A new voice for open and inclusive government - A Better Eurobodalla (ABE) - has stepped up to improve regional decisions, ensuring they represent the interests of residents, businesses and visitors.
ABE has identified "hot-button" issues and has put the Shire Council on notice that it will pursue answers to concerns and lobby for better outcomes.
The lease of Bateman's Bay Community Centre was one of the first concerns and ABE made detailed presentations to the council at its November and December meetings in support of continuing the current arrangements. Unfortunately, the council decided (6 votes to 3) to lease out the centre from July 2021 with no guarantees community groups will maintain their level of access.
This is an example of the council being unwilling to listen to the wide range of interests who asked the council to prioritise well-being and recovery and actively support community groups and services.
The community needs all the assistance, support and cooperation it can get ... it is a time for giving, not taking away.
With the council election shifted to September 2021, ABE wants to ensure out-of-town ratepayers know they are entitled to one vote per property.
Our councillors make vital decisions about planning and managing in the challenging years ahead so it is vital everyone votes.
Non-resident electoral rolls are prepared by the council and will close on Monday, July 26, 2021. Non-residents must register to vote. For more information see the ABE website (https://abettereurobodalla.org/).
ABE will ask all candidates about their commitment to open communication with residents, transparent financial management and planning for a long-term, sustainable future.
We want to understand how government operates locally and how residents can improve decision making.
The aim is better, fairer and more sustainable outcomes for residents, visitors and businesses.
ABE expects that before governments, at any level, make decisions that will impact their communities, they will undertake broad and meaningful consultation, listen to and share expert advice, and proceed using a transparent decision-making process so the community understands who makes decisions, when and why.
ABE has approached the council on its emergency preparedness and evacuation centres, the re-opening of its services post-COVID, and the need for a climate adaptation plan.
The council will hear more from ABE on recent zoning changes and potential impacts for bushfires. ABE joins a groundswell of groups around Australia to stand up for communities and inform voting.