Friday, October 24, 2008

'Silencing dissent' letter in The Age

Today's edition of The Age carries my letter on the proposed laws regarding Councillor conflict of interest. Follow the link to see it in the paper, or read on:

Your editorial rightly identifies the desire of state governments to keep local councils in check - perhaps especially so where community candidates threaten the positions of Labor councillors who too often fall weakly in line with state government policies.

The proposed conflict of interest laws are an expression of this desire which, in its broad scope, would impose a presumption of constraint on councillors' decision-making. Instead of attending to the merits of an issue, dissenting councillors will be plagued by a fear of running foul of laws that target their past community engagement, rather than any real conflict.

Your excellent editorial, articles and letters on this issue provide a clear-thinking rebuff to Wynne's anti-democratic nonsense.
Be sure to ask the position of your Labor Unity Councillors on this important issue!

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Comments are most welcome on any of the posts at Northcote Independent. I encourage feedback - positive or negative. Feel free to disagree, but remember that posts are moderated to ensure they are on the topic and in the spirit of open debate, as outlined in my editorial policy.