Home' The Great Southern Star : October 4th 2016 Contents “THE STAR” Tuesday, October 4, 2016 - PAGE 13
Post: PO Box 84 Leongatha 3953
Fax: 03 5662 4350
Post: PO Box 84 Leongatha 3953
Fax: 03 5662 4350
OPINIONS Letters to the Editor
Letters to the Editor
All share drug problem
I AM writing in regards to the with-
drawal of the proposed drug and al-
cohol rehab for Loch.
I can totally understand the fear
and concern of the local community
of Loch on how the centre would
have affected the town, how it may
have caused negative social and eco-
nomic effect on the town however
this is my view on the situation.
Unless you have had your head
in the sand (and believe me a lot of
people do) we are in the middle of
a drug crisis, walking amongst us
in our picturesque towns are people
who are using or know of people who
are using drugs.
The ice problem is the one big-
gest issue I believe that is facing re-
gional areas and we need places for
people to get the much needed help
they deserve. I suppose it’s the case
I don’t want it in my backyard when
it comes to creating these rehabs, but
unfortunately it is already in your
The problem can only be solved
with these facilities of which there is
not enough of to cope with the thou-
sands who desperately need help.
Ice and alcohol is not someone
else’s problem it’s all our problem;
it is destroying communities and de-
cent families. Again I can understand
the concern of the people of Loch
perhaps I may have objected myself,
but I know I am more scared of the
fact we are losing young people to
this drug and that they have no places
to go to get help.
There are no easy solutions to this
issue, we can only take it step by step.
But we need to make those steps be-
cause we will drown in the murky wa-
ters that we are already knee deep in.
We’re not dummies
I HAVE just received by mail,
something claiming to be “Impor-
tant Council Electoral Information”.
Imagine how shocked I was to find
it contained the how to vote cards of
five first time candidates and Don
Hill, all packaged to look like offi-
cial voting information, all extremely
similar and all putting Don Hill as
their number two.
Most of these candidates have
also claimed they are against the $32
million dollar council offices. Yet this
claim is completely false. There is no
$32 million dollars in the budget for
any such thing. The budget was sup-
ported by Cr Don Hill, why would
he support something that included
something he is so much against?
The kindest thing that can be said
about Don Hill’s five dummy can-
didates is that they may themselves
have been treated as dummies.
It all smells pretty fishy to me.
Be careful who you vote for. They
are treating us all as dummies.
Make up your own
THE Local Government Act 1989
states that councils “have the primary
objective of endeavouring to achieve
the best outcomes for the community
having regard to the long term and
cumulative effect of decisions.”
This requires councillors to rep-
resent the whole community when
making decisions, which in turn
means councillors have to have the
capacity to be able to take a whole
shire, big picture view. These quali-
ties are by no means evident in many
of the candidate statements for the
South Gippsland Shire Council made
We do not need candidates with
a narrow, often populist focus on
topical subjects. Nor candidates
promising changes which can’t be
guaranteed before the new council
has considered them. Or candidate
authorised disingenuous “How to
Vote” tickets which are aimed simply
at grabbing power.
Suggesting people vote for par-
ticular candidates without accompa-
nying evidence as to why they should
is an insult to the intelligence of vot-
ers and it certainly has nothing to do
with electing a better council. The
one (hopefully the only one) circulat-
ed so far on behalf of six Tarwin Val-
ley candidates is receiving the public
opprobrium it deserves.
The capacity to work coop-
eratively with other councillors to
achieve the best outcomes is also an
extremely important personal attri-
bute for any aspiring councillor.
The dysfunctional conflict in the
last council has to stop. Representing
ratepayers will at times mean decid-
ing between conflicting interests and
will generate robust discussions, but
with a good community consulta-
tion framework and decision making
process the council can still function
All levels of government are
experiencing serious levels of dis-
engagement with their constituents
and our council is no different. For
the first time in 20 years I have heard
people saying “I think it might be bet-
ter to go back to appointed commis-
sioners.” Voters, tear up the “How to
Vote” tickets and just vote for who
you think are the best candidates.
COUNCIL, like any board of direc-
tors or committee, requires a group
that genuinely wants to work togeth-
er for an outcome that is good for the
Shire as a whole.
During my time on council, there
were regular discussions and emails
with fellow councillors who wanted
support for an issue. They would
have the opportunity to discuss their
reasoning and receive feedback and
suggestions from their colleagues,
which often resulted in a better out-
Grandstanding ideas, only in
front of the media and crying foul
play when you don’t get your issue
supported only creates hostility and
At this time, we need a council
that can work together, foster ideas,
support the community, encourage
economic development and be finan-
We need to stop the constant
name calling and spreading of bla-
tantly inaccurate information.
I will be supporting in Tarwin Val-
ley Ward, my good friend and former
council colleague Nigel Hutchinson-
Brooks, together with Maxine Kiel
and Meg Edwards.
I strongly believe this will give us
a good mix of experience, good busi-
ness sense and fresh ideas.
I hope you will do the same.
Ryans Bricks, Leongatha.
Who needs desal
SOUTH Gippsland has the biggest
rainfall in the state.
Our reservoirs are full again
but South Gippsland Water refus-
es to make our reservoirs bigger,
clean out silt, or make new ones,
instead it has made a 30 million
dollar (so far) deal to pipe water
This clearly shows that the performance last year was $5 million worse
than the budget. This is why they must not be re-elected and there are many
Surplus (Deficit) for the year
WITH the exception of Councillor Clare Le Serve voters must make
sure that existing councillors standing for election should not be re-
elected in October.
Asset renewal for the past four years during which these councillors
have been in control has been well below the 100 percent stated in the
2016/17 Budget as being the minimum required.
The figures from the past four years annual reports are below.
2012/13 – 36 percent, 2013/14 – 36 percent, 2014/15 – 41 percent
2015/16 – 55 percent and in the budget 2016/17 – 75 percent.
In the budget papers, council stated that “a percentage greater than 100
indicates council is maintaining its existing assets, while a percentage less
than 100 means its assets are deteriorating faster than they are being re-
newed and future capital expenditure will be required to renew assets.”
Our Council has been not performing financially to its own targets.
The financial performance has been disastrous; again the figures are
from the 2015/16 Annual Report (p12.)
from the desal plant to Wonthaggi
reservoir then pump it up to Koru-
mburra, Poowong and Nyora.
If we need water from the sea,
God help the rest of the country.
Unite not divide
AS a candidate for the upcom-
ing elections I attended the Bass
Coast Ratepayers Association ral-
ly, held at Inverloch last Sunday.
Whilst I agree with many of the
issues raised I was disappointed
in how it concluded in relation to
I believe we as a community
will be best serviced if voters look
at candidates individual skill sets
and then preference accordingly.
We need to aim to get a diversity of
skills in council that will allow our
councillors to make the best pos-
sible and most informed decisions
on our behalf.
Please do not let this election
divide our community. Let it be a
new beginning of unity and qual-
ity decision making, based on the
concept of legitimate community
Candidate for Bunurong Ward.
BEFORE the end of term, the stu-
dents of Chairo Christian School
held events to celebrate the term.
The junior school students competed
in the Chairolympics, which involved cos-
tumes and students interacting along with
The school’s three sporting houses com-
peted in the games, with students and their
guests dressed up in their house colours.
Complete with its own theme music
and opening ceremony, the night was full of
spectacular sport, fun and games.
Some of the activities the teams com-
peted in included tallest tower of milk
bottles, a skip off, a fashion parade, a paper
plane contest and a balloon stomp.
The winning team walked away with
the gold medal.
ESSO Australia’s operation of
the Barry Beach Marine Termi-
nal could be coming to an end,
as the company looks to find a
new operator for the facility.
The company said a recent review of
the terminal located near Port Welshpool,
“identified significant underutilised capac-
ity” at the facility.
A spokesperson for Esso’s parent com-
pany ExxonMobil said it is intended any
new operator would provide supply depot
services to Esso’s offshore platforms, as
well as utilise unused capacity to provide
services to third party customers.
“A new operator, appropriately skilled
in logistics, will be able to better manage
the combined needs of Esso and other po-
tential facility users,” they said.
When oil production was at its peak,
Esso had over 1000 employees at Barry
Beach. In more recent times, the workforce
is substantially smaller.
The company told The Star until an
agreement was made, it was too early to in-
dicate the impact on current employees.
Despite looking to divest itself of local
assets, ExxonMobil said it will continue to
have an ongoing presence in the Gippsland
“For over 50 years, Esso has been an
active member of Gippsland communities
and has invested over $1 million through
the Gippsland basin joint venture,” the
Esso has recently changed catering and
housekeeping contractors for its offshore
facilities from Sodexo, with Gippsland
based employees, to ESS and Western Aus-
Australian Workers’ Union Victorian
secretary Ben Davis said there are 110
people, the vast majority of whom live in
and around Sale with their families, who
are now out of work.
“Their replacements are flown in from
Western Australia to earn 28 percent less
than is the situation currently,” Mr Davis
“There are people who have been work-
ing offshore for decades who were given
precious little notice of this major disrup-
tion to their lives.
“This will tear a hole in local commu-
nities and disrupt families who have built
their lives in Gippsland. They deserve bet-
An Esso spokesperson said ESS will
provide similar service quality, while de-
livering efficiencies at competitive costs to
help the company build a stronger business
into the future.
“Esso remains committed to its
Gippsland operations, however, as our in-
dustry evolves, we need to identify oppor-
tunities to improve efficiency and produc-
tivity so that we can continue to compete in
this changing market,” they said.
“Esso requires all of its contractors to
comply with the Fair Work Act and that
where enterprise agreements are entered
into by the contractor, they must be ap-
proved by the Fair Work Commission,”
LEONGATHA High School is
celebrating another school re-
union this Saturday, October 8 at
the Leongatha Tennis Club.
The event will kick off at 7pm and anyone
who started Year 7 in 1965, 66 or 67 through
to Year 12 in 1970, 71 or 72 is invited to come
along, but all year levels are welcome.
A list of names has also been compiled
for people who attended Leongatha Technical
School from 1967.
The event is bring your own drinks and
bring your own nibbles to share.
Pizza and sandwiches will be available,
and the cost of food and the venue will be
shared between attendees.
The Leongatha Motel and Caravan Park
are across the road for those planning a long
To fi nd out more or to RSVP, contact
Leila Wilson (nee White) at leeby54@
First catch up: former Leongatha High School students attended a major reunion in 2012.
Students set to reunite
Esso looks to outsource
Chairo ends term in style
Family fun: the Ellen family competed for the blue team in the Chairolym-
pics late last term, hosted by the Chairo Christian School.
How far: Jett, Seth and Abbey from Chairo Christian School competed in the
Chairolympics’ plane throwing competition for the red team last term.
VICTORIAN Railways is no longer
planning to take over the South
Gippsland Tourist Railway.
The Star published a letter to the editor
entitled Railway Resurrection, which was
The information printed is no longer fac-
tual and the future of the South Gippsland
Tourist Railway is still undetermined.
Railway future still in the air
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