Merger goes head to head

Pro council amalgamation

FAR FROM OVER: Cabonne ANTY members Marj Bollinger, Derek Johnson and Jock Haynes. Photo: JUDE KEOGH

FAR FROM OVER: Cabonne ANTY members Marj Bollinger, Derek Johnson and Jock Haynes. Photo: JUDE KEOGH

In the 26th of January edition of the Blayney Chronicle was a first page story entitled “Stay Independent” which quoted Mr John Sutton of Newbridge.

Mr Sutton appears to be continually angry and upset with our state member, Paul Toole, for what Mr Sutton perceives as his non performance as a member of the state legislature since 2011.

The latest issue to get under his skin is council amalgamations.

The great benefit of living in a democracy is that one is able to express an alternate point of view. I am clearly of the opinion that the proposed merger of Blayney with Orange & Cabonne would have greatly benefited the people of Blayney Shire. 

Mr Sutton (and people of his view), do not want any changes to their perceived idyllic rural lifestyle.

When these things do not happen, they will be the first to complain.  The real major benefit of an amalgamation is that it will lead to better investment opportunities across the Shire, especially for small business, and therefore improved employment prospects. It should also lead to lower rates as there is a bigger population across which to levy them.

In my opinion, the people leading the charge against this amalgamation, mainly in Molong, are nothing more than a bunch of backwoodsman who have no vision for future opportunities.

I note that Mr Sutton appears to have it in for Paul Toole personally. Mr Toole can defend himself but the fact remains he has done more for the Bathurst electorate generally and Blayney Shire in particular that the previous ALP members put together over many years.

If Mr Toole is good at getting grants (on which Blayney Shire depends) then that just shows he is doing his job as a local member. That’s what they all try and do.

It will be interesting to see in this regard how Mr Donato fairs in Orange before the 2019 election.

Not too well, I would happily forecast.

Miles Hedge,

Kings Plain

Anti council amalgamation

In response to the headlines in the Blayney Chronicle last week regarding a noisy selfish anti amalgamation minority.

I wonder where the pro merge group  have been during this whole debate over council amalgamations.

They certainly were not at the poorly advertised but well attended meeting in Blayney sponsored by the Boundary Commission . Every speaker there spoke against the proposed amalgamation and that was the feeling of all that attended.

As for the selfish noisy anti amalgamation minority  in Cabonne, its interesting to note  that noisy minority caused a swing of over 60% against the Nationals in some parts of the Orange electorate.

The overall swing against was closer to 25% , a swing considered impossible as Orange had been a National seat for over 70 years.

That noisy unhappy minority actually started a political avalanche that resulted in Troy Grant resigning as the leader of the Nationals. John Barilaro replaced him and he could obviously  see the writing on the wall for the Nationals.

It was doubted that Paul Toole would retain Bathurst at the next election due mainly to the anti amalgamation sentiment in Oberon Shire. John Barilaro  called for a stop to forced amalgamations and those before the courts to be repealed.

Forced amalgamations and banning greyhounds were both dumb ideas. Mike Baird, a good premier but poorly advised resigned .

We now have a new Premier that promises to unwind the whole sorry mess.

The cabinet has been reshuffled and Paul Toole has been replaced as minister for local government. He is now minister for Racing Crown Lands and Forestry.

That might put him back in touch with that anti amalgamation dissent in Oberon Shire and give him a chance at the next election.

The Government said in writing that there would be no forced amalgamations.

They broke their promise and Paul Toole as the minister aggressively prosecuted the cause.

The electorate is annoyed with politicians that don’t do what they promise and do what they say they won’t.

John Sutton, Newbridge

Send your opinion about this, or any topic, to mark.logan@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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