No amalgamation says GM

Lismore City Council general manager Paul OSullivan has ruled out an amalgamation between Rous Water and Lismore Water at least in the short term.

However he did confirm that Council has deferred its hunt for Lismore Waters top senior management job, which has been vacant now for two months. There are seven other vacancies within Lismore Water which were also being re-evaluated, subject to further discussions with Rous.

He said only four were considered critical, and needed to be filled without delay.

Mr OSullivans comments come after Council voted 10/1 at its last meeting to further explore resource sharing with Rous Water, causing concern amongst 22 Lismore Water staff about the effect on their jobs.

Mr OSullivan said he understood some Rous Water staff were also feeling anxious about job security, but said they were jumping at shadows.

Theyve turned it into something in their own minds that isnt very likely, he said. Were just trying to get the best out of both organisations. Theres all sorts of conspiracy theories out there. But Lismore Water is not going to disappear and be swallowed up by Rous Water. Its not an amalgamation. Rous charter wont allow for that.

Mr OSullivan said Lismore Water had areas of weakness where it could be assisted by Rous Water and vice versa.

What I see this as being is a service agreement, said Mr OSullivan. They might do certain things and we pay them money, and vice versa where weve got certain expertise that they dont have.

He said an example where resource sharing could work was in the area of water treatment.

Theyve got water treatment plants at Nightcap and Emigrant Creek, he said. Weve got a very small one at Nimbin and we dont employ any specialist staff. Thats an area where we dont have a high level of expertise. Rous have got resources and they could deal with it.

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