Tweed Shire Council's online extraordinary meeting on April 9.
Tweed Shire Council's online extraordinary meeting on April 9. Jessica Lamb

BREAKING: Decision on beachside car park closures official

Rolling coverage of today's Tweed Shire Council virtual extraordinary meeting 

4.50PM:

Director of engineering David Oxenham also clarified boat ramps car parks are still open as the state government has allowed fishing and boating to continue.

He said closing boat ramp car parks was looked at but it was "too difficult".

Mayor Milne clarified water skiing and wake boarding was not a permissable activity, just the passive boating, recreation, fishing and working activities or grocery shopping.

Councillors confirmed Tweed's beaches were not closed, only the beach-side car parks.  

Cr Chris Cherry admitted she had concerns about closing beach car parks at the last meeting but said in the current circumstances it was a  necessary "desperate measure in desperate times".

"Our hands are tied on the border closure but this is a measure we can take to keep the community safe," she said.

"I think we do need to re-visit it after the Easter break."

The vote passed unanimously.

The closures will come into effect at 5pm today.

The council meeting has now ended.

4.45PM:

A recommendation has been moved by Cr Milne and Cr James Owen:

1. Council approves the temporary installation of Road Closed signage and "No Parking Area"

signage at various roads and road related locations throughout the Tweed Shire for the 2020 Easter holiday period, from Thursday April 9 to April 27, subject to a barrier board be installed with the words "Road Closed" or "Car Park Closed" at the closure point which would enable access to the area for emergency and police vehicles.

2. In accordance with the Local Government Act and the Crown Land Management Act where applicable, Council closes the car parks contained in this report for the time period item 1 above."

While council had already announced their decision to close beach-side car parks across the Easter break in the shire, this recommendation made things official.

Cr Milne said the local traffic committee, that met this morning, also supported the recommendation.

Director of engineering David Oxenham said there was an opportunity to keep barriers up if there is still an influx of people past the long weekend but if extended, the matter would need to go to the local traffic committee again.

4.37PM:

The meeting has started.

Mayor Katie Milne has read the aboriginal statement.

General Manager Troy Green said a prayer.

All councillors are present.

4.30PM:

TWEED Shire Council's extraordinary meeting is about to begin.  

Council will consider a report on temporary closure of beachside car parks and the Minutes of the Local Traffic Committee meeting which was held this morning.  

The meeting is 'virtual' with councillors using videoconferencing from remote locations and live-streaming the meeting as it is closed physically to the public as a coronavirus safety measures.