Councils everywhere are faced with the challenging task of making decisions on a wide range of issues by balancing differing interests in the community and the needs of current and future generations. How council manages Hanging Rock into the future is an issue which exemplifies this delicate balance.
The ABC's 7.30 Victoria program chose to selectively edit and distort how council came to its decision to explore private investment in the council-owned East Paddock (not Hanging Rock Reserve). It was the decision of elected councillor representatives (not the officer recommendation) to pursue this path as the only suitable option. It is your right to disagree, but it is incorrect for Christine Pruneau ('CEO must go', Midland Express, October 29, 2013) to claim that council has not been honest and transparent about the financial imperatives (see our website for a copy of the council report and related bulletins). Ms Pruneau's letter to the editor presents an incorrect view of how council operates, with no understanding of the role of the CEO. In relation to our transparency and openness on any issue, council staff encourage and proactively meet individuals and groups every day. The Macedon Ranges Residents Association has declined to meet with council representatives. What sadly gets lost in the negative views of Ms Pruneau are the many positive things that councillors and council staff do for our community. Every day, over 100 services are carried out in a polite, friendly way and with genuine care for our community. Whatever decisions are made, and whether or not you agree with them, I ask residents to remember that council staff will continue to conduct learn-to-swim classes, provide school crossing services, mow sports ovals, remove fallen trees from roads, prepare for the summer fire season, support our youth, families and elderly, and maintain a high quality of life for all residents and visitors to enjoy.