South Ballina Beach. Photo : Mireille Merlet-Shaw/The Northern Star
South Ballina Beach. Photo : Mireille Merlet-Shaw/The Northern Star Mireille Merlet-Shaw

Should visitors pay to 4WD on this North Coast beach?

VISITORS hooning along South Ballina beach have inspired calls for a new permit system for 4WDs.

Ballina Shire councillor Nathan Willis will put forward a Notice of Motion for a proactive approach to managing vehicles on the beach at the council's meeting today.

Cr Willis said he had been approached by a member of the community who was concerned about visitors massing to the spot with their 4WDs.

"She was saying she often goes to South Ballina beach to walk with her husband and dog,” Cr Willis said.

Recently, the woman was confronted by about 15 4WDs, some of them carrying trail bikes and all bearing Queensland number plates.

Cr Willis said she recalled the scene as being "like the set of a Mad Max movie”.

He said his motion would not seek to pose a cost to residents and was not a move against people using 4WDs legally on the beach, but rather a response to those acting irresponsibly.

His motion will seek for the council to approach the State Government to discuss the implementation of a permit system to "more proactively manage 4WDs on the South Ballina beaches”.

He is also calling for the council to use possible revenue secured through permits for increased ranger patrols on the beach and to look at "the possibility of increasing the ferry tolls for either non-NSW registered vehicles or alternatively non-resident, non-ratepayer vehicles to generate extra revenue to also assist with increased ranger patrols.”



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