Noosa will become 'fat cat capital for Qld', warns deputy
NOOSA is destined to become the "Queensland capital of bureaucrats and politicians" if it breaks away from the Sunshine Coast Council in next Saturday's de-amalgamation referendum.
That was the return fire from Deputy Mayor Chris Thompson, aimed squarely at Free Noosa spokesman Noel Playford for suggesting that the Coast council was a bloated financial train wreck about to go off the rails if it did not shed hundreds of staff and cut back services.
The former Noosa mayor said that would be the case regardless of whether the "yes" vote created the council split on March 9.
Cr Thompson said that unless the "no" vote got up, Noosa was going to be the land of the fat cats.
"You wouldn't be able to walk out of a shop in Hastings St without bumping into a pollie or a bureaucrat - and their wages will be paid for by the people of Noosa," Cr Thompson said.
"The Boundaries Commissioner's report has shown there will be one bureaucrat for every 152 ratepayers in Noosa and its hinterland.
"In other words, every 150th person in Noosa would work for the council.
"In comparison, the Sunshine Coast Council would have one staff member for every 166 ratepayers."
He said the report figures clearly showed the Sunshine Coast Council would be at least 10% more efficient than a new Noosa council.
"This is not only worrying for Noosa ratepayers, but also for the more than 400 employees who would go back to Noosa," he said.
"The Sunshine Coast Council has already ordered an organisational review to ensure it has a measured, professional, targeted response to improve efficiency.
"Unfortunately, a new Noosa council would be starting from scratch and would be left with a bloated bureaucracy or huge debts."
The Deputy Mayor was responding to a claim by Mr Playford that the "giant Sunshine Coast Council" was "a bloated bureaucracy, burning cash fast and mired in debt, with senior staff and the Mayor covering shortcomings by peddling misinformation".
He said local rates under the Coast council would be a lot higher than if Noosa voted to de-amalgamate from "a giant, slow-motion train wreck".