Like many councils across the country, Marrickville Council face the challenging problem of renewing a vast portfolio of aging capital assets - from roads, to parks, to pavements, stormwater drains and beyond. There are also new assets the council may wish to build such as cycleways and greening initiatives to be factored in - while at the same time income sources are heavily regulated and limited. The scale of investment is vast, and most feedback from vox pop channels only lets councillors know citizens want everything fixed - and lower rates (local taxes)!

 

This jury process is a tradeoff exercise focused solely on physical infrastructure. Once citizens are exposed to and informed about the full extent of asset renewal options, which elements do they choose to prioritise and how do they choose to pay for this?

This is an essential element: this is not a 'wishlist' exercise, but one which asks citizens to reach common ground as to how they would solve the problem. If 30 randomly selected citizens can reach agreement, does this make it easier for a Mayor and Council to solve a vexed issue for their local community that could otherwise see all possible decisions open to political criticism which makes any decisive action less likely.

The jury will meet five time in September and October 2014, with a decision from Council due in early 2015.

 

Further Reading