Council rates to rise while wages stagnate

Rate add-on: Georges River Council has outlined its proposed rate restructure program.
Rate add-on: Georges River Council has outlined its proposed rate restructure program.

Re the article "Georges Rive Council's 8.1 per cent rate add-on" (Leader, September 4).

It is amazing, as we look into the eyes of global financial constraint that Georges River Council is choosing a double whammy for ratepayers next year.

An 8.1 per cent increase for all ratepayers and, owing to Hurstville Council's good management over many years, a couple of extra $100s for that part of the local government area.

Our mayor makes some interesting, out of touch, comments about how we all want more than the basic services under the Local Government Act.

I am certain ratepayers who have not had a pay rise in a very long time will find these comments out of line.

Councillor Badalati made a comment at the last council meeting, that they were looking at where savings can be made.

Could we suggest restructuring the admin side of the council. More directors than in either Hurstville or Kogarah councils, the general manager is paid near the same as our Prime Minister. Councillors are given allowances which are far beyond those of the pre-amalgamation councils. The spin section has too many spinning. Both Hurstville and Kogarah had a very limited, qualified admin staff.

Seems there is a lot of fat to be trimmed before the ratepayers are hit by such an outrageous rate hike.

A proposed strategy for infrastructure before the council is for 25 years. By then we may be in a better international financial position.

We don't have to build it before the next council elections. As most families will tell the council. If you haven't the money, you don't spend it.

Brian Shaw

President, St. George District Residents Network Inc

Since council amalgamation, I've seen local parks and streetscapes deteriorate, with Moore Reserve, once a source of pride in the community, looking the most bedraggled I've ever seen since it was the local tip.

Let's hope we get some "bang for our buck" and that rate increases will result in greater care and upkeep for the local environment.

Vanessa Tennent, Oatley

Mayor Kevin Greene is quoted as saying "A council that solely looks after roads, footpaths and rubbish removal is a thing of the past".

As a resident of Peakhurst for 50 plus years, may I suggest the word "soley" is in my opinion superfluous in this sentence.

In April 2018 I wrote to council with regard to a broken pit cover in the footpath at the roundabout Belmore Road and Richards Avenue, Peakhurst, as neither Telstra nor the NBN workers saw it as their problem.

The hole is now much larger just waiting for some poor pedestrian to have an accident.

As for rubbish our streets are a disgrace.

Elaine Cameron, Peakhurst

Re the articles "Urgency call on pool study" and "Georges River Council's 8.1 percent rate add-on" (Leader, September 4).

Georges River Council's Open Space Recreation and Community Facilities Strategy 2019-2036 misleadingly only contains three aquatic facilities, including long existing crumbling ones in need of replacement and upgrade - noted well before amalgamation and when the district took on massive planned redevelopment and population growth in prior years.

The redevelopment of Carss Park Olympic Pool, if undertaken under previous expert advisement, will only amount to three aquatic facilities, the same number that served a much smaller community.

The recent loss of the Olympic [ool is a backward and retrograde step leaving the larger community short of a minimal third centre when a fourth should have been in the planning stage instead - a poorly disguised strategic fudge.

In every other area there has been a recognised need for additional facilities to accommodate population growth such as trains, clearways and new council facilities.

All existing pool facilities were built by the community prior to Berejilkian Government council amalgamations, which was supposed to be the turning point in community improvement, but has only resulted in rationalisation of existing facilities, further bureaucratic uncertainty, fewer answers and planned obsolescence.

R Piech, Sans Souci