A WAGGA councillor says the council needs to bring the conversation back to local issues rather than distracting itself with problems outside its power to fix.
To achieve this, Cr Tim Koschel plans to declare a state of emergency on roads and Lake Albert.
It's a decision that comes "off the back" of his fellow councillor Vanessa Keenan's intention to call on Wagga City Council to take a stand against climate change by - likewise - calling a state of emergency.
"Cr Keenan motion has divided the community at the moment, but it's not that people do not believe in climate change - just that it's not in the realm of the council to do so," he said.
"Our community are talking about fixing roads and the state of Lake Albert. Those are issues that I am working on and I believe more action needs to be done.
"Cr Keenan believes that calling a climate emergency will have an affect, so I would like to hope it would be no different for local issues."
Lake Albert has been plagued by blue-green algae and a lack of water for years and the city's backlog of road upgrades need the council's time and resources, says Cr Koschel.
Although the environment is important, says Cr Koschel, he considered it a matter for the state and federal governments. He said the council needs to support the two tiers of government rather than getting them offside.
"I see that by declaring a climate emergency, we will be working against them," he said.
"We can call this emergency and stoke the fire with fuel, but should we instead work with the state and federal governments who give us the funding - working against them could be hindering our chances."
A local husband-and-wife duo, Stewart and Erica Finemore, have conflicting opinions on the pressing need for a state of emergency for climate change - however, they agreed that the council's must start thinking local.
Mr Finemore said the city residents are facing many problems - and at the end of the day a climate emergency is not a high priority for local government bodies.
"They are not doing anything for the ratepayers and the council needs to focus on Wagga itself and turning this into a fantastic place to live," he said.
The council's priorities should be about creating more employment opportunities, says the local couple.
"Create more jobs, improve the lifestyle, getting more people off social security, educate the youth and hopefully reduce crime rates. It will make Wagga a better place," they said.
Cr Koschel will be absent at the next council meeting on July 8. He plans to bring his motion to declare a state of emergency for roads and Lake Albert at the meeting on July 22.
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