NEW Melville Mayor George Gear has listed talking to the community as his key priority in his vision for the City.
The former Tangney MHR defeated long-time Mayor Russell Aubrey in an often toxic election.
“When I was a marginal member, I used to have a policy, we used to send 250 letters per week inviting people in for coffee,” he said.
“The value of that is that you actually get to talk to people, it’s not via Facebook, it’s not via letters, it’s actually face to face.
“The measures I’ve put in place with us having people come in and see us every Friday, we start learning about what people in the community want.”
Mr Gear said he wanted to break down the bloc voting that had seen councillors vote the “same way, all the time on all the issues.”
“That defeats the purpose of having local government and it defeats the purpose of decision-making because instead of getting 12 or 13 views, you are getting five or six views,” he said.
“What I’ll tell them is this, I want them to bring in their values, their life experiences, and discussions they’ve had with ratepayers to bear on whatever we are voting on.”
Mr Gear said he wanted the council to look at the administrative costs of delivering services.
“What I want to do is start tracking how much it’s costing us to deliver services and once you do that, you can start getting those costs down,” he said.
“Another thing I want to do is start benchmarking the services we deliver to ratepayers.
“That is, if someone comes in with a concern at 10am on a Monday, it’s logged and it’s logged out when we’ve fixed it and then we rate their satisfaction.
“Over time we can build up a profile of how well we are delivering services.”
Mr Gear’s solutions to the key issues plaguing Melville:
Melville Bowling Club
Mr Gear said he will pursue a long-term lease for the club, as it was an important community centre.
Tompkins Park redevelopment
Mr Gear said he would look at avenues to make the Mt Pleasant Bowling Club viable and would take advice from the existing Tompkins Park clubs about what should happen at the reserve.
Bert Jeffrey Park
Mr Gear said an independent arbiter would be brought in to talk to the Applecross Cricket Club and residents who lived near the park who opposed the club moving into the reserve.
Mr Gear said he would support residents and look to bring in a policy where everyone understood the rules.
Roe 8 and 9
Mr Gear said while he was Mayor, the City would not take a position on State or Federal Government matters.
Riseley Centre paid parking
Mr Gear said an extension of the first hour free was a logical solution.