Fingers crossed as waiting starts

Submissions to the Local Government Advisory Board from both council and community groups closed on Thursday.

The City of Fremantle is happy to put its primary support towards the Local Government Minister’s proposal, which would see Fremantle lose Samson, O’Connor and North Fremantle but gain East Fremantle, Bicton, Palmyra, Hamilton Hill, Spearwood, Coogee and parts of Munster.

During the meeting, councillor Bill Massie restated his resignation at losing Samson and O’Connor, a sentiment which was backed up by councillor Dave Hume.

‘I don’t think anyone here is willingly ceding Samson and O’Connor but this is not a process we sought, it’s something we’re reacting to,’ cr Hume said.

‘However reality bites and the way the State Government has approached this is very much just cleaning up the lines and these are actually improved boundaries to what we offered.’

One word that arose several times during the meeting was ‘consistency’, as a number of councillors praised city officials for keeping their proposals and reasoning along the same lines throughout the whole process. They cited it as one of the reasons they had been given boundaries that were satisfactory not only to them but to the wider community.

While Fremantle officials were happy with their processes, Local Government Minister Tony Simpson openly criticised a number of councils on Thursday, urging them to stop spending money on misleading and expensive campaigns and to get on with their jobs instead.

‘It’s one thing to show pride in your community, it’s another to spread misinformation about potential rate rises, loss of assets and loss of services,’ he said.

‘The funds spent on costly campaigns could have been much better spent on such things as shade cloths, new playgrounds and fixing our roads.

‘Instead they have been spent on signs flying behind planes, free hamburgers for people who sign petitions and expensive mail outs.’ The LGAB is expected to finalise its recommendations in June.