Manly Council – All new and with 33% fewer meetings!

One of the first acts of the new Manly Council has been to slash it’s own workload by removing the Land Use Management meeting from it’s calendar entirely.

While the content of the meeting will now be handled by the Manly Independent Assessment Panel, the lack of a forum for residents to engage with council is a retrograde step for Manly.

The last term of Council saw vibrant debate in the chambers, with members of the gallery able to freely express their disapproval or otherwise at the three regular monthly meetings. This has now been slashed to two, with no talk of a replacement for the now defunct LUM Meeting.

Given the lack of experience of some Councillor’s, and their ability to make decisions which have a broad affect on the day to day lives of Manly’s residents, I feel the Council should be actively seeking opportunities to engage with the consituents.

The last Council was perceived as one of the least accountable in recent memory, yet the new council seems determined to take this mantle from their predecessors.

This is a situation that must be rectified.

Mayor Jean Hay should be calling for a third meeting to be introduced into the monthly meeting schedule – the Manly Community Forum Meeting.

This would follow a Q and A format with a time limit of two hours, where any member of the community can ask questions of their elected representatives, and the said representatives can provide clear, concise answers.

Rather than have the Council’s message carefully crafted through the Manly Daily, let’s put our representatives to the test and see if they are really knowledgeable about their role and the community they intend to serve.

I think this would be particularly important for new Councillors, such as Clr Le Surf, Clr Elder, Clr Whitting and Clr Burns, who were elected whilst having been remarkably silent on key community issues over the last 4 years of Council.

Indeed, Clr Elder was so engaged in the campaign for her own election, she found time to slot in a quick trip to India -hardly what I would call full commitment.

Mayor Hay, show the community that you truly value their opinion, and return a bit of community involvement to the Council process.

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2 Responses to “Manly Council – All new and with 33% fewer meetings!”

  1. Tim Fiddes Says:

    Glad the blog has started up again. I hope that we can get some real coverage of Manly Council issues instead of the rubbish the Daily serves up.

  2. Digby Says:

    It would be good for Clr Elder to have more meetings as it gives her cause to visit the Manly LGA. Once again we have ended up as with a non-resident councillor

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