No taxpayer bailout for Coober Pedy Council

The Australian Taxpayers’ Alliance (ATA), a 75,000+ member grassroots advocacy group representing Australia’s taxpayers, today called for Coober Pedy council to be put into administration to shield taxpayers from footing the bill for its $6 million+ debts racked up by maladministration, and demanded greater transparency in spending by councils across the nation through an online expenditure portal in order to deliver accountability and fairness for taxpayers.

“Hardworking South Australian taxpayers don’t deserve to see their money spent on undoing the mistakes of incompetent public officials.” Said Satya Marar, ATA Director of Policy.

“Coober Pedy Council has repeatedly breached its obligations under the Local Government Act, entered into an irresponsible $200 million electricity deal underwritten by taxpayers, and committed basic errors such as a failure to budget past losses and other acts of serious maladministration.

“The Council should be held to account and must pay for its mistakes through its own resources, asset sales and stringent financial measures, before taxpayers are forced to pay a single cent to rescue it from a history of inexcusably bad decisions and poor stewardship of public funds.

“The ATA have long campaigned for expenditure transparency portals for state, local and federal government which could avert issues of longstanding maladministration like this by ensuring that our representatives are held to account for how they spend our money.

“These cost-effective initiatives have been implemented successfully in the United States, Britain and continental Europe, and have delivered unprecedented savings for policy makers while exposing the misuse of public funds. This is not an issue of left vs right – but an issue of right vs wrong.”     

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