A balanced look at the sports precinct

Letter to the editor of The Independent

Dear Editor,

Mayor Gerard O’Connell seeks to deflect criticism of the sports precinct plan by urging that his “independent committee” be allowed to get on with it. This does not address the issues.

Unfortunately this committee does not seem to be a genuinely independent review committee. I see no evidence that its terms of reference would allow it to recommend that the project be deferred or halted. Rather its function is to sell the project while it tries simultaneously to fix the problems with the plan, and find some government grant money.

I have spoken to many people about this project in my Division 6, in sports clubs and in the wider community. I can assure Cr O’Connell that the plan has very limited support at this stage. There is however support for my proposal to put the project on hold temporarily so a new council can re-examine, re-consult, and reconsider. This review needs to have all options open to it, ie proceed, defer or halt. Nothing less is fair to the community.

I can also assure Cr O’Connell that the community objections are not based on any lack of vision or concern for the future: rather they are issues of suitability of the proposal, need, cost and benefit. I have outlined some of these issues in more detail on my website at www.davidlewis.com.au.

I should stress that my comments are not a criticism of the members of the committee – they are doing what they were asked to do. The problem is they were set the wrong tasks.

Yours,

David Lewis
Candidate Division 6.