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  • Writer's pictureThe Beagle

New Council reaches its 100th day in office

It has now been 100 days of the two and a half year term for the current council. To the average person in the street there may not have been much done that is outwardly noticeable but to those who are committed Council watchers there has been quite a lot achieved already behind the scenes. The first thing that one notices is the vast improvement with communication and engagement. The new Mayor and councillors have remained true to their pre-election promises to be more inclusive and informative and this is immediately evident in the proactive engagement shown by their communications team. Hopefully the days of "controlling the narrative at all costs" will become a thing of the past. The team, once stifled by what could only be considered as draconian paranoia, have been given the tools and impetus to use social media to engage and inform the community of the small detail aspects of council. An immediate example of this was the well received explanation of Council's actions on potholes and mowing, explaining openly and honestly that resources were stretched and continued rains were playing havoc with maintenance schedules. But Council is more than roads and mowing and the new councillors have had a lot to learn over the past 100 days, from legal to planning, from assets to waste. The 100 days have seen them inducted by staff of how things "are" and how some things "need to remain unchanged". Of interest is that the new councillors are mindful that the briefings they receive from staff are indeed brief, and can come with an added bias. While previous councillors may have failed to bother to accept anything other than what they were told to believe the new councillors, in their 100 days, have shown that they will do their own research, seek out their own history of events and, ask the hard questions. In previous councils there was a fear of asking hard questions for fear of being alienated or even condemned. But this council, even in its first 100 days as it finds its legs appears to be confronting the nay-sayers and those who are happy to continue in mediocrity. It is noticeable already that the new council has begun to get into stride challenging the executive with questions and bringing more out into the open. The fresh council appears to have also lifted the spirits of many of the staff the Beagle has talked to informally who have felt that they were undervalued, stifled and micro managed into an agenda that best suited the idealism of economic rationalists rather than civil servants. There is still much to be done to restore the damage done in the last term of council which saw Eurobodalla Council sink to the lowest it has been, in terms of community respect, since the Great Dismissal of 1982. Here's to the next 100.

. Above: Mayor, Mat Hatcher has posted "Well that’s the first 100 days done. I want to say a huge thanks to my fellow councillors for the support and effort you are putting in. It’s truly a team effort and this team is strong. Couldn’t do it without you. Thanks to the community for trusting us to create the shire you want. Be a marathon runner in a world of sprinters".

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NOTE: Comments were TRIALED - in the end it failed as humans will be humans and it turned into a pile of merde; only contributed to by just a handful who did little to add to the conversation of the issue at hand. Anyone who would like to contribute an opinion are encouraged to send in a Letter to the Editor where it might be considered for publication

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