Councillor in jail threat over units

Councillors were faced with applications for three blocks of eight units in Bassendean at the June 23 meeting, which reignited debate about higher-density living.

The developments are proposed for Anzac Terrace, Second Avenue and Fourth Avenue, which has gone through an extensive application history dating back to March last year.

The Fourth Avenue plan was reconsidered by order of the State Administrative Tribunal (SAT), after the original proposal for five units and the existing house was rejected last year.

Councillors have already considered or reconsidered five similar applications this year at previous meetings.

�If I have to go to jail, I will go to jail,� she said. �I am not against development but this is ridiculous.�

Her comment was in response to the possibility that if any of those applications were rejected without any planning basis and it went to the SAT, the applicant could move to have the town reimburse their case costs.

Cr Brinkworth said she was there to represent the community, which did not support an influx of multiple dwellings, and that it was offensive for there to be consequences if councillors voted against the applications.

Cr Gerry Pule said he hoped people would be up in arms if Cr Brinkworth was threatened with jail time.

Mayor John Gangell reiterated, as he has in past meetings, that there was no planning basis to reject the applications and that it would cost thousands of dollars to debate it with the SAT.

Cr Mike Lewis put it on the record that he would only vote yes to save ratepayers� money by avoiding a case with the SAT.

Cr Pule worked out it would cost the town about $60,000 if its decision were appealed by the SAT.

All three applications were passed, with councillors Brinkworth and Paul Bridges voting against them.