Rate rise not needed
During the Bendigo Council 'budget debate' on July 15, Cr Fyffe commented if council did not collect the two per cent rate rise then $2 million would be lost each year.
He failed to use that analysis over the 37 new staff costing approximately $3.5 million each year forever.
In fact, the 37 additional staff were not mentioned in the 'budget debate' by any Councillor.
Rates could have been frozen if councillors, aware of the devastating impact of COVID-19, had persuaded CEO, Craig Niemann, to forego new appointments.
Council officers, totally unaffected during the crisis, proceed with a 'business as usual approach' as if COVID-19 does not exist.
The money to bankroll this extravagance is coming from tottering or closed businesses, workers that lost their jobs, and families struggling to make ends meet or put food on the table.
Bendigo councillors need to put a stop to an ever increasing council bureaucracy in these tough times.
Revise the budget.
Colin Carrington, Heathcote
We are not alone
At times, it is easy to believe that all is well with the world. As I walk my dog in the evening, the setting sun paints clouds gold. Below, in the valley, the buildings of my little town nestle amongst green pillows of trees.
Beyond, the sky hangs pink above the mountain.
But all is not well. A virus stalks amongst the people of our city and many other cities throughout the world. Businesses and economies teeter on the brink of collapse.
Far away in Siberia, there is a record heatwave causing wildfires to burn and permafrost to melt sending greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
Hearing this news reminds us of the terrible bushfires that raged through our country only six months ago. Then we wore masks to stop the smoke of burning trees and animals from entering our lungs.
Storm clouds of chaos and uncertainty gather on the periphery of our minds. While we fret over Covid-19 figures, our politicians seek to dismantle environmental laws and allow mining companies to destroy ecosystems and ancient caves.
Despite these grave threats to our existence, sunsets are still to be enjoyed. Lockdown can be a gift: a time to reflect, eat well, read and rest, to grow gardens and ourselves. Each of us has a responsibility to steer our Earth onto a better course.
We are not alone: there are millions working for positive change, for renewable solutions, for a healthy environment and stronger community.
We must practice sustainable ways of living and remind our MPs that they work for our wellbeing if we want our children to inherit a habitable planet.