Pedestrian plaza for Bowral?
The current shutdown of half of Bong Bong Street in Bowral CBD due to the fire repairs has provided an opportunity to observe just what it would be like to have that section as a traffic-free zone. With Covid restrictions likely to remain for a long time yet, it would allow for much more socially distanced as as well as relaxed shopping. For those traditional critics - just wait and see how long it would be before the rest of the street retailers demand a plaza in their section!
Bruce Mumford, Moss Vale
Chance to improve streetscape
While certainly not wishing to downplay the heartbreak of business owners devastated by the destruction of the Highlands Arcade complex on the corner of Bong Bong and Wingecarribee Streets, this month's disaster does provide an opportunity for a great improvement to the main streetscape in Bowral.
Each of the three remaining buildings bordering the intersection - the Syros 1922 Corner, the old Commonwealth Bank building, and the very lovely 1888 Grand Hotel - has a solidity and charm that certainly eluded the graceless architecture of the building on the north-west corner, now incinerated.
This is too good an opportunity to be missed. With the eyesore gone, let's hope for an interesting modern phoenix that will actually compliment its elegant neighbours, enhance the town, and provide residents and returning tenants with a building of which all can be justly proud.
Norelle Dixon, Burradoo
Nelson on the wrong track, again!
Suspended Councillor Peter Nelson's credibility hit another new low with his letter (SHN, July 7). If he had bothered to read the agenda and minutes of the council meeting of June 23, attend the meeting or watch and listen to it, he would not write this uninformed garbage about what has happened with the Station Street grant and how the repairs to Station Street will actually be funded - repairs long overdue thanks to his and other suspended councillors' blind belief that their vision for Station Street was to "improve" traffic, parking and amenity of Bowral by destroying the National Trust listed northern entrance of Bowral, by cutting in half the number of car parking spaces adjacent to Bowral Station, and leaving unprotected open drainage channels, thus allowing Station Street, its trees and camellia gardens to fall into disrepair that will now cost at least $4.3 million to repair and recover.
Mr Nelson claims the cost of recent staff payouts is $13 million, but he was happy to champion the $36 million Station Street folly, now thankfully terminated by the interim administrator Viv May. It escapes Mr Nelson's attention that whenever a person's employment finishes, by retirement or by termination, the employer is obliged to meet the cost of that termination and will have made proper provisions to meet those costs, so they are unavoidable costs whenever they occur and are fully funded. As a former council employee, Mr Nelson should have been fully aware of those provisions and not made that extraordinary statement. In any case, Mr May has made the right decision to terminate and accept resignations of those former members of council's staff so that Ms Miscamble can recruit fresh staff to undertake the leading roles in moving forward into a new and open administration, unfettered by the likes of suspended Cr Nelson.
Peter Edwards, Burradoo
Support local and enjoy pub atmosphere, at any age
The family and I decided to support local last weekend, having lunch at the Sutton Forest Inn. My youngest grand daughter was delighted to find the pool table there and played ball in the hole with enthusiasm and understanding. Background soundtrack of Jimmy Barnes from his latest album 'My Flesh and Blood' added to this authentic Southern Highlands pub experience. The adults had a lovely lunch!
Alexandra Springett, Bowral
E (or Internet)Voting. Is it worthwhile?
As our local NSW council elections draw closer (September 4) I am wondering why we still don't include E or I (internet) voting as a system to be used in these circumstances, especially in our post Covid world.
I appreciate many will have reservations about this and obviously trust is a big one. For some it is just the thin edge of the wedge, and reminiscent of the many hackable opportunities that have already been exposed in certain parts of the world. We require a system that is transparent, simple to use, safe and secure, and be able to correctly verify a person's ID.
Countries like Estonia first used this method in 2005 and several other European countries have since experimented too. Several experts agree that while tampering can occur it is a very limited possibility.
In Australia internet voting has been used for disabled voters, particularly the sight impaired, and those in the defence forces. So can we design a system that is safe for voting? At least can we add it to our suite of voting options that we presently have i.e. postal voting and presenting ourselves at polling booths? It may improve compliance especially among our younger voters and those with mobility issues.
Privacy is a moot point these days as the likes of Google and Facebook probably know more about us than our close friends and family.
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