Tasmanian Times

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

Economy

Planning and governance reform: Will someone have the courage?

For those of you who have any history of involvement in planning in Tasmania, you’ll remember the days when the PLUC came up with the RPDC, PT, state planning policies and the whole suite and box and dice of planning schemes. Today, mired in the lack of state planning policies, multiple planning schemes and a building and approvals system that the Property Council’s members and others baulk at, seemingly at every turn, reform is once more under way. Simpler, faster, cheaper…… you’ve picked up the rhetoric by now.

Unfortunately, once more, like the amalgamation debate, we’re going to get it wrong. Once again, people have headed to the detail without thinking through the foundation of all our ills in Tasmania.

Must I go over history again (we just do keep forgetting, don’t we) and point out how we’ve developed a system of government and governance that fails the test of a clear division of roles and responsibilities between State and Local Government?

If you follow the principle that difference grows when people are isolated, then it’s easy to understand how Tasmania’s system of government and governance has developed.

Today Tasmania and its many small towns and hamlets are no longer isolated. Neither do people live and die in the same bark hut they were born in.

The model of local government imposed from the now defunct British Empire is no longer relevant for Tasmania’s aspirations of a place in global society. It may have been in the early to mid 19th century, but hey! Time to innovate. Neither is this model capable of moving quickly enough to accommodate change. The same can be said for the current planning system. And the futures of the two are intertwined in any governance debate.

Can I make some assumptions here? That Tasmanians by and large would agree that a sustainable happy community where a people-focused economy respects and values both natural and built assets is a good place to be? That renewal is welcomed with open debate is a given? That local competitive advantages are worth leveraging to ensure a population has sound, if not excellent levels of education, social services, and business acumen? That the economy and society share levels of resilience to enable surfing with edge and some degree of safety the global markets and waves of technology change? Are these assumptions of what Tasmanians would like too wild? Do they make an ass out of you and me? I’ll be positive and say this is where I’m working towards, please feel free to join in at any time.

Now if you follow the principle that values shared is a community created, then the revamping of the Tasmanian planning system is an opportunity to re-imagine Tasmanian governance.

For too long the State has been be-devilled by multiplicity and central neglect as a consequence of financial deficits (and I’m talking from colonial days on, here). Yes, brought about by historical circumstances but does it have to continue? Tasmania was only settled to stop the Napoleonic French – dumping the convicts and growing sheep was an afterthought. The Colonial Chest was stretched by ambitions of Empire and once Buonaparte was safely installed on St Helena, the lid dropped shut and VDL Governors were told to be more financially self-sufficient.

What followed since has been a litany of economic woes, of overseas loans, of unfunded depreciation of state assets and too-free spending of windfall GST gains. And in all that time, Tasmania’s response to the population’s demands for services and infrastructure has been to devolve responsibility locally.

Cost-shifting has created, even with the 1993 amalgamations, 31 sets of governance rules for Tasmania (29 Councils, one State, one Federal government). And within those 31 sets are multiple, beyond belief multiple, boards and statutory authorities and interpretations of what set of rules and regulations mean what. And at the local government level we see the creation of three regional bodies based on geography and not a commonality of purpose that creates and implements real innovative change.

Seriously. This can’t go on. In any management structure, multiple layers of hierarchy in an organisation create serious siloing and continual fragmentation.

In planning alone, there are 29 planning authorities with 29 local interpretations and no cohesive overall State planning (other than attempts to get a Statewide Planning Scheme that risks as much fragmentation in application as with the present system). Our current planning system lack consistency on development, heritage, agricultural land, business and professional services, residential areas, industry, tourism, parking, disability, CBD provisions…must I go on? With only a 15% commonality between planning schemes, this is totally unsustainable.

And this is where it really hurts us all. Twenty nine Councils acting as three regions means inevitably 29 different ways of pushing economic, social, environmental and developmental policies. I have to ask the State government (as it downsizes the newly created State Growth Department) on the matter of a single statewide development policy, just what are you thinking?

So here’s the thing. If you’re serious about getting governance sorted in Tasmania, start to have some policy balls and think about the table below with some sketch ideas. The outcome is a cohesive approach across Tasmania of policy development, interpretation, application and review.

And you know what, if this happened, why, we might then start to dismantle the local government empire that evolved like topsy since the 1820s, and start to have a mature conversation about what local communities and cities really want.

Imagine, a space to have the conversation about reform. It’s not mergers as we know them, that will make a difference for Tasmania’s governance and government. It’s the State and local government sitting down to sort out a new way of working and better shared responsibilities.

If we had a State Government that resolved planning into a Statewide Authority, why not also whole of State economic development, waste, roads, stormwater, bridges authorities – it was done for water and sewerage. Get rid of the multiple boards and get a streamlined structure in place.

So what will local government be left to do?

Implementation and feedback consultation between top and bottom.

Promoting local (business internodes, festivals, tourism, local streetscape programs, bushcare, etc.)

Caring local (elderly, young, disabled, LGBTI, multicultural programs, etc.)

Sharing local (parks, gardens, recreation facilities, etc.)

And yes, keep the local elected people, but seriously, define their roles and functions in the Local Government Act more succinctly.

At least then we won’t have 29 miniature State governments pulling this State apart in 29 different directions after every local government election. And who knows, then the Feds might find they can’t divide and conquer this island’s people so easily either!

Read more HERE, where you can see Eva’s Table …

• Mike Bolan, in Comments: Ald. Ruzicka has got this right. Despite the massive changes in population, technology, communications, medicine and science, our governments are still operating in quill pens and wigs mode. The result is vast wastes of money, degraded services and an impoverished population that is struggling to stay relevant to the times. As examples I offer the NBN, Australia’s farcical effort to keep us competitive, and the debacle of the RHH redevelopment supposedly to improve our health service. “If you keep doing what you’ve always done, you’ll keep getting what you’ve always got” We need to create change and we can’t rely on our inept governments – we must rely on ourselves.

• Ald Eva Ruzicka, in Comments: History is a wonderful thing if we remember it correctly. Regarding comments over the ill-fated Giddings push for the RHH redevelopment.

• Barbara Mitchell, in Comments: The main reason we are lumbered with a bunch of wanker lawyers and members of small time political ‘dynasties’ and party hacks and ex-mayors and out and out narcissistic sociopaths is because ‘real’ people aren’t interested in politics – and they should be.

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24 Comments

24 Comments

  1. Robin Charles Halton

    November 16, 2014 at 12:28 pm

    Eva, this is my last attempt to try and explain to you the functions expected of any alderman worth their salt.

    One never expects that aldermen to vote in secret to allow ratepayer money flow into private business projects such as Myer/Kalis as occured under the Thomas regime.

    Local government must be the mouthpiece for engaging with State and Federal governments, most forcibly if necessary to provide necessary services and encourage investment.

    All this political rubbish about the rebuilding of the old public hospital and ignoring an essential bypass road behind Hobart to serve future generations of alleviating heavy through traffic in the city is already resulting in a painful long term inefficiencies for Greater Hobart.

    Have it as you will Eva, time is marching on through this century those two opportunities mentioned above have been lost within the stupidity of engaging with the utterly time wasting Jens Gehl DISTRACTION, which had nothing to do with connectivity within or through the city centre.

    Broadly speaking the Council is basically incompetent as to whether or or it will change its direction under Mayor Sue Hickey remains to be seen.

    The bigger picture needs looking into very soon otherwise the city will continue to become a clutter trap.

    Already 50 KPH speed limits are pointing towards a revamped Slowbart, speed trapping by the politzi was out in force during the Myer fairy floss brigade pageant on both Saturday and Sunday.

    We expect a damn lot more from our aldermaniac representatives and not a continuum of weak excuses.

  2. Simon Warriner

    November 13, 2014 at 6:42 pm

    re 20, for a really clear exploration of this issue I suggest the third blog down here: http://thearchdruidreport.blogspot.com.au/

    As I read JOhn Greer’s blogs and watch the unfolding Tasmanian experience i often feel he is using governance here as his example.

  3. Barbara Mitchell

    November 13, 2014 at 4:34 pm

    Sadly, I’ve just realised that Hare Clark’s quota system is based on formal votes registered. I guess I was too busy ‘just doing it’ and getting on with stuff to check.

    So, maybe a huge informal vote wouldn’t change the way things are at present, but it’s still a great way to let the current crop of incumbents know what you think of them. And, it could still encourage decent, sensible candidates to come forward, knowing they have a chance of securing the votes of people who have really thought about what they want from their government and their representative. People who aren’t happy to ignore the idiocy that prevails in parliament, and the blatant self interest of those presently ruling over us.

    And, make no mistake, they fuck us over at every turn.

  4. Barbara Mitchell

    November 13, 2014 at 3:31 pm

    #19 ‘I don’t know anyone who doesn’t know you can make an informal vote, most like myself are loath to do that’. Clearly, A.K., we don’t know the same people – have you really asked around about the informal vote thing? Try heading down to your local shops – hit up a few random ‘ordinary’ people and ask them about informal voting. You may be surprised at their response – ‘What the fuck is an informal vote’, could be the most popular.

    And why are you and your friends and associates loath to vote informally? You know Hare-Clark works on a quota system, do you not? If a majority of voters followed Mark Latham’s advice prior to the 2010 federal election –

    ‘They say voting is compulsory in Australia, but it’s not compulsory to fill out the ballot paper. You can put it straight in the ballot box, totally blank. That’s what I’ll be doing on Saturday, and I urge you to do the same. It’s the ultimate protest vote’ –

    maybe no candidate would have enough votes to fulfil a quota, even after distribution of preferences. Maybe NO-ONE would be elected. (Dr Bonham might know how this would work).

    Candidates who WILL advance the interests of the people may then have an opportunity to come forward. A huge informal vote would force change – and there’s no retribution for voting informal. It’s a secret ballot – no-one will know you did.

    As long as most of the electorate think they are obliged to give their vote to the least worst of the very sad selection on offer, nothing will change.

  5. Mike Bolan

    November 13, 2014 at 11:19 am

    Wow, this thread has brought out some fine polnts about the evident weaknesses of the Australian ‘system of governance’.

    #17 Barbara, have you noticed that in the real world people think about and discuss how to do things while in the political world they talk about why it can’t be done without their participation – the lingo of the rent seeker.

    If you’re trying to get something done you need to consider possibilities, if you’re a rent seeker you just need to keep objecting until you get a seat at the table. Trying to deal with government is dispiriting and usually a waste of life unless you’ve got plenty of ‘sweeteners’ to grease the wheels.

    No ordinary person that I know wants to waste their time and lives on the Sysiphean task of ‘engaging’ the bureaucracy who they are paying, just to keep listening to negative thinking.

    I suggest that we just get on with our lives without the armies of clerks, inspectors, co-ordinators, overseers etc etc with their hands out.

    What was it Nike said?

  6. A.K.

    November 13, 2014 at 9:52 am

    #17, Barbara, apologetics, denial and delusion are the hallmark of an ideologue. They are neither factual, representative of reality or believable to evolving humans, just a reflection of ideological insanity and always designed to support the unsupportable.

    Most of your claims relating to the average person I find ill informed and far from the truth in every way. A teacher is not a real person, but a programmed clone, incapable of anything other than collecting their pay packets. This is borne out by the state of real education you find in the young.

    I don’t know anyone who doesn’t know you can make an informal vote, most like myself are loath to do that, but I did in the last state election as there was not one candidate that came within light years of having a working brain and not just simple useless ideological programming.

    Our political system has been designed and enhanced to only support party success, those who believe clinging to a system which is destroying the future will bring positive results, are living deep in fantasy land.

    Real people are interested in politics, they are not interested in becoming part of a system which only gives the corporate, religious and elitist humans power and control. Thats why we need a party to get rid of political parties, set us on the right path and turn over power to the people. So they can make their decisions about the states future and not useless ideological fools and their deranged irresponsible cloned supporters.

    The majority are welcome to support and cling to a death cult, it’s all they have and don’t have the guts to take responsibility for themselves and their footprint on the planet. They complain about the system, but fervently support it with apologetics and fanciful fictional claims, yet deny what must happen for there to be any form of future.

    It really doesn’t matter, it will be a real miracle if our society lasts for another 5 years, nothing can be done to stop the complete collapse of ideological humanity. You only have to read the comments on this forum to realise, no one is interested in change, just propping up and desperately supporting the fatal direction, approach and outcomes of ideological insanity.

    Its the end for ideological humans, which consist of 99% of humanity, there is no chance of survival as the ideological human race is already dead. Nature is now determining when it will bury us and that is extremely close and will be by our own hand.

    Change is the last thing on the agenda of ideological humanity, yet change is the only constant and evolutionary process in the universe. Any life form that rejects change is doomed to extinction and we see that throughout history, so bye bye the ideological human race.

  7. Geoff

    November 13, 2014 at 3:24 am

    #15, Eva, you are right, the big picture problem is indeed the allocation of roles and responsibilities. We’re dealing with the late stages of the ossification of the mechanisms of state that inevitably occurs at the end of an empire.

    Our systems of governance have become so gummed up with people wanting a piece of the pie that we’re getting to the stage of immobility. Numerous academics who have studied the history of great civilisations point out that this often occurs as decline sets in, it is a well known symptom as we head into societal senility.

    Can we vote or legislate our way out of this pickle? I’m afraid we cannot, not within the existing framework, because that framework exists and has grown over time purely to support the parasitism that gives everyone a place within the context of our society.

    Ultimately we are faced with the problem of paying maintenance. All the real material income of our society is now spent on upkeep. We maintain not only the infrastructure, but the social order and all the “indispensable” groups of people that need payment in order to facilitate the smooth running of society.

    We have moved to the stage where we spend more on the groups and less on the infrastructure e.g. consultants and reports are generally costing us more than the sensible solutions would have. All new works need to be carried out by stopping maintenance payments on some of our old infrastructure, physical or human/social, and we know how popular that is. Just ask those who now need to lose their jobs in order that other, currently more favoured groups of people can take up their new jobs…

    The intractable problems of our communities are only going to be solved by going outside of the crumbling edifice, bypassing the outstretched hands of the dozens of needy and greedy departments, organisations, NGOs and professional facilitators, detractors and obstructors, and getting the jobs done.

    Sadly, as we see in the U.S. where feeding the homeless is now a crime, our government will do everything it can to stand in the way of genuine progress, as it cannot see that it is the greatest hindrance to that progress.

  8. Barbara Mitchell

    November 12, 2014 at 4:07 pm

    #16 A.K. For the record, I agree that the current system of government we are forced to endure is not working for our benefit, and the politicians running our lives are arrogant fuckwits whose only ‘talent’ is self promotion. A tiny minority of Tasmania’s elected representatives are people with sound ideas and genuine motives – I can think of maybe two, at a pinch – but even they are caught up in the bullshit backslapping and self-congratulation that goes on in the houses of parliament. The rest just like the sound of their own voice, and the wonderful opportunity to pursue their narrow self interest that parliamentary membership offers.

    I certainly do not ‘support’ the current system, with the current personnel.

    I also agree that people living in the ‘real world’ are able to manage businesses, organisations, homes and families, often with spectacular success – they are in no way inferior to academic ideologues and elitists. All around us are examples of personal achievement that would have been impossible in the hands of government. Imagine if the government decided to build a Museum of Old and New Art – they’d still be paying consultants to tell them what type of flushing mechanism to install in the toilets.

    However, I also made a point of asking people from all walks of life – business owners, teachers, students, young mothers – pretty much everyone I knew – what they thought about government and elections and the electoral process and the various candidates at the March election this year. The lack of interest and engagement was astounding, particularly among young people.

    A.K., most people don’t know that they can lodge an informal vote. They do as they are told by the government and dutifully register their vote because they think they have to do so, even if they don’t approve of any of the candidates. Many just vote for a familiar name, or the party they or their family have always voted for in the past.

    They don’t even begin to understand how the Hare-Clark system works.

    Their knowledge of what goes on in government is limited to what the local press tells them. They don’t watch parliamentary webcasts or read Hansard – if they did they would be unpleasantly surprised (more likely appalled) at what passes for sensible behaviour in the houses of parliament.

    Running their own personal show is something a lot of people do very well, but making decisions for many is another thing altogether. If ‘the people’ are ever going to take control of government, they first need to engage with the issues involved. There are opportunities to do this, even within the current framework, if ordinary people were prepared to take an interest and thoroughly inform themselves about broader economic and social issues, and then challenge political candidates to put forward sensible proposals.

    The main reason we are lumbered with a bunch of wanker lawyers and members of small time political ‘dynasties’ and party hacks and ex-mayors and out and out narcissistic sociopaths is because ‘real’ people aren’t interested in politics – and they should be.

  9. A.K.

    November 12, 2014 at 10:09 am

    #9 Barbara, (relentlessly peddling), is what incumbent elitist ideologues do to force their idiocies onto the people and it’s all useless crap. I put forward the facts, which aren’t changing, just getting worse under the control of the system you support.

    If you all got the picture, you wouldn’t be supporting the fatal revolving door merry go round of the current elistist governance approach. Which is no different to believing and supporting a non existent god fantasy, against the viewable and verifiable facts.

    The people don’t vote for these fools, they are forced to vote for parties by the corrupt and fully controlled election system. Which demands parties are elected with forced preferencing of their useless cloned candidates and not freedom of choice or direct election as required by the Australian constitution.

    “They would need solid education, and a well-rounded social and political awareness.”

    Declaring those who have worked, lived and experienced real life, as somehow inferior to those who have only spent their lives in a school room and office, being simply rote programmed. Whilst being paid large sums for nothing, but ripping of the public purse, destroying the future and deluded ignorance, is why we are in the position we are and no other reason. You can’t blame the ordinary Tasmanian, they have no say, only the fools have a say and the results are for all to see

    The majority of the ordinary people have more useful knowledge, social and political awareness in their little finger, than the entire regime of academic and ideological elitist dummies. They are also ready to participate online in debate and decision making to take us forward, in a voluntary way and not to be forced in stupid corporate directions and approaches, as they are now

    When you live in the real world and talk to real people, you realise they are ready and want to control their future direction and governance. However any attempt to make changes are foiled by those who desperately cling to the current fatalistic political and elitist approach.

    Those who live in the real world see the people running clubs, community organisations, essential and emergency services, business, families and farms, all pretty successfully. Academics and senior bureaucrats run nothing successfully but their ego’s and bank balances, they have no knowledge of life outside their elitist groups and knowledge of working life and reality, is totally bereft in all of them.

    You only have to talk to them for a few seconds to realise how empty of life experience and knowledge they are. These facts are borne out by the state of our governance, transport, health, education, legal, justice and bureaucratic system Add our economic state, environmental collapse, lack of future direction, securing future fuel and energy requirements and you have a wonderful example of how academic ideologues run things.

    Academic elites, have no social, future, present or knowledge awareness in any way, outside their simple useless school programming. The facts fully support that and not the contention it is the people who are the inferior failures.

  10. Alderman Eva Ruzicka

    November 12, 2014 at 1:18 am

    History is a wonderful thing if we remember it correctly. Regarding comments over the ill-fated Giddings push for the RHH redevelopment. At the time the Premier of Tasmania proposed this, I was Deputy Lord Mayor. The Mayor was an employee of DHHS and therefore had a conflict of interest under the State Service Act and could not speak publicly or vote on the matter at Council. In this case, I was then delegated under the Local Government Act to speak on behalf of, and put the case for Council’s reasons why building on the waterfront was such a silly idea in the manner in which it was being proposed. However any discussion of a greenfields site was not a policy decision for Hobart City Council. As my deliberately provocative series of articles on the roles and responsibilities of local and State government point out, health is the total responsibility of the State government under the Australian Constitution. And at the time the State government was hellbent on have a new hospital on the waterfront. No matter what any council said, and to hell with the social community relationships and consequences when they played one group off against the other and wasted $7M into the bargain.
    As to traffic – the problem of traffic is again a State government constitutional responsibility. Council only manages roads delegated into its care and the State shuts us out of transport policy when it suits them. As such, Macquarie and Davie Street and the Southern Outlet form part of National Highway A1, and is managed by both State and Federal. It’s a crazy system – three tiers to manage roads! SERIOUSLY!!??!!
    Can people please stop going into detail and start focusing and thinking on the big picture here – and the big problem – that the current allocation of roles and responsibilities in our Australian Federation is the greatest barrier we face in every day life to fix the seemingly intractable problems in our local communities. The signs and symptoms of this bureaucratic legal malaise are all around – it is the root cause of the illness we need to address.

  11. Robin Charles Halton

    November 12, 2014 at 12:15 am

    #8 Willian Boeder,
    In the past I have put up with lots of mother hen stuff from this particular counciller who was not prepared to see into the future for the city.

    Greater Hobart is the way we all should view our city, not the tuft of grass growing on the street beside my fence line.

    Too late the new Southern based hospital opportunity has gone.

    #13 kevin wilson, no doubt the blurring of whose is the responsibility, local, State or Federal govts’ depends on who is prepared to stick their necks out and lose the appeal of the voters at the next election.

  12. kevin wilson

    November 11, 2014 at 7:37 pm

    Eva has posed a basic question ” Will someone have the courage” Unfortunately the answer is NO

    Those in a position to even start any debate are too much locked into fixed period election cycles and soon as they are elected start to think of short term processes to get re-elected There recently was an examination of the “Roles of Local Government ” which to my mind did nothing of the sort It only examined whether existing agencies were doing a satisfactory job on what they are doing There was no examination whether certain functions should be State or even Commonwealth responsibility or even done at all

  13. Russell

    November 11, 2014 at 6:53 pm

    You can add into the list an impotent EPA which seems to always decide in favour of or turn a blind eye to big business over the environment, eg: pulp mill permits, burn-offs, aerial over-spray and spray-drift complaints.

  14. Robin Charles Halton

    November 11, 2014 at 6:27 pm

    EVA, Think yourself lucky that our family in Hobart gave you the top vote for Deputy Mayor as you had shown some initiatives with your T T articles prior to the local govt elections.

    Although your reporting style takes a bit of getting used too we gave you the benefit of doubt in this particular instance.
    Well you did manage to be reelected as an alderman, so good luck with all of that.

    Other than a new public hospital which has now vanished into thin air, I would like to remind you of another opportunities that has been lost over the past decade.

    We had many a conversations on the phone about a bypass road behind the city to alleviate the traffic using the city as a main highway.

    You were exceptional at arguing the point with me as you were attending some particular course at the time with the university as you left me the impression that you were quite up to date on road transport issues.

    I repeatedly and repeatedly told you that a solution had to be reached beyond the opening of the Southern Outlet in 1973, thirty years later both yourself and good fellow long term fence sitter Mayor Rob Valentine were not interested in reducing traffic through the city as it would be bad for local business.

    What a bloody enclave we live in now we have cycle crazy Helen Burnet as Infrastructure Services committee chairperson.
    I can for see some crazy ideas coming foward in and around the city to baulk traffic flow on some of our streets.

    Lets face it previously the Jans Gehl appraisal for a cost of $300,000 absolutely did nothing to address the for ever increasing traffic flow coming from the rapidly expanding population commuting from south of the city nor did it address linking the CBD to the waterfront.

    Over the past decade the gate keepers of the city have shown unwillingness to comprehend the reality by keeping pace with roading infrastructural needs in and around the city.

    Probably a bit too late now as the Tasmania does not produce enough to pay its way with taxes collected.

  15. Andrew Ricketts

    November 11, 2014 at 4:07 pm

    In relation to the Land Use Planning And Approvals Amendment (Streamlining Of Process) Bill 2014 (No 36 of 2014), Section 30K is an abomination.

    This grubby Bill has currently just gone to the Upper House. You can find it all here:http://www.parliament.tas.gov.au/bills/36_of_2014.htm

    It should be termed the LUPAA ‘gut the public interest’ Bill. Some of the proposals in this LUPAA amendment are grossly unjust.

    Liberals, seemingly guided by lobbyist Ms Massina, now installed in the Planning Reform Taskforce, are shamelessly running roughshod over everyone’s rights.

    This amendment Bill is almost certainly in breach of the Land Use Planning Approvals Act (LUPAA) itself and the Resource Management Planning System (RMPS) Objectives, which underpin the planning system in Tasmania.

    This Liberal plan will not be fairer, not appreciably faster, certainly not cheaper and most definitely neither better nor smarter.

    Regarding Section 30K of the LUPAA amendment Bill, you will see that the Liberals are proposing to remove the already established and in train hearing process for representors to the current batch of Interim Schemes, thus also permanently and unfairly removing those rights including in relation to any future Interim Scheme as well.

    This will inevitably create a poorer RMPS, poorer schemes and angry, aggrieved representors. Long-standing representations are proposed to be nullified because the representors will not be able to explain their points in a hearing. The remedy proposed in Section 30K is discriminatory and abhorrent.

    Tasmanians who have spent time working on interim planning schemes and making representations in good faith should continue to have a right to attend a hearing and further emphasize or clarify their representation, especially if the issue has not been resolved at the Section 30J Council report stage.

    There are already about a thousand representations made against Interim Schemes currently waiting for a hearing. Importantly those people have a rightful expectation of their matter going to a hearing and being adjudicated in the proper manner.

    Because the existing process (to create new schemes), in train for several years now with the declaration of Northern Region and Cradle Coast Regional Interim Schemes and their Section 30J reports, it is grossly unjust to truncate it now. The proposed Bill No 36 of 2014, amending LUPAA is a complete denial of procedural fairness for those already involved.

    If the Interim Schemes, which are operational, in fact had been done as draft schemes then LUPAA Section 27 (2) would apply. It states, “(2) For the purposes of its consideration under subsection (1), the Commission must hold a hearing in relation to each representation contained in the report.”

    Section 27(2) mandates a hearing for Division 1 Schemes where a draft is produced. The Division 1A Interim Scheme process was already a reduction in rights, a reduction in fairness and now the Liberals want to further diminish your rights by removing the Section 30K right to a hearing.

    The Upper House should be urged to discard the Section 30K amendment from Bill No 36 and instead the Tasmanian Planning Commission should simply get on with the task of efficiently and concurrently holding combined regional hearings into the Regional Interim Schemes now.

  16. Barbara Mitchell

    November 11, 2014 at 2:25 pm

    A.K., thank you for once again relentlessly peddling the all politicians are ‘useless academics and brain-dead ideologues’ and ‘people power and control is what we need for this century’ mantra. I think we all get the picture. In fact, I agree totally with your characterisation of politicians. However, you always fail to acknowledge that the politicians you find so distasteful and inept are voted into power by the ‘people’ who you would like to see running the show.

    Before your proposal could make an ounce of difference to the lives of the electorate, the people would need to truly engage with what goes on around them. They would need solid education, and a well-rounded social and political awareness. Otherwise, you could hand them the reins, only to have them cede control to the same smooth talking charlatans you so despise, because doing anything else is just too hard.

    What are your plans to raise that awareness in Tasmania’s people and encourage their active participation in the political process?

  17. William Boeder

    November 11, 2014 at 2:16 pm

    Robin Charles Halton, while it is pleasing to note that you have an interest in the city of Hobart Civic affairs, it is not quite right to lay the blame upon one popular councillor who in fact was very highly representative of the community of Hobart, this being one of her most respected attributes.
    Do you think it right for you to lay the blame for many of this Council’s In-House approved shortcomings by laying the finger of blame upon arguably the single most sensible member of all the former City Councillors?
    I believe you owe this alderman an apology Robin.

  18. Robin Charles Halton

    November 11, 2014 at 10:53 am

    As / Tuesday’s Mercury I note that Eva Ruzicka was appointed chairwoman of strategic governance committee.

    Probably a role that she could be well suited for as Eva must have finally learnt something from mistakes by local council matters from numerous past mistakes and lack of willingness to comprehend issues from past dealings with the public representation interface against absurd State and local government logic.

    One that stands out was the Hobart City council’s insistence that the Royal Public Hospital remain in the city to serve CBD business.

    We all agreed at the time that Lara Gidding’s grandiose waterfront hospital was out of the question by placing it within an industrial port zone, $11M wasted by her then ladyship Lara.

    Eva herself at the time calling public meetings at the Town Hall was a driver of this so called
    “initiative”.

    Of cause we all know now the rebuilding of the Old Royal was a fatal mistake, stalling one stage followed by another probably ending with botched up and expensive result remaining as a clutter trap reigning with ongoing inefficiencies.

    So my dear friend Eva why wasn’t the wider picture of public health in the Southern Region settled in a more forward thinking manner by supporting the provision of a suitable greenfield site somewhere within the Greater Hobart region.

  19. charles Bruce

    November 11, 2014 at 10:34 am

    3 Mike you are correct there.

  20. charles Bruce

    November 11, 2014 at 10:19 am

    Bigger is better, not. How is your water bill?, Under the U beaut one water board my quarterly water bill is more that it used to be per year when managed by the inefficient small operation ran by West Tamar council. This so called inefficient operation managed to read my water meter every three months, then compared the water consumption with other consumption readings. Several times the consumption was higher than normal. this small inefficient water mob inspected my property, located the leak and dropped a note in my letterbox, advising me what and where the leak was.

    Oh do you remember the salary paid to the chairman of the u beaut big is beautiful water mob, one hundred and thirty five thousand dollars per year for one days work per week, any more than one day per week, result overtime.

    Jeff Kennett got the big is better agenda rolling in Victoria and had a large following of any one who thought they were some one. It all came crashing down when the Victorian electors awarded Jeff an O.A. Note in my world an O.A is not the Order of Australia.

    I later question a Victorian dairy farmer as to why this happened. His reply was Under the old inefficient small council my rates were $400 per year, for that the council graded the road once per year once per month the council gravel truck came around and filled in the potholes.

    Under the big is better more efficient council my rates increased to $600 per year, the road has never been graded the potholes are never filled in, now why would I vote for him

  21. William Boeder

    November 10, 2014 at 3:54 pm

    AK your comment at.2 was not wasted for it has imbued each and every skilled quality and talented element prized by the State’s most reviled (by me) Senator.
    Being he was of migrant stock (now quoted as asylum-seeking) perhaps the local police can relocate this person to the seclusion of Pontville to our South.
    Eric loves his extra hectares that give him so much freedom, even to continue the drawing up of his blueprint for Tasmania, that depicts the descent of Tasmania going deep down into the murky depth of Eric’s plotted economic plug-hole.

  22. mike seabrook

    November 10, 2014 at 2:12 pm

    and these clowns who stiffed tasmanians with increasing water and sewerage bills now want to stiff glenorchy and kingston ratepayers to pay for this massive hobart bureacracy and playing games in this lab-green piddly 50,000 people hobart council haven.

    glenorchy ratepayers won’t freely vote in favour when they see the debt and contingent liabilities and the handout looting capacity of ratepayers funds – myer, mainland footy clubs etc.

    why should clarence want to merge – they are already collecting hobart council ratepayers loot for footy games by mainland clubs at bellerive

  23. A.K.

    November 10, 2014 at 12:59 pm

    More complaining about what they have been a willing party to and are fully supportive of, our current political and governance system. Nothing like banging on the door you built and look upon as sacrosanct, then claiming it doesn’t work, no different to the belief in god, primitive denialist crap.

    There’s nothing wrong with local government, or local planning controls. The problem lies within those already in power and the bizarre elitist system forced upon the people by egocentrically deluded elites.

    These complaints are not about improving governance outcomes, but entrenching power and control in the hands of small number of useless academics and brain dead ideologues.

    What’s needed is a local governance system which the people actually control and mandate what has to be done, not useless bureaucrats and self centred vested interest clones. We need all forms of governance to be in the control of the people, that can only be done with online referendum voting, governance and control by all the people of Tas and not just a few empty headed ideologues.

    We have the technology, the people have more understanding, knowledge, experience and ability to take us forward. Yet we are forced to listen and accept the direction and outcomes pushed by those who clearly don’t have a clue about anything, but themselves and their ideological ego’s.

    People power and control is what we need for this century, not the revolving door merry go round we are currently on, under the control of those living back in the distant past and advocating approaches which are destined to take us to oblivion within the foreseeable future.

  24. Mike Bolan

    November 10, 2014 at 11:14 am

    Ald. Ruzicka has got this right. Despite the massive changes in population, technology, communications, medicine and science, our governments are still operating in quill pens and wigs mode. The result is vast wastes of money, degraded services and an impoverished population that is struggling to stay relevant to the times.

    As examples I offer the NBN, Australia’s farcical effort to keep us competitive, and the debacle of the RHH redevelopment supposedly to improve our health service.

    “If you keep doing what you’ve always done, you’ll keep getting what you’ve always got”

    We need to create change and we can’t rely on our inept governments – we must rely on ourselves.

    We must all choose our own futures particularly now that the political ‘parties’ have repeatedly demonstrated that they are not up to the task.

    Good luck.

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