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Mayor’s French visit mystery deepens.

September 14, 2015

Don’t know where the Tiser gets it’s information from, but today’s page 15 item “Trench war over mayor’s WW1 trip” claims that  “While Unley councillors are likely to approve the trip, many want a cap on the amount of public money spent”.

But only one Councillor, Rob Sangster, is quoted, saying that Council needed to be “very careful” about how it approached the issue. And  the Deputy Mayor, Bob Schnell, is mentioned as being opposed

What about the remaining eleven members?  And why was there  no comment from the man at the centre of the controversy, Mayor Lachlan Clyne, who wants to go to France next July to represent Unley at the 100th anniversary commemoration of the city’s part in the battle of Pozieres, one of the biggest  of World War One.?

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21 Comments leave one →
  1. September 14, 2015 10:04 am

    The fuss over exorbitant travel by Bronwyn Bishop, Tony Burke, Leon Bignell and other Federal and State MPs illustrates that elected reps have an innate sense of personal entitlement to publicly funded travel, food and drink. Some of our local government reps are no exception. If a mayor feels that only he, rather than Australia’s Governor-General or Prime Minister, can properly represent his area at an overseas event, let him go, by all means, but also please ask him to use his own mayoral allowance to pay all the expenses.If a mayor feels that $6500 is too large a slice of his allowance, I’m sure that a local office of Flight Centre or Phil Hoffmann Travel could come up with a much cheaper budget for an economy class round trip for one from Adelaide to Pozieres plus a couple of nights’ accommodation.

    Like

  2. Sarah permalink
    September 14, 2015 10:33 am

    I think the Mayor should go. We as an Unley community have an incredible connection to France and in particular Poziers. anyone who is opposed to this needs to have a good hard look in the mirror #lestweforget

    Like

  3. Robert permalink
    September 14, 2015 12:08 pm

    This is an incredibly unique situation. State and Federal MPs travel all around the world and never tell us much about it. Pisoni spent over $20,000 and told us what? Nothing in his flyers about it. 18 Mayors went overseas to China and?

    This is important for Unley.

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    • Angela permalink
      September 17, 2015 9:07 pm

      Fixing my street and the footpath is more important to me.
      You say that the trip to France is important to Unley.
      To me, fixing my street is more important.
      Get real Robert.

      Like

  4. James permalink
    September 14, 2015 6:24 pm

    There is a lot of ill feeling in the community about this trip overseas.

    The residents of Unley, who will pay for this trip, have just been slugged with a 4.1% rate increase this year to pay for the excesses imposed by the Unley Council.

    Unley has had a long history of elected members involved in controversial trips overseas. I seem to recall his father on a trip when he was an Unley Councillor that still raises eyebrows to those who recall the issue.

    Like

  5. Trevor permalink
    September 15, 2015 5:38 am

    Unley council must trash this idea.
    I don’t want my rates being spent on an overseas trip by Mayor Lachlan Clyne.
    Richard is right. The Mayor should fund the trip.
    He earns a whopping $65,000 +

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  6. Judy b permalink
    September 15, 2015 10:19 am

    My uncle Fred Nairn died @ Moquet Farm as part of the Poziers battle. I think it is great for Mayor Clyne to go to France for the centenary. Why doesnt he use his mayoral allowance? I spent 2 weeks visiting cemeteries & memorials on the
    Western Front. Family hotels provide good accomodation for about $140 per night. Joining a bus group or hiring a car is not that expensive.

    Like

    • Mary permalink
      September 15, 2015 8:52 pm

      A good suggestion Judy.
      The mayor should use his allowance.
      It is a quite substantial allowance of $65,000 on top of his normal job. I presume that he has one.
      He should go and it should not be a council decision.

      Like

  7. Bert permalink
    September 16, 2015 5:51 am

    It is a bit of a cheek for the Mayor of Unley to expect the ratepayers to fund his 2 weeks trip to France. Is this what the rate rise was for?
    The Mayor is paid well and should fund it himself.
    Damn cheek.

    Like

    • Brenton permalink
      September 17, 2015 5:06 am

      i totally agree with Bert.
      It is outrageous for ratepayers to fund this trip.
      The well paid mayor should pay his own way.

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  8. Sheralie permalink
    September 17, 2015 7:16 am

    Surely Unley could have a local event to honour Unley’s troops killed in France.
    Surely the Mayor doesn’t need to go to France.
    Surely the ratepayers of Unley don’t have to fund Mayor Lachlan Clyne going to France.
    Surely the Mayor can fund his own trip.
    Why not put a vote to the people?

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    • Richard permalink
      September 17, 2015 9:40 am

      Flight Centre today is advertising economy flights from Adelaide to Paris and return in 2016 for $1554. So what would the extra $4946 (out of the $6500 budget) be spent on? I reckon you could fly to and from Paris, get to and from Pozieres, spend a couple of nights in France, eat, drink and be merry for $2500 to $3000 max.

      Like

  9. Brenda permalink
    September 17, 2015 8:59 pm

    Was there a one way special price?

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  10. September 18, 2015 5:05 am

    Unley Council is getting a bit of flack lately.
    This issue is not helping.
    It is time to put this to bed.
    No money to fix my footpath, so why should the council pay the mayor to go to France.
    I do not support it and am annoyed that my rates would fund the trip.
    In fact rates from about 8 houses in my street would fund the trip.
    Stay home and fix my footpath.

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  11. Mike permalink
    September 18, 2015 12:39 pm

    How are you voting on this issue Mike or is it too early to show your hand?

    Like

    • cllrmikehudson permalink*
      September 18, 2015 1:57 pm

      If I were able to vote, which I am not, I would be a “No”

      Like

      • Mike permalink
        September 19, 2015 2:50 pm

        Pray tell Mike. I understood this to be a Council decision on he Mayor’s overseas jaunt and therefore all Councillors would vote on this matter. Am I wrong?

        Like

      • cllrmikehudson permalink*
        September 19, 2015 6:39 pm

        Some Councillors will not be voting, as they will not be at the meeting.

        Like

  12. Elliot permalink
    September 18, 2015 3:03 pm

    I find a lot of comments on this post disturbing, especially since there are so many questions that seems to make this issue seem ‘controversial.’ Yet there are so many responses on what should and should not happen. I would like to know more in depth details about this.

    In your previous posts Mike, I read that Mayor Clyne responded quite a number of times by saying that ‘If I go, I’ll not because I want to but because my Council and the community sees the merit and importance of it.’ That seems to suggest that going to France is an idea that was suggested by someone else other than himself. Did this idea come about because of the invitation from the Mayor of Pozieres, which was reported in the Messenger? In your post, you said ‘Mayor Lachlan Clyne, who wants to go to France next July…’ I would like to know which of the above is true. Did the Mayor want to go on his own suggestion or did it come about as an invitation to him/council, as that would make a lot of difference.

    Secondly, where did the amount of $6500 come from? Was that an amount that was quoted by a travel agent or a tour group? Has there been more than 1 quote sourced? Will council be talking about the possibility of the mayor doing a ‘self travel’ instead of tour groups to lower costs if the vote was for him to go? I use to work for a company that was doing work for the South Road upgrade and had no qualms about charging the government bodies a lot more than they normally do.

    It is a good initiative/thought on the part of council but could this money be put to better use/lessen? If the Mayor were to fund this trip on his own and yet represent council at the same time, is there any liability for council should anything happen during the trip? If so, should he be representing himself rather than the council if he is using his own funds?

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    • cllrmikehudson permalink*
      September 18, 2015 3:28 pm

      Wow. So many questions and so little time…
      Firstly, I don’t think it was any Councillor who suggested the idea, so perhaps you should ask the Mayor where it came from.
      I said “wants to go to France” because of the Mayor’s obvious enthusiasm for the idea.
      I do not recall any invitation from France, but maybe I just missed it.
      The amount of $6500 was, as far as I know, first mooted in a report to Council from the Administration.
      I have NO idea as to the situation regarding the search for a lower fare.
      “Self travel”. See above.
      Yes to better use.
      Insurance isn’t my bag.
      Ditto the puzzle of representation.

      Probably the above does not meet all your concerns, but it is the best I can do at short notice, as I am off overseas myself in the very near future. All as a drain on the Grumpy hip pocket!!!

      Like

  13. Georgie permalink
    September 19, 2015 5:33 pm

    I know that it is a historic event, but leave the expensive travel to the State and Federal politicians. I would prefer Unley to spend the money locally eg. Fixing my footpath.
    I don’t support the Mayor going to France.

    Like

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