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Local Government? What’s “local”?

July 24, 2014

There’s nothing new, I know, for elected members of councils to live outside the area they represent.

West Torrens long- serving mayor John Trainer does a mighty job from his home in Unley’s Arthur Street. A former Burnside mayor had to leave Fullarton every ime she went to her civic office..And a current Unley Councillor (also a very effective member) lives in the salubrious eastern suburbs of Adelaide, a ballot paper throw away from Victoria Park.

Not a big deal.And technically I could have stayed on at Noarlunga Council many years ago despite having moved mid-term to Black Forest.

But the current brouhaha at Marion Council would, on the surface at least, seem to be a different kettle of far-ness.

While today’s page two “Advertiser”devotes ten paragraphs (headlined “Council Scandal #2”) to a stoush between two Marion Councillors, the story does not contain the vital information required. Why does Councillor Kathleen Allen require chauffeured transport to carry her to council meetings from home in Mount Compass, wherever that is? How often? Since when?  And what about committee meetings? And at what cost to the long-suffering Marion ratepayers?… And most, importantly of all, why has the whole situation arisen?   … Sloppy journalism.

Not exactly a good day for what is meant to be the most highly regarded level of Australian governance, given that the other half of the Advertiser page (tagged “Council scandal   No 1) delves into the unedifying stoush between an “outspoken ”  Prospect councillor  and his mayor.

Suddenly, for all our many faults, little old Unley seems a haven of concord…divided only by pickets!

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