'User pays' won't work
If we as residents of the Bega Valley Shire Council adopt user pays for the swimming pools, then we need to adopt this ideology for all other assets and facilities. That is only fair thing to do.
This means that the 10 properties that are on one particular rural road will have to pay for its upkeep. This means that the six properties that use a particular bridge will have to pay for its upkeep. This will run into hundreds of thousands of dollars, equating to tens of thousands of dollars per property.
Only those that use the library should pay for the staff and facilities. My children are too old for parks now, so I won't pay for them. I don't use many of the council roads and bridges, so I won't pay for them. Did you know there are about 200 bridges that the council maintains? Who pays for the upkeep the council's office? Only the staff that work there? I go to Eden once a year, so I shouldn't pay for the upkeep for the public toilets and footpaths. The list goes on.
Obviously this ideology will not work. We as individuals do not have endless buckets of money to pay for the things that we use. Local councils are structured so that everyone shares the cost of running and maintaining all facilities and assets. This is the best and only way of having as many facilities and assets as possible with such a small population as in the Bega Valley Shire.
Jenny Weber, Jellat Jellat
I note that the Bega Valley Shire Council is seriously considering applying to be allowed to increase rates throughout the shire, the money to be spent tarting up half a dozen artificial swimming pools. Understandably there are considerable objections to this.
The BVSC holds sway over many kilometres of pristine beaches, innumerable harbours, estuaries and lakes and other waterways stretching from the Victorian border to and including Wallaga Lake. Most of these are accessible to the public.
This is only one of the many idiosyncrasies with this august body. At our beach bush subdivision of Barragga Bay, 9km south of Bermagui, there is a umber of imposing signs describing features of the area including historical data. The leading notice of the signs with an arrow pointing due north states "Toilets 9km". I am reminded of the poor bloke who rang the incontinence hotline as was asked to hold.
Visitors to the popular family beach adjacent to and under the Cuttagee bridge will be pleased to know that the toilets are only 8km away.
But there is still more. On the Bermagui-Tathra road the properties have rural mail addresses and get mail deliveries. Down the short Barragga Bay side streets the properties have suburban house numbers but get no mail deliveries.
When first introduced, confusion reigned between lot numbers and house numbers to the extent the council fixed house numbers to properties that had an available post at the entrance. Our property for example is Lot 21, Number 22. My ageing mind boggles.
The ways of the BVSC, like the peace of God, are beyond all understanding.
Noel Carter, Barragga Bay
One wonders how can a nation stand idly by and let this endless parade of inept, incompetent people posing as political leaders destroy our nation.
A 99-year lease on Darwin harbour to a foreign country - treason. Denial on climate change, coal is good - madness. Lack of reaction to the drought and water management - a disgrace.
Everywhere you look, education, government departments, infrastructure, the whole legal system.
As for the present economy it appears to have gone into the same bin as fast rail or energy supply. Just too hard for them to deal with. Everything appears to be broken. Surely the broken down state of the nation should have alarm bells ringing, or is it already too late? RIP democracy.
It seems our values are falling daily. Quite a few people now blatantly ignore the No Entry sign next to Mal's Pizza and drive into Coles. When asked, the response is usually "I did not see the sign".
I have made requests of several of the employees in Coles about upgrading the sign. I have written an open letter to person in charge of Coles. Nobody expects a vehicle to come barging in through the exit and so one of these days someone, probably a child running around, is going to be seriously injured.
Dr KR Rajesh, orthopaedic surgeon
The NSW government is introducing severe water checks on homes. Level Two restrictions will be enforced in the Greater Sydney, Blue Mountains and Illawarra regions from December 10. Fines may be slapped on those using hoses and sprinklers. People have been asked to restrict the length of their showers.
But, while we are staying dirty and our gardens dying, there is no mention of the production of meat, dairy and eggs. Enormous amounts of water are used in irrigating the crops that farmed animals eat, providing millions of animals with drinking water, and washing away the polluting filth of factory farms, trucks and slaughterhouses. All for products that are cruel to animals, harmful to human health, and detrimental to the environment. An average of 4500 litres of water is required to produce just one steak, and the production of a single hamburger requires the same amount of water as taking around 30 showers.
Any water conservation measures must include a long, hard look at animal agriculture industries.