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Have Council lost their raison d'etre

The Beagle Editor, Congratulations to the Australians of the Year in the Bega Shire Tim Holt and Terence Irvine Tim Holt’s friend Ian Campbell wrote of Tim in social media Tim was the voice of local current affairs and news and understood the importance of the role in a small regional community. The fair, well-considered way Tim went about his work was respected by all. His drive and motivation comes from a place of community service, of wanting to use his communication skills to inform public debate and discourse. In a region made up of many small villages and interests, Tim was often one of the things everyone had in common. A connection or ‘glue’ that helps people feel part of a wider community and allows people to appreciate our shared ambitions. Tim has a particular interest and flair for promoting local arts and culture. In no small way, Tim has had a hand in the strength and success of our music community locally, nationally and internationally. It would be easy to say, “Tim was simply doing his job,” but what that fails to recognise is Tim’s genuine passion for the people of this region and the way he has used his talents for the betterment of many. Congratulations mate, well deserved. Further north in Narooma Margaret Saker, now living in Victoria was awarded the OAM. More locally the 2018 Australia Day Narooma Community Awards went to Brian Craven, Joe Halsey, Colin Boxsell, Lilly Rose Bennett, Kristy Beecham and Sue Barford. Bega Council Joint Citizens of the Year this year went to Dane and Junee Waites, Senior of the Year Ron Finneran and Young Citizen of the Year Shaun Fitzpatrick. What about Eurobodalla ? Nothing – zilch, bugger all – no Shire wide awards as there used to be, no formal Council ceremonies, no nothing.

Young ones around the shire and new comers might not remember how Australia Day used to be in Eurobodalla just a few years ago before this “couldn’t give a rats ar$e” mob arrived.

For decades Eurobodalla celebrated Australia Day with a special awards ceremony at Moruya with three major celebrations at Batemans Bay, Moruya and Narooma on Sunday 26 January 2014.

Eurobodalla's newest Citizen of the Year and Young Citizen of the Year was announced at the award ceremony which used to be held at the Moruya RSL. The ceremony also announced the recipients of the Jeff Britten Award for the Pursuit of Excellence, local Achievement and Sports Achievement Awards and the Community Event of the Year Award. Now they do squat and leave it to the town committees to come up with their own awards and run their own ceremonies and Aussie Day BBQs. Lions Club and the Surf Club in Narooma, Lions Club in Moruya and the three clubs of Lions, Rotary and Quota in Batemans Bay are all to be commended as are the recipients of any awards handed out by those committees ….. but, Lest We Forget, the Council has dropped its bundle. Where are the Eurobodalla shire wide awards. Where is the Jeff Britten Award for the Pursuit of Excellence - Gone with the wind it seems. This Council might throw in a few bob to buy some sausages but they have dropped the ball well and truly in their responsibility of overseeing the formalities and celebrating its wider community. We remember only a few years ago when then Deputy Mayor Rob Pollock OAM and Member for Bega, the Hon Andrew Constance MP attended the Australia Day ceremony and congratulated the recipients in 2015. It was a big event and the awards were meaningful and the recipients proud. Don’t get me wrong, the local town awards are good but they are handed out by a local self appointed committee and being local it keeps the awards local as well. Other Council areas to our south, west and north have whole of region awards. Why don’t we and who decided to get rid of them. I wasn’t consulted. This Council is fast becoming so mediocre in everything they do it wouldn’t surprise me to learn there wasn’t an Australia Day Citizenship ceremony this year either. Very disappointed in Council. I am very supportive and congratulate those who were awarded home town recognition. Reading the Narooma News report all the recipients were justly selected for going beyond the pale. At the same time I do wonder who was Citizen of the Year, Senior of the Year, Sports Person of the Year, Youth of the Year and Volunteer of the Year in Nelligen and St Durras, Mogo, Bodalla and Congo. By the way - Change the Date !! Name and address supplied


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