Golder calls to end work­shops

Mara­noa coun­cil vote on meet­ing dates for next year

The Western Star - - NEWS - Sarah Dionysius sarah.dionysius@ west­ern­

MARA­NOA Mayor Tyson Golder has called for an end to coun­cil work­shops in order to free up more time to spend within the com­mu­nity.

At the gen­eral meet­ing on Wed­nes­day morn­ing, a mo­tion was brought to the ta­ble to re­view meet­ing dates for 2018, which in­cluded two gen­eral meet­ings and four work­shops a month.

Cr Golder spoke against the mo­tion of con­tin­u­ing the coun­cil’s work­shops, as he be­lieved the time would be bet­ter spent out in the com­mu­nity.

How­ever the mo­tion was voted in 7–2, with coun­cil­lor Ge­off McMullen and Cr Golder vot­ing against it.

“First of all, this is my per­sonal opin­ion and not that as the mayor,” Cr Golder said.

“Work­shops, a lot of the time, take up a whole day and I would rather spend longer in gen­eral meet­ings.”

“Nor­mally we spend work­shops brief­ing for the meet­ings but as part of the Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Act we are not al­lowed to make any de­ci­sions at a work­shop.

“My stance is that we view brief­ing pa­pers be­fore the meet­ing and then any ques­tions can be an­swered dur­ing the gen­eral meet­ing days.”

“Some of the best feed­back I re­ceive comes from mov­ing around our com­mu­nity,” he said.

Cr Cameron O’Neil said the work­shops were im­por­tant in for­mu­lat­ing coun­cil’s de­ci­sions.

“Our gen­eral meet­ings are nor­mally full days and can last from 9am to 5pm,” Cr O’Neil said.

“For us to get across all of the de­tail it is in­cred­i­bly im­por­tant to come to the brief­ing ses­sions.”

Cr O’Neil said work­shops were com­mon prac­tice across many lo­cal gov­ern­ments in the state.

“At the mo­ment we sit a to­tal of six days a month in coun­cil cham­bers,” he said.

“This leaves am­ple time for us to in­ter­act within the com­mu­nity.”

Cr O’Neil said any elected coun­cil­lor was re­quired to at­tend gen­eral meet­ings but there was no re­quire­ment to at­tend work­shops.

“There is a com­mu­nity ex­pec­ta­tion that we do ev­ery­thing we can to make the best de­ci­sions that we can.”

Coun­cil­lor Janelle Stan­ford said the work­shops were ex­tremely valu­able.

“I try and make ev­ery de­ci­sion be­ing fully in­formed and the work­shops help me do that.”

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