Tom Tabart, Drysdale
In the period 2013 to 2017 the federal government’s expenditure on consultants increased from about $380m to almost $700m. The number of public servants providing the same services for far less money has decreased proportionally.
Conservative pollies maintain their discredited mantra that the private sector will always provide a more efficient service than the public.
In reality it provides the opportunity to give a substantial handout to big donor mates; but more importantly a consultant can always be relied on to come up with the answer the client wants.
In Byron Shire the same system has been in play for many years with the council staff having free reign to pick whatever ‘helpers’ they want with virtually no oversight from elected councillors.
The consultant almost exclusively favoured by Council staff is GHD, a major outfit that has proved very reliable. GHD is reportedly currently negotiating with the Adani coal mine to engineer their water-extraction system.
The question now is, will our lighter shade of green councillors take any action or will they maintain their usual practice of looking at the ceiling murmuring I see nothing?