Council rejects Bangalow weir demolition recommendation
BANGALOW Weir will not be demolished any time soon, if at all, with Byron Shire Council voting unanimously not to accept a report recommending its removal.
Yesterday's decision gives Bangalow Historical Society time to look for alternative funding sources and lodge a DA to restore the historic structure.
The new resolution will see the council give owner's consent for the lodgment of the DA by the historical society.
The council will also defer any decision about the future of the weir until the results of any funding applications made by the Bangalow Weir Group are known.
Finally the council will receive a report regarding any other potential funding sources that can be used for the restoration.
During the meeting, councillor Sol Ibrahim praised the Bangalow community for the time and effort they had so far devoted to preserving their weir.
Bangalow Weir Group representative Christobel Munson was happy with today's decision.
The group had already applied for a Community Building Partnership grant from the State Government worth $115,000.
"In eager anticipation of our application being successful, we have gone ahead with preparing a DA," she said.
"The DA should be ready in a couple of weeks and will hopefully address all the issues that council staff may raise.
"It's Bangalow, everyone wants it to happen - the weir enhances the amenity of the community. It's a place to have good old-fashioned fun for free."
Before the meeting, members of the group had expressed disappointment the council would allocate $60,000 to remove the weir wall, returning Byron Creek to natural flows.
They were also affronted by a proposal to place a section of the old wall in the nearby park to recognise the weir's heritage value.
At the meeting, councillors also voted to re-state its support for a gasfield-free shire that incorporates coal seam gas mining exclusion zones.
"We have a responsibility to follow our community in restating the rejection of this dinosaur industry," said Mayor Simon Richardson.