Few at rally consultation

April Margierson and Eddie Roberts at yesterday's Repco Rally consultation meeting in Murwillumbah.
April Margierson and Eddie Roberts at yesterday's Repco Rally consultation meeting in Murwillumbah.

ORGANISERS of the planned World Championship Car Rally on the Tweed in September will be hoping for far, far bigger interest in the real event than the public consultation session attracted in Murwillumbah yesterday.

But of course they will have much more time to publicise the actual rally.

A mere handful of people turned up at the Murwillumbah Civic Centre to ask questions about the event, with some voicing strong disappointment that only a few days notice was given of the consultation session.

No Rally Group president Michael McNamara, who had been unable to make it, said putting out information last Sunday about the session allowing only two working days for those interested to arrange time off was “cynical in the extreme”.

“It speaks of an attitude that is just about 'ticking the boxes' rather than seeking real engagement with the commu- nity,” he added.

Murwillumbah Ratepayers Association member April Margieson, who did make it along, was disgusted by the short notice but more alarmed by the event itself.

“They are saying they have had consultation with community groups, but our ratepayers' association has not been consulted and there are no members at all in favour of the rally,” Ms Margieson said.

Spokesperson for TweedCAN (Climate Action Now) Eddie Roberts said it had been hard for many working people to get to the session on a Friday morning.

“The notice was terribly short, but I'm here because I don't believe the truth is being represented by this group. The rally is an example of industry going in the wrong direction, and I'm personally dead-scared of copy-cat driving,” Mr Roberts said.

Rally Australia spokesperson Chris Nixon said the session was an opportunity for individuals to ask questions and view hundreds of pages of environmental, social, traffic and economic impact reports. Another consultation session is due to be held at the Kings- cliff Community Centre today from 2pm to 5pm.

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