Sunday, 8 April 2012

NSW Canada Bay Council council GIVES power to public to choice how to spend its money


I was listening on the radio about a dramatic change with a council asking the public to tell it how to spend its money.

YES the public will decide and guide the council. WOW that is un heard of. 

Allotted assembly for budget planning in the city of Canada Bay, Australia

The Australian Daily Telegraph reports:
More than 1,500 people will be randomly asked to take part in a panel to set the agenda for how Canada Bay council should spend, service and plan its four-year budget.
It puts into practice an idea from independent research body newDemocracy Foundation that a random selection of citizens has the least direct self interest in public decisions.
NewDemocracy Foundation executive director Iain Walker said the randomly selected panel was similar to a jury – only for public decision making instead.

[...]
The computer-selected panel would include renters and business tenants as well as owner-occupiers and would operate on a “super-majority process” – meaning the direction must get 75 per cent support.
Mr Walker said researchers would not stipulate an agenda, instead showing a baseline of services and provide the experts they request so “to not shape them down a particular path”.
Canada Bay mayor Angelo Tsirekas said opening the chambers to the public hailed a new era in democracy.
“Council will be in a better position to say this is where you want your bucks spent, and giving us a clear indication of where they want council to deliver and how we should be spending ratepayers dollars,” he said.