Titbits: WCC staff meet the Boss, and those Aquazone dollars

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Carol Altmann – The Terrier

The Warrnambool City Council offices were buzzing yesterday as dozens of staff were seen piling into the Lighthouse Theatre studio for what some passers-by thought might be a mass union meeting.

But no, it was not a union meeting, but a meet-and-greet with new CEO Peter Schneider who still remains a bit of mystery man since starting the new job in February.

According to a somewhat embarrassing movie-style internal flyer that was, I guess, a bit of fun from the council’s public relations team, the sessions were a chance to MEET the CHIEF.

“He’s a man with a plan and he wants to meet you.”


This blockbuster event was a chance for staff to be introduced to Mr Schneider and “talk about culture, values and the way forward”.

The flyer “reviews” said it was a presentation not to be missed and a real “game-changer”.

This all sounds positive, even if the flyer scares me with its machismo, slightly Trump-esque tone.

Hopefully there are plans for a a public screening of this “blockbuster” so we can all hear about Mr Schneider’s culture, values and the way forward too.

An update on last night’s Facebook post about $985,000 being spent at Aquazone this year to improve water treatment and air quality at the pool.

I wondered out loud where the money was coming from, given the 2018-19 budget set aside $540,000 for the water treatment works and next year’s budget makes no mention of any Aquazone works at all.

The answer came today from council spokesman Nick Higgins who said the rest of the money dates back to the 2017-18 budget, when $420,000 was set aside to fix the roof, but was never spent.

Further investigations, he said, revealed the roof was being ruined by an old air handling system, so it was decided to fix the roof AND the air circulation problem in one.

So this is why, as we speak, the whole she-bang adds up to close to $1 million.

Pools are expensive to maintain and it seems heated, indoor pools are even more expensive: in 2015, the council spent $178,000 re-tiling the changerooms at Aquazone and the pool is not yet 20 years old.

Hold your breath, because I sense the $985,000 this year is just the beginning.