May 24, 2019: Public Meeting in Bowral on Friday 31st of May

With apologies to our readers who don’t live in the Southern Highlands, I need to write a bit more about our local council’s proposal to take a lot of money from the Environment Levy and give it to a proposed Regional Art Gallery.

The Environment Levy is something that is charged to all ratepayers in Wingecarribee Shire with the express intention that the money ‘will only be used for environmental works which are additional to Council’s statutory environmental obligations’.

There seems to be a lot of room for interpretation as to exactly what Council’s ‘statutory environmental obligations’ might be but one thing is certain… an art gallery is not an environmental work in any way, shape or form.

So What Do We Do About It?

  1. Sign the petition that is currently being circulated and encourage your associates to do the same. You can click here to download a copy of the petition, get as many concerned citizens to sign it as possible and bring it to the public meeting on Friday (see below).
  2. Make a submission in response to Council’s call for public comments on their Draft Operational Plan and Budget 2019-20 stating that you object to Environment Levy funds being used for anything other than suitable environmental works. Submissions are due by Monday the 27th of May. Click here to access Council’s web-page with information on how to make a submission
  3. Come along and bring your friends to a public meeting to be held at Bowral Memorial Hall on Friday, 31st of May at 6:00pm.

Below is some more information provided by Clive West who is spearheading this community effort to make sure that our Environment Levy is used for environmental works now and in the future.

Friday 31 May is when we’ve booked the Bowral Memorial Hall for our second public meeting on the issue of the use of the Environment Levy funds to pay for the operation of the regional gallery.  This time we have more time to let people know, so please circulate this widely.  Southern Highlands News has been notified and requested to publicise it.

It’s a big hall and we need to fill it !

The petitions can be returned to me at the pubic meeting next Friday, or dropped off at the Berrima Post Office (our postmistress, Bronwyn, is aware of the petition and supports it)

Thanks for supporting this effort and I hope to see you at the meeting on Friday.


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