Lights may be on but is there anybody in the office?

WHAT is it with Tamworth Regional Council? Is nobody home? Does nobody in the place care? Is it all about revenue these days? 

A couple I know who are in their 70s and are aged pensioners decided to move here a little over a year ago. They purchased a home through one of Tamworth’s major real estate businesses which was presented for sale for domestic or commercial purposes because the house had previously been used as an office for a disability counselling service. 

The couple purchased it as a domestic residence and that is how the contract was drawn up. After a while this elderly couple found that the rates they were paying were commercial rates and they applied to council to have their rating altered to reflect the nature of their tenancy. 

Their request was met with a $280 bill for making a development application even though they are not intending to develop or to change anything at all, and a council officer visited them, demanded to be shown through the house, and then scared these senior people out of their wits by announcing that the council was going to undertake soil contamination tests in the backyard of their house and that they would be liable to pay for any remedial work should it be necessary. 

Have you tried to ring through to council these days? 

Recently an old gum tree fell onto the roof of our neighbour’s house, smashing the verandah in and blocking the driveway access to their car. The couple have a boy who needed to be driven to have medical treatment at a clinic that very day and when I tried to report this emergency situation to TRC, the lines, as always, were busy and a message bank suggested that I leave a message. 

Then again, how about Bicentennial Park? 

Have you seen the driveway leading to the Noel Park bandstand which leads onto the oval where concerts and other public events are held? It is broken, rutted and always littered with shards of 

broken glass which are never taken away. The bandstand structure itself has stone holes through the front of it, graffiti all over it, fungus growing on the roof and is in general a total disgrace. 

In spite of the way they run this city, my bet is that TRC will grab the latest opportunity just announced on the media, to hike the ratepayers’ rates up to the limit just as soon as they can.


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