Ratepayers: “We want to work with council, not against them”

“We want to work with Council, not against them,” stated John Lush to a crowd of 80 people, on Wednesday September 9, at the Two Wells Football Club.

The Mallala Ratepayers Association held another meeting at a larger venue to cater for the growing number of residents who are joining the group.

The tone of this meeting was pro-active, rather than reactive, as the notion of cooperation with the council develops.

“We’ve got 700 members and growing, as we speak.

“Join our association and we’ll respect your concerns, and represent you in a professional manner.

“We will collate information and present that information to Council for consideration.”

“We want to give ratepayers a voice on what they want to see happen in their area.”

An impressive show of councillors, along with Mayor Duncan Kennington, were present to hear the Association, as well as residents’ concerns about their local area.

In particular, aspects of regions not being maintained properly, requiring much needed funds to stop them from being public liability issues.

“The $250,000 budgeted for temporarily shifting the council offices from Mallala to Two Wells is seen as a way of fast tracking the movement to a permanent basis, which means more costs”, said Craig Argent, Association committee member.

He then addressed the Mayor’s media response to claims that Council spending $12m on the proposed move are incorrect.

“It’s recorded in the Mallala and Districts Facilities and Infrastructure Advisory Committee, August 2013,” said Craig.

Councillor Joe Danielle then stated “that figure was scrapped a long time ago”, despite the absence of a new report retracting the figure.

Calls for better economic management were heard from around the room.

Councillor Picard of Lewiston assured residents that a review of the long term financial plan has been requested, “it will happen soon”, she said.

A committee member to represent the Lewiston area in the Association was volunteered in Barry Flitter.

Mr Lush then revealed a meeting had been scheduled between the Ratepayer Association and the Council, where residents’ concerns were to be formally presented and discussed.

“We will be asking Council to hold at least two public meetings where ratepayers can ask councillors face to face the questions they want answered.”

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