Rosalie Woodruff MP | Greens' Local Government spokesperson
The financial activities and conduct of the Glamorgan Spring Bay Council were called into serious question at last night’s Annual General Meeting by local residents.
Ratepayers were concerned they will bear the enormous risk and costs of a massive $6 million Treasury loan, all to fund the supply of “industrial quantities” of fresh water to the Solis and Tassal.
The community in the gallery unanimously supported motions from the floor to reject the Council’s annual financial report, and to get an external independent assessment of the proposal to spend ratepayer’s money building a 3,000ML dam in the drinking water catchment to supply private companies.
Peter Gutwein, the Treasurer and Minister for Local Government, should halt the ratepayer-subsidised loan until independent expert scrutiny has been undertaken. He needs to show his Government supports transparent processes, not special deals behind closed doors.
Residents also criticised the General Manager for acting outside his delegated authority when he sought the approval from Treasury for a $6 million loan, and for insufficiently investigating the council’s ability to service its loan obligations.
Given the serious accusations of misconduct and financial risk that have been raised, the Treasurer should halt the loan process to the GMSB Council immediately, and seek answers to these questions of probity and fiscal security.