Fighting at the top

Cr Giardina has brought a defamation action against the Shire President and her husband over allegations made about him in an unsigned leaflet that was hand-delivered in May to homes in his South East council ward.

As the nomination period for council candidates opened yesterday, the Shire�s two top elected figures were involved in a brief Supreme Court of WA directions hearing in front of Justice Kenneth Martin, where a mediation plan timeframe was set in place.

Cr Bilich, who represented herself in court, asked that the deadline for the next step in the process be delayed until after the election period.

�As of today, this is the first day of local government elections and up until election day on October 17, my workload increases significantly,� she said.

Cr Giardina�s lawyer said the timeline first offered by Justice Martin, which gave both parties until the end of September to produce and exchange any related documents, was adequate.

Despite both parties agreeing there were only a few documents involved, Justice Martin accepted Cr Bilich�s request and granted her an extension until October 23.

A date for mediation was not set but Justice Martin expected it would occur in November or December.

Cr Giardina is a 28-year council veteran and intends to nominate for re-election. Cr Bilich is not a candidate as her term expires in 2017.