City determined to leave MRC

A request by Stirling to extend its exemption by another year to mid-2014 did not get support from the MRC administration, which recommended an extension to September.

Cr Dot Newton moved an alternative motion that Stirling start delivering municipal waste to MRC again from July 1, a motion accepted despite opposition from all three Stirling representatives.

MRC chairman Russ Fishwick said escalating operational costs influenced the decision as the other members, including the cities of Vincent and Perth, faced higher tipping fees while Stirling was not tipping its rubbish at either the Neerabup resource recovery facility or Tamala Park landfill.

Cr Alannah MacTiernan moved another motion for urgent talks with Stirling to retain it as an MRC member and that passed six votes to four.

One of Cr MacTiernan’s reasons was the cost to remaining members if Stirling withdrew, in terms of the capital settlement required, an estimated $6.2 million, and the higher cost per tonne already borne over the past two years.

Cr Fishwick said MRC previously tabled an offer to Stirling for the withdrawal, which it had not accepted, and the May 2 decision effectively withdrew that offer.

He said he had written to Stirling, and would ask Local Government Minister Tony Simpson not to approve the withdrawal application.

City of Stirling Mayor David Boothman struck back, accusing the MRC member councils of changing their minds.

‘As a matter of record, three years ago after a breakdown in negotiations over the introduction of a flat rate tipping fee whereby the other member councils wanted Stirling to cross subsidise their budgets at a significant cost to our ratepayers, the other member councils told the City that they wanted Stirling out of the MRC and asked us to leave,’ he said.

‘The City agreed to a withdrawal at the other member council’s request’