Premier positive on boundary change

Premier positive on boundary change

PREMIER Colin Barnett is confident that rates will decrease for Subiaco and Nedlands residents who will become City of Perth ratepayers in July.

Last week, State Parliament enacted the controversial City of Perth Bill, which will extend Perth City Council boundaries to include Kings Park, QEII Medical Centre, UWA and Perth Children’s Hospital.

Some Subiaco and Nedlands ratepayers will also come within the new boundary.

Mr Barnett said he was delighted the Act had become a reality and Perth would have a true capital city.

“With respect to the residents, the (State) Government hasn’t had much complaint at all,” he said.

“Some individuals have, but I am confident that people will see a fall in their rates, that they will see at least as good, probably better services from the City of Perth and I think they will see their property value rise with a City of Perth address.”

Lord Mayor Lisa Scaffidi said the Act was “history-making”.

“The City of Perth Act will provide the necessary structure and legislation to ensure local and State government can work together on vitally important issues,” she said.

“Given that every other capital has had a (capital city Act) for some time, it’s appropriate that Perth now also has this because it’s a very empowering piece of legislation to allow us to focus on economic development for the City and the State.”

Subiaco Mayor Heather Henderson said the council had fought hard to keep its residents.

“Our residents were silenced on this matter,” she said. “There was no consultation with this community of 3000 people and we’re understandably disappointed with the outcome. However, we are looking to the future and will be working closely with the City of Perth to ensure the transition is as seamless as possible.”

Ms Scaffidi said she understood Subiaco council and residents were disappointed.

“However, the assessment we’ve done of the financial figures of Subiaco do not suggest to us that it is a financial catastrophe for them and from our advocacy perspective we have been focusing on growing the capital city and getting the boundary in the position it needed to be,” she said.

“It was nonsensical previously to have a major world-class university divided across three local government authorities.

“It was not serving them, the capital city and the people of WA at all well.”