SENTINEL-TIMES COMMENT

THERE is an almost complete lack of interest, within the South Gippsland Shire community, for the return of an elected council after the last one was sacked in regrettable circumstances by the state government in June 2019.

Of course, there’s been the occasional bleating you’d expect to hear from those who felt hard done by when then Local Government Minister Adem Somyurek pulled down the curtain.

But hardly anyone else has made a murmur and few have taken issue with the performance of the Administrators to date either.
So, do we really want to go to the polls again in October this year and potentially elect some of the same goats who allegedly represented us last time?
Maybe not.

Perhaps we’d be better off sticking with the Administrators, appointed by the state government, for a few more years yet, thereby avoiding all of the palaver associated with another dud council – notwithstanding the importance of a democracy.

The only reason you might support the calling of a new election this year, as indicated by the government when the last council was sacked, is if you thought an elected group could do a better job.

At present, South Gippsland’s indebtedness is among the lowest of any rural council in Victoria, and while rates are on the high side by comparison with nearby councils, there’s significantly more being spent on works and services than our neighbours (Google ‘Know Your Council’ for details).

So, if you think the shire could put the brakes on rates a bit more, drive more efficiency into the organisation and better distribute the dollars around the shire; then maybe we should go to the polls.

But it will only be worthwhile if we get some proven community contributors who are prepared to leave politics and personal agendas at the door.