I for one am feeling decidedly pessimistic about the upcoming Albury council elections, I have heard it said on more than one occasion by people appraising the current council lineup that “not one of them deserves to be there”.
Sadly, I suspect this September is unlikely to do anything to improve the situation.
For the past four years we’ve seen factions, cliques, gangs, whatever you want to call them form ad nauseum.
The Fromholz park debacle proved a flash-point for a virtual civil war to erupt within the council chambers.
While I agree Fromholz park is a poor choice of location for the construction of a child-care centre, and the council’s dealings over this issue have been “less than transparent” to put it most diplomatically, drawing the issue out and continuing to use it to create divisions at council level is clearly not in the best interests of the community.
Further, we’ve seen vested interest groups emerge on all fronts, scrapping the proposed $2.00 spectator fee to keep the sports stadium viable (for people who would, no doubt spend ten times that much on junk food to eat while they sit and watch their kids play basketball) has become a way for dubious candidates to curry favour with the masses.
A sweetener or political bribe if you like.
We’ve seen candidates buy into the Uiver debate en masse, the spectacle of council candidates clamouring over one another to “save” a rusting old replica of a plane locals banded together to help land safely in the 1930’s is a comic farce worthy of John Cleese.
Of course the Summers Carrol Hull/ Summers “leadership team”, all the glitz and glam of “dancing with the stars”, and a fraction of the substance.
We’ve had council candidates left right and centre using nepotism (but it’s not nepotism if you put your own son fourth on the ballot….is it?) calling in favours from community groups and generally using fair means or foul to make sure they get over the line in a record field of candidates.
Oh and I almost forgot the “we make a packet of money peddling vice and sleaze in Dean Street, hang the social cost to the community we’re in it for US” or as they prefer to be known, the “late night trader’s” ticket.
I think this election the adage has never been truer, “whoever you vote for, you’ll get a politician”.