Controversy surrounds the Basin Communities Association.
You can read about this controversy in
Melissa Fyfe's article in to-day's The Age
I leave Networkers to their own conclusion with one proviso -
Water. Land. Development.
This triumvirate has always been, throughout Australia's history,
an attractor for powerful people, companies, corporations, political organisations
who seek to put forward their own interests in the halls of politics and power.
As a communitarian from regional Australia, I have to say that I can't recall a time or a major issue in which agricultural lobbies have been so conscious of their "communities". I have to wonder if that is because there is a Labor Government in power and that it might be in the interests of industry lobbies and agricultural political parties to prove that they have a popular base in the towns of the Murray-Darling Basin.
I am not trying to foreshorten the right of MDB communities to their voice in this significant policy decision. In fact, I want them to be there putting their own views forward. However, I fear that the views put publicly by the townspeople and businesses will be put forward in the shadow of powerful interests....interests who would take their business elsewhere if dissenting voices are heard.
I wonder too if the significant Aboriginal communities represented by MLDRN - putting forward their proposal of cultural flows - will be heard at this meeting. Anyway, Networkers, you might be able to see for yourselves at this meeting to-day which is being livestreamed.