Bra-vo

By RENEE REDMOND and BREE PRICE

BRA power has won over the Ballina Shire Council.

Yesterday council announced it would review its controversial policy banning community groups from erecting promotional signs.

It follows the national media storm over the council's decision ordering the Alstonville Wollongbar Quota Club to remove 2000 bras and signage from the Wollongbar TAFE fence two weeks ago.

Last week the council also told the Teven-Tintenbar Public School to take down signs advertising the school's annual Country Fair.

However, Ballina Shire general manager John Christopherson said he wanted council to adopt clearer rules for community signage.

He said the council would maintain its existing Development Control Plans for commercial advertising signs but would be more

flexible for charity groups.

"Signage is either under control or out of control, there's no middle ground," he said.

"We want a consistent policy which will see neat, safe and maintained signs around the shire which are removed at the end of the community event."

Mr Christopherson met with the Alstonville Wollongbar Quota Club yesterday. He said both parties agreed the 'Bras on the Bruxner' display could have been handled better.

He encouraged community groups to write to him about what they wanted to achieve with their signage.

Vice-president of the Alstonville Wollongbar Quota Club, Diane Parker, said she suggested council select certain prominent areas within the shire, where signs could be posted to advertise community events.

Mrs Parker said it was important to look at how much money community groups raised through their events, which was all put back into the community.

Last week Teven-Tintenbar school was told by council that signs advertising the school's annual country fair had be taken down.

The school placed six signs around Teven-Tintenbar, including the junction of the Pacific Highway and Ross Lane, and the Pacific Highway and Tintenbar Road, in the lead-up to the fair on September 10.

But earlier this week, following complaints from several parents, the council reversed its decision and said the signs could stay up until after the fair.

P & C president Tony O'Rafferty said he applauded the council's rethink.

"Congratulations to the council for listening to the public opinion and realising the public want these signs around and it's a good public service," he said.

"I think there should be guidelines for where signs are put and to make sure they are put up and down in reasonable time for the event, but signs like these should be allowed.

"The country fair is the major fundraiser event for the school and if we haven't got funds we can't buy books or things for the kids.

"The signs would draw 70 per cent of patrons to the country fair."



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