National Party MP Thomas George believes the Murwillumbah to Casino rail corridor could be safe from sell-off for another 10 years due to a change in legislation.
National Party MP Thomas George believes the Murwillumbah to Casino rail corridor could be safe from sell-off for another 10 years due to a change in legislation.

Looking to rail's future

PEOPLE power has saved the Murwillumbah to Casino rail corridor from being sold off in the near future, according to National Party MP Thomas George, whose electorate includes the old Murwillumbah rail terminus.

Mr George yesterday said the community had achieved “a significant win” by forcing the government to amend a proposed new law which would have allowed corridors to be turned into so-called “rail trail” cycling tracks or sold to developers.

The amendments would include a 15-year gap between the time the last train ran and any sell-off.

But local lobby group Trains On our Tracks (TOOT) and Greens Upper House MP Lee Rhiannon both said the amendments did not go far enough. The railway remains at risk of being sold.

“A sustained community campaign culminating in a mass rally outside Parliament House last month has forced the NSW Government to amend its bill to sell off disused rail corridors to developers,” said Mr George.

“New amendments include provisions which limit the sell-off of scrap metal and sleepers; retain the requirement for Parliament to make the final decision; promise more community consultation and impose a 15-year gap between the last train and the sell-off.”

Mr George said the last provision meant the Casino-to-Murwillumbah line, which closed in 2004, was theoretic- ally safe for another 10 years.

TOOT president Karin Kolbe said Transport Minister David Campbell’s promise of protection for lines that have been disused for less than 15 years was “not good enough”.

“It will be up to Minister Campbell to decide when ‘passenger and freight services’ were last operated regularly,” she said.

Ms Kolbe said TOOT was calling on Federal representatives including Richmond Labor MP Justine Elliot to “help secure long-term protection and action on our line”.

“Justine Elliot’s first speech to Parliament mentioned the ‘Federal Labor’s long-term commitment’ to the Casino-Murwillumbah line, yet she is silent in the face of this proposed NSW legislation.”



Tweed businessman wants another shot at running for election

Tweed businessman wants another shot at running for election

Nationals are looking for nominees for Richmond

Last chance for gun owners to register firearms

Last chance for gun owners to register firearms

Firearms amnesty coming to a close this weekend

How to own 20 homes before you’re 30

How to own 20 homes before you’re 30

The hotspots where Australia’s newest property moguls will be ‘born’

Local Partners