Some residents are already worried about the accuracy of the waste management survey the Katherine Town Council launched this week.
Several ratepayers contacted the Katherine Times today, and others have commented on social media, in regards to the online survey which they claim can easily be manipulated.
People are able to use multiple devices to complete the survey, and even people from outside Katherine, can access and complete the online survey.
Council has contracted Darwin company True North Strategic Communications to conduct the community consultation on its waste management strategy.
The company has used a popular online platform "SurveyMonkey" to compile the responses to residents ending on November 10.
Do they want a recycling service, how much are they prepared to pay, about 20 questions in all?
The survey results will be used by council to help provide "a strategic framework to guide council decisions about how waste is managed in Katherine".
Council today said SurveyMonkey is an engagement tool used widely by other councils and has been used in past consultations including; the Dog Park, CBD Revitalisation, School Holiday Program and others.
"The logistics of implementing a restricted survey process are quite complicated and council is concerned the implementation of such would not be conducive to the community engagement process."
The council statement said "whilst this is not an issue that council is particularly concerned with, we also note that the survey is one element of a larger consultation process currently being undertaken".
"The results of this consultation will assist council with developing the long term waste management strategy, of which recycling is one element."
Council said its waste management strategy will also include an investigation into:
- Waste reduction
- Resource recovery and recycling
- Best practice landfill management
- Improving the environment and public amenity by considering actions to achieve carbon neutrality; and
- Reducing litter and illegal dumping.
The council statement said the consultation will also involve "community displays" with dates and places still be organised, one-on-one stakeholder consultations and its waste management strategy fact sheet.
The development of the strategy is part of the agreement made with the NT EPA over last year's tyre fire, "has in no way been determined", the statement said.
"The various elements of the consultation process are imperative to understanding the desires of the Katherine community whilst complying with EPA requirements around waste management.
"KTC is committed to the waste management strategy and will encourage all members of our community to participate in the process."
You can find the survey here.
Community members can contact True North Strategic Communications at email@example.com or phone (08) 8981 6445 to provide submissions, gain further information or to schedule stakeholder consultations.
Katherine Times has contacted the NT EPA for comment.
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