Council excommunicates the News

THE Derwent Valley Council has announced it will no longer respond to questions from the New Norfolk News.

A council spokesperson said the New Norfolk News website was not a recognised media outlet.

The decision, delivered by telephone to journalist Damian Bester earlier today, follows several recent questions posed to the council by Bester going unanswered. These related to:

  • The length of Margaret Johns’ appointment as acting general manager
  • The timeline for the appointment of a deputy general manager
  • Whether the deputy general manager would be appointed in the absence of general manager Greg Winton
  • When the council intended to build a public toilet at Bushy Park which had been funded in three council budgets

The spokesperson said the council would provide responses to Bester’s questions if he was reporting for the Mercury or Derwent Valley Gazette, but not otherwise.

Established in 2008, the New Norfolk News has published more than 5300 articles and had 1.95 million page views in the intervening 11 years.

The council has previously requested photos from the New Norfolk News for various purposes, which have been freely provided, while Mayor Ben Shaw uses a New Norfolk News photo for his Facebook cover photo.

The council has been asked to provide its decision in writing.

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