Why should caravans pay for drop off points ?
Yesterday my wife and I returned home to Ballarat after a great week away in the Victorian alps.
The first task for caravanners on return home is to clean their van prior to storage.
The challenge for Ballarat caravan travellers is the absence of a public dump point.
These days most caravans have a toilet and many have a grey water tank which needs to be emptied.
When I contacted the Ballarat City Council and the visitor information centre, I was told to go to a caravan park with the relevant facilities but where I would have to pay for the service.
All large cities and most small towns have an accessible public dump point. Why not in Ballarat?
Recently, I came across a concrete kerbside drain on public land where someone had emptied a caravan toilet cassette.
This behavior is inexcusable but the health risks could be reduced if proper facilities were made available.
It would be a simple fix for the City of Ballarat to install a public dump point and would encourage more self contained travellers to stop in beautiful Ballarat without dumping us in the poo.
Gerry Watt, Alfredton.
The Prime Minister’s Demeanor.
The primary problem with Malcolm Bligh Turnbull is his demeanor. The Prime Minister is not engaging and lacks warmth. He appears to be aloof, supercilious, disinterested and living in a world of his own.
His language is often convoluted and overly flowery and he has trouble getting to the point; a turn-off for the common man. An ineffective communicator.
In many ways, he comes across as a younger Donald Trump. Self-made and self obsessed. Anything but a team man. A politician who does not inspire loyalty let alone affection
The best political leaders in this country have usually been well regarded by their opponents. Malcolm Turnbull enjoys little respect across the board and some of his most strident critics come from within his own disunited party.
Hardly likely to inspire public support when push comes to shove.
Michael J Gamble, Belmont.
Regarding the amendment of the Ballarat Planning Scheme transferring responsibility for the Civic Hall site to the state Minister for Planning.
This renders community disagreement close to impossible.
More disturbing is the Minister’s current power to develop and alter categories of development in VicSmart – a supposedly improved, ‘streamlined’ Victorian Planning System – without informing the public.
Goals of VicSmart are to increasingly privatise planning, lower planning triggers, increase ‘as-of-right’ approvals, reduce local variation, simplify planning, and reduce regulation.
The property industry is enthusiastic. VicSmart reference and advisory groups include reps from the MAV, architects, builders, planners, lawyers, urban developers, but no public community group is invited and the public is excluded from consultation.
This information comes from Professor of Environment & Planning at RMIT University, Michael Buxton.
He suggests the public may be purposely being locked out of the VicSmart process under the pretext that we are incapable of understanding strategic planning and we might object.
We probably would because VicSmart approvals are already “exempt from notice, decision guidelines …review rights…[and]…the responsible authority [Council] cannot request further information.
The Labor Government right now is beavering away at Stage 2: gradually entrenching VicSmart into the Planning Scheme by integrating it into overlay schedules and particular provisions.
Professor Buxton says ultimately the public may be dished up a cooked goose with no right of reply
He believes at that point Victoria’s planning may well become a dictated done deal. Planning that affects you and me in our local places.
But who’s to say? If the public starts to ask questions, if people care enough to stand firm and demand that local planning remain local in the lead-up to the state election, miracles could happen.
Dr. Linda Zibell, Mount Helen.
I sit contemplating the disaster which occurs at Humffray Street, Prest Street, Elsworth Street West and Sewerage Farm Road.
Originally you turned left through a cutting at Prest Street to access Sewerage Farm Road.
Elsworth Street didn’t extend to the sweeping right bend.
Then the cutting was removed and Elsworth Street was extended with a track crossing Sewerage Farm Road, then on to a bottleneck at Prest Street.
Recently a house was demolished near this junction.
I hear a car sales yard is to be situated there.
This will make this sweeping bend and junction more dangerous.
Additionally a bank up of traffic along Elsworth Street due to it being a shortcut from Mount Clear. Pedestrians have to take many risks when turning.
I would like the council to visit this site.
Ian Nunn, Mount Pleasant.
Time to act on ASIC
The startling revelations in the Royal Commission into the Financial Sector, suggest systemic and despicable conduct of the financial institutions, some key questions need to be asked:
Has the prudential regulator been excessively focused on solvency standards. If so, should there not be a higher-level decision-making body to resolve conflicting policies?
Has the competition regulator made decisions on mergers that have stifled competition and facilitated exploitation of consumers?
Does the ease and blatancy of hoodwinking the corporate regulator suggest it is incapable of quickly assessing, investigating and pursuing, illegal conduct ?
Should parliamentarians fast-track the National Integrity Commission?