Un­fair play­ing field

Mercury (Hobart) - - LETTERS -

THERE seems to be a com­mon theme of com­mu­nity out­rage with the se­crecy and priv­i­lege dis­played by the Hodg­man Gov­ern­ment. Think these ex­am­ples: the West­bury jail de­ba­cle, the re­zon­ing of land at Hunt­ing­field to In­ner Res­i­den­tial, the sell­ing off of Tas­ma­nia to for­eign buy­ers, wilder­ness de­vel­op­ment, and now fa­cial recog­ni­tion (“Free­doms killed by a thou­sand cuts,” Talk­ing Point, Novem­ber 5)! In ad­di­tion the com­mu­nity con­cerns re­gard­ing the Gov­ern­ment’s Ex­pres­sions of In­ter­est, and the Projects of State Sig­nif­i­cance leg­is­la­tion, both of which al­low the Gov­ern­ment to with­hold in­for­ma­tion from the pub­lic and give them ad­di­tional pow­ers.

Com­mu­nity out­rage, com­mu­nity costs in fi­nan­cial terms plus the time, stress, ef­fort and en­ergy re­quired to op­pose se­cret gov­ern­ment ini­tia­tives (which the com­mu­nity have been un­aware of un­til the end stage), can be daunt­ing to say the least. Throw in the Gov­ern­ment’s in­tran­si­gence in the com­mu­nity con­sul­ta­tion process, and we have a some­what un­fair play­ing field. How­ever, to be la­belled a “mem­ber of the anti-ev­ery­thing bri­gade” or a NIMBY by a mem­ber of the Hodg­man Gov­ern­ment should be seen as a badge of hon­our! Chris Need­ham Kingston

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