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Hazel Constable - 14 October 2014

Hazel Constable made the following comments in Non Agenda Public forum at the Ordinary Council Meeting on 14/10/2014.

My name is Hazel Constable. I am a long time resident of Eurobodalla Shire and remember when the Sports and Leisure Centre was built in Narooma.

I also remember how pleased and grateful the residents of the southern end of the shire were when this council facility was opened.

For years it was used for what its name suggests: a sport and leisure centre. My own grandson played roller-blade hocky there after school for some time.

I, and some friends and family have attended displays of art, photography, and various other crafts in this publicly owned building.

Then suddenly, without public consultation of any kind, the ratepayers and residents of Narooma were advised that HuntFest had been given permission to display weapons that kill for the next five years.

Now we have learnt that HuntFest has asked for leave to actually sell deadly weapons. If councillors do concede to this request, will it mean the that other ratepayer facilities will be able to do the same, and the reputation of Eurobodalla as a "Nature Coast" be sullied forever?

In a call for public submissions on guns Eurobodalla Shire Council has received community submissions from far and wide, including the 40,000 presented by Councillor Harding that Georgia B has collected from all over the world, signifying that this is more than "just an event". Indeed it is an event that has serious implications for the wider community, but especially for us in here in our beautiful coastal home.    

If councillors do agree to the sale of deadly weapons, will it promote a gun culture in our community, especially for the young? Are we being conditioned to accept this here?

In view of the above I ask councillors to consider carefully the consequences of this request by HuntFest. Will you be prepared to take responsibility for anything that may happen in the future? Which of us knows for sure what that will be?