byron Shire, the NSW government has responded to say that the previously-announced Assertive Outreach team will receive $1.3m in funding for a year.

Other News

Cartoon of the week – 22 May, 2024

The letters deadline for The Echo is noon Friday. Letters longer than 200 words may be cut. The publication of letters is at the discretion of the letters editor.

Local Labor MP supports Future Gas Strategy

Climate research scientist, Joelle Gergis, has joined other scientists, academics, think tanks and economists in condemning federal Labor’s Future Gas Strategy, which was released last week.

Main Arm roads

Dear Tamara, I was at the meeting last night where we heard of Byron Council’s frustrations with the NSW...

Cabarita Beach powers up with new EV fast charger

The future of sustainable transport is rolling into northern NSW with the opening of a new electric vehicle fast charging station at Cabarita on the weekend.

We Like to Tiki: Caper festival closing party this Sunday

North Byron Hotel is the official watering hole of Caper Byron Bay Food & Culture Festival 2024. To celebrate...

Police appeal again to locate man missing from Mullumbimby

Police are again appealing for public assistance to locate Gage Wilson, a man missing from Mullumbimby, since Saturday, 18 May.

Ballina Island. Photo David Lowe.

Ballina Shire Council’s August meeting covered refugees, parks, rubbish collection and development issues, with controversy over local government ward boundaries spilling over into an additional meeting the following week.

Proceedings opened with a debate about whether welcome packs should be provided to international refugees who have come to Ballina. This was ultimately supported with only Cr Nigel Buchanan opposed.

There was then a mayoral minute from Cr Sharon Cadwallader, encouraging council to prepare a plan to identify embellishments to Walsh Park in Wardell (which might include goalposts and a community garden), considering that the main recreation grounds in town are now occupied by a pod village.

The motion was carried unanimously after a failed amendment and debate.


After morning tea, Ballina Council voted to adopt amendments to the Ballina Shire Development Control Plan regarding the latest plans for Ballina Heights Commercial Area, and endorsed new planning/mapping adjustments for locations near the junction of Ross Lane and the Coast Road and in the Cumbalum Urban Release Area.

Cr Rod Bruem. Photo David Lowe.

In a discussion about fossil fuel investments Cr Rod Bruem said Ballina was heading in the right direction, with council’s fossil fuel free investments going up slightly from 42 to 43.2 percent.

Unfortunately the fine print shows that fossil fuel aligned (and non-green) investments are still at 52.5 per cent, with 4.3 per cent being unclassified.

Council wrote off rates, charges and interest totalling $5,408, before debating whether to support Marine Rescue NSW to the tune of $11,200 for computer and jet boat-related costs. This was ultimately supported, with only Cr Phil Meehan voting against.

There was then a long and acrimonious debate about local government ward boundaries in Ballina, followed up by an Extraordinary Meeting about the same issue the following week. Mayor Sharon Cadwallader and her allies ultimately prevailed, by a narrow margin.

Earnings, signs and rubbish

Flat Rock Tent Park charges went up, and council unanimously accepted policy review into Farmland Rating policy and an update of legal matters, with a large electric sign on Bangalow being knocked back, the RSL’s similar sign being preserved, and various developers fighting Ballina Council in court, notably Gemlife.

Ballina waste collection service. Photo David Lowe.

A financial review showed earnings were up from the airport and Ballina Visitors Centre, before council agreed to privatise the rest of their garbage collection service, including selling off the waste collection trucks.

Only Crs Jeff Johnson and Eva Ramsey were opposed.

During a debate about financial assistance for community groups, it was revealed the CWA now had to hire back the same hall they originally donated to Ballina Council.

A motion to allow large community groups with multiple bank accounts for different services to submit more than one application per year for support was blocked, as was an amendment for Ballina Council to donate $500 to the Lennox Head Residents Association Boomerang Bags Committee for venue hire (this went down on the casting vote of the mayor).

There was unanimous support for an 0.5 per cent increase in the General Manager’s salary, with councillors unanimously agreeing his twelve month performance review was positive.

More fun next month!

More stories about Ballina Shire Council:

Lennox Head tree planting day success

This year celebrated the 19th year of the annual Lennox Head tree planting day along the iconic Lennox Headland that took place on May 10. 


Lane closure at Canal Bridge and Allens Parade; roundabout construction to...

Tomorrow night will see one lane closed on Tamarind Drive in Ballina while  Lennox Head will see the beginning of roundabout construction at Ballina Street and Allens Parade, Lennox Head start on Monday, May 13.


Ballina Council delays Sharpes Beach redevelopment

At the eleventh hour, Ballina Shire Council has voted to press pause on the controversial Sharpes Beach car park redevelopment, and seek further options.


No more video meetings on the go for Ballina Shire Councillors

Dodgy reception and dangerous driving have been cited as concerns prompting a recent majority Ballina Shire Council vote to ban members attending meetings by video in a moving car.


Take a stand against violence against women in Ballina this Sunday

Say ‘No’ to domestic violence this Sunday, May 5 at 4pm in Ballina and stand in solidarity, honouring those who have lost their lives to domestic violence.



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Rally demands action over Gaza

As the crisis in Gaza continues to escalate, a march through Byron’s streets last Saturday demanded immediate action from the Australian Labor government to stop the genocide and mass starvation of the Palestinian civilian population in Gaza.

New witnesses in long-running kambo inquest

Proceedings reopened in Byron Bay Courthouse yesterday in what is expected to be the final stage of the long-running coronial inquest into the death of Jarrad Antonovich.

Police appeal again to locate man missing from Mullumbimby

Police are again appealing for public assistance to locate Gage Wilson, a man missing from Mullumbimby, since Saturday, 18 May.

Causes of death

There’s been a lot of talk about an epidemic of violence against women lately, including Dr Ray Moynihan’s article in the last Echo. I like...