THE number of letters to the editor that the Western Advocate has received in the past week about the city's bins is a reminder of the old maxim about local government: that it's all about roads, rates and rubbish.
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Ratepayers will always want their council to have an eye on the future and be prepared to leave something big behind (witness the current debates in Bathurst about Hereford Street and local water security), but they also won't let their council forget about the finer details.
Indeed, it's what must make local government such a good training ground for those who make the leap to state or federal politics: local government decisions very rarely go unnoticed and, if they are unpopular, you will hear all about it in the supermarket, the pub, takeaway shop or newsagency.
Or in the letters section of the newspaper.
Bathurst Regional Council's decision to run a trial of fortnightly pick-ups (rather than weekly) for the red lid bin hasn't found too many supporters among those who write to our letters page, who have asked how a fortnightly pick-up would be handled by larger families and how such a change could be justified when rates are going up.
And they are valid criticisms.
But then again, Bathurst Regional Council might have in mind the bruising criticism it received six years or so ago when it introduced the green lid food and garden waste bin to the city - and the general acceptance that followed.
Though it would hardly be known now, when the green bin has a very comfortable place among most local households, its addition generated some angst at the time.
It's easy to be dismissive of those who would tie themselves in knots about whether we have three bins or two or whether we have our rubbish collected fortnightly or weekly, but, in the end, this is the stuff of life.
The water that comes out of the tap in our backyard, the rubbish tip we use on the weekend and the local park where we take the kids to have a run around are all part of the mechanics of our life - as is the garbage truck that rumbles into our street at regular intervals.
We generally expect the things provided to us by local government to stay the same unless there is a good argument that, in changing them, it is because they will be improved.
If council does end up changing the routine for the city's bins, the challenge will be to make and win that argument.
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