Weekend Courier - - Opinion -

IN re­sponse to ‘In­tense de­bate over Ja­pan visit’ (Courier, March 30).

Yet again, and as I pre­dicted in Jan­uary in this pa­per, some Rock­ing­ham coun­cil­lors have shown by a six to four vote they are com­fort­able spend­ing $35,000 of other peo­ple's money on an­other jun­ket hol­i­day to Ako, Ja­pan for the usual few and cho­sen ones.

What a clever move to ap­prove a jun­ket be­fore the ap­point­ment of a new CEO, just in case he or she may have a moral com­pass and not want to waste money on some­thing of no ben­e­fit to the ratepay­ers.

For Barry Sam­mels to use the ex­cuse that 171 del­e­gates from Ako have vis­ited Rock­ing­ham and spent $100 per per­son over a two day visit each year over five years and he wants to re­cip­ro­cate is a lame rea­son.

He wants to spend $35,000 in just one visit in five days.

Maybe the Ako coun­cil don't have ratepay­ers strug­gling to sur­vive or just like this coun­cil they think they have the right to spend oth­ers' money on them­selves.

The six who take the hol­i­day should spare some thought each day for all the ratepay­ers who are pay­ing for it, some go­ing with­out food, med­i­ca­tion or a hol­i­day so they can pay their rates.

Also, the thought that this coun­cil is mak­ing de­ci­sions about tens of mil­lions of dol­lars should be of con­cern to us all. They have been and still are un­ac­count­able.

It’s past time for the State Gov­ern­ment to step up and stop this bla­tant waste and mis­use of money on sis­ter cities.

Shame on the six who voted for it, shame on the six that go. RAY CORMACK, Rock­ing­ham

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