OpEd by PAUL LEWIS
The Alice Springs Town Council seems to cop lots of grief, but is it justified?
Are the people in charge of the Town Council fit to run it? The state of its policies certainly raises questions.
There is no standard template for policies. All policies should have a review date. They mostly don’t. Similarly, all policies should at least be dated and often any revisions are listed.
Some are quite amusing, in that they are very ambiguous, though possibly intentionally, with some “cut and paste” from other council policies that were not intended to be the same. Some examples:-
The Access Policy hasn’t been reviewed since 2002.
Of particular interest is the Alfresco Dining Policy (Policy # 301) which hasn’t been updated since 2007. Given all the COVID-19 necessities one would think this would have been updated.
The Pandemic Financial Hardship Council Policy was supposed to be reviewed in July 2020, but hasn’t.
The policy around Rates and Charges (# 510) hasn’t been updated since 2008.
I find the Borrowing Policy (# 516) interesting, but I cannot find the associated document they mention, namely “Borrowings Procedural Statement and Directives”.
The Community Development Grants Scheme Policy (# 303) hasn’t been updated since 2007.
The Corporate Sponsorship (Outgoing) Policy (COR 004) was supposed to have been updated in 2010 but hasn’t: “This is about Outcome. A more diversified economic base, Strategy, Support appropriate economic development projects, A vibrant tourism industry. Actively promote and support local events” and so on.
All of these items are fundamental development and growth issues of the town itself and the people in the town.
Procurement Policy (# 219) was supposed to be updated in June 2018 but hasn’t.
Furthermore, there are many more policies that have not been updated since 2007, for example the Childcare Centres Policy.
The Community Consultation Framework has not been updated since 2005, which may explain why Community Consultation hasn’t been working.
The Town Council’s website has outdated information, yet radio advertisements advise to obtain the latest information from their site.
For example, the Mayoral Awards is still referring to November 2020. The Youth Action Group refers to the Skate Park Festival registration date for 9 October 2020. We all agree the youths need something to occupy them. The Phoney Film Festival mentions the film being screened on the 16 July 2020.
It sure doesn’t make sense and so my conclusion is that bring it upon themselves.
In comparison, have a look at the City of Stirling Council website.
If the Alice elected government wants to regain the respect of the ratepayers, then perhaps show us that you can act in a fit and professional manner.