“We need to find out how to raise money
for what is becoming a crisis.”
– Michelle Wasserman (DA)
“It’s coming at us like a speed train.”
Lauren Waring (Municipal Manager)
Those were quotes from a very tense Section 80 meeting held by the Planning, Development and Infrastructure Committee on Wednesday, September 10 2014.
Despite the Knysna Municipality’s claims in the media to financial stability, the reality, as i’ve often said, is that our town is facing a very challenging future. It’s only the beginning of the financial year and Knysna is R6.6 million rand short for infrastructure repairs. That doesn’t include the massive, untold amounts needed for our towns ageing pipes and roads. This new amount is needed for a shortfall in Eskom fees and repairs to waste water treatment works (Knysna and Karatara) and Sedgefield’s white elephant desalination plant.
As an emergency measure, just as we’re told that we’re preparing for a water shortage, funds are having to be diverted away from several pump stations repairs which, according to the Director of Technical Services, leaves them at “a risk of failing and the resultant public outcry.” However, unless they do so, one severe consequence will be that the final effluence from the treatment of our sewage will remain polluted.
Elrick van Aswegen (COPE) delivered much needed criticism with, “Is renovating offices a priority over matters like this???” He was referring to the recent expense upgrades to the building housing the politicians and the Municipal Manager. More about this pivotal truth meeting in the next blog, ‘Rates Must Go Up Double Digits’.