Byron Greens members were instrumental in Byron Council adopting a program entitled, “Greenprint for a Sustainable Future for Byron Shire” in 1995. Byron Greens’ first councillor, Richard Staples, was elected in 1995 and was a part of the council that developed the rural settlement reforms that were encapsulated in the 1998 award winning Byron Rural Settlement Strategy. Byron Greens candidate, Ian Cohen as an MLC, was instrumental in making Multiple Occupancy (MO) legal again after the Liberal /National Government made them illegal in the 90s.
Byron Shire has now authorised over sixty (60) MOs and Community Title (CT) communities. These are often intentional communities and still able to provide affordable and ethical living opportunities to our community. Most of Byron’s MOs and CTs have made huge contributions to native revegetation, biodiversity conservation, sustainability, and the protection of rural land. Members of the Byron Greens have been a part of the establishment of intentional communities since the 1970s and one of our candidates still lives on an MO.
With the current housing crisis in Byron Shire, we propose planning changes to allow secondary dwellings on some MOs and CTs where it is sustainably possible.
Byron Greens will:
- Support existing MOs and CTs to reapply to expand the number of dwellings and lots permitted where sustainably possible. i.e. additional dwellings on existing MOs and CTs
- Propose changes to the Byron Rural Land Use Strategy (BRLUS) and Local Environment Plan (LEP) to enable additional MOs to be approved around the Shire.
- Make changes to the Byron Development Control Plan (DCP) to make it easier to build rural workers dwellings for farm workers, native revegetation workers and rural workers.
- Investigate including the RU4 Primary Production Small Lot zoning in the Byron LEP. This would allow the rezoning and sub-division of exiting RU1 and RU2 Rural zones from the existing 40 hectares down to 10 or 5 hectares where the use would be for intensive agriculture.
- Create a definition of temporary accommodation in the Byron DCP so that farm-stay, bed & breakfast, rural tourist, eco-tourism, caravan park and camp site accommodation can be leased to one tenant for up to 24 months not the current 3-month limit. The Byron Greens believe it is a perverse planning outcome that landowners can build tourist cabins for tourists but not affordable housing cabins for locals.
- Change the current arrangements for tiny houses and caravans to allow more tiny houses and caravans on rural properties as exempt development.
- Introduce incentives for more permanent group homes and hostels to be built in our rural areas. Particularly for seniors, people with disabilities and other disadvantaged people in our community.
- Reduce permissibility and incentives for tourism developments in rural areas.
- Further incentivise native revegetation and biodiversity enhancement on private property throughout the Shire but particularly on wildlife corridors.
- Further protect our riparian areas and native vegetation.
Only the Byron Greens can be trusted to facilitate sustainable rural living as only the Byron Greens have a proven track record. A vote for the Byron greens is a vote for sustainable rural living and intentional communities.