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Local Government

ROTTEN: Victoria’s worst council and its toxic tip

Casey ratepayers may be stuck with a bill for tens of millions of dollars after a council-run Cranbourne “landfill” tip was mismanaged for two decades and now endangers the lives of hundreds of people living nearby.

Dangerous gases have been spewing out of the toxic tip causing a terrible stink and a potential risk of explosion and death.

The Casey Council says they opposed recent residential development in the area but locals complain the council caused the poisonous situation by mismanaging the tip and then failed to adequately warn prospective home purchasers of the risk they were making by building there.

Certainly the Council seems to be struggling in its response to the crisis, with Casey mayor Janet Halsall showing a distinct absence of compassion in a television interview above that highlighted the dangers her tip poses locals.

Toxic gases coming from the incompetently managed tip threaten to cost many families their brand-new homes, with as many as one hundred properties at risk costing an average of $400,000 each.

The total cost of cleaning up the devastated site and buying these properties could be in the hundreds of millions of dollars.

Victoria's worst council The man ultimately responsible for the debacle is Council CEO Mike Tyler, who has been revealed as exercising near absolute power over the council he has run since 1994. His job has not been re-advertised in all that time and he receives regular significant payrises. His current salary is approximately $310,000 per annum, with other perks and benefits taking him up to $8000 per week.

Council critics say Tyler “took his eye off the ball” by being distracted by the “glitz and glamour” of city cocktail parties and wining and dining AFL Clubs to relocate to the area.

Meanwhile the Casey Council tip has emerged as a seething cauldron of filth and noxious gases that have engulfed the Brookland Greens estate.

Many council observers believe it is now a matter of when not if Casey Council CEO Mike Tyler is held accountable for his mismanagement of the council tip. Certainly it looms as a huge election issue across the municipality with ratepayers left in a deep financial hole as a result.


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  1. the council must be sacked

    Posted by scary | September 10, 2008, 14:42
  2. I was appalled to see Casey Mayor Janet Halsall and her totally un-sympathetic behaviour on a national news article.

    This council through its actions over many years has potentially put the lives of residents living near the landfill site at risk.

    Someone has to be held responsible for this debacle and no doubt the first person who all responsibility lays with is CEO Mike Tyler.

    One of my local councillors door knocked my house the other night which is a start in the right direction, but it really is not good enough that council officers, overseen by the CEO Mike Tyler have let this situation escalate to the position families living in this estate are faced with today.

    Posted by Kate - resident of Brookland Greens | September 10, 2008, 14:55
  3. In asking for the Council to be sacked, it must be understood that it is the bureaucrats employed by the council, not so much those elected, that have caused this mess. It time for a cleanout at the top. Its just a pity none of the councillors have the stomach to stand up to the current CEO..

    Posted by Laurie | September 10, 2008, 15:02
  4. Makes you wonder about the People’s Republic of Brimbank.

    Posted by Anon Anonski | September 10, 2008, 19:47
  5. when does the lawsuit start? This is a terrible situation for many to be facing.

    My house value has just plummeted to the point that my mortgage is no doubt worth more than my house!!

    Combine this with the lack of decent technology infastrucutre and i regret my decision to build my first home in this estate.

    Which is a damn shame as there is alot to like about it!!

    Posted by Scott | September 11, 2008, 9:39
  6. Calling all parties for the inevitable class action.

    Please call1800 810 812

    Posted by Maurice Blackburn Cashmachine | September 11, 2008, 9:59
  7. Reading the local papers in Casey, it seems the mayor is more concerned about councillor behaviour than dealing with what is a disgraceful sitution residents of the Brookland Greens Estate are now faced with.

    She shold be ashamed of herself, bring on the election.

    Posted by Brad | September 11, 2008, 10:49
  8. Swing batter, batter, batter, batter, saaawiiiiiiing batter!

    Posted by 'Big' Bad Bob Halsall | September 11, 2008, 11:59
  9. I shouldn’t think Bob Halsall, husband of ‘out of control’ Mayor Janet Halsall, should even contemplate making comments abou the actions of the Casey Council.

    What Bob should do his talk some sense into his wife and ask to to not think of herself and her short term personal gains, but instead show some proper leadership for the enitre city.

    Posted by Lizzie from Cranbourne | September 11, 2008, 13:41
  10. Just heard all the fuss in the media and checked out the CFA web site for more info. I then rang Casey council to find out why, as a resident of Brookland Greens had council not advised me of the problem. I was informed that its a media beatup and the information on the CFA web site is lies.
    I’m stunned, the CFA & EPA are telling lies, forcing the evacuation of hundreds of residents, and devistating the property values of hundreds of houses. Is this possable? According to Casey council it is.

    I think Casey council has gone to far this time. The govenment needs to take imediate action against the council and force them to take thier heads out of the sand.

    Posted by Geoff | September 11, 2008, 13:53
  11. Can’t they harness the gas and use it to heat their homes free of charge as compensation? How many other land fill sites of the 50’s-70’sin the same bloat.

    Posted by Gasometer | September 12, 2008, 4:52
  12. My family and I had finaly made it, through years of long hours and hard work we had the chance to build our dream home, but where will we build ? Berrick looked good,But wait we have lived in Cranboune for 30 years and had seen the bad times and good times, all Cranbourne needed was a uplifting development that Cranbourne would be proud of,and get Cranbourne on the map for a great place to live,
    They gave us Brookland Greens ???
    (WE ARE ON THE MAP ALRIGHT)but you can’t live there. We have all been conned and let down, and the rats are running for cover. The city of Casey, EPA,and State Government,have not protected the many familys that put there faith and money into the Brookland Greens Comunity. We must all stick together and pursue the idiots that have put us in this situation, and I mean all of he Brookland Greens residents,our properties are worth very little and the stigma will last for years,and so will the finger pointing. They will hope that it will just fade away, so we will have to keep it in the spotlight as much and as long as possible.
    Also, what else is leaching out??

    Posted by Terry Fox | September 16, 2008, 8:47
  13. I work for a building surveyor who issued permits at Brookland Greens.
    Residents have little chance of winning a lawsuit, as the land contract (137b) which the owners sign before we issue the permit clearly states that there is a risk of methane leaching into the property. All the owners will have signed this contract (at least all of the recent owners will have).

    Posted by Josh | September 16, 2008, 16:20

    Posted by Terry Fox | September 17, 2008, 10:58
  15. I told my wife Janet that I would attend the school play on her behalf and that it wouldn’t look good if she didn’t turn up to the Council meeting. But she insisted she didn’t want to attend.

    What more can a husband do ?

    Posted by BOB | September 18, 2008, 9:44
  16. THose talking about legal issues and that the City of Casey cannot be sued.

    Perhaps you should all look up and read the Rule of ‘Rylands V Fletcher’ recently used in South Australia.

    Than come back and say council can’t be sued.

    WRONG !!!!!!!!!

    Posted by Legal Eagle | September 18, 2008, 9:48
  17. I am now a bit concernd about what is underground at the land fill, and what else is leaching out underground. Municipal Waste does not include hospital waste, chicken processing waste, Qantas waste,etc ???.
    Was Vcat given missleading infomation of the waste that has been dumped there,Who in the council gave the OK for the dumping of toxic rubbish from out side of the shire. Did the EPA moniter the dumping of rubbish in proper manner. I am starting to smell a rat along with every one else. Was Vella allowed to keep extracting sand after the deal had been struck with the shire.
    At the council meeting, other than 3 councilers who where trying their hardest to help and understand, the rest seemed to be just a bunch of self promoting smirking imberciles rapt up in their own importance and promoters of burocratic bullsh#t. Remember Mr Tyler, a turd is still a turd no matter how much you polish it, and it is just as well the Mayor was not there her input would have been as usefull as a one legged man in a butt kicking competition.

    Posted by Terry Fox | September 19, 2008, 8:46
  18. It’s reported that Ombudsman’s office was poking around in Brimbank – wonder if they bumped into Old Man Seitz or Hakki.

    Posted by Anon Anonski | September 19, 2008, 12:39
  19. Terry Fox is right on the money. A huge rat is running around in the City of Casey avoiding all responsibility and doing nothing but attributing blame to everyone else except the City of Casey.

    One can only guess that this hugh rat is none other than CEO Mike Tyler who is only interested in keeping his $310.000 a year job.

    THis man is an absolute disgrace and what is worse is that he is being supported by the Mayor ‘Who Doesn’t Care’ Halsall.

    This so-called mother is only now prancing around in front of the media trying to reclame what little is left of her reputation, supported by Tyler and is concentrating more on her appearance instead of actually assisting the residents of this estate.

    I can’t believe that this council thinks by showing the Mayor and CEO walking around the estate that that may reduce the animosity the entire community has towards Janet ‘ The Mayor Who Doesn’t Care’ Halsall and CEO Mike’ The 310K Man’ Tyler. You are deluding yourself.

    I’m with Terry Fox all the way, bring on Slater & Gordon class action against council.

    Posted by George | September 19, 2008, 15:43
  20. Well well it looks like the CEO is on the run, or have school holidays come along
    just in the nick of time?? a ready made reason not to show up at up at meetings.Its a real shame that lot of families from the Gas fields will be missing their family home with their children on the school holidays. Is the Government going to help the Casy refugees ?? And the ones that are still at home can play pass the detector. If Tyler does not attend its not much of a loss, his constant smirking is iritating and lack of compassion apparant to every one. Never trust a man with two first names. And I think we should keep the Mayor out of the estate, the value of the properties have dropped enough. TWO MEETINGS THIS WEEK, every one should attend and stick together. I will be having a interveiw today with the Herald Sun and will be trying to keep the spotlight on the problems we are all facing. I am going to keep digging until I find out who is responsible, and who has had there hand in the cookie jar.

    Posted by Terry Fox | September 23, 2008, 13:27
  21. The corruption and sex scandals continue to surround Local government particularly at Melbourne, Whitehorse, Brimbank and Casey are the reason I believe we should get rid of the 3rd tier of government, and just have Federal and State Governments.

    Federal and State governments are made accountable through TV, radio and print media.

    Local government has little accountablity through local papers.

    Now mainly thanks to this website we see some of them exposed

    Posted by GET RID OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT | October 16, 2008, 11:30
  22. If only Brookland Greens Gas was the problem

    Lets get one think straight from the start, and that is, that I am a proud Cranbournite, and have been for more than 35 years. I have moved house 3 times but always stayed in the boundaries of the place we lovingly call Cranny. Like most people having a State government to worry about, not to mention Federal, we tend not to give much thought to whom is running our own back yard (Casey). We like to think that the local council would be there because they have a calling and ideals and are above political corruption, but alas this is just a fairy tail. What we have is a council that is socially and morally bankrupt and parasitic councillors that seek publicity at every opportunity that suits their ego.
    The last three months have been a real wakeup call for me and to many of the residents of Casey with the disaster of Brookland Greens. This put us back in the headlines as the most badly run councils in Australia. Let’s cast our minds back some time ago, the Bracks government was going to sack Casey council and appoint an administrator because of their total mismanagement of the City of Casey.
    They missed a golden opportunity to clean out some of the so-called councillors and administrators that spend more time trying to further there political and social standing by wheeling and dealing or back stabbing, when they should be looking after the welfare of Casey residents. I have attended several public meeting, and council meetings recently because my family and I are unlucky enough to be residents of Brookland Greens, which could be aptly, renamed Casey Gas Fields.
    I have observed to my dismay the council in action or should I say inaction.
    Every one in Casey should attend a council meeting at least once, its no wonder we are a laughing stock, and it would be really funny if it were not so tragic. It could only be described as watching a very badly organised Monty python sketch.
    You will see more hand balling than a full season of AFL matches and if you are into soap operas you wont miss out, there is more muckraking than Carrum Downs sewerage farm with personal assassinations that JR would be proud of. It doesn’t take too long before one realises that the smiling assassin on the top table is the one who has written the sketch and most of the councillors are not really running anything at all, just being directed. The ones that won’t be controlled are gagged and ridiculed; some councillors have gone so low as to embarrass a fellow councillor with personnel attacks to stop them asking the right questions.
    It is a sad fact that politics are fully entrenched in councils and this interferes with the decision making, and you can guarantee that with the council elections looming up, that behind closed doors deals are being done to keep the same old hanger ons in council. As residents of Casey we do have a chance to rid ourselves of these self-promoting council vandals and with luck, the puppet master that is controlling them. What we all need to do is have a real good look at who is standing for council and put all our political bias aside and vote for the person that is going to do the best for Casey. If we don’t do something it will be business as usual and we will all deserve every thing that we get!!!!

    This is my say
    Terry Fox

    Posted by Terry Fox | October 30, 2008, 9:00


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