A stink over public toilets was the centre of debate about a community garden in Merrylands at Holroyd Council.
Councillors argued over whether they should accept federal government funding and build a community garden in Byron Park before it had money to build a public toilet at the site.
Cr Allan Ezzy suggested a council estimate that a toilet would cost $70 to $80,000 was ‘‘ridiculous’.
‘‘People are going to there (to the garden) to work and will have to walk around cross-legged,’’ he sang out excitedly.
Cr Ezzy moved that the council defer allocating the $47,000 government grant until the wee problem could be solved.
Cr John Perry then stepped in and said deferring the garden’s construction would only make it more expensive to build in the future.
The councillors did their math and Cr Eddy Sarkis suggested a latrine could be paid for using the available money.
He suggested the council’s cost estimates of $10,000 for garden beds, $7000 to demolish a brick wall and $2000 for compost bins were exorbitant.
‘‘I think all this needs to be looked at in a little more detail to see if the estimates are estimates that exist, because to me they seem a little excessive,’’ he said.
Cr Ross Grove then took the council and gallery down memory lane to a camping trip he had once enjoyed.
‘‘I’ve been camping!’’ he exclaimed, ‘‘and I know how to dig.’’
Oh . . . Cr Grove then joked that gardeners should use their shovels to dig the old-fashioned ‘‘bush-dunny’’.
Eventually councillors resolved to review the estimated costings and seek funding for toilets to accompany the garden.