Gone are our elected Councillors – even though half of them had no role in the alleged misdemeanours.
The ‘newbies’ stand accused of making poor decisions in the short time they served us; however; they had little choice but to rely heavily on administrative staff briefings.
From my personal observations the ‘newbies’ were well on the way to turning things around through good decisions, having “embraced” the Growth for Reduced Rates concept and requesting a re-worked budget to accommodate the long-planned rate reduction.
The ‘newbies’ disrupted their lives, left jobs, etc., only to be unceremoniously and unfairly dismissed. Water under the bridge now though!
As both the Municipal Monitor and the Commission of Inquiry gave the administration side of Council a clean bill of health, we should be thankful that the problems have been taken care of.
I am heartened by acting CEO Bryan Sword: “My colleagues are a remarkable group of resilient people who are dedicated to providing good service to this community”.
From personal experience and listening to the tales of 400+ petition signatories (and those who didn’t sign for fear of retribution), I was having some doubts.
So, we have a well remunerated administration staff running a trouble-free machine.
With no Councillors to hinder their performance, that’s ‘gold’ in terms of a ‘time and motion’ study!
Outcomes to match the performance of a successful commercial enterprise should flow freely.
After all, the Shire is a corporation with an uncomplicated business model.
How about aiming to improve outcomes, by turning 10-year projects into something more like two-year jobs? Cost/benefit analyses, costings and feasibility studies retain relevance. Game-changing benefits for ratepayers are achievable and success would confound those who believed the administrative staff were underperforming.
I hear the messages from Administrator, Julie Eisenbise (now joined by colleagues Christian Zahra and Rick Brown): “I want to work with the community to get the best outcomes for the entire Shire” and “at the moment it’s absolutely critical that we rebuild faith”. Admirable aspirations!
Not honouring the previous elected Councillors (both the ‘oldies’ and the ‘newbies’) intent to offer a one off 3% rate reduction this time around is a
serious ‘black mark’.
It would have been a token gesture, with a price tag of an affordable $2.6 million. I bet that cost would be no more than the savings flowing from our slick new machine!
It’s a lost opportunity to commence rebuilding that lost faith. Shame, that!
John McCombe, Leongatha.