Tuesday, December 16, 2008


NEWSLETTER 28 – 15.12.08

WOOLWORTHS GONE VEGETARIAN?? They’re promising not to process meat or chicken at their proposed Mullumbimby supermarket!! Have they gone vegetarian? No, it’s their latest ruse to get on-site sewage accepted on the floodplain; they reckon if they don’t process these products they will have less wastewater!

Dept of Planning (DoP) and Woolworths (Wws) have been having intercourse; 3 communications dated 7 Aug, 19 Sept & 19 Nov were sent from Wws to DoP, copies of which were sent to Byron Shire Council (BSC) recently together with an “independent” consultants review from Whitehead Associates commissioned by DoP. Presumably Whitehead Assoc were the persons taking soil samples from the site a few weeks age. BSC was invited to make a submission to DoP re: this “new information” from Wws, the closing date being 8 December. Did BSC buy the vegetarian promise from Woolies? I am attempting to get a copy of their submission. Watch this space.

I contacted Paula Tomkins (DoP) asking for copies of the above documents and for some time in order that MCAN could make a submission. She simply replied thus: “The Department is not inviting public submissions at this time” and failed to respond to my request for copies of the documents.

I applied to BSC for the documents and was told to go to DoP for them. DoP are not answering me. Hello, what’s going on? Christmas is traditionally a special time for government to slip things through – remember last New Year’s Day when Woolworths was announced. Congratulations team, for keeping them at bay for a whole year!!

HOW YOU CAN HELP – please go to www.mullumaction.org and click on our CAMPAIGN BUTTON which will send a message direct to Premier Nathan Rees and Minister of Planning Kristina Keneally. Please ask your friends to click too. It’s easy!

MULLUM’s POO PIES – BSC councilors voted 6-3 to fix up (and replace if necessary) the leaky sewage pipes which dispatch raw sewage into the Brunswick River. This happens in times of heavy rain when the water table rises and groundwater infiltrates the pipes. Their Resolution 08-748 sounds great and this is my summary of it.

That should the pipes be deemed in need of replacement that funding will be made available for this work as a priority of 2009/10. Also, the moratorium will not be lifted until the rainwater going into the pipes is no more than five times the average Dry Weather Flow, and that residents will be kept informed of what’s going on re the pipes.

RUDD’S ROTTEN 5% EMISSION TARGET: Is this adequate for protecting Great Barrier Reef, Murray Darling and Kakadu? Is Kevin showing leadership and commitment to a meaningful target?? Complete on-line survey (2 mins) http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=4aEBfIJsFB3owEi0_2fG7u0w_3d_3d
and/or write to Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and Climate Change Minister Penny Wong at Commonwealth Government Offices, 70 Phillip Street, Sydney 2000.

CLASS ACTION RE CLIMATE CHANGE: Article from The Guardian: “You could soon sue oil and power companies for climate change” – how about a class action against Wws for contributing to climate change? Or Kevin perhaps?

MCAN CHRISTMAS GATHERING 16 DEC: (Also My 60th Birthday and Duncan’s birthday). Please call Deb for directions 66843723

Do not go gentle into that good night.Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

My version:
Do not go gentle into Mullum’s plight
Rage, rage against the Big Box fight
(with your keyboard).


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

2 days left to lobby Councillors


POLLUTION AND MULLUM PIPES: I have today lodged an official complaint to EPA (now known as Dept of Environment and Climate Change) about the sewage pollution in the town and in the river.

VOTING ON STP THIS THURSDAY This week the councilors vote on whether to go ahead with the new STP (sewage treatment plant) or fix up Mullum’s broken pipes – or even delay the decision whilst exploring all options. Cr Staples has suggested piping (more) liquid wastes to fertilise farmland – this has been done usefully in Main Arm, and could well ease the pressure on the old STP.

For me the priority is to find out why the river is so polluted and whether the new STP will fix the problem. This fix seems doubtful to me as the ancient terracotta pipes under Mullum are leaky and have perished seals; when it rains heavily the water table rises and there is an exchange of rainwater and sewage. The sewage is diluted up to 15 times and overwhelms the old STP and ends up in the river (untreated). More gets into the river at Heritage Park near the end of Dalley Street, and some bubbles up into Susan Skyvington’s garden in Dalley Street, much to her disgust.

There is some rush to get the STP happening as a State Gov grant of $2m may expire soon. This is maybe 4% of the total cost of around $40-$50million; a massive capital expenditure about 5 times the cost of the Council Chambers which kept us in the red for some 5 years. This begs the question: will other projects like Lighthouse Road and Helen Street bridge still be attended to?

OPEN SLATHER: If the STP gets the green light, the building moratorium will be lifted and there will be open slather – some 2000 new houses, Woolworths and whatever else the State Gov decides for us. According to the Local Government Association:

“NSW communities are the big losers in changes announced by the Planning Minister that will see 90% of major development applications (DAs) in coastal and metropolitan areas decided by state government appointees.” (Deb will forward full media release or for more info contact or Local Gov Assoc Media Officer: Kristie Down - 0427 109 593; Media Comment: Cr Genia McCaffery - 0419 404 867).

PLEASE ASK COUNCILLORS TO FIX THE PIPES! You have two days left, voting is this Thursday. This is a pivotal decision for the future of Mullumbimby. cr.basil.cameron@byron.nsw.gov.au; cr.diane.woods@byron.nsw.gov.au; cr.jan.barham@byron.nsw.gov.au; cr.patrick.morrisey@byron.nsw.gov.au; cr.richard.staples@byron.nsw.gov.au; cr.ross.tucker@byron.nsw.gov.au; cr.simon.richardson@byron.nsw.gov.au; cr.tom.tabart@byron.nsw.gov.au; cr.tony.heeson@byron.nsw.gov.au

DEPT OF PLANNING has organized soil tests on Station Street Site. No news re: S96 result.

WWW.MULLUMACTION.ORG is being continually updated: see our new campaign button. Thanks to Robert.

THE GENERATOR (Bay FM 9am Mondays) was highly commended at the National Radio Awards in Alice Springs over the weekend and The Generator News is now appearing in a New York newspaper, fortnightly. Bravo Giovanni and Charlie.


HELP STOP FARMER SUICIDES: http://www.newint.com.au/cotton/?utm_source=ni-enews-oz-2008nov24&utm_medium=email&utm_content=body&utm_campaign=new-internationalist-enews-oz-shop

GREEN DRINKS – Mitra Ardron invites sustainably-minded people to get together and network at Poinciana Café, Thurs 4th December from 5 pm. Come when you like, leave when you like, and there will be a table for business cards, leaflets, etc.

LUNCH WITH Wws NEW SPIN MAN: http://i.mysunshinecoast.com.au/bm/oid35994/doc/November_Lunch.pdf

Ecological principle: sustainability
Consequences: Conservation, Reduced consumption, no-growth economics, constraints on technological development, anti-capitalist.


Monday, November 10, 2008

stuff up the shire for $2m!!


Greetings MCANics


What is the source of pollution in the Brunswick River? Is it the old Sewage Treatment Plant (STP), the ancient leaky pipes under Mullumbimby or upstream contamination? Please ask councilors to investigate this before voting on proposed new STP on 27.11.08. This is especially important for those impacted by sewerage smells in town, or had raw sewage bubbling up into your back garden or under your house.

Please ask councilors to investigate the source of pollution before voting for the behemoth. A new STP may not solve the problem of pollution in the Brunswick River.

Ask them to delay the decision to think this through -new councilors need time to consider the implications. There is some pressure to have the councilors vote “yes” (see ad in Byron Shire News 30.10.08 p5). A new STP will lift the 10-year building moratorium but will it fix the pollution problem???

A new STP may be the largest ever capital expenditure in the Shire. Even the $8m Council Chambers had us in the red for years, and the new STP may cost between $40m and $50m (they still don’t know the full cost). Who’s paying for it? Us!! Our rates may well have to rise to meet this. When might it be paid for?

A State Government grant for $2m has been offered to BSC and this may soon expire, causing more pressure on councilors. The grant may only cover about 4% of the total STP cost, which is as yet unknown. As Nadia Pietramale said “Stuff up the Shire for $2m???”

Richard Staples has proposed that reducing pressure on the STP by siphoning off liquid wastes to fertilise agricultural land would be a cheaper and greener alternative to a massive new chemical plant. This system is currently used successfully in Main Arm, and could be expanded.

Councillors addresses are: cr.patrick.morrisey@byron.nsw.gov.au; cr.tom.tabart@bigpond.com; cr.ross.tucker@bigpond.com; cr.basil.cameron@byron.nsw.gov.au; cr.richard.staples@byron.nsw.gov.au; cr.jan.barham@bigpond.com; cr.simon.richardson@byron.nsw.gov.au; cr.diane.woods@byron.nsw.gov.au; cr.tony.heeson@byron.nsw.gov.au also send to Don Page at don.page@parliament.nsw.gov.au and ray.darney@byron.nsw.gov.au

The Councillors are our vehicle of democracy. Democracy rests on an ideal of equality in which everyone has a voice. Barack Obama has shown the power of democracy, see his “YES WE CAN” speech on http://www.mathaba.net/rss/?x=610706.

Avaaz petition to Barack Obama on human rights, climate change and peace

Powerlessness is passé, and our web network is our most powerful ally. Please forward this to your contacts. Our voices must be heard as all future capital works in the shire may be at stake for years to come. Peter Cundall (Gardening Aust) sent message to RAID Rally “If you don’t fight, you lose”.

Seen our website lately??? New movie of Bob Brown, and check out RAID rally movie. www.mullumaction.org Robert our webmaster has done brilliant work.

“Will your grandchildren thank you for this decision?” (Bob Brown).


Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Newsletter 24

Greetings MCANics

MULLUM STP – renew or fix the pipes instead? This is being debated by councilors (proposed by Richard Staples : cr.richard.staples@byron.nsw.gov.au). See ad p.5 of BSN 30.10.08 urging us to contact local councilors with an opinion on the debate. Many articles in the Echo (and letters from Duncan Dey and Garry Scott) have said the dilapidated state of the ageing pipes under Mullumbimby are the cause of the raw sewage being flushed into the river during rain. Will a new STP fix the pollution problem…. or will upgrading the pipes? Councillors workshopping the issue will present findings at Ordinary Meeting on 27 Nov.

Co-incidentally, the Sat Star last week announced that Woolworths proponents are now intending to connect directly to new STP when it comes online.

RAID DOSSIER given to the press at the RAID rally, representing each group (including Mullumbimby) and all that is wrong the NSW planning laws is at: http://www.friendsofcurrawong.com/RAID/raidgroups.htm. It will be presented to Planning Minister when Friends of Currawong meet her on 11 November and contains resolution passed at the Rally.

RAID MOVIE: on www.mullumaction.org shows easy-to-digest speeches on the crux of the planning issues. Brilliant speakers such as Sylvia Hale (Greens) stating “What we’ve seen in the last 25 years is a concerted determination to strip away those rights (of the EPA Act)” In other words, we have now lost the environmental protection won in the 1970s by the likes of Jack Mundy. She goes on to say that the development industry poured millions of dollars into the coffers of the Labour party, who used it for saturation tv advertising, and 12 months after the election provided a set of “reforms” to the planning legislation based on the wish-list of the development industry. Have a click on this informative, inspiring and motivating movie. (Thanks to Robert Hart for making this).

MULLUMBIMBY UPDATE: We await new Minister Kristina Keneally’s decision on the S96 changes to the DA proposed by Wws. The best we can hope from her is to give the decision-making process back to Byron Shire Council. A flurry of requests for her to do so around the time of receiving the RAID dossier on 11 Nov, might be good: office@keneally.minister.nsw.gov.au

BOB BROWN MOVIE: After Bob’s speech at BBCC last Saturday, Robert has added movie and article to www.mullumaction.org. What I appreciate about Bob’s speech is they way he makes info accessible; one kilo of CO2 can be emitted just by taking the car to the shops. Click for inspiration and news of the threatened lungfish to provide small amount of water to Brisbane – the city without tanks! Hear about the logging phenomena gathering pace in Australia and about the greenhouse gasses its producing.

THE COALY MOLEYS: Greenpeace Video on Rudd’s $1.2billion handout to coal industry – bottom line is “Imagine paying someone to be a prick”. Funny.

JENNI CARGILL STRONG will be on Bay FM this Friday 7 Nov on Shakedown – Red Terra interviewing her about social change, trees, personal healing tales, etc. (plus CD giveaway). Jenni’s ACE course “Storytelling from the Heart” starts 12 Nov. Call her 6684 6548.

“What’s more important, coal or food?” Bob Brown.

Regards, Deborah.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


TONIGHT – Organics and Community Food Systems: Community Film and Forum Night at Mullum Council Chambers (the Round House). 6 – 8.30 pm celebrating National Organic Week.

The evening will commence with the short film 'Think Global, Eat Local: A Diet For A Sustainable Society'. The film celebrates local food projects in communities around the world - farmers markets, food box systems, food coops, community farms, community gardens and school gardens, touching on many of the issues caused by our current unsustainable food systems and providing strategies for relocalisation. Following the film, hear a series of inspiring presentations from local farmers and sustainability experts then join the interactive forum to discuss organics and sustainable food systems as a means of relocalisation. Speakers include Tim Winton and local farmer Alasdair Smithson, chaired by Jan Barham.

RAID RALLY – SYDNEY – Sunday 19 October. Meeting at Hyde Park (St James Station) at 10am: will be community groups from all over NSW – all of them angry about recent changes to Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (EPA Act), particularly Part 3A, which has given extraordinary powers to the Planning Minister to override local councils, community wishes and expert opinion as well as blithely ignoring issues of sustainability and climate change.

Speakers include Jack Mundey, Shane Withington, speakers from political parties, National Trust, National Parks Association, and community groups – Currawong, Sandon Point, Catherine Hill Bay and many others (see www.friendsofcurrawong.com the main RAID website).

Sue Higginson from the EDO (Environmental Defenders Office, Lismore) has written a paper concerning the integration of considerations of ESD, BASIX Climate change and offsets (Bio banking) into the Environmental Assessment process. (view via www.mullumaction.org).

Sue explains what the new Clause 3A to the EPA Act means, that inappropriate developments which can adversely impact the environment are now mostly assessed under Part 3A of the EPA Act and issues of climate change and sustainability are “simply not provided for”.

In other words, the Minister can approve Woolworths Development application in Mullum even with sewage capacity for a single bedroomed house … not to mention all the other disastrous issues involved with this application.

Deborah and Robert will travel to Sydney to support the rally and fly the banner “MULLUMBIMBY – SHAFTED BY THE STATE GOV”

Donations towards our costs, however small, may be made at Southern Cross Credit Union, BSB 802 185 a/c 132418 Burringbar Street, Mullumbimby (account: Mullumbimby Community Action Network - type S10).

WWS PLANS – still no news yet on whether Minister Katrina Keneally has approved these.

LABEL GM FOODS PETITION: http://www.truefood.org.au/OurRightToKnow/

MOBILE PHONE RESEARCH: Alarming new research from Sweden on the effects of radiation raises fears that today`s youngsters face an epidemic of the disease in later life.
“Study: mobile phone use raises children’s risk of brain cancer fivefold” (also cordless phones and wi-fi). http://www.mathaba.net/rss/?x=606796

Article in The Age “Behind the smoke, Byron Bay is just another Theme Park”

JOHN LENNON’s birthday celebration at Strawberry Fields NY: movie on YouTube.

“A day without laughter is a day wasted” – Charlie Chaplin


Wednesday, August 27, 2008


ABC 4 CORNERS this Monday, 1 September, features enquiry into the big box supermarket and will show footage of our demo held 12 July. If you miss the programme, you can see it online at www.abc.net.au/4corners

NATIONAL WOTTING DAY last week was carried out in dozens of Wws supermarkets around the country. Wot is it? Outlined in http://www.news.com.au/couriermail/story/0,23739,17395086-3102,00.html... “ As well as the majority of residents boycotting the new store, there would be "wotters" lining up to fill their trolleys with goods and then abandoning them in the aisles. The term "wotting" comes from Woolworths Operation Trolleys and is a practice encouraged by anti-Woolworths demonstrators who see it as a way of expressing their opposition to the Maleny store.”

ENVIRONMENT DEFENDERS OFFICE is presenting a series of free talks (ca.30 - 45 mins. long) on Human Rights and the Environment on the last Fridaysof the month at the Byron Community Centre Verandah Room (first floor), withdrinks and nibbles from 6 for 6.30pm, followed by questions. Friday 29 August: SANITATION, with Ben Fawcett, ex-Southampton UniversityFriday 26 September: MINING, with Techa Beaumont, Mineral Policy InstituteFriday 31 October: WATER, with Ilona Millar, Baker and McKenzieFriday 28 November: CHEMICALS, with Dr. Mariann Lloyd-Smith, National ToxicsNetwork Although they are often thought of as two distinct realms, many human rightsdepend on environmental protection, and vice-versa. Come and hear local andvisiting experts talk about the interdependence of the social and naturalworlds, with a focus on international issues and initiatives. For more information call Mark Byrne, Education Officer, EDO NorthernRivers, on 6622 8470 or email edonr@edo.org.au.


1. Earth Spirit Action film now on YouTube - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b6jCpChUxOw
2. Forest and Climate Change Action Forums - September 5-7th Lismore, Byron Bay & Mullumbimby
3. Upcoming Youth Bicycle Tours (see below)

1. If you haven't seen Earth Spirit Action, produced and directed by Ruth Rosenhek, you can view it now (16 mins) online at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b6jCpChUxOw. The film features Starhawk, Vandana Shiva, Ruth Rosenhek, John Seed and Matthew Fox speaking on Deep Ecology, Living Democracy and Revolution in Consciousness in a fast moving discussion of the type of change that needs to take place for a Sustainable Future. An inspirational and stimulating film including beautiful nature footage and a colourful array of global action shots.


2. Get the facts on Australia's carbon bank! 3 Forest and Climate Change Action Forums

Friday 5th Sept, 7pm - 9pm - Byron Bay
Railway park, next to Byron Bay Environment Centre's rotunda.

Saturday 6th Sept, 10am -2pm - Mullumbimby
Heart Space, Santos Centre, 51 -53 Burringbar st.

Sunday 7th September, 5-6PM Upstairs at Winsome Hotel, Lismore

Costs: Free Entry
Organised by: The Wilderness Society

The Australian National University recently released a report called Green
Carbon. This exciting new science shows that Australia's forests store huge
amounts of carbon, and they help reduce climate change. The research shows
that Australia's forests store at least three times more carbon than we
previously thought. On top of that, logging our forests releases dangerous
CO2 into the atmosphere, shrinking the size of the carbon bank and making
climate change worse.
Gemma Tillack from The Wilderness Society will be presenting an exciting
powerpoint about the Green Carbon report and will lead a session about how
local groups and individuals can contribute to the campaign.
For more information contact Gemma from The Wilderness Society on 0427 057
643 or email gemma.tillack@wilderness.org.au


3. The Otesha Project (Aus.) is making massive preparations for it's two upcoming bicycle tours in NSW and Victoria to educate youth and raise awareness about environmental sustainability and social justice issues. The Otesha crew combines theatre performances with interactive workshops to empower high school students to consider different life choices. With much success they have been able to fill the NSW tour with 20 enthusiastic individuals from all walks of life. Come live in a roving community to educate youth about sustainable consumption from January 18th to March 1st, 2009 while "being the change you want to see in the world." Spots on tour are quickly filling up so get your application in at http://www.otesha.org.au/biketours/joinatour before the September 19, 2008 deadline!

MULLUMBIMBY UPDATE: We still await news of the last S96 Amendments to Wws plans from paula.tomkins@planning.nsw.gov.au who will be making recommendations to Minister Sartor. Sending her a message to show her you care will help us achieve our goal to stop Wws coming to Mullumbimby.

WWS CEO: mluscombe@woolworths.com.au … keep up the pressure!

MESSAGE FROM MALENY: As part of the ongoing resistance to woolworths Maleny, Reply paid feedback forms (available at any woolworths store) are regularly completed and mailed.... with ww paying the postage. Thousands of these forms have been sent in past couple of years.... We have no idea who the perpetrators are but perhaps persons unknown in your area may wish to join in. Apparently it is driving them wild.

WWS CREDIT CARD LAUNCHED which will collect data on customers shopping habits http://www.smh.com.au/news/technology/woolies-new-card-will-trail-shoppers/2008/08/26/1219516518185.html. Creation of this card is a Wws partnership with the Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC) described on Wikipedia as “the most profitable bank in the world” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HSBC. Info about HSBC predatory lending has been removed from Wiki, although www.householdwatch.com have plenty of horror stories about this financial institution, including the credit card interest rate being increased to 50% in India.

WWS SUSTAINABILITY IS SPIN DEEP exposure on www.wakeupwoolworths.com about Wws connection with APP (Asia Pulp and Paper) allegedly the worst offenders re: environment and treatment of indigenous inhabitants.

LETTER TO IEMMA – This month’s edition is on our website www.mullumaction.org (download and send). I heard on the news today that the Premier may be reshuffling the position of Minister for Planning! Maintain the rage!!


Saturday, August 23, 2008

newsletter no 19

Greetings MCANics! (thanks, Echo for the collective noun)

TELEPHONE TREE urgently needed this week. Please ring me 66843723 (or your contact person) or email deborah@mullumaction.org with your phone number – how it works is I ring two people, they each ring two people, who each ring two more people – the message spreads like wildfire .... we have a message to send about a DIRECT ACTION happening very soon! This will have national repercussions.

This Tree will also be useful if any building works are intended.

EDO WORKSHOP: Solicitors from the Environmental Defenders Office, Lismore, will be explaining the major changes to NSW’s planning and development legislation, the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act, passed in June 2008.
Two evening workshops are for professionals, community groups and members of the public.
When: 6-8 pm, Thursday 21 August 2008Where: Richmond Room, Regatta Ave, Ballina
When: 6-8pm, Thursday 4 September 2008Where: CWA Hall, 20 Queen St
The seminars are free of charge, however RSVP is essential. For more information or to register your interest, contact Mark Byrne on 02 6622 8470.
MULLUM COMMUNITY GARDENS official opening last Saturday – a beautiful celebration of a grassroots initiative deserving much success. A magical occasion – contact Jeanette at jl.martin@bigpond.com for more info.

Truck Drivers apply Pressure to Woolies

-some interesting comment re Coles /Woolies http://www.pigswillfly.com.au/?p=1090

“What Women Want” – registered as a political party one year ago – subscriptions $20 for this year now due http://www.whatwomenwant.org.au/home/modules/content/index.php?id=42

Thursday, July 31, 2008

newsletter no 18

STATE-WIDE PROTEST: SARTOR’S PRO-DEVELOPER LAWS Sunday 3 August. We will be having our own gathering and photoshoot after the Mullum-to-Bruns walk/run on Sunday, at about 11.30 am.

MULLUMtoBRUNS WALK/RUN: Sun 3 August – walkers depart Apex Park, 8.30 am. See p20 this week’s Echo for details or call Mehil 0419 220 897 www.mullumtobruns.org.au This event is non-political. However, with the Statewide Sartor protest happening on the same day, we can’t ignore it; as Jan B said at the demo “We have been shafted by Sartor” (visit our website to hear her speech www.mullumaction.org its in the video of the demo) MCAN and protesters can gather after the raffle prizewinners are drawn at the Bruns Soundshell (opp dolphin café) for our separate photoshoot for the press. Bring yer banner!

SYDNEY MORNING HERALD printed an article about Mullumbimby, the demo and our campaign on Sat 26 July. Taking almost a full page, the informative article by local journalist Kate Hamilton gave the background to the Wws proposal as well as a fantastic picture of marchers at the recent demo, with plenty of colour & placards. View article on-line (no picture) http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/a-big-box-comes-knocking/2008/07/25/1216492732938.html?page=fullpage#contentSwap2 Article with picture will be at our info table on Sunday at Bruns Soundshell, with DVDs for sale.

ABC STATELINE (REGIONAL NEWS): “Bega Valley councillors have decided not to challenge the State Government's approval of new supermarket projects at Merimbula. This week the Council knocked back a proposal for a referendum on the proposed developments. Earlier, the Planning Minister refused to let the Council put a cap on the size of retail development in the town.” (from ABC on-line).

WOOLWORTHS PLANS – what’s going on? Phone Paula Tomkins at Department of Planning (02) 9228 6397 or email her at paula.tomkins@planning.nsw.gov.au for update on Sartor’s decision-making process. Remind her we care – she is the one to present recommendations to Sartor. Remind her that the Mullumbimby Settlement Strategy 2003 states on p17 “NO STAND-ALONE SHOPPING CENTRES WILL BE PERMITTED” http://www.byron.nsw.gov.au/pdfs/pub_comm_plan/settlement_strategies/Mullumbimby_Settlement_Strategy.pdf

IAN COHEN’S QUESTIONS TO SARTOR (in newsletter 17 last week)

2. Q: Were you aware that this proposal contravened the Mullumbimby Settlement Strategy adopted by Byron Shire Council to not allow any stand alone supermarkets? A: I am advised by the Department of Planning that the approved development does not contravene the Mullumbimby Settlement Strategy 2003.

The Minister is mistaken!!
This could be a theme for placards on Sunday. This is a splendid opportunity to come up with some original artworks – the standard of banners at the demo was brilliant! Thanks to everyone who showed up with their creations. The photo in SMH was so vibrant with a sea of colourful people and at least 14 placards on view. The Mullum message about Woolworths has reached across NSW and will soon go on national TV (more news about that soon). Let’s get a message out for Sartor!
See you Sunday.
Regards, Deborah

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.
Margaret Mead 1901-1978

Saturday, July 26, 2008


SYDNEY MORNING HERALD printed an article about Mullumbimby, the demo and our campaign on Sat 26 July. Taking almost a full page, the informative article by local journalist Kate Hamilton gave the background to the Wws proposal as well as a fantastic picture of marchers at the recent demo, with plenty of colour & placards. View article on-line (no picture) http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/a-big-box-comes-knocking/2008/07/25/1216492732938.html?page=fullpage#contentSwap2

THE MULLUM DVD made by Jane Swallow and Gene Kulic recently, is currently being sent to Frank Sartor “Private and Confidential”. We will be getting it on our website soon and more copies will soon be available at Eden’s Landing veg shop (Stuart St) for a donation of say $5 each. It’s a delightful squizz at Mullum and features local speakers – just the thing to send to your family OS.

BYRON WOOL LIES to the rear and north and south Plaza is, according to the Tidy Town Crew, the most rubbished area of the whole town. Similar story is mentioned on P14 of Byron Shire News.

ORANGE ROUGHY (endangered fish) is apparently on sale there.

MALENY WW – story and pics on WW visibility due to last of bamboo coming out is now online: >> http://www.malenyvoice.com/

(Answers are following the questions: coloured type is not available in this format)
Mr Cohen to the Treasurer, Minister for Infrastructure, and Minister for the Hunter representing the Minister for Planning, Minister for Redfern Waterloo, Minister for the Arts
1. Were you the consenting authority for the 2 Stage Development of the 2,500 square metre Station Street supermarket on railway land surrounded by residential land in 2006 under SEPP 8 Surplus Public Land? Yes.
2. Were you aware that this proposal contravened the Mullumbimby Settlement Strategy adopted by Byron Shire Council to not allow any stand alone supermarkets? I am advised by the Department of Planning that the approved development does not contravene the Mullumbimby Settlement Strategy 2003.
3. Were you aware of the Byron Shire Council's ("BSC") moratorium on new connections to the sewerage system in the Mullumbimby and Brunswick Head shires when the DA was given? Yes.
4. Was the reason for the approval of the two staged development so as to allow sufficient land to be available for an on-site waste water system? Yes.
5. Are you aware that Woolworths have purchased that DA and that the current S96 is an attempt to circumvent the existing moratorium on new sewage connections in the Mullumbimby and Brunswick catchments as imposed by BSC? I am advised that Woolworths Limited has purchased the land to which the development consent applies. The amendments to the development consent proposed by the current section 96 application will be assessed on their merits.
6. Does BSC maintain this moratorium in the Mullumbimby and Brunswick Head shires due to deemed over-load and that there is no estimated project completion date for sewer infrastructure upgrades to allow new connections? This question should be directed to Byron Shire Council.
7. Are you aware that no contracts have been entered into and that there is no final price or completion date for work secured for the STP? Yes.
8. What measures will the Minister take to ensure and verify all information submitted to the Department of Planning by Woolworths or associated proponents in relation to its Section 96 Modification Application is correct? I have asked the Department of Planning to assess this application rigorously. The Department is currently assessing the merits of the proposed modification in consultation with a range of agencies, including Byron Shire Council.
9. What is the veracity of information produced by the proponent considering the proponent made a representation to BSC notating on a document that 1800 sqm would be set aside for on-site sewerage, when in fact it is only 180sqm? The veracity of the information provided with the application will be subjected to a rigorous merit assessment.
10. Are you aware that a Section 96 Modification currently before the Department of Planning requests the approval of a 2,500 square metre building without an interim connection to sewer being available? The Department of Planning has advised that initially the application proposed an interim connection to reticulated sewer. However, amended plans have been lodged with the Department of Planning that propose on-site effluent disposal.
11. If permission is given to build the full Stage 2 building without connection to the sewer, how can you be confident that a sufficient on-site sewerage facility can be effectively operated on the 180 sqm set aside for the on-site facility which contravenes the NSW Governments own guidelines for on-site sewage management ? I am advised that the applicant has lodged amended plans with the Department of Planning that now propose on-site effluent disposal. The proposed on-site system will be subjected to a rigorous merit assessment prior to determination of the application.
12. Do calculations using the guidelines indicate that 2700sqm is required? These calculations will be made during the assessment of the application.
13. Will you seek expert advice from Byron Shire Council regarding the feasibility of this? Yes.
1. If not, why not?
14. What recourse will citizens of Mullumbimby have and what processes will be undertaken if approval is given for the Section 96 Modification and an adequate onsite sewerage facility cannot be operated? Appeal rights, if applicable, are determined under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 and the Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation 2000. The proposed amendments to the development consent relating to the provision of sewerage services to the site will be rigorously assessed prior to determination of the application.
15. In respect to the lack of any viable current sewage management option for the Woolworths S96 proposal for a 2500sqm store, how could the application before the Minister meet the criteria of a S96 in that it must be substantially the same development as granted in the original DA? The sewage management system proposed for the site will be rigorously assessed prior to determination of the application.

The Minister is wrong in his answer to q2 as the Mullumbimby Settlement Strategy 2003 clearly states “NO STAND-ALONE SHOPPING CENTRE WILL BE PERMITTED” on page 17 under “Mullumbimby Town Centre” and this is quoted by Mayor Jan Barham in Stateline item 27.6.08 http://www.byron.nsw.gov.au/pdfs/pub_comm_plan/settlement_strategies/Mullumbimby_Settlement_Strategy.pdf

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Whats wrong with Woolies new amendments?

The most outrageous aspect of the S96 Amendments to the Woolworths proposal is their sewage plan. The flowchart calculations for their 2500 m2 supermarket are based on a single bedroomed dwelling! Furthermore the storage and irrigation area is underneath the carpark and access road; there will be no transpiration/evaporation possible through the tarmac. I’ve been told that noxious gasses such as hydrogen sulphide and methane will accumulate in the anaerobic environment and it will have the festering smell of rotten eggs similar to a waste dump; gasses which are 21 times more global warming that CO2.

Drainage is a problem in Mullumbimby, especially on the floodplain where the Woolworth’s proposal is. The Station Street ditch is still full of stagnant water two days after last week’s rain. Where will Woolworth’s treated sewage go when the ground is sodden with rain? Frank Sartor needs to check out these proposals very carefully; please keep onto him (submission deadline is 18 July). Whether you are for Woolworths or not, this sewage scheme is not good enough.

Woolworths appear to have forgotten that the DA Approval was granted for a two stage development; Stage 1 with on-site sewage disposal, Stage 2 “relies on reticulated sewerage disposal being made available to the site” (MOD 22-3-2007 Conditions of Consent www.planning.nsw.gov.au). BSC’s Director of Planning, Development and Environment Services Ray Darney wrote to Woolworths on 16 June and omitted the contentious sewage issue (www.byron.nsw.gov.au see Woolworths application; Response from BSC) A recent Urgency Motion prepared by Cr Westheimer about the sewage situation has also been ignored, despite a Resolution to bring up the sewage issue with Department of Planning.

Even the Traffic Report prepared by Masson Wilson Twiney is riddled with inaccuracies; in the Introduction they state the DA was approved and omit the Consent Conditions. This could confuse people. P2 flouts BSC by calling it “Bryon Shire Council”, p3 states Argyle Street connects to Pacific Highway. Even if you don’t understand the technicalities, Sartor need to know that these Consultants are approaching this serious business with disrespect, the results of which could be disastrous for Mullumbimby.

A sample letter to Minister Sartor is available to download from our website www.mullumaction.org, also at Eden’s Landing, Santos & IGA-Deli.


newsletter no 16 - acknowledgements

THANKS to everyone who helped to make our demo such an energetic, memorable and enjoyable event. Mullumbimby community is powerful! We pulled a rabbit out of the hat in just 9 days; good networking! It was a brilliant demonstration of Mullum’s commitment to stop the Big Box. The placards were imaginative, persuasive and made a “good show”. I feel encouraged, supported and connected.

Video of the demo is on www.mullumaction.org (thanks to Robert Hart) and another one, featuring in particular the procession and ceremony (thanks to Stephen Turner) is on http://www.byronballinagreens.org/home.html. Articles & photo at www.echo.net.au and Northern Star http://www.finda.com.au/story/2008/07/14/protest-hots-against-woolies/

RAFFLE: thanks to lovely persons who donated the bike; Santos, Eden’s Landing and Raw Store for $50 gift vouchers, Vashti’s Body Bar for 1 hr facial and Deborah Lilly for donating a 2 hour Hawaiian massage. Raffle will be drawn on 3 August if anyone can sell tickets, please call Deb 66843723.

MULLUM TO BRUNS RUN & WALK: Sunday 3 August. I would like to organise a MCAN group of runners or walkers for this community event, which is to raise funds for the Brunswick Valley Rescue Squad and Oxfam Australia (for indigenous support). The cost is $20 pp or $30 on the day (family discounts available). Volunteers are also needed. Their raffle (and ours) will be drawn around 11 am in the Soundshell at Bruns. Check www.mullumtobruns.org.au

CLIMATE ACTION PROTEST IN NEWCASTLE - About 1000 people demonstrated and a dozen chained themselves to a coal train, delaying it for 6 hours. See http://www.smh.com.au/news/environment/protest-halts-coal-train-for-six-hours/2008/07/13/1215887451541.html

VOLUNTEERS FOR INFO TABLE needed specially this week as the submission period ends this Friday 18 July. Download sample letter from website www.mullumaction.org


“Apathy isn’t it”: John Lennon

“The price of liberty is eternal vigilance”: RSL (Thanks Liane Simons)

Wednesday, July 9, 2008


Community is coming together for our rally; excitement is picking up and offers of support are trickling in steadily.

SPEAKERS: Mayor Jan Barham, Mark Cochrane, Garry Scott, Giovanni Ebono, Jeanette Martin (Community Gardens) and Magenta Appel-Pye (who will recite her poetry).

ENTERTAINMENT: Magenta & Mates, Toby & Jim Blues Duo, David Hall & Choristers will each be doing a couple of numbers.

KIDS STUFF: Face Painting by Sharon Shostak; Milli the Fairy sprinkles magic with wishes, stories and games.

RAFFLE: Magnanimous donations of a bicycle from Magenta and a $50 voucher from Paul at Eden"s Landing. I will offer a 2 hour Hawaiian Lomi Mana massage. If anyone else is willing to offer goods or services, that would be great.

REFRESHMENTS: About 6 offers of cakes/savouries so far – more needed please, also mandarins. (This is for fundraising). Paul at Eden"s Landing will supply some apples. Richard IGA is offering soft drinks. Does anyone know someone who could do teas/coffees? Can anyone lend some tables/chairs?

PA SYSTEM – Pip has offered to set this up for free.

HELIUM BALLOONS: we shall be putting them up on Sat morning, on or near the site, to indicate size of Big Box. Any offers to help do this? (Luis C is doing the plan for us to follow).

PERCUSSION FOR THE PROCESSION: We will be taking a Big Box down Station Street for a ritual burning. Bring your percussion instruments and dancing shoes.

PRIZE FOR THE BEST PLACARD: Any offers of a prize, please? Donator can be the judge, or we could ask the speakers to judge.

AEROPLANE BANNER FLY BY: We are working on this one with Andrew Polidano.

OTHER IDEAS: will be welcomed, call 66843723.

It"s going to be a great day for Mullum community to get together.
Cheers and thanks to everyone for supporting our demonstration.
"Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it.
Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. Begin it now." - Goethe.

Friday, June 27, 2008

newsletter no 12

TONIGHT!!! SHARON SHOSTAKs short movie about Mullumbimby's response to Wws has been advertised by the ABC that it will be on tonight (Fri 27 June) between 7.30 & 8pm. Its a good one, well worth a watch.

WWS AMENDMENTS TO S96 - BSC have advised that Wws new changes will be advertised in the next few weeks - that means a new submission period... will keep you posted.

SCALE MODEL: meanwhile, would you like to see a scale model of their proposals? Or perhaps even a photomontage that actually shows the building rather than a row of trees that they supplied with the last S96 and which they showed at the public meeting? Contact Mr Gary Boyer Regional Manager - who put out the lovely green booklet delivered by hand to Mullum letterboxes - at newdevelopments@woolworths.com.au - why not send a copy to Wws CEO Michael Luscombe at mluscombe@woolworths.com.au

SEDUCED BY THE BLANDISHMENTS OF SPIN? let us know how many lies/hype/spin you can find in that pretty green booklet.

WWS BEATEN!! ACCC Rejects a Supermarket Acquisition by Woolworths in Favour of an Independent: Extract from QRTSA (Retailers Assoc) newsletter:
It is with great satisfaction today that I bring members the news of an historic move by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) to announce their opposition to the Woolworths takeover of a retail outlet in Queanbeyan in New South Wales. The ACCC has acknowledged that had Woolworths been allowed to buy the store, "...it would be likely to substantially lessen the competition in the local retail supermarket "market" surrounding the store". The ACCC further noted as reason for their position, "...if the acquisition had proceeded, Woolworths would have owned three of the four full-line supermarkets in the Queanbeyan area..." More info http://www.qrtsa.com.au

Congratulations, Queanbeyan - joining the ranks of Mt Evelyn VIC; Erskinevillevillage.org NSW; Eurobodalla NSW, Griffiths NSW.

........... Gary Snyder

newsletter no 11

SHARON"S STATELINE MOVIE: We were advised by Stateline last week that they were going to show Sharon Shostak"s short movie, but it didn"t go to air as planned. It may be on this week. Apolgies to those who rearranged their plans to view this.
WWS NEW PLANS: We heard from Wws that they are working on new changes to S96, taking into account our suggestions. I followed this up with the Dept Planning and Byron Shire Council, both of whom had unforthcoming about information regarding changes. Their replies were as follows:
DoP: "The applicant has recently advised the Department that they intend to submit amended plans next week. A decision on whether the amendments will be publicly exhibited will be reserved until the Department is in receipt of the information."
BSC: "We are asking the DoP to renotify the amendment to Sec 96 primarily due to the on site issue. I doubt whether with such a large development that the changes that I have observed would lead to a new DA but certainly it should be renotified"
In conclusion, DOP will decide whether or not to "go public" with the new plans (called "amendment") which BSC are requesting. Basically Wws are changing the goal posts, ie the plans are now different to the S96 application about which we made submissions. Section 96 requires that the plans are "substantially the same" as the approved DA. I have asked Ray Darney what the criteria is in determining whether the plans are "substantially the same" to the original DA, and I await his reply.
If Wws want to build Stage 2 straight away (approval was only given for Stage 1) there is not enough space for on-site sewage works.
LETTER TO MORRIS IEMMA, NSW PREMIER, is on our website and explains the situation more. It requests him to review the S96 and ask Sartor to reject it. Click on "documents" http://www.mullumaction.org – or "read more" next to Iemma"s pic.
MCAN CARNIVAL: We are still considering this for sometime in August – alternatively a ball at the new Civic Centre, or a demonstration. Let us know your ideas/preferences/enthusiasms. August 2/3 is the same weekend as Splendour and we think a later date would be better.
MULLUM TO BRUNS RUN/WALK – Sunday 3 August http:// http://www.mullumtobruns.org.au
GET UP RURAL SURVEY: The survey lists a number of issues drawn from the GetUp Ideas Forum and the Australia 2020 Summit - they'd love to hear which of these issues are most important to you! They also want to learn more about rural and regional members and how best you can participate in future GetUp campaigns. http://www.getup.org.au/campaign/CountrySurvey
NEW LOOK WOOLIES CALLED "THOMAS DUX GROCER" in Lane Cove – looks like a chic deli – shop assistants wear black, they have chalk boards and wooden boxes for the fruit. They are not promoting this on their website, but we know it"s them 3; the local papers were on to it, also http://www.foodweek.com.au/main-features-page.aspx?articleType=ArticleView&articleId=1198 orhttp://www.ausfoodnews.com.au/2008/04/24/woolworths-open-first-thomas-dux-store.html. Next Dux will be in Paddington. The local Greek deli in Lane Cove has now gone out of business. By the way, have you heard Wws gospel song "Woa-oh The Fresh Food People Yeah" (ring their number and ask for the manager, you will hear it while you wait).
SARTOR"S PLANNING LAWS Scrape through the Upper House (media release from Sylvia Hale) Planning Minister Frank Sartor"s controversial planning laws passed through the Upper House of parliament tonight by 1 vote after the two Christian Democrat MPs split. Fred Nile voted with the government in support of the new laws while Gordon Moyes voted with the Greens and the Opposition against the Bill. The two Shooters Party MPs voted with the government. Greens MP and Planning spokesperson Sylvia Hale said the vote was very disappointing given the widespread community concern about the Bill. "This Bill has been driven by the development industry from day one. It is the government"s reward to big developers for all the money they poured into the NSW ALP"s campaign coffers before the last election," said Ms Hale. "The Bill will damage the state"s environment and heritage. It will remove the rights of residents to have a say about the way their neighbourhoods develop. It will lead to increased disputes between neighbours and it will open the door for an even greater level of corruption in what is already a corrupt planning system." "The fact that the government has responded to the Wollongong Council scandal and the public disgust at favourable development decisions for big political donors by entrenching and extending conflicts of interest is a disgrace," said Ms Hale. The Greens moved 94 amendments to the Bill aimed at maintaining existing environmental and heritage protections, removing conflicts of interest and restoring appeal rights. All of the Greens amendments were defeated after the Opposition joined the Government in opposing them.******************************************************
Ode to Mullumbimby - by - Magenta Appel-Pye
In Mullumbimby we pride ourselves on being a unique little town,Our heritage business centre the jewel in our crownWith friendly shopkeepers who know us by nameWe like the fact that none are the same.Our locally grown fresh food in all its diversityShits on genetically modified perversity.
How Woolworths got their D.A. through verges on criminalTheir architectural sensitivity is less than minimal.They want to be the "one stop shop"They don"t care if local businesses flopThis rampant greed has got to stop!Their representatives were totally condescendingTheir lies and tricks seem never-ending.Already they want more and biggerHow they get away with it one can only figure.
This spotlights that the "family store" WooliesAre really "get want we want" corporate bullies!When big business practices are unsustainableOur climate change goals are unattainable.
A selfish person stops live music in the hillsOur happy healthy rituals he willingly killsBan music, dancing and drumming and there goes our cultureFurther eroded by the predatory Woo lies vulture.
Mullumbimby could be a shining lightOf healthy communities getting it rightA community garden, heritage areas and businesses diverseMakes one want to visit and open one"s purse.But when our rights are taken away and its only about moneyWe lose our sense of community and that"s not funnyI hope we can beat them and community good prevailsFor our lovely Mullumbimby, the biggest little town in N.S.W.*********************************************************
Contact Deborah 66843723 if you want to get more involved with MCAN.for Mullum.Deb

Wednesday, May 21, 2008


Brilliant turnout at BSC “Meet the Woolies” on Wednesday – thanks everyone for your support. The chambers rocked!

We have one more urgent need – that is to contact your councilors TODAY because they are discussing the S96 tomorrow at BSC. Meeting starts at 10.30 (let me know if you want placards). Because Woolworths have an approved DA, all we can do with the bureaucracy is to buy time: (you can cut & paste this section; then cut & paste the councillors addresses)


It’s taller by 1.2m (now 8.2m high)
It’s longer by 21.6m (its now 86.4m long)
(see our website for image www.mullumaction.org)

Current STP is overloaded and a health hazard
“interim connection” is unfair; we have a moratorium
New STP won’t be ready by 2010 as no plans have been tendered

Extra traffic in Station Street: noise, fumes, pollution, vibration
More use of cars because of greater distance from town centre
Heavy good vehicles will pass 12 more houses in Station Street

Unacceptable in residential area
These are the basic things we can get them on – no doubt you will think of more such as the building being alien to the heritage character of the town, an eyesore, etc.

BYRON SHIRE COUNCILLORS: cr.jan.barham@bigpond.com; cr.ray.kestle@bigpond.com; cr.ross.tucker@bigpond.com; cr.john.lazarus@bigpond.com; cr.peter.westheimer@bigpond.com; cr.jan.mangleson@bigpond.com; cr.diane.woods@bigpond.com; cr.richard.staples@bigpond.com; cr.tom.tabart@bigpond.com; cr.bob.tardiff@bigpond.com

“We don’t want Woolworths!” …. this is true and our strategy right now to stop them is... to play the planning game with Frank Sartor: get him to reject the S96 modifications; buy some time; ask for a new S96 which might be more acceptable or we reject it again.
Meanwhile, Woolworths will get fed up with the waiting game. Keep bombarding their directors (and CEO Michael Luscombe) with community opposition to the big box in the biggest little town. Email address: WW_Customer_Feedback@woolworths.com.au and snail mail address is 1 Woolworths Way, Bella Vista NSW 2153.

Mr James A Strong (Chairman, Non Exec. Director)Mr Michael Gerard Luscombe (Managing Director, CEO)Mr Tom Pockett (Director, Finance Director)Mr Ian MacFarlane (Director)Ms Alison Watkins (Director)Ms Diane J Grady (Non Exec. Director)Mr Leon M L'Huillier (Non Exec. Director)Dr Roderick Deane (Non Exec. Director)Mr John Astbury (Non Exec. Director)Mr Peter J Horton (General Counsel)

Thank you to everyone who supported me with my rego bills – much appreciated!

KULCHAJAM ETHICAL FOOD CO-OP is starting up in Byron to “activate and develop a model of production and consumption that reflects principles of sustainability, creativity, cultural vibrance & social justice.” Cheap food, too.
Contact Techa 0409318406 or Rob 0431366466 for membership forms.

Please contact Meryn 66841415

PINE GAP mind gap
The Terror Cell that Never Sleeps
What’s really going on in our red centre



1. Tassie Forests Still Under Threat! Information and Action Night
Thursday, May 29th, 7PM @ Winsome Hotel, Lismore

2. Aquarius Film Festival - May 23rd @ Bush Theatre, Nimbin

3. Lismore People for Reconciliation Film Night for all the family
Friday May 23rd, 6.30pm @ Star Court Theatre, Lismore

4. Dance for Burma's Cyclone Victims - Saturday, May 24th from 4pm to 6:30pm at Temple Byron

5. Mushroom Mycrorenewal Project - Saturday, May 24th 7PM Sphinx Rock Cafe, Mt Burrell.

6. ...and on a community note, a Hats Off to Hofmann party will be held at the Bush Theatre, this Friday, May 16th, 7PM onwards in honour of the late Albert Hofmann including films, testimonials, yummy food, Happy High Herbs and a raging dance party with Pagan Love Cult.

More info on each of these events from:
Rainforest Information CentreBox 368, Lismore 2480 NSW(02) 66897519http://www.rainforestinfo.org.au/

Palm Oil Consumer Campaign, Take Action Now! - http://www.palmoilaction.org.au/

…. More next week

Friday, May 16, 2008


Now that Woolworths have bought Mallams Supermarket, they want to build a very large new store, almost as large as Byron Woolworths—next to a residential part of town on railway land in Station Street.
Mullumbimby Community Action Network (MCAN) is a growing group of concerned residents who believe that Woolworths will be bad for Mullum.
Woolworths’ has a history of destroying local businesses and communities. Across Australia, towns have found that a new Woolworths, opening with prices at or below cost, sends many locals out of business, reduces local employment, and sells little or no local produce. Furthermore, the Station Street site will create massive traffic problems in Mullum, break up the present compact retail area, and destroy the value of a residential part of town. A lot more retail profit will also leave Mullumbimby instead of staying in the town.
In 2005 Byron Shire Council rejected the Station Street development proposed by Mallams, who then appealed to the NSW Minister for Planning, Frank Sartor. Sartor overturned the Council decision and allowed the development on certain conditions. Mallams then sold the approved DA to Woolworths—who are now unhappy with some of the conditions.
Bend the Rules?
One of the conditions of the original DA was that sewage had to be disposed of on-site, because of a moratorium on new connections to the overloaded Mullumbimby sewage system.
Woolworths have now lodged a DA to modify conditions, including a ‘special dispens­ation’ for an ‘interim connection’ to Mullum’s already overloaded sewage system. The new sewage treatment plant will not be finished for some years: the “interim” could become permanent. Why should Woolworths be allowed to bend the rules while other developers toe the line? The DA modification document can be viewed at BSC or on the BSC website.
Take Action
The NSW Minister for Planning, Frank Sartor, has the final say on this revised DA, and MCAN urges you to lodge your personal objections. Write or email them using the enclosed form letter as a guide. An electronic version is available at our website, www.mullumaction.org. Or simply sign the enclosed letter (with a personal note, if possible) and, ideally, one signature per submission. Post it to the address included or leave it at a drop box in Santos, Eden’s Landing, or the deli counter at IGA. All objections must be received before 30 May 2008. Nonresidents may also submit objections.
Apart from the damage Woolworths will cause to local businesses, a building five times the size of either of our existing supermarkets, and in a residential area, is so out of proportion to the small-town personal scale of Mullum, it will change the nature of the town permanently—for the worse.
If you value Mullum the way it is—we need your help to keep it that way.

Woolies is bad for Mullum
Mullum Community Action Network (MCAN)
PO Box 603
Mullumbimby, NSW

All Byron Shire Residents

Woolies Is Bad for Mullum

Why What’s Good for Woolies…
Is Bad for Mullum

Action Requested:
Please read the enclosed and voice your concerns to the Planning Minister

Be sure your submission includes:
• Your name and address
• The reference number (DA 32-04-2006 MOD 2)
• A statement objecting to the proposal and the reasons why you object

Submissions must reach the Dept of Planning by close of business May 30.
Post: The Director, Coastal Assessments
Dept of Planning
GPO Box 39
Sydney NSW 2001


The Director, Coastal Assessments
Dept of Planning, GPO Box 39
Sydney NSW 2001

Re: Section 96 by Woolworths for Variations to DA for Supermarket in Mullumbimby.
Reference No: DA 32-04-2006 MOD 2

Dear Mr. Sartor
I wish to object to the variations Woolworths Ltd. has applied to be made to conditions imposed by your Department in approving the above development in 2005. The reasons for my objections are as follows:
Variation on Sewage Connection. The original two-stage development was approved on condition that sewage from Stage 1 was treated on-site. Woolworths plan to build both stages at once with no on-site collection and treatment, and special dispensation to connect to the existing sewage system - breaking a moratorium other developers abide by. Mullumbimby’s overloaded and inadequate sewage system cannot cope with this massive extra load.

Variation on Building Shift and Vehicle Noise. Shifting the building 54 metres to the north from its original approved position and with no landscaping, will give residences at the river end of Station Street an outlook dominated by a large concrete wall instead of the present trees and pasture. Moving the re-located building’s loading bays to the north end means semi-trailers will travel further along Station Street with more residences subject to constant noise impact from morning till night.

Variation on Unloading Bay Operation Times. The original DA only allowed deliveries six days a week. This variation allows semi-trailers to unload on Sundays as well from 10am to 4pm.This is unacceptable in a residential zone.

Variation on Illuminated Signs. Standard Woolworths signs are much larger and more intrusive than those allowed for in the original DA. If allowed, this variation will also add to the light pollution at night for nearby residents from permanent lights in the car park.

Variation on Screening in Station Street. The variation leaves gaps in the tree screen allowing the supermarket to be clearly visible from residences in Station Street. Extra mature plantings are not proposed. Shrubs screening the fence along Station Street have been deleted meaning the perimeter fence will be very visible. A west elevation showing new plantings and which trees are to be retained to screen the building from Station Street is not provided.

Variation on Car Park. This allows the car park to be ramped from ground level at the southern end of the site to the supermarket floor level at the northern end. The site is flood-prone land. No details of the impact of these changes on flooding is provided.

Variation on Metal Screening. Metal screening around the underside of the suspended slab (elevated because of the flood prone nature of the site) will be an eyesore visible from the residential area of Station Street. Similarly there is no detail of the nature of the metal and timber perimeter fence is available for the public to comment on.

These variations to the original DA will create an even greater loss of amenity in a quiet residential part of town, compounding the negative effects of such a massive development totally out of proportion with the small-town scale we value highly about the present Mullumbimby. Please reject them all.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008


Mullum: We Want Small Traders—Not Corporate Invaders. No Woolworths!
Mullum: We Are Not Fresh-Fooled People. Think Logically. Shop Locally.
Woolies, I Don’t Buy It.
Mullumbimby, Charming and Quaint. Woolworths Ain’t.
Woolies Are Bullies
Mullumbimby— Co-operation Not Corporation.
Mullum: It’s a Special Spot—Not a Red Hot Special
Support your local "Fresh Food People"Say no to Woolworths in Mullumbimby!
Bugger off bullies!
SUPPORT our LOCAL merchants, our local farmers, our unique community.NO WOOLWORTHS in Mullumbimby
You don't know what you've got till its gone.Shop locally—think globally
Warning Mullum, It Ain't Worth the Wool!
Woolworths - the f*cked food people.
Woolworths - the truck food people
Woolies, a wolf in sheep's clothing
Woolworths… Worth It?
Woolworths—Wealth from Stealth
Don't pull the Woolies over our eye's
Mullum CAN stop Woolworths
Size does Matterin the Biggest Little Town in AustraliaMullumbimby—Supporting Small and Local Businesses
Yer not pulling the woolies over my eyes
Save the Biggest Little Town
Woolworths the Trash Food People
Woolworths, it's not worth it.
Diversity=Resilience. Support Local Small Business
Mullumbimby Won't be Woolied.
Mullum—Woolworths free zone.
Woolies? Not Worth It.
Check out Mullumbimby before Woolworths does.
Local Business=Local WealthCorporate Business=Corporate Wealth
Woolies? Not!
Keeping Our Community AliveMullumbimby-Where Size Makes a Difference
Local is my space
Sustainable Communities Thrive on Local Support
Community Starts here
Save the Biggest Little Town
Shop Local – Save a Farmer!
Want to see the entry of your choice made up as bumper stickers, badges and T--shirt? We’re looking for funds to support these ventures. Call 6684 1415.


Going Local - A Relocalisation Convergence
New Farm, Brisbane 24-25 May, 2008
Going Local has been designed as a participatory gathering of people interested in building the sustainability and resilience of their local communities. Amongst us will be some of the leading innovators in sustainable local economies, community-building and place-making. People like:

Judy Wicks, co-founder of the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies in the United States, Helena Norberg-Hodge, founder of the International Society for Ecology and Culture in the UK and author of Ancient Futures,
Gilbert Rochecouste, place-maker, urban deep ecologist and founder of Village Well in Melbourne,
Ingrid Burkett, Education & Innovations Co-ordinator, Foresters ANA
John Champagne, founding member of the Bega Eco Neighbourhood Developers,
Mitra Ardron, founder of the Byron Shire Sustainable Ventures Network and Director of Beyond Building Energy.

A Going Local Program and Registration form is on www.climateleadership.net.au

We are on the cusp of an era of unprecedented change - change that we can hardly even imagine. Our modern world is built of an assumption of unlimited growth driven by abundant cheap energy. But the end of this road is now in sight. Our future depends on reinventing ourselves in harmony with the natural limits of our planet. And doing it quickly. While action by governments and corporations is essential, it is the strength and resilience of our communities that will ultimately make the difference. In community we are best able to adapt and to innovate. This is where the inertia of our social and political institutions is weakest, our motivation strong, our values clear, and our willingness to collaborate with others the greatest. In community we care the most, feel most connected to each other and to place, and are most confident to act. Going Local is a unique opportunity to explore what we know about building strong, adaptable communities. It offers a chance to share the experience of some of the pioneers of sustainable local economies. It will be a place to build the connections for learning from each others experiences as we move into an unknown future.

So make a commitment to your sense of community, your love of the Earth, and to your own ability to learn and relearn in action. This is how we can create a future for our children to believe in. For more information: www.climateleadership.net.au

Wednesday, May 7, 2008





will be held at
Byron Shire Council Chambers, Mullum,
To discuss the changes to the development.
Woolworths reps will be there
so please wear your protest tee shirts, badges and carry banners!

“SECTION 96” (Amendment to the original DA submitted by Mallams) is now on display at Byron Shire Council and Mullumbimby library. The submission period is from 7 to 30 May.

SUBMISSIONS NEEDED! Next newsletter will have some pointers for objections. Numbers of submissions count! Anyone, even non-locals, can submit their views (closest address is best).

LETTER BOX DROP: Volunteers wanted to help us circulate info. Please call Meryn 66841415 – even if you can do only one street.

INFORMATION TABLE – We would like volunteers to be there as many hours as possible, canvassing people to send in submissions We will have form letters on the table for completion and signature, and skeleton letters for people to personalize. Table roster Judy 6684 5390.

Please contact us via the website if you have any queries/suggestions.


Buy local or it’s bye bye Mullum

Keep an eye on our blogspot www.mullumaction.blogspot.com for upcoming objections info.

Monday, May 5, 2008


Greetings - this has been a big week for calls for the people to speak up. NSW State Gov appears to be attempting to hand over local councils, state electricity, even Mullum's retail sector into the hands of Big Business (see "Keep it Local" below). The only way to counter corporate control of our state (read fascism), our town, our community is to speak up.

Wws HOT NEWS: Woolworths have put in Section 96 Changes to their DA into State Planning NSW (Minister Sartor's office). Byron Shire Council is awaiting details and Ray Darney (Chief Planning) has assured us of a public meeting, an exhibition in Council Chambers, and at least 2 weeks submission period advertised in the local papers. We will keep you posted as soon as we hear anything….form letters and information leaflets are being formulated. This is our Big Chance (and only one) to speak up about Woolworths in our town!

PRIVITISATION OF OUR ASSETS Yesterday John Kaye (NSW Greens) spoke passionately about the NSW State Gov's bid to privatize our electricity – they want to sell off OUR assets and let the corporate boardrooms decide on the future of electricity generation and therefore climate change – we will have no say. While we can still speak up – go to http://www.johnkaye.org.au/campaigns/energy/public-power-not-private-profit/privatisation he has a YouTube clip.

DEB'S REGO DUE! I have to find $1200 which means I'll have to get a job! I have been working full-time on this campaign for 3 months, and frankly I haven't got time for a job! If you can help with a donation (however humble) my account is BSB: 062665 A/C: 10052079 Commonwealth Bank.

ARMIDALE WIN: We had a call from a town planner from Armidale: when Woolworths wanted to build a big supermarket outside town, potentially killing it's heart by attracting shoppers to their one-stop shop; diminishing pedestrian traffic, therefore shopping in the town - as has happened all over the country - the people of Armidale spoke up. The Wws DA was approved and "in the bag" but the local people applied pressure; Wws relented, and built the supermarket in the town centre instead.

WHAT YOU CAN DO FOR MULLUM: John Waterhouse of Mallams said Wws have a contingency plan to open where Mallam's is now. That might be a solution, at least it would be better than them building the big box in residential Station Street. You can speak up to the Woolworths Directors (below) and tell them what YOU want!
Peggy Balfour advises that sending a letter in a brightly coloured envelope, marked "Private and Confidential" is most likely to reach its destination. From the ASX website details as follows:

Address: 1 Woolworths Way , BELLA VISTA , NSW, AUSTRALIA, 2153
Directors / Senior Management
Mr James A Strong (Chairman, Non Exec. Director)
Mr Michael Gerard Luscombe (Managing Director, CEO)
Mr Tom Pockett (Director, Finance Director)
Mr Ian MacFarlane (Director)
Ms Alison Watkins (Director)
Ms Diane J Grady (Non Exec. Director)
Mr Leon M L'Huillier (Non Exec. Director)
Dr Roderick Deane (Non Exec. Director)
Mr John Astbury (Non Exec. Director)
Mr Peter J Horton (General Counsel)

SLOGAN COMPETITON We had some brilliant entries, and these were the winners. Email me via website if you want the whole list. We are looking for funds to print these up on bumper stickers, teeshirts and badges – if you have a preference for sponsoring a particular slogan in a particular way, please specify. Call 6684 1415.
First prize, a $150 voucher from Santos Trading, went to Gary Street for:
Mullum: We Want Small Traders—Not Corporate Invaders. No Woolworths!
Mullum: We Are Not Fresh-Fooled People. Think Logically. Shop Locally.
Second prize, a $70 naturopathic consultation with iridology and hemaview from Lotions and Potions, went to Allison Howell for:
Keep Our Mullum Culture: Stop the Woolworths Vulture
Third prize, a $45 voucher from Eden's Landing, went to Ange Keenan for:
Woolies, I Don't Buy It.
And fourth prize, a $30 voucher from Sushi Wala, went to Olive McLeod for:
Mullumbimby, Charming and Quaint, Woolworths Ain't. ****************************************
"KEEPING IT LOCAL" campaign run by the Local Government and Shires Associations advise us as follows… their webpage is EASY TO FOLLOW! >
The NSW Government is introducing new State pro-Developer Laws that are tipping the balance away from local communities towards developers. The laws will not only drastically reduce funding for services like libraries, parks and playgrounds but also take away your right to have a say in local developments that affect you.

The new laws haven't been approved so NOW is the time to tell your local MP that local voices matter and you value high quality services. Help tip the balance back in favour of local communities by emailing your local MP here http://www.keepitlocal.org.au
Thanks for standing up (speaking up) for local communities!****************************************************************
GM FOODS = CORPORATE CONTROL OF OUR TUCKER Following is a link to Mathaba.com from SBS "Insight" programme. http://www.mathaba.com search the following:GM Foods in Australia Let Loose on Consumers Without Labeling
Time to get political again! SPEAK UP!
Small business welcomes predatory pricing crackdown:http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2008/04/28/2229190.htm *************************************************************
Rudd to rein in business bullies April 28, 2008
BIG businesses that slash prices to destroy smaller rivals will be targeted under new laws to be unveiled by the Rudd Government today.Under the proposed amendments to the Trade Practices Act, the Government will defend small business from so-called "predatory" pricing and give it a permanent voice inside the competition watchdog, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission. ..
A reader questioned the figures quoted last week of Indian farmers committing suicide. I got this information from an article featuring Vandana Shiva in New Internationalist magazine http:// http:// http:// http:// http:// http:// http:// http:// http:// http:// http:// http://(www.newint.org) April edition p29. "In the past decade, 200,000 farmers have committed suicide in India and- according to the celebrated environmental thinker and activist – this is a direct result of agricultural modernization, including the introduction of genetically modified crops"
FREECYCLE IS IN BYRON!!I had three responses to last week's Freecycle item and they are alive and well in Byron Bay. A fab way to get rid of unwanted stuff.: byron_bay_freecycle@yahoogroups.comhttp://groups.yahoo.com/group/byron_bay_freecycle/ **************************************************
The Generator (local radio http://www.bayfm.org) is starting a section on Local Food Action which will actively support people with local food projects. We are particularly interested in supporting people who want to:process food in season that otherwise gets thrown out (eg citrus in Winter, when you literally cannot give it away)help maintain gardens for old people who's family has grown up in exchange for some produce, lend unused (or underused) land to community projects farm staple foods (eg rice, sweet potatoes, corn and other subtropical crops)develop community supported agriculture projects. Contact: Giovanni Ebono at Ebono Institute http://www.ebono.org 0402 779 375+61 2 6684 6202

DIRECT ACTION: Will anyone interested in direct action in the coming fortnight please contact Giovanni.
VOLUNTEERS WANTED (message from Techa Beaumont) MPI the charitable org I work for is looking for volunteers with a range of skills to assist with research campaigning and IT/admin support on a range of environmental, human rights and social justice issues to do with the mineral sector. If you can think of anyone who may be looking for an interesting and rewarding volunteer activity, or want to gain experience in NGO/environmental and human rights campaigning please let me know / pass on my details. Our website is http://www.mpi.org.au for background on the issues we work on. My contacts are advocacy@mpi.org.au and 0409318 406 or hm 66884608


Another rural village is threatened with a corporate invader: Canungra .....is NOT a shopping centre with a 300 space car park (proposed supermarket : 4 times bigger than FoodWorks)wants to remain a rural village (WOSP - see attachment)our future is our hands (Your voice represented by our Councillors and your submissions)for Canungra's future ..... please attend ...... Submissions close 12th May:The Chief Executive Officer, Scenic Rim Regional Council, PO Box 25, Beaudesert Qld 4285On Thursday 24th April CADA held a public meeting to hear local opinion on a proposed development application by "Canungra Commercial Pty Ltd" (LASCORP Development Group (Aust) Pty Ltd) at Christie Street and Finch Road, Canungra (Council Reference No: 020-030-001991): A major chain SUPERMARKET (2,650 m2) with 300 CAR PARK spaces, SHOPS (1700m2) and relocated bowling club with 21 car park spaces. Over 40 local residents from various areas around Canungra, as well as shop owners, attended to voice their concerns:
ANU Digital Arts student Ty Mason is making movie about Mullum CAN: see article in N Star http://www.northernstar.com.au/storydisplay.cfm?storyid=3770201
Video On Demand: "Dirty, Sexy Money"Sarah Ferguson looks at how politics can be poisoned when donors are seen as buying access and partiality from decision-makers. If you missed the Four Corners prog, here it is http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2008/04/28/2229190.htm

SHARKWATER –the movie, premiering this Sat 3rd May 7 pm at Byron cinemas $12.50 fundraiser for Australian Seabird Rescue based in Ballina. Full details: http://www.thegenerator.com.au ************************************************************************

Thursday, May 1, 2008

newsletter no 3 - 25 April 08

Hi Folks
What can we do about Woolworths?? John Cummings of NARGA (Nat Assoc of Retail Grocers of Aus) recommended we GET POLITICAL; ie lobby Don Page, Justine Eliot, Frank Sartor and Ray Darney (below).

INFO STALL SUCCESS: Don Page (I went to see him today) was very interested in a sketch map provided by Station Street resident to Renee on the Info Table. This resident had had a visit from 2 Wws reps this week to “explain the new proposals”. Sketch showed new location of proposed Wws further north on the site with loading bay now on the north side. This means trucks will travel deeper into residential area. Don Page took this seriously and said he will tell Sartor that our community wants input into Section 94 Variance of DA and that this needs to be looked at by Traffic Committee (BSC; RTA & police).

From Don’s website www.donpage.com.au : "My vision for the electorate is that we create a sustainable future for our community. This involves creating employment, whilst protecting the beauty and environmental integrity of our area. It is not a case of jobs or the environment - it is a case of jobs and the environment."

Jolly good, Don. Let’s support each other in this vision. Your message to Don will help! Don.Page@parliament.nsw.gov.au

Also, Ray.Darney@byron.nsw.gov.au who is BSC Chief of Planning said at our public meeting that “the Minister would ensure that the (Woolworths) proposal is renotified. I would expect that the Minister would put plans on display at Council’s Administration Building”(Darney’s Q & As are on our website under “Documents”) Darney needs to be reminded that we want to have our say when DA is revised (Section 96 Modifications) this is our chance to object!

You could, most importantly, write to the Minister who approved this DA: office@sartor.minister.nsw.gov.au (sample) Dear Frank – please will you let us know before you pass any Section 96 Modifications to Wws DA 32-04-2006. We want to see the plans on display at BSC first. Yours truly.

WALMART & ALDI IN OZ: From The Australian 24.4.08: A RUDD government plan to lower food prices by easing the way for major international retail chains to enter Australia has drawn fire from economists and retailers who argue it will make little difference to the cost of groceries at the checkout……Later in that article: “The peak body representing Australia's largest retailers, the Australian National Retailers Association, said the move would not increase competition because it did not address the underlying problem, which was a lack of new supermarket sites. John Cummings, the chairman of the National Association of Retail Grocers of Australia, which represents 4500 independent retailers, said the proposal would make no difference to grocery prices. "For an international player to get into the Australian market and compete with Coles and Woolworths, they would need to find 750 supermarket sites around Australia, and that just simply is not going to happen," Mr Cummings said.

I often get calls and emails from people – here is one:
USA MACAS IN LISMORE WWS “I went shopping in Lismore Central Woolworths. Amongst other items , I was after some raw macadamia nuts. I was appalled to see that the nuts were sourced from the USA. At least I would expect a modicum of political correctness on the part of woolies that would see them source their macas at least locally, given its importance to our local economy. Guess not!” John, Eltham

Wws are wanting to update their image to be more 'socially responsible': http://www.woolworths.com.au/vendors/news/announcements/greensmkt.asp "Woolworths is committed to building sustainable and environmentally friendly retail developments while continuing to provide local communities with an enjoyable shopping experience." - that's extraordinary!!

Woolworths installing self-service check-out terminals in all new stores – (perhaps they will need to revise their job figures for the Mullum proposal)http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/news/business/woolies-price-checks-checkout-chicks/2008/04/21/1208742882358.html

On-line petition to boycott Coles & Woolworths http://www.gopetition.com.au/petitions/boycott-coles-and-woolworths/sign.html
We are currently looking at putting in our own on-line petition.

ETHICAL SHOPPING- free on-line edition of New Internationalist magazine http://www.exacteditions.com/exact/browse/386/422/1787/2/2/0/

CORPORATE RESPONSIBILITY?? The following link is a video about GM seeds in India, particularly BT cotton which is causing the suicides of hundreds of thousands of Indian farmers. Vandana Shiva, physicist and social activist, quotes corporate biotech salesman: “to us it doesn’t matter if the crops don’t do well because they will just come back for more of our seed; the failure of agriculture is a market success for the Corporation.” http://www.livevideo.com/video/D8AFEBAA8DAF4AF7B758953A09880B34/zegee-com-unnatural-selectio.aspx

FREECYCLE your junk instead of landfilling! Freecycle initiatives in 85 countries – who wants to start a group here? http://au.news.yahoo.com/080421/19/16k2v.html

WOOLLOOMOOLOO community garden: green therapy for schizophrenia

TRANSITION TOWNS explained in free on-line edition of Resurgence: http://www.exacteditions.com/exact/browse/389/425/3137/3/36

Relocalisation (local) movies: Each Tuesday, 7.15 for 7.30 sharp start; tea and bickies, + $5 donation Tues. 29th April; 'How to Save the World'. Bio-Dynamic farmer Peter Procter (from NZ) is now living in India and doing great good works. Many, huge BD compost heaps, we can organise this in our shire! The community's waste is our resource! See Calendar on our website www.mullumaction.org for more details.
Happy surfing – just watch out for sharks.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Report of Public Meeting, Mullumimby 5.4.08

St John's Hall Mullumbimby - Sat 5 April 10.30 am

The panelists were:
Ray Darney (Director of Planning, Byron Shire Council) - who answered the questions (copies available from Deb) - written answers to the questions have been requested.

NOTE: Ray said if Wws put in a new or revised DA that there will be a public meeting where we can make submissions - see video on website http://www.mullumaction.org )

Rose Wanchap (Director of Red Rose Realty) spoke about values and community in relation to ownership of land - also the hidden agenda - possible financial support to potential council candidates.

Kali Wendorf, (Social Ecologist and Editor of Kindred Magazine) spoke about family living from sustainable and well-being perspective and the impact of a large supermarket on children in our community.

Helena Norberg-Hodge (Founder and Director of ISEC - International Society for Community and Ecology) (try googling her: v interesting) internationally recognised pioneer of the world-wide "localisation" movement and leading analyst of the impact of globilisation on economies and culture.

John Dolman (Manager of Santos) spoke about money circulation within the local economy (google 'Local Multiplier Effect').

Meeting was attended by about 200 people.
Deborah Lilly welcomed the audience
Anthea Amore facilitated the meeting
panellists gave 5 min talk each and then answered questions from audience
Jack Travis did power point display of questions to Ray Darney
Anthea took questions from the audience
Deborah explained MCAN overall aims, campaign goals, and MCAN sub-committees
More questions and suggestions from floor for individual and community action such as a UTube video specifically aimed at teenagers about the effects of a supermarket on a small community; interview with Macca on Australia All Over
Sausage sizzle (vegetarian & meat) & home-made soft drinks & tomato sauce
Song by Jenni Cargill-Strong 'Yellow Taxi' words changed to fit our campaign
musical accompaniment by Diti Dickson & David Hall

Mood of the meeting: Rapt attention to the panellists; probing questions to Ray Darney from BSC; disturbed local asking if Woolworth's had bought the two pubs in Mullum; more information wanted on the traffic effects (eg one-way system) in Mullum if Wws come - and promise by Ray Darney that if Woolworths put in a new DA there will be a public meeting so locals can make submissions.

Where to from here: MCAN will be having special meeting to discuss the structure of their group and strategies in a couple of weeks.
Appeal for legal help and funding brought immediate donations of $90 (including a $50 note)

There is an account of the meeting and video (with press quality photo) on our website http://www.mullumaction.org/. Incidentally, a PR person from Woolworth's Clare Buchanan, requested that they send a representative to our meeting to give a 'Woolworth's perspective'. We declined their offer, at this time.

This meeting demonstrated one of the Guiding Principles of our Campaign in action - that of strengthening SOCIAL CAPITAL - we worked together as a team, functioning as a community enterprise respecting, supporting and valuing each other's contributions to make the meeting the success it was - informing people about the effects of globalisation and the importance of localisation. Most important of all, we stimulated people's thinking!


Thursday, March 27, 2008

We've gone national!!

Tonight on "A Current Affair" and also "Today/Tonight" our campaign was featured, with interviews from outside the Council Chambers. Thanks to everyone who turned up and supported and especially to Meryn Callander who co-ordinated this event. Congratulations Mullumaction! We've had feedback from http://www.erskinevillevillage.org/ who say they are "with us".... check out their website for similar campaign. The national networking has begun!

I have a VHS recording of the Current Affair, and hope to get it onto
the website soon. Regards, Deborah

TV team in town Thurs & Fri 27 & 28 March

TV Today/Tonight team are in town today from 12 noon at Eden's Landing - will be wandering around filming and interviewing at random and then will interview Chris Abraham at 2 pm outside Mullum council chambers (it was to be be Woolworth's site but rain's changed the venue).

Tomorrow they will be interviewing Helena at 11.15 and wandering in town till 2 pm at Lulu's cafe.


Following is helpful info if you happen to get interviewed:

We want to alert people across Australia about what is happening here in Mullumbimby, and that it could happen in their own town. We are in a growing line of communities that have protested against Woolworths development, including Griffith, Sandgate (Brisbane), Lane Cove (Sydney), Maleny and Kempsey. In each of these communities monetary might and political clout has won out over the voice and actions of the local people.

We want it to be known that we are part of a growing wave of citizens who recognize the destructive impact of multinational corporations co-opting their town’s economy and that this destruction cannot continue. We want people to know that it matters a great deal how and where they shop, and that shopping is an active decision. Each time we buy something we are supporting a particular business practice as well as the ethics of that business practice. We want people to know how and where their food was produced and how many food-miles it has traveled. We want to know if we are buying a local product or a foreign one; supporting local farmers or overseas ones. We want people to be aware of how multinational corporations suck the blood out of local communities and contribute massively to global warming.

The NSW State Department of Planning over-rode Byron Shire Council’s objection to the development and our community was not listened to by the government. We are outraged that, in the face of all that we know about the importance of strengthening local economies, Woolworths may be allowed to come to our town. We want people tell State Planning Minister Sartor, as well as our Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, that this blatant abuse of democratic process is not acceptable.

Some reasons why we don’t need Woolworths in Mullumbimby are as follows: Woolworths offer minimal financial support to local communities comparedto local businesses, who regularly donate many tens of thousands of dollarswhile also offering other forms of support to local causes. This support keeps our local sporting clubs, community groups and the arts alive.
Many local retailers provide personalised services to their customerswhile Woolworths do not. These will be lost if local businesses are forced todownsize or cease trading.

Woolworths plan to build a bigger supermarket than the one in Byron - with a bottleshop - surrounded by tarmac, close to the gateway of our town. Besides being an eyesore, this development is totally out of character with the residential setting, as well as with the small-business diversity of our town.

Fragmentation of our town centre will diminish the cohesion,sustainability, and unique character of Mullumbimby and the heart of ourcommunity.

The growing impact of global warming and peak oil makes it more importantthan ever to support our local producers and merchants in creating aresilient, vibrant, and sustainable local economy. In and around Mullumbimbywe have a rich, creative community, cultural diversity, experience and the fertile lands to create a model of localized sustainability. We’ve got what it takes!