Greens MP for Ballina Tamara Smith has welcomed the announcement by Byron Shire Council that it will purchase the Beech Road education land in Suffolk Park, retaining it in community ownership.
"This is a victory for the Suffolk Park community and another example of people power that we as a community in the Northern Rivers area are world renowned for," said Ms Smith.
"What a cost, though, to our already stretched local council and thus a cost to our community. When you consider that the space had historically been planned to be used for a school why should the community have had to pay $900,000 to buy the land to keep it as social capital?”
"This is a government that has made more than $16 Billion from privatising our inter-generational resources. Forcing a community to buy land that has already been earmarked for the community is not exactly largesse. "
“Thank goodness for the willingness of our community to stand up loud and proud for what is right,” said Ms Smith.
The residents held a protest on 16 November where they let the NSW Government know they did not want their park sold.