Congrats on trail solution
Congratulations to Shire of Augusta-Margaret River president Pam Townsend, councillors and Shire staff on their leadership in the management of the issues around the walk trail along the Margaret River.
This was never an easy issue to resolve and there were multiple and competing interests, including the need for an honest recognition of Aboriginal connection with the river that was more than just lip service, ensuring the environmental repair of the river, while also providing multiple forms of public access.
Having watched this situation unfold, I was disappointed when a few months ago I saw the full-page advertisement taken out by prominent citizens of our town pushing for the simplistic solution of telling the Shire to “just build the walk trail so we can get on and use it”. I believe these people were probably acting out of frustration, but I would encourage them to realise Margaret River is no longer a small country town where decisions about the common good can be made to suit a limited group of people.
Margaret River is known for its sophistication in wine, surfing, food, architecture and volunteering.
This has to be matched with a sophistication and thoughtfulness in community decision-making.
If we don’t raise the standard of our decision-making, we will continue with the outmoded, tediously boring, and expensive splits that have characterised Margaret River local government during the past 30 years.
It’s time we, as a community, moved on from thinking in terms of developers v greenies, Liberal v Labor, and council officers v elected councillors.