WOW what a week, this time last week I’d just returned from the Moorebank residents action against the concrete recycling rally at Georges Fair. Please note the PAC meeting is this coming Monday at 3pm at Bankstown sports club. While I’m usually the one calling for recycling, the idea of concrete being crunched this close to the community and the river is just not on. Liverpool cannot be the dumping place for all the crap no one else wants.
Following this I was delighted to meet an amazing couple of people from the Chinese community who were guest speakers at our local Greens meeting. I cannot describe the disdain I felt hearing the terrible stories of detention and organ harvesting that is happening today in China and how the community here and there is so totally unaware. They say that even Australians are travelling to China for transplants, little do they know the donor, doesn’t always consent. Truly scary stuff and worthy of more investigation and protest.
Tuesday was the council meeting, brought forward no doubt so councillors didn’t miss the State of Origin. Credit to Cllr Waller for reminding the other councillors that representling the community is an honour and an obligation. One distressing point made by councillor Shelton was a line had been removed from the budget that I’d clearly missed … the Environmental Levy is to fund an Enviro Centre/Nursery…(more on that shortly) and when he questioned the CEO, Mr Wulff said we can always buy trees. This short sighted and clearly incomplete idea of the facility is one thing but to simply remove it from a budget is appalling. As your community representative on that committee for a few years now, one of the major benefits to come from the levy was that Council could provide the community with an exemplary facility that would show them in real terms what can be achieved in an environmentally considerate and practical way, Meeting rooms and if possible a cafe. Along with that we could substantially save council by propagating locally significant plants to line our streets and fill our parks at a fraction of the cost we’re paying now. The flippant line that we could buy trees simply shows that the CEO is focused on the bottom line of the balance sheet not what is in the long term best interest of the people of Liverpool. While that in some things the budget is good focal point, however this particular funding is tied and I am hopeful sufficiently tightly so that particular line will be reinstated in the Budget. On another issue and one that concerns me, how can the CEO simply override the budget of the past… that particular budget 2014/15 was passed by the community through submissions and the councillors, what is his authorisation to simply remove it? Quite frankly this particular project would have been up and running had it not been for a couple of disruptions , one being a former councillor with an agenda and another being the impost of the Moorebank intermodal and the proposed Bridge across to it. Why is it when if comes to caring for our environment, it is the first to be shafted when another ‘idea’ comes along? Easy I guess, dismiss it as a green agenda and voila, it’s unpopular or worse a good idea that needs to be ignored. It is really important that we the community speak up, we cannot simply be dismissed when a new broom sweeps through. We (the community) are here for the long haul, while CEO’s etc generally are not.
I will keep you informed on this one, our EAC group has worked, investigated and cared for your environment levy like it was our own, oh yeah, we’re ratepayers it blinking is. The Committee is made up of 2 community reps, of which I’ve been one for some time, one business representative and a number of community organisations invested in bringing the best outcomes. We are not fly by nights who need a line item on a resume.
On the budget, only three people put in submissions and two used the online facility. As a community it is really important we share our views, comment on issues affecting our community and this option is presently available in relation to a bunch of parks council is considering disposing of, sorry that’s reclassifying ( I mentioned this in a previous post)… please register on Liverpool Listens and have your say. With our community growing at such a pace we must protect our parks and open space, we need to protect them, we need to speak up and in this instance we need to say NO SELLING OUR GREEN SPACE. There is a link on the Council webpage to get involved with the Liverpool Listens facility, it doesn’t take long and doesn’t require long involved or detailed submissions. We do however need to be mindful in how these surveys are written, we experienced this with the Badgery’s Creek one some time ago and more recently on the council amalgamations survey, sadly if you opposed amalgamations like I do, you were unable to accurately state this and complete the survey. I’ve made sure council staff were aware of this and trust that this won’t happen again. I guess I will have to write a formal submission on that particular item as surely there will be no voices of dissent if I don’t such as the way this survey was written.
I missed Sorry day on Monday but was delighted to hear Cllr Waller and one other cllr (sorry I missed their name) were in attendance. Unsurprisingly the Mayor was not one of them, knowing his penchant for not showing up, there’s rarely a surprise there, he is gaining quite the reputation for being a no show, even at the Moorebank Action he was significantly late, another in his modus operandi.
Alas that is all for now, I will keep you posted on events as I hear about them. As always please let me know if there is information you think I’ve missed, misheard, misunderstood, or you heard differently. It’s easy to say my info is wrong, just as easy to help spread the alternative view if you are so inclined and apparently even easier to offer criticism instead of information.
Until next time…
ps… Moorebank intermodal project is online and ready for additional comments from the community… I’ll post the link soon.