Rumour – the first Council meeting is closed to the public 28.9.2012


Is this usual?

The rumour I hear – completely unsubstantiated – is that the first Council meeting is next Tuesday and it’s closed to the public.

How’s that for a beginning?

Says a lot about the approach we can expect to engaging with the community. [At least one part of this was wrong: the investiture of the new Council is after next Tuesday. Hope the other part of the rumour is wrong too.]

And here’s what Tim Owen and I had to say to each other over the last couple of days:

Me: 9/27/2012 3:35 pm
Dear Mr Owen

I note that in a flurry of ‘anti-graffiti’ work, in which you were involved as a volunteer, the wall of paintings on the side of the S&W Miller building in Stewart Avenue/Hunter Streets was painted over.

A friend believes this was a NCC-sponsored youth art project.

I have written to NCC’s GM to ask

  • whether this was a Newcastle City Council youth art project
  • what safeguards were put in place to ensure that the anti graffiti project would do no harm as it has in fact now done
  • what education NCC provided to the group.

Murals are a tool well used by NCC throughout the LGA – as they are by organisations across the world – to prevent graffiti. What the wall now represents is a great spot for taggers which will cost the ratepayer funds to maintain. It’s sadly disrespectful to the artists who painted the works that they have been beiged out.

I have no doubt this project was well-intentioned and that this is a small error in an otherwise great project. I would like to ensure this misguided approach doesn’t happen again. Looking forward to your response.

Yours sincerely,

Caitlin Raschke


TO:  Thu, 27 Sep 2012 15:52:07

I suggest you wait for the GM’s response
Kind Regards
Me: 9/27/2012 11:27 pm
True to form – Save your energy.
TO: Fri, 28 Sep 2012 08:19:08
Caitlin, watch the city change!!
Kind Regards
Me: 9/28/2012 8:23 am
If the Liberal Party has anything to do with it, I dread it.
TO: Fri, 28 Sep 2012 08:31:30
Caitlin, I don’t know why you are such an antagonist with what we are trying to achieve in this city.  You can see the people of Newcastle are sick to death of the lack of action that has gone on; they have voted accordingly both at a state and local government level.  I understand you have very different views to me, but some useful contributions instead of opposing everything that we are all trying to do to help the city along would be welcomed.
We are going to change this city, you can be art of it constructively, or not – your choice.
Kind Regards
Contributions and reminders of what ‘They’ are Trying To Achieve In This City would be appreciated.
  • They couldn’t/wouldn’t save Laman Street.
  • They don’t have funding for fixing the Town Hall.
  • They rejected funding for the Art Gallery.
  • They seem to be making noises about whether they have funds to save the Post Office.
  • They’ve just cut funding for art and music at TAFE.
  • They were nowhere to be seen when Fullerton Cove was in trouble.
  • They took days to alert Stockton about chromium.
  • They’re watering down agricultural land safeguards in the Hunter.
  • After years in Opposition bagging Part 3A of the Planning Laws, it seems planning will be even worse, with less input by Councils and the community.
  • Mr Owen has made it plain he supports closing the rail line while Nick Greiner, Infrastructure Uber Person, threatens that no money for light rail will be forthcoming – but it’s OK:  people can ‘hop’ on a bus.
  • I recently had a patient wait  THREE YEARS for an appointment in orthopedic outpatients at the John Hunter. Forget surgical waiting lists: we need outpatient waiting lists.

And all that is without any mention of coal.

Please someone – anyone – tell me something good.

And I know the last lot had had their day well and truly etc etc.



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One Response to “Rumour – the first Council meeting is closed to the public 28.9.2012”

  1. Jacky Says:

    There is one more wall that is covered in a beautiful mural in Hunter st near Crown st that they better not paint over.
    Keep them away from Kurri Kurri’s 50 murals.
    Don’t let them near Sheffield in Tasmania, it is full of beautiful murals throughout the town.

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