Local Government reform sees Cockburn communities merge with Fremantle and Melville

Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt.
Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt.

COMMUNITIES in Cockburn's north were last week processing the recent local government reform announcement, as they prepare to move into neighbouring councils next July.

Under recommendations accepted by Local Government Minister Tony Simpson, Cockburn is set to cede North Coogee and Hamilton Hill to the City of Fremantle while North Lake, Coolbellup, its part of Leeming and Jandakot Airport will move into the City of Melville.

While disappointed to be leaving the City of Cockburn, which will amalgamate with Kwinana to form the City of Jervoise Bay, Hamilton Hill resident and community figurehead Chris Ferreira said the aim was to ensure Hamilton Hill and North Coogee were not frozen out by a city considered CBD-focused.

‘The concern is we will be lost in the City of Fremantle,’ he said. ‘That relationship we’ve built with Cockburn is something we’re going to have to recreate with the City of Fremantle, to ensure the services, facilities, resources and support that we’ve had in the past continues.’

Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt said the City had always considered Hamilton Hill and North Coogee residents as part of the broader Fremantle community.

‘Our plan is to ensure new City of Fremantle residents feel part of the Fremantle Council as quickly as possible,’ he said.

‘Fremantle’s ethos from the start has always been to retain service levels and facilities, so in lots of ways, their experience won’t change a whole lot.’

Dr Pettitt said his City intended to work with Cockburn Council to ensure community groups were identified and communicated with.

Coolbellup Community Association treasurer Pip Brennan admitted there was uncertainty among residents following the announcement.

She said the aim was to ensure a continuation of council support, including the upkeep of local parks, support for community events and the following through of the revitalisation strategy laid out by the City of Cockburn.

‘It’s no secret we were fighting to stay in Cockburn,’ she said. ‘But we want Melville to know we’re a very positive suburb.’