Margaret Howes, Empire Vale
Are The Greens on the right track? Some call them scumbags, others call them even worse names, but they are the only ones standing on a platform of organisational review within Ballina Shire Council.
I believe this organisational review should occur, and I believe the council’s commercial property development section should be disbanded. Being a property developer is not within the council’s charter.
In 2007 my rates were $2,291.79. My rates have climbed through the years to their present level in 2012 of $3,582.12. This is a whopping 56.5 per cent increase over five years. How many other businesses have managed to secure such an increase for their services in a period of global financial recession and so far above the CPI?
We, the ratepayers, are the sitting targets of an inefficient, unproductive and unprofitable council that can slug us what it likes to balance the books. It is currently being run by councillors and staff who (please excuse the expression) mostly don’t know their arse from their elbow.
The five years between 2007 and 2012 are the years Ballina Shire Council has made its major commercial investments in property.
The properties are worth infinitely less now than when developed for specific tenants. This renders them unlettable if the tenants fall by the wayside and terminate their leases.
Phil Meehan is correct. Angels Beach estate and the Coast Road were constructed by the council in 1990, but there was no commercial development department in those days. The shire engineer did everything and, not only that, he had done a complete round of the shire by 7am!
The Cherry Street headquarters of Ballina Shire Council is top heavy with staff, there are insufficient car-parking spaces on the premises, and now the council has purchased Centre and Tamar Arcades to create 80 car spaces right opposite the Council Chambers. Can you honestly believe the shoppers at Little Woolies will park there and then push their grocery trolleys across River Street to the new carpark?
Think before you vote on September 8! Your vote could save us or sink us!