In October 2015, I made a last minute submission regarding the 2016-17 ACT budget on behalf of the Crace Community Association. I reflected the wants and desires of the community, as conveyed at our events, on social media, and online.
The short story is I asked for a dog park and public bins to help reduce dog waste and other litter along our walking paths, and a feasibility study in to green bins. I also asked that the government make good decisions based on solid evidence, and planned for the long term rather than funding short term “band aid” solutions like – in my personal opinion – the traffic lights at the Barton Highway roundabout.
Recently, we received a responding to the submission, and were invited to make a budget reply. While we didn’t get a dog park (Weston Creek got that this time around), there is money in the budget to address public bins and green waste, so I made a reply accordingly. . I indicated I was willing to present my reply to the Select Committee on Estimates, and was invited to do so.
I presented my reply and the Committee asked questions about roads, congestion, local amenities, our Landcare efforts, and government consultation. The transcript of my time in front of the Committee is in Hansard: page 12 of the draft transcript (final published soon), or see the list of all transcripts and search for 17 June 2016.
I enjoyed the process and look forward to submitting another later this year. If you want to help with the community submission, please let us know. If you would rather simply let us know your budget priorities, that’s great too. Some priorities are more suited to go through the Gungahlin Community Council, but I can facilitate that.
What the whole process showed me is that together as a community we have a strong voice. That is something amazing about our community, and something I want to see continue for as long as possible.