Thanks mainly to the machinations of the Council’s senior staff and the Department of Public Prosecutions, I haven’t been able to, in person, see the new Council acting at all.
I used to be banned from going within 20m of the entire Council boundary seven days a week, but now it is only on Thursdays when Council meetings are on. Generous.
Anyway, what follows is necessarily based on the official record plus limited chats with the informed. I haven’t seen or heard enough of Councillor Swivel’s doings, but on the basis of two key votes I’ll now award him the interim title I always expected: Cr Blowhard. He talks big but when it comes to the crunch he’s just another follower of the senior staff way of doing things. At least previously we had Cr Cameron putting on the record a dissident vote for common sense. Now there is just abject surrender.
The other recent dispiriting farce was the vote to give developers huge discounts on certain fees. Until about the 1960s any developer could and would start a subdivision somewhere out in the sticks and expect Council to build roads and connect all the services for free. The benefit, they always argued, was that their development would ‘increase the rates base’ and be a ‘shot-in-the-arm for the local economy’. Clearly we are headed back to those good old days, courtesy of councillor stupidity and cowardice.