Community Strategic Plan is not pro-community

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In June I attended a forum to discuss the council’s Community Strategic Plan.

By the time the plan is released for public comment, the community, as we know it, will be downscaled, downsized, fragmented and tenuous, with limited community benefi ts. Those surviving will be financially secure, which could lead to increased fees and charges in the future to supplement the council’s funds.

Cogitation is not a strength of Central Coast Council. The future is that committed volunteers will be replaced with those capable of dealing with the council’s bureaucracy, such as accountants, solicitors, marketing managers and management executives.

The range of social, health, arts, recreation, education and environmental issues addressed by committed volunteers will be signifi cantly reduced and lost to the community. The new paradigm is not pro community. Will the Central Coast Council replace these lost services or will it be a matter of budget balancing first, community benefits last? Refer to Coast Community News, June 29 (edition 161) page 12, increased rents of 400 per cent, and six-page documents being replaced with 26 page contracts with onerous management conditions, raises questions about our future society.

I am not prepared to make a prediction for the future, on the record, which is in line with the relationship between the committee members from smaller community halls and the council. My suggestion for potential councillors is to ensure your health will withstand the rigours of an unknown environment with an as yet unknown work load.

Letter, Jul 18 Norman Harris, Umina