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Mayor turns a deaf ear to Climate Emergency speaker

Last Tuesday saw Deputy Mayor Rob Pollock once again chair a Council meeting in the absence of the Mayor who it is understood, was in the building but "otherwise indisposed". Never the less Councillor Pollock chaired the Public Access in his usual capable fashion with all the other councillors present to listen to the single presenter on the day, Judy Smith, talking on the Climate Emergency. Each of the councillors had at hand their iPads and courteously progressed their way through Ms Smiths presentation, having been given copies 24 hours before hand to digest and formulate questions, as is the new requirement of Council. While it might be suggested that the Mayor may well have been watching the live streaming of the presentation in the comfort of her office it must be remembered that it was the Mayor who closed down live streaming of Public Forum presentations, the disemboweling of Public Access away from Council meetings to once a month, and played her hand at reducing public engagement to such a farcical level that there was no-one, including the media, in the gallery to hear Ms Smith speak. If it wasn't a requirement that Ms Smith's presentation be archived on Council's website five levels down then the community might never discover what she said. Fortunately the Beagle is honoured to present her presentation here for the wider community to enjoy and absorb as the opinion of a community member, formally addressed to Council for their consideration and action. Fortunately for Ms Smith one Councillor asked her a question. Ms Smith identified that the time for Left, Right, Green, Blue, Red or otherwise was over. The only question and a valued one came from Clr Anthony Mayne; basically asking Ms Smith "how do we approach this topic to work together... as it is not a left v right" adding "Just look at England with a conservative government accepting climate change.  So how do we address this dualism, this tribalism, and find common ground in which to address this challenge for all of us." With the Mayor showing the continued disdain she has for environmentalists presenting during Public Access and Public Forum in 'her' chamber it comes as no surprise to the many who attend Council meetings that she has lost the favour and respect of the wider community in regards to climate change, climate emergency and the leadership the community expects of Council in what is building to be a concerning situation whilst to the south her Bega Valley counterpart, Mayor Kristy McBain is taking her community on an inclusive, informed and actioned path in readiness of what might come. Ms Smith's presentation follows:

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