Poll wording

I WOULD suggest that as a chartered accountant, Belmont Councillor Patrick Gardner would know something about costs, productivity and economics of scale in applying economic sustainability to a municipality in which he represents ratepayers’ and residents’ interests and welfare first and foremost.

Therefore, I find it very strange that he is seemingly unaware of the benefits of amalgamating Belmont and Kalamunda councils when he states that “We have no cost benefit in front of us regarding amalgamation…” in his successful motion for a poll of residents on the subject (Plan for poll on merger next year, Gazette, December 24).

That other Belmont councillors followed by voting unanimously either shows that they are not prepared to find out for themselves the benefits of council amalgamation (at the very least for the interests and full information being made available to their constituents) and possibly lazy for not instructing council bureaucrats to provide the cost benefits to councillors and Belmont residents long ago.

Then they could make a sound judgment based on unbiased facts as to the benefits of amalgamation to all.

Since the announcement of the proposed merger of Belmont and Kalamunda councils, I have heard and read nothing but fear mongering from people who should know better.

Unfounded, negative and some ridiculous statements have been made such as “our rates will go up”, “not in the interests of ratepayers and residents”, “ensure the income from Belmont resources stay in Belmont” and “negatively impact on our civic services”.

On what are these statements based?

I don’t have a problem per se with this poll, but I may have a problem with the possible wording of the poll questions and to the lack of information as to benefits of amalgamation forthcoming from Belmont council before any such poll.

Kevin Bettridge,

Rivervale