Paid parking set to stay at beachsides
By Samantha Turnbull
"We're here because locals should not have to pay for parking," Ben King told a rally of more than 100 Byron Bay residents last night.
"Now let's get this over with quickly so we can all get home and watch Rex Hunt on TV."
Mr King, president of the Byron Bay Boardriders Club, did get his wish for the protest to end quickly, but plans for paid parking at three beachside car parks are still in place.
Cape Byron Reserve Trust manager Sue Walker addressed the protesters at Captain Cook Lookout, but did not deliver the news they wanted to hear.
The trust plans to introduce parking fees at The Pass, Captain Cook Lookout and Cosy Corner at $3 for four hours, or $35 for annual passes for local residents.
"The annual pass means you can get as many stickers as you need for the number of cars you have at home," she said.
"They will also get cards to give to family and friends if they're in another vehicle."
The crowd jeered at the annual pass option, with one resident yelling, 'We didn't come here to be told how to park, we came because we don't want to pay to park'.
Ms Walker said she would take back the residents' concerns to the trust.
"The trustees want everyone to know they're listening," she said.
"We are part of the community too."
Byron Bay fisherman Ken Thurlow said the community should have been consulted long ago.
"They've put the cart before the horse," he said.