Council Elections Coming Up
We have asked our candidates for council what their stance is on the Rail Trail.
These are candidates that replied.
BYRON SHIRE COUNCIL
George Graham – supports the Rail Trail as he thinks “trains won’t come back in my lifetime”.
Cate Coorey – “I support the Rail Trail idea but not to the exclusion of any other use of the rail corridor. Must be kept in public hands and if possible used for some kind of transport conveyance”.
Paul Spooner – “A publicly funded rail service is not coming back on this track – no state or federal government is proposing this to happen.
Both Lismore and Tweed Councils have committed to establishing a Rail Trail on this corridor. This will kill any idea of a regional train service.
As Mayor I would begin discussions immediately with the state government about the utilisation of this corridor for public transport usage – this would include road transport, bus lanes, bike paths and walking tracks.
We need to maintain our historical public transport corridor for what it was meant for – public transport. It should not be sold off. It should not be leased to commercial enterprises. It should be used for transport uses”.
Alan Hunter – Supports the Rail Trail as a stand alone project.
“The trains will never come back on that corridor.”
Jack Sugarman – Supports walking/bike track and light rail and wild-life corridor.
As far as we know most candidates support the rail trail.
RICHMOND VALLEY COUNCIL
Sandra Humphries – Has been a long time supporter of the Rail Trail
Robert Hayes – Says he is supportive.
Daniel Simpson – “I am currently also a board member on Regional Development Northern Rivers which is chaired by Don Page. I am a big supporter of the rail trailconcept, Richmond Valley has it listed as a signature project. I will do all I can to assist it to come to fruition”.
TWEED SHIRE COUNCIL
Barry Longland – Long time worker for the Rail Trail and sits on the NRRT committee.
Barry says “Generally the Tweed candidates are supportive of the Rail Trail“.
Tweed council elections have been put back until October.
THE BYRON LINE – A PROPOSAL BY SIMON RICHARDSON (MAYOR OF BYRON)
See full proposal below.
A meeting was held on Thursday 25th August by Simon Richardson to members of TOOT and NRRT inc and other interested parties regarding the future use of the railcorridor within the Byron Shire.
Simon presented his Byron Line Proposal with the principal hope of activating the corridor between Billinudgel and Bangalow, which is within Byron Shire only.
The previous feasibility study done by Arup, has met with criticism and disbelief from certain parties, therefore another feasibility study was suggested for the Byron Section only. This may be partly funded by Byron Shire Council.
NRRT inc. would like to see the Terms of Reference (TOR) for this study be decided on with input from TOOT and NRRT inc, Byron Council and the community.
The status of the Rail Trail proposal from NRRT will be unchanged. However, we will assist with the TOR in order to expedite this new feasibility study and business plan. It is important that all parties have their questions and concerns addressed by this study so we can move forward as a united community.
The meeting agreed that this is not a public transport solution.
NRRT inc. believes that a full transport study would be necessary to address major transport needs of the community, other than just focusing on the corridor.
NRRT inc. is conscious of the urgency of the situation as the corridor is deteriorating at an increasing rate and major heritage structures are becoming less viable over time, to restore.
Lismore, Richmond Valley and Tweed councils remain committed to the Rail Trailand are not involved with “The Byron Line”.
BESPOKED PARTY FOR ALL CYCLISTS (AND THEIR FRIENDS)
Byron Bay Cycling Club had the idea that we should celebrate cycling in the region (there are a lot of us!)
The new councillors will also be invited as well as guest speakers. As you can see, we have our supportive band Soul’d performing for us again so it should be a great night with good food, music and dancing. Come along and have a ball!
We also need to point out to the 4 councils that more needs to be done to create safe cycling infrastructure for our residents and visitors.