It just depends what you want to believe. This is the verdict, by expert psychologists, especially to explain wide division of opinion between climate scientists and climate change denialists, like current Federal Government.
Some people believe major benefit with shire amalgamation is one set of management/admin overhead cost spread across more ratepayers, reducing duplication at each of proposed member shires.
Phil Wright has reported that, from recent meeting of local government councillors, they expect more amalgamation, not less.
As Don Cummins explained, this is exactly what the people of Mansfield were told. Obviously, they didn’t want to believe it.
An interesting story in last Saturday Age reviews history of General Motors, following Roger B Smith being CEO from 1981 to 1990.
His main policy was to amalgamate all except production lines into a “more efficient” single cost centre in Detroit.
As a consequence, the different brands of Chevy, Buick, Cadillac etc, which had previously been in friendly competition, with separate identities, suddenly became very much the same variants of blandness. Investments were made in new facilities, very expensively, distributed unevenly and not delivering appropriate return.
Big changes are difficult to reverse. Smith died in 2007, when GM market share had dropped from, 46 per cent in 1981 to 24 per cent.
Per Mansfield, amalgamation did not deliver expected economies of scale, except for budget cuts, like reduced regular road maintenance.
After de-amalgamation, Mansfield rates really did increase, with cost of reinstating roads, for example, being six times more than what it would have cost for regular maintenance.
The smaller team is much more accountable to the community, takes responsibility directly and is able to organise its own projects, for things like swimming pools, without expensive plans and revision(s) by consultants.
Of course, the experts advise that it’s only rarely that facts and reality can change strongly held beliefs. Strange brand of cattle, us humans.
Bernie McComb, Cowes.