Joondalup arts centre will leave a huge debt

Huge debt to build the Joondalup Arts centre.
Huge debt to build the Joondalup Arts centre.

IT is with interest that we have been following the debate on the proposed Joondalup Performing Arts Cultural Facility.

It was also interesting to read the recollections of Christine Evans, who did not mention that the council of the day decided in 2002 that it could not justify the cost of the then-proposed facility, around $25 million.

It is a shame that the present council appears not to be following the same sensible pathway.

She also made no mention of the colossal debt that would be incurred for the ratepayers of $60 million, plus any blowout on building costs, plus the subsidised operating costs.

It would leave a future generation of householders still paying for those who wished to perform on a big stage.

With reference to sports facilities, we do not believe that over the years the council has gone into massive debt to provide an oval or clubroom, facilities.

While some residents would like to see a theatre in Joondalup, at this point with Federal and State governments billions in debt, it seems grossly inappropriate for the City of Joondalup also to plunge its residents into a similar situation just to leave us with another reminder of politicians’ need to leave their mark.

We also raise the question as to whether the City has asked neighbouring councils if they would contribute to such a project as their residents would obviously also have access to such a facility.

The mayor has also stated that it would bring jobs to the City of Joondalup during the construction stage, but this can be viewed only as a minor advantage that in no way would offset the massive debt the City, and ultimately the ratepayers, would incur.

In addition, the workforce could come from any part of the metro area of Perth, further diminishing this miniscule advantage.

There should be no further costs incurred on this over-the-top building project until there has been a full consultation of the wishes of all the ratepayers as they are the ones will be paying for it, forever.

Further, any survey carried out should include a comprehensive questionnaire. For example, asking a City resident if he or she would like a performing arts centre should be followed with the question of whether they are willing to pay for it.

M.R. JONES and C.H. WEE,

Connolly.