Wyong mayor, Cr Doug Eaton OAM has slammed Gosford Council for its waste of public money and lack of vision over the NSW Government’s council reform agenda.
“Gosford Council refused to meet with Wyong during the process,” Cr Eaton said. “Following a meeting with the minister for local government, Mr Peter Toole in early November, both mayors agreed to co-operate on a joint cost benefit analysis.
“Despite this, Gosford Council failed to turn up to a number of meetings between November and February to progress this agreement. “We had a farcical situation where a meeting was convened in Gosford Council and no Gosford councillors or their general manager turned up.
“The financial cost of this recalcitrance is about $270,000 ripped out of the ratepayer’s pocket. “If we had produced a joint cost benefit analysis, the state would have paid half of this cost. “So instead of both councils forking out some $180,000 each, this would have been reduced down to $45,000 for each Council.”
“In Wyong’s case, our cost benefit analysis showed little financial benefit for a merger, but this was a direct result of Gosford Council refusing us financial information making it impossible to quantify the benefits on a regional basis.
“I am personally disappointed that the opportunity for a regional council may be lost due to this lack of vision and honesty. “The fact that Gosford could not co-operate with us to even establish a joint business case highlights the need for a regional council that can make decisions on a regional basis.
“We want to be recognised as a region but are clearly incapable of acting as one.”
25 June 2015
Mayor of Wyong