Don’t for­get mis­takes of past

Albany Advertiser - - OPINION - Bev­erly Ford, Den­mark

In Den­mark in 2015 there was a great deal of angst. Many were frus­trated, afraid and hor­ri­fied by the treat­ment they re­ceived from the then Shire coun­cil.

There was angst over a pro­posed pool; over the clo­sure of the boat ramp; frus­tra­tion and dis­ap­point­ment within the build­ing in­dus­try of its in­abil­ity to se­cure con­tracts for lo­cals; angst within the tourism in­dus­try over the Shire us­ing tax­payer funds to com­pete with pri­vate car­a­van parks and also over a pro­posal for free camp­ing.

In­di­vid­u­als were warned to stay quiet if they didn’t want to jeop­ar­dise con­tracts with the Shire.

Oth­ers were frus­trated in their at­tempts to de­velop their busi­nesses or main­tain se­cu­rity of their busi­ness. There was real fear.

The Cham­ber of Com­merce called a special meet­ing in June, 2015, to have con­cerns aired. Sixty-seven busi­nesses braved a cold and wet night. Even there they were ha­rassed and in­tim­i­dated and prior I was ha­rassed to can­cel the meet­ing.

The cham­ber was warned mem­ber­ship would suf­fer a se­ri­ous de­cline if the meet­ing pro­ceeded. As an aside it has nearly dou­bled since then. At the Shire elec­tion in Oc­to­ber, 2015, our com­mu­nity voted for fun­da­men­tal change; the com­mu­nity wanted con­sul­ta­tion and trans­parency and they got it.

The Com­mu­nity Strat­egy de­liv­ered un­prece­dented con­sul­ta­tion and the record­ing of ac­tual coun­cil­lor votes and re­port­ing of brief­ing ses­sions.

I can at­test to all this as I was pres­i­dent of the cham­ber in 2015 and now have stepped down so I can speak out as an in­di­vid­ual.

Be aware of whom you are vot­ing for and with whom they are aligned.

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