The City of Canning received a poor financial sustainability score

Canning's financial position is sound according to the commissioner.
Canning's financial position is sound according to the commissioner.

CANNING Commissioner Steven Cole says the City's financial position is sound, despite claims its finances were poorly managed.

As part of the local government reform, councils were given financial sustainability scores to help the Local Government Advisory Board determine which proposals formed strong local governments.

The Western Australia Treasury Corporation’s (WATC) financial rating analysis showed the City of Canning had a financial sustainability score of 49 out of 100.

The City of Melville achieved a financial viability score of 78.

Mr Cole said the standardised modelling did not recognise some unique elements of the City’s operations.

‘This included the previous Council’s strategic approach to maintaining a low level of rates and a high level of service provision,’ Mr Cole said.

‘While Canning rated relatively lower on the WATC scale compared to other local authorities, the rating should not be considered an adverse reflection on how the City has been administered.’

Mr Cole said grant funding used to support the expense of delivering community services, liked aged care, may not have been given appropriate recognition in the analysis.

But Riverton MLA Mike Nahan said the City’s low score was inexcusable.

‘Claims that the City of Canning has been well managed and that it is a viable authority have proven to be incorrect, highlighted by its dismal financial sustainability score,’ Dr Nahan said.

‘This is inexcusable given its strong rateable base and its large amount of industrial area.

‘The City of Canning ranked 28th out of 30 metropolitan local governments, clearly indicating that it has been poorly managed recently, which ultimately contributed to the Board’s decision to break it up.’

The expanded City of Melville has a financial sustainability level of 77 and the new City of Gosnells 73.