Open letter to councillors
The Minister for Local Government says the full suite of IPART recommendations "if implemented, could substantially change our local government system and impact directly on communities".
So it's a big deal, eh?
The minister, rightly, goes on to say that "it is important that councils, community members and organisations representing the interests of local government should have the opportunity to fully consider these issues before the Government proceeds with a final response to the reports".
Very few if any members of the community were aware that such changes were being considered let alone knowing what impacts those recommendations might have or even that they could have access to a process to seek further information or make their views known.
I understand a briefing session attended by six of you last Wednesday was the first time some of you councillors might have heard of the IPART recommendations or the Minister's letter or the deadline for responses to be made to the OLG even though the IPART report has been available for yonks and the Ministers letter was 11 weeks old.
The recommendation of the report before you is that: "Council submit to the office of Local Government responses to the recommendations raised in the IPART report "Rating System Review" as attached to this report. Councillors, you are Council! Are you willing to submit the responses as being yours after an initial briefing to six of you held on September 3? Why weren't you and the community involved months ago allowing time to properly seek the community members' views.
I urge you to defer this report until you and the community are fully informed and that proper engagement and consultation with the community has occurred.
Jeff de Jager
Mental health facilities needed
How many people have to die down here before it is taken seriously and real help is provided?
I'm disgusted with the lack of help to people suffering from mental health on the South Coast.
For three years I have been fighting for help for my daughter, only to be in a worse position from it.
When is the Eurobodalla Shire area going to provide us with a facility to provide ongoing support and help to people suffering from this terrible hell?
'Get onya bike for farmers' mental health'
Do you love the freedom of being "onya bike", on a journey peddling to wherever you want to go?
Have you thought about combining your love of bike riding with supporting someone in need - but don't have time to go on one of those long charity rides?
Then Rural Aid has the answer for you.
This September, we want you to get onya bike and spend up to an hour a day riding (or spin biking) and be part of the Australia-wide Beach 2 Bush Ride, to raise funds for qualified mental health counsellors for our farmers and rural communities.
Not a cyclist? Not a problem. If walking or running is your thing, you can still participate.
Harsh Australian conditions and natural disasters are devastating for our farmers and rural communities on many levels," Charles Alder said.
The goal of this September's Beach 2 Bush Ride is to raise $150,000 to place one new counsellor in rural Australia to offer vital professional mental health support to drought-affected farmers and their families.