Our local councils claim to have a values-based approach to their communities.
Sadly, thousands of Victorians DO NOT AGREE.
Again, this year, Local Councils are the second most complained about public body to the Ombudsman.
Today our Councils act more like the tough corporate law enforcement agency, instead of the community minded, not for profit, values champions, seeking to serve us in the values-based approach we expect.
We have become their enemy. We are to be controlled, managed, and told only what they want us to know. That does not include the full truth or facts, and our opinions are really not wanted.
They have become corporate behemoths obsessed with profit and making money. They still claim to be underfunded and hard done by, regularly threating the public with less services if profits are not increased.
With soaring rates, fees, fines, and charges - Councils have created bloated organisations that are unsustainable in their current form.
Much of this is because the Local Government Act (2020) has removed and stripped out performance standards and clear definitions of responsibility. This allows Councils to do whatever they want. There were also major changes to the role and definition of what Councillors and CEO's can do. This has erased MOST of the rights of Councillors, and handed control to the CEO.
CEO's have become the unelected demigod. They oversee and control almost everything and have the total right to restrict, ban and block Councillors at every turn.
Some CEOs have even threatened Councillors on a regular basis, refusing to let them be involved in solving residents' problems - this is the POWER of the CEO.
This is an appalling an antiquated industry where the unelected bureaucrat with no loyalty or obligation to the paying community enables them to treat residents and councillors with contempt, indifference and a lack of basic respect.
The culture within the highly networked and often scheming Executives and CEOs is the sum of the total problem. An embedded culture where our Australian Values of FAIRNESS, ACCOUNTABILITY, EQUAL TREATMENT, DEMOCRACY & RESPECT are actually not welcome.
If you want to help us make a change - because we can't allow this to continue, sign up or help start your local Council Watch group.
If you have been trampled on or treated poorly, get involved. Knowledge and people numbers are powerful, and we intend to hold them accountable.
Drop a line to email@example.com