Border Mail letters: Border Mail readers have their say on the issues of the day

Protocol ignored

In reference to the radio interview with Anna Speedie on Thursday morning and other media interviews regarding the stock route bridge, flooding and the Big Bash cricket, I raise concerns that the election period protocols for sitting Councillors has been disregarded.

Both the Local Government Act and the required code of conduct establish a principle that sitting councillors should not engage in media that may affect voting and that has not been formally authorised by the CEO and only then in providing information about the election process.

THINK BACK: A reader says that many people seem to have forgotten the reasons that ratepayers backed the last democratically elected council in Wangaratta.

THINK BACK: A reader says that many people seem to have forgotten the reasons that ratepayers backed the last democratically elected council in Wangaratta.

The flooding and stock route bridge interview and the Big Bash cricket interview are clearly not about the election process and could not have obtained CEO authorisation.

The radio interview may have been intended as election process advice to the community but Anna Speedie deviated into political issues and other matters associated with Council and which either intentionally or otherwise created an unfair opportunity to raise her profile in the community and to therefore influence voting in the election.

Sheridan Zikesch, Wodonga

Remember the issues

It seems to have escaped many people who write here why the last democratically elected Wangaratta Council was voted in.

Ratepayers were opposed by many of the environmental “sustainability” issues that were being implemented by previous council led by Robert Paino.

Listening to people wasn’t in Mr Paino’s interests and even Anthony Griffiths admitted this problem, as well as saying the councillors should be in charge, not the CEO.

Many issues were protested against and Wangaratta Council did what they wanted anyway.

A public address was only installed when the newly elected council came in. We could now hear debate.

The Rural (Land) strategy and the swimming pools has seen local laws imposed which are both costly to farmers and ratepayers by our so-called “we know what’s good for you” administrators.

These were the very issues ratepayers were opposed to.

 Wangaratta rates are seen as the most expensive in the Victorian rural area. To then have used a human rights issue to dismiss council, without considering ratepayers, shows that it’s easy to claim bullying when wanting to damage councils.

The Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV) criticised the move, saying there must be a better way to deal with problems in local governments.

Standing up to the Co-Store car park was Julian Fidge and his common sense team. We know how that ended. He was right to stand up. It’s costing us.

The ward electoral zoning system has been tweaked by the government of the day to maximise its own voter support. I wonder how many people will see this and do some careful thinking about how to vote.

John Vance, Wangaratta

More trucks in town

It is commendable that Indigo Shire Council wants to stop B-Double trucks travelling through the Shire's small towns (The Border Mail, October 12).

So why on earth would the Federation Council be supporting a compost facility on the edge of Howlong which will result in a huge increase in the number of B-double trucks travelling through the middle of town?

Some coming from NSW councils would not need to come into the centre of town, but those from Victoria have no alternative but to travel on the bridges over the Murray River and up a main road and through the centre of town, indeed through the town's main intersection.

Unless of course, Cleanaway or Council are going to build another bridge further up the river to take all trucks?

Judy Thomas, West Wyalong

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