Like many ratepayers, readers and residents, I was not overly impressed with the revelation that four people were needed to go to Barcelona to attend the Smart City Expo World Congress to present Wyndham council’s WynLens idea, which was nominated for an award. I am sure the $19,000 could have been better spent elsewhere. But in the scheme of things, it is small bananas.
What did get my blood boiling was this passage that was reported in the media: “Another councillor, who wished to remain anonymous, said a number of councillors were not happy with the cost to ratepayers. ‘It’s a lot of money, and the trip occurred right at the end of the current mayor’s term’,” the councillor said.”
What a spineless, back-stabbing weasel this “councillor” is. Since when does a pot-shotting elected representative get to remain anonymous while tipping a bucket on his or her fellow councillors? Is this the type of person we want to be part of our supposedly transparent, accountable council? I think not.
You give up the anonymous quote rights when you are elected. Have the courage of your convictions, put up or shut up – or move on. Interesting that the quote noted the end of the current mayor’s term. Was the “councillor” frightened that if he or she were named, it might have jeopardised any leadership aspirations they harbour?
There was an embarrassing display of ineptness during the meeting to elect the new mayor. After Peter Maynard was elected unopposed, all that was missing from the next five to 10 minutes was the Benny Hill music as attempts were made to have the position of deputy mayor tabled and voted on.
What unfolded was a farce that only provided more ammunition to those who believe councils should be axed. As if that wasn’t enough hi-jinx, several councillors are backing a move to have more than one deputy mayor – because people want a titled representative at their events, not just an ordinary councillor. Give us a break! Truth is, they are all pretty ordinary and no title will change that in a hurry.