Council has given us an opportunity

Ed, It is of real concern to find all three letters in last week’s Clarence Valley Independent (19/8/15), not just taking a completely negative stance on the proposed rate variation, but also expressing such extreme views as “entrenched disharmony, in the elected body”, “to invite the CVC to help themselves to even more of your hard earned money”. Of course, there are going to be varying views on such a contentious subject but it would be much more helpful if these were constructive. The Council has given us the opportunity to say whether we would like to eliminate, retain or retain at a reduced level, some or all of 24 discretionary services. Did any of those three letter writers go through that list and make some considered decisions, I wonder? As a personal opinion, under-utilised amenities sporting facilities perhaps should be eliminated. Also is it the role of any Council to sponsor events and festivals or even be involved in tourist promotion? The facts are that it is not just CVC but probably the majority of Councils in New South Wales who have same problem. Some of this is no doubt due to poor management but a major reason is that Councils have been subjected for years to what I believe has been a totally artificial rate increase cap, so major projects have been put off or, if done, at a lower standard of quality. Earlier this year, I penned a letter on this subject which, among other points, said we only get what we pay for. That’s still the case. Also a few years ago, CVC proposed a similar rate variation which was emphatically rejected by ratepayers, only two of us supporting the proposal. As a result the financial situation has worsened. We really can’t afford not to support this new proposal and/or accept reduced levels of service. For the record, I have no connection with the Council, other than to report a problem, especially on the state of the road I live in. And, no, Bill Day, I am not stark raving mad by supporting the Council. I just feel strongly We shouldn’t put our heads in the sand and do nothing! Brian Holley, Yamba