Classify council services, opinion

MOST of what Melville Councillor Patricia Phelan wrote about candidates in local government elections (Attend meetings, Melville Times, November 10) seems reasonable.

However, her comment that “they must convince the council to cut spending by reducing essential services that are taken for granted” demonstrates the flawed thinking that leads to the poor reputation of councils.

Rather than immediately crying poor and fear mongering about an apparent need to cut essential services, why don’t councils target the bucket loads of non-essential services on which councils spend ratepayers’ money?

Perhaps that is a good starting point for implementing better financial management by local government – for all councils to classify all services and spending as either “essential” (and provide the justification therefore) or “non-essential” (or use a 1-5 scale)?