Australian news, and some related international items

Kimba nuclear waste dump: The government failed to show overwhelming support and the proposal to site the facility in Kimba can’t proceed.

22 November 2019
Mr Dean Johnson
District Council of Kimba

Dear Mayor Johnson
I refer to the recent ballot at Kimba to determine the level of support
for the siting of the radioactive waste facility.

The results of the Kimba ballot were:
Voting papers issued 824
Formal votes accepted 735
Yes vote 452
Did not vote ~ 283
The government are saying that the result is the percentage of yes votes of the formal votes accepted and they say this is 61.50/0.

This not a vote between two political opponents who are both free to campaign and present alternatives political views for consideration.

This is a simple yes / no vote on a proposal to establish a radioactive waste facility in a wheat field.
It is the government who are the proponent. It is they who have to get people to vote yes. They have to get 413 vote to get a simple majority.

For an overwhelming show of support they need at least a 2/3 yes vote.

You have to remember that this poll was not a genuine contest of ideas. There was only one view put and paid for by the government. There was not a no vote argument presented to voters. This places an unfair bias in any result obtained.

As if this were not bad enough the government offered a $31 million cash handout to the voters and 45 permanent jobs, manned a permanent office in the town of Kimba advocating a yes vote.

The way in which this ballot has to be interpreted is this: How many people voted yes as against how many people did not vote yes.
As a famous South Australian Mick Young the former Special Minister of State in the Hawke Government correctly put it  if they don’t say yes they mean no.”

The government has been dishonest in that their figure of 61.49% as it neglects the people who didn’t vote.
The correct methodology is the ratio of people who wanted the facility (voted yes) as against those who didn’t vote yes. This is the ratio of yes votes to the people who didn’t vote yes.

The actual number supporting the facility is then 54.850/0. To achieve an overwhelming result the Yes vote would have to be 536 votes.

The government failed to show overwhelming support and the proposal to site the facility in Kimba can’t proceed.
This view is based on my experience as a federal government minister and also in local government where I am currently the Mayor of the City of Melville in Western Australia.

Yours sincerely

George Gear

September 26, 2020 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, politics

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