Councillors identify areas of public concern

PLANNING and development, and rates are Tasmanians’ major council-related concerns, councillors and aldermen believe.
Nanjing Night Net

Those two areas topped the list of residents’ concerns, according to elected people who responded to a survey run for the Local Government Association of Tasmania.

They were asked to identify the top three public concerns in their municipalities.

Both areas were nominated by 50 respondents, or 15.7 per cent of all respondents.

Economic conditions/employment came in third, with 43 nominations.

Other areas of significant levels of concern were roads (38 responses), infrastructure (29) and transparent government (25).

Public safety was near the bottom of the list (four responses), suggesting residents either feel safe or regard councils as having limited relevance in that area, or both.

Just one response nominated climate change, and nobody nominated natural resource management.

Areas also mentioned were waste management (19), council amalgamations (16), community welfare (15), financial sustainability (11) ageing population (10) and housing affordability (seven).

The survey showed councils were dominated by working and retired people.

More than one third of respondents (33.7 per cent) were self-employed, with a further 26.9 per cent in full-time employment.

Another 20.2 per cent were retired, with 9.6 per cent in part-time work.

Between them, people who classified themselves as permanently sick or disabled, not in paid work and looking after a home or family, not working for some other reason, unemployed or full-time students made up just 9.6 per cent of respondents.

The most common occupations of elected people were small business proprietors (20.8 per cent) and managers/executives (19.4 per cent).

Professional/technical, sales/retail and farmers were the other groups above 10 per cent.

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