‘Dys­func­tional’ process is more about ide­ol­ogy: Bali

Mt Druitt - St Mary's Standard (East) - - SPECIAL REPORT | THE FUTURE OF OUR COUNCILS - Ali­son Bald­ing

BLACK­TOWN Mayor Stephen Bali has re­as­sured ratepay­ers not to be con­cerned by the gov­ern­ment’s “scare tac­tic” lan­guage to force smaller coun­cils to merge.

The In­de­pen­dent Pric­ing and Reg­u­la­tory Tri­bunal last week found the coun­cil did not sat­isfy the financial cri­te­ria to stand alone “based on its fore­cast of con­tin­u­ing op­er­at­ing deficits, and a build­ing and in­fras­truc­ture re­newal ra­tio sig­nif­i­cantly be­low the bench­mark by 2019-20”.

“When a large, well-run and fi­nan­cially sound coun­cil like Black­town can be found ‘un­fit’, then the whole se­lec­tion cri­te­ria must be called into ques­tion,” Cr Bali said.

“De­spite be­ing found ef­fi­cient, of the right size and scale, and to be prop­erly de­liv­er­ing its in­fras­truc­ture and ser­vice man­age­ment re­spon­si­bil­i­ties, it is not found ‘fit’.

“This is dys­func­tional de­ci­sion-mak­ing, which seems more about sup­port­ing an ide­o­log­i­cal stance than mak­ing a proper de­ci­sion based on fact.

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